meat to buy to make steak tips

Guys, i pay over 5 dollars a lb for flap meat, which makes me be very careful about how much i put on a salad or sub - and if i try to stay within 25-30 % food cost - my salad looks really cheap, and steak tip salad is 7.50 at my store. Am i doing smth wrong? And do i have to buy flap meat for steak tips? if i add meat tenderizer and marinate them for like 3 days, is there amy cheaper meat cut that would still be suitable for making steak tips?

Tell us more about your method and what “steak tips” means to you. If you are talking about grilled or sauteed little chunks of meat that get seared all around, and served medium, to med-rare, then flap is a really good cut to use. That means it is an expensive one, as you certainly told us.

You can use lots of options, like sirloin, anything from the short loin, sirloin, flank or rib primal cuts. If you handle it well, things like chuck eye can be used. Aim for the less used, and less common names.

If you get into braising, you can get to the chuck primal. Chuck steak is great if cooked low and slow, but gets chewy when high dry heat is used. However, from Hormel’s website: The chuck eye is a continuation of the rib-eye meat. It is similar to the rib-eye meat of the rib primal (ribs 6-12) except that it is located in the chuck primal (ribs 1-5). So, chuck eye could be the secret source for you if you find it affordable.

All that saidm, I use the sirloin family most often for balance of cost with tender/flavorful. Top sirloin, tri-tip steak/roast, bottom sirloin if I must. In the shop, I use my SteakEze pucks and griddle them up for salads and sabdwishes. Different product altogetherm, I know.

God, this is so much information for me. i dont really know anything about different cuts, but defeniatedly check them out next time i go restaurant depot. steak tip we serve are usually medium well to well done and we serve them in salads, subs and dinners - over rice or ff, so we r not triing to be fancy, i would rather give away bigger portion. so i guess, flap meat is not mandarory meat to use when grilling little marinated peaces of meat on a grill or charbroiler, i’ll experiment with the cut you mentioned above, i just wanted to make sure i will not be doing anything way off the line when switch to a cheaper cut. Thanks

We buy bulk Round steak (costs us around $6 per kilo wholesale in a 4 - 6 kg piece) and then cut it and sprinkle tenderiser on it.

It is probably the cheapest cut but with the tenderiser and some marinade it comes out really well. Granted we only use our steak on pizzas (small strips) and we par cook it and freeze in portion controls but it still comes out great.

What I find as a great marinade addittion to tenderise the meat is pineapple juice which we save when emptying the bulk cans to the make bench. We use this mixed with our BBQ Marianade sauce for our pork ribs and after marianting for a couple of days the meat is really soft and tender.


the chuck is not a good selection for you 2 use…much too tough…it needs to be “slow” cooked…

your best off staying in the sirloin family, but I’ve not dealt w/Restaurant Depot, so I don’t know what they offer

“breaking down” or cutting a whole sirloin is not that hard…you can also get a smaller cut, called Top Butt and Tri-Tips are good…

check out this link for info… … =22&id=338

Hello dmitri,A loin or rib eye is your best bet,if your concern is food cost then raise your price.I wouldn’t do any type of chuck though for it is tough and dry when trying to be used the way your using it.We use filet mignon on ours because I already have it in house for our filet mignon sandwich.


Sorry about that. You’ll find that simple questions aren’t always simple. Meat and choices of cuts is one of those topics I’ve read extensively on, and have figured out that there is a whole lot to learn about getting the results you want with affordable meat cuts. You can use really cheap meat to get great results if you know what you are doing.

Just ask the meat guy at your store about something affordable from the Sirloin primal cut. If he’s really a meat guy, he’ll be able to help you. Regardless of the other posts, the Chuck Eye is a cut that is comparable to sirloin in handling and eating qualities. Top round is useable, like Dave said, but do learn how to handle and cook it for best results. It can easily get a “liver” sort of off flavor if cooked to long.

Tenderloin cuts (filet mignon) to me lack the beefy flavor I look for. Smooth texture, but light on flavor. Loin steaks and Ribeyes are definitely in the ‘pricey’ end of the spectrum, but a really good steak for tenderness and big flavor in one piece of meat.

Hey Nick. With your knowledge of meats you should be a butcher.

Better hours and more profit, especially when you do the old butchers trick of putting your finger on the edge of the scale :lol:


And I hear you have a little extra space in your building…Butcher by Day…Pizza guy by night…RCS…

Nick I don’t know where your getting your ‘filet mignon’ from butt how it doesn’t taste like steak to you pal is something I never heard of.The loin is the most tender and tasty part of the steer.As far as chuck goes,one there is no comparison,two I was just stating that it isn’t efficient at all to use on a pizza line as far as prep and cooking time goes.I know you may be a professor of some sort as far as you are a well read individual,but I have been in this lovely business with no books just hard labor for 30 years.My hat is off to your knowledge though.

I hit a nerve I didn’t intend. I am truly sorry if I stepped on you in my reply. Beef cuts (let alone grades) is a topic of some passion for me, and I can get carried away. Really, I am only stating my own opinions on the whole filet thing. Especially in a tight price situation, the flavor impact of tenderloin versus the more active muscles is pretty distinct, given the price differences. Putting a ribeye next to a tenderloin medalion makes a stark flavor difference. Textural, too, though.

The fact that you make tenderloin work in your place is a testament to your business. Lots and lots of people like the tenderness and milder flavor of that cut, and finding the price point that they accept means you have done a really good job giving them what they want for a price they’ll pay.

I’ll bet it is even more useful that we should be looking at the USDA grading of our beef (in the states) to be sure we are comparing pricing and quality levels. Really, asking about meat is so much like asking about cheese, or cflour, or tomatoes. Everyone has some information that’s useful, and it is a big, massive topic with lots of different things going on in it. I just poppe4d up a quick and dirty site about grades of beef: … rades!.htm


What I really want to know from you is what meat cut you use for cheesesteaks. I have heard some folks do use tenderloin, and some use really thin ribeye. what’s been your experience on that? I just go easy out with the SteakEze pucks. they are tastey, and simple to use . . . . and our customers love 'em. However, it would be lots of fun to find an ‘upscale’ way to do them for my next dining room concept. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just looking for more ideas on making it work in the kitchen.

I know about the beef on the cow and in the package . . . putting it into a sandwich and process is where I have wayyyyy less experience.

I’ve found a bulk package or shaved sirloin is more than adequate for cheesesteaks…

ribe-eye is just more expensive…

but either of these solution is cheaper than pre-portioned steak-eze type products…

I’m paying $2.40# from Roma

to my knowledge all products like this are not “quality” cuts, but more than likely from utility grade, #2 grade etc.

they are also quite heavily marinated, to tenderize…

plus, after we season w/butter/peppers/onions/garlic etc - that is the “taste” we’re seeking…

Hello Nick,Using the filet is pricy butt I get a good buck for the sand.and for the salads.As far as my cheese stks. we use rib eye sliced very thin.I am in Philly so we couldn’t get away w/ any of the frozen stks.Way to much compitition here when it comes to chse.stks. and hoagies.Back to the nerve you struck :lol: ,when I give advice I tend to not think of cost more than whats more efficient on the line like less prep time and overall quality of product.
Niccademo [don’t let your 'meat’loaf]

bottom round I use alot cheaper a little tough if u dont cook s-l-o-w

when talking about meat cuts here is how it is layed out, you have your five primal cuts. Chuck, rib, short loin, Sirloin, and round

the most tender beef comes from the short loin, the most tender of those being from the tenderloin. the next most tender cuts come from the rib, such as rib eye steaks, the next most tender cuts come from the sirloin. Then the next most tender cuts come from the round (which are the hind legs) then the toughest cut comes from the chuck (the front legs) The reason the chuck and round cuts are tough are because those are the muscles the cows work the most. The more a muscle works the more tough it will be. The round cuts have a lack of fat and marbling which doesn’t make it good for quick marinating. The sirloin cuts are the most flavorful of all the cuts allthough they are tougher than the rib and short loin cuts. With a good marinade you can get a good steak tip out of sirloin. (which you see used most for steak tips)

That was the upper half of the beef, now for the lower half

the primal cuts on the lower half are

brisket, shank, plate and flank. All of which are tougher cuts than the cuts from the rib. The most common cooking method for all of these cuts are braising, a wet heat cooking method. Of course, you have the brisket which is smoked most of the time. Your cornish beef comes from the brisket.

your best bet would be to get some sirloin to make your steak tips from, find a good marinade that is highly acidic. The acidity will help tenderize it. Then braize it in the marinade.

ADpizzaguy. Great knowledge, thanks.

You and Nick should go into business together in butcher shop with your combined knowledge of meat. Think of the money you could make with both of you having a thumb on the edge of the scale. :lol:


I could be a butcher, but my passion is food service. Nothing gets me off more than serving good food.

I would love nothing more than to be able to operate a full service restaurant where we would cut our own steaks. But I’m in Pizza, and still… I love it because I know that I have a better pie than any pizza place in the area. I just need to find a good assistant and start turning things around.

I’ve always wanted to own a pizza/bbq place that used a brick fire oven for the pizzas and slow smokers for the bbq.

maybe one day. After all, I’m in one of the birth places of bbq… North Carolina.