How to Cut Steak

The Editors at Food Fanatic | Food Fanatic
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Learn how to cut steak the right way, for juicy and tender results every time

Have you ever read a steak recipe and wondered exactly what is meant when you are instructed to 'slice your steak against the grain'?

Grilled Chile Lime Flank Steak Photo

Most of the time, you have probably just cut your steak any old way, but it's actually important to cut it correctly! This article will explore how to cut your steak and why you should be cutting it against the grain. 

What is the 'grain' in steak?

First of all, let’s start by defining what we mean by the grain. And no, we don’t mean grains like barley!

Grilled Chile Lime Flank Steak Picture

Instead, we are talking about the direction in which the fibers of the muscle within the steak are aligned. You can see them much more clearly on cuts of steak that are usually tough, like flank or skirt steak. With leaner cuts, like sirloin, the grain can be a little harder to identify.

When cutting against the grain, you should cut through the fibers, thus shortening them, rather than cutting in the direction they run. When cutting, hold your knife at an angle so that it cuts almost diagonally through the steak.

Grilled Chile Lime Flank Steak Image

Cutting the muscle fibers in this way breaks them up, which actually makes eating steak easier. It will not be as chewy, which makes it much more tender and delicious. 

The importance of resting your steak

Whilst  perfectly seasoning and cooking your steak are crucial steps, how you deal with your steak after cooking is equally as important.

Do remember that after cooking, but before slicing, you should always allow your meat to rest. You may disregard this step in many recipes, but you shouldn't because it matters!

Not only is it important to allow your meat to rest to help flavor the steak and allow its juices to redistribute themselves, but it also allows it to reach the perfect consistency for cutting.

Grilled Chile Lime Flank Steak Pic

It is best to allow your steak to rest for anywhere between 5-10 minutes before cutting. 

Using the right knife for the job

Now, don’t spend all this time perfecting your steak and allowing it to rest for an adequate time, only to then go and butcher it with the wrong type of knife!

Always use a good, sharp knife to slice into your steak. You should also use a pair of tongs or a serving fork to hold your steak steady as you slice.

Perfect Grilled Ribeye Photo

As you slice your steak, be sure to cut off any fat. Most people do not enjoy the fatty parts of steak as it can be quite chewy and tough. You may be tempted to just trim off the fat prior to cooking, but the fat actually helps provide a great deal of flavor. That's why we recommend trimming it afterwards, just before serving.

Now that you know just how to cut steak to perfection, why not try this unique Coffee Rubbed Steak recipe? You might also like to learn how to cook a rib-eye steak - a mouthwatering cut and one of the richest, beefiest steaks available!

Steak Recipes

    When I want the best nachos EVER, I reach for the carne asada nachos. With this carne asada, you get all the flavor without hours of work, along with plenty of cheese, veggies, avocado, hot sauce, and MORE.
    Miso Marinated Steak Salad is the balanced blend of Asian flavors with steak, fresh greens, and vegetables. From the marinade to the dressing, all the elements make every bite pop.
    A simple and delicious recipe for Japanese Beef Curry, on the table in only 35 minutes!
    Steak Gorgonzola Pasta is boldly flavorful. This easy supper will be a new family favorite, we're sure of it.
    Flank Steak Tacos - Juicy flank steak marinated in lime juice, garlic, cilantro and more. Served in tortillas with your favorite toppings for taco night!
    Grilled Chipotle Lime Flank Steak with Creamy Avocado Salsa is a spicy, bright, and tangy take on your favorite grilled meat, just in time for summer. The heat and savory flavors of the steak with the bright, tangy salsa are ideal for eating on their own or even in tacos.
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