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Try Something New on the Grill

Flat Iron Tortas

Move over New York strip steak. I’m ready for something new. But...um…how do I begin? Luckily, Beau Klose, one of Whole Foods Market’s expert meat guys here in Texas, helped me navigate the meat counter pointing out hidden gems sure to make my summer more delicious and my grilling more adventurous.

Beef for Every Occasion

When I asked Beau for his favorite lesser-known cuts, he pointed out the tomahawk/thick bone-in rib steak, top sirloin steak and flat iron steak. Check these out plus a few more steaks to look for and when to give them a try.

  • Flat Iron Steak. Looking for a weeknight family meal solution? Beau points out that the flat iron steak is showing up on more menus but is still undiscovered by many shoppers. It’s great on the grill or in a hot skillet if firing up the grill isn’t an option. This super-flavorful cut has an easy-to-swallow price and is great for marinating.
  • Top Sirloin Steak. If you are hosting a large group, this cut goes a long way and won’t break the bank. “Top sirloin is the steak most often in my fridge at home,” said Beau. “This cut is not as pricey as a fillet or a strip steak, but if cooked to a perfect medium rare, it stands with the best of them.” He appreciates this cut’s versatility having used it for kabobs, satays, as a steak, for stroganoff and stir-fries – all with excellent results. Try this super-simple Top Sirloin Steak with Tarragon recipe and see how you like this cut. 
  • Skirt Steak. It’s a perfect cut for a big crowd (fajitas or tacos!) because it’s an affordable, quick-cooking cut. Marinate before grilling.
  • Short Rib Steak. Make afternoon backyard barbecues more delicious by cooking up this this extremely flavorful cut. Cook it slowly over indirect heat.
  • Tomahawk/Thick Bone-in Rib Steak. Cooking dinner for someone special? Reach for an impressive-looking cut for big appetites or date-night sharing. Beau explains, “These are the reigning king of steaks. (Sorry, porterhouse fans). They are a single rib cut (think Flintstones style) from the rib, which is rich in beefy goodness. Plus, the bone is frenched, meaning meat and fat around the tail of the rib have been removed to expose the clean bone.  These have the whole rib portion intact and the bone extends out 8-10 inches. That earns the wow factor."
  • Denver Steak. Reach for this rich, juicy, tender and well-marbled cut for a Saturday night dinner with friends. Just marinate and grill.

Like that? Try this!

Here’s a cheat sheet for when you’re deciding on your menu.

  • Appreciate earning oohs and aahs with a porterhouse or T-bone steak? Serve a tomahawk or thick bone-in rib steak.
  • Enjoy the special single serving of a fillet? Grill a petite top sirloin and wrap it in bacon if you want.
  • Like the full flavor of a rib-eye or New York strip steak? Try a flat iron steak.
  • Looking for leaner choices? Reach for boneless pork loins or grass-fed beef.

Hot Tips

If you’re cooking a new cut on the grill, follow these four tips for maximum enjoyment.

  1. Apply sugar-based sauces towards the end of the cooking time to avoid burning.
  2. For juicier, tastier results, let grilled meats rest for a few minutes before slicing or digging in.
  3. Slice steak against the grain for the best texture.
  4. Use a meat thermometer! Know your temps and stick to ‘em.

Keep in mind, the meat you grill is only as good as the meat you buy. All the meat in our meat department meet these high standards:

  • Vegetarian feed
  • No added hormones*
  • No antibiotics, ever

All beef, chicken, pork and turkey in our fresh meat cases must come from producers who have achieved certification to the 5-Step™ Animal Welfare Rating.

* Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in raising pork, poultry, goat, veal and bison. And we don’t allow them for lamb and beef, either.

Got a burning question? Fire away. Our expert butchers behind the meat counter are there to help. And be sure to pick up a copy of our Light Your Fire grilling guide in the meat department. You’ll find recipes and grilling tips including how to make compound butters and how to hack your grill and make it a smoker.

What lesser-known cuts of beef do you recommend grilling? Let me know in the comments section below.