All About Meat For Consumers

20th April 2019


Myth #1: Beef consumption should be limited because it’s bad for your heart and raises overall cholesterol.
FACT: Contrary to conventional wisdom, research shows that including lean beef every day, as part of a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle, can reduce risk factors for heart disease.

A randomized-controlled trial found that participants who consumed lean beef, as part of a dietary pattern rich in fruits, vegetables and lowfat dairy and low in saturated fat, experienced a 10% decrease in LDL cholesterol and a moderate decrease in blood pressure, both markers of lower heart disease risk.

Another study found that subjects who followed a healthy and higher-protein weight loss dietary pattern, combined with physical activity, and consumed lean beef four or more times a week, saw reductions in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

In addition, evidence has shown that beef has a similar effect on total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and triglycerides as poultry or fish. The current body of evidence provides convincing support that lean beef can support a strong heart, as part of a healthy dietary pattern and lifestyle.

Myth #2: Americans already consume too much protein.
FACT: Although the American diet has evolved over time, Americans have not increased their percentage of calories from protein in 30 years

On average, Americans (age 2 years and older) consume 5.7 ounces from the Protein Foods group each day (meat, poultry, eggs, fish/seafood, nuts, seeds and soy products), which is at levels consistent with the recommendations of the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs).

Including high-quality protein, like lean beef, in a healthy dietary pattern can help Americans meet their protein needs, improve satiety and preserve lean muscle mass.

Myth #3: Americans consume too much red meat, especially beef.
FACT: On average, Americans consume 1.7 ounces of beef daily, which is well within the recommended amount of 5.5 ounces from the Protein Foods group per day.The fact is, beef is a natural source of essential nutrients with relatively few calories, which makes it a great lean protein option that Americans can enjoy at any meal.

Myth #4: Beef is the primary source of fat in the diet.
FACT: Beef contributes ten percent or less of saturated fat and total fat to the American diet.

Many people are surprised to learn that not all the fats in beef are saturated fats. In fact, half of the fatty acids in beef are monounsaturated – the same heart-healthy type of fat found in olive oil. Approximately one-third of beef’s total saturated fat is stearic acid, which has been shown to be neutral in its effects on blood cholesterol levels in humans.

Myth #5: It is difficult to find lean cuts of beef in the grocery store.
FACT: Thanks to enhancements in cattle breeding and feeding, today’s beef is leaner than ever as more than 65 percent of the whole muscle cuts sold through the supermarket meat case are lean when cooked with visible fat trimmed.

In fact, the number of beef cuts that qualify as “lean” increased sixfold from 1989 to 2013.

Many Americans’ favorite cuts, such as Top Sirloin, Tenderloin (Filet Mignon), Strip Steak and Flank Steak, are lean, when cooked with visible fat trimmed.

Myth #6: Beef is difficult and time-consuming to prepare.
FACT: Beef is a nutrition powerhouse that can be easy to prepare by using common ingredients and matching the right cooking method to the right cut. By planning ahead, you can also save time in the kitchen when preparing recipes made with beef.

Beef can be paired with fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and there are many cuts of beef available in the marketplace. Therefore, you have an endless amount of culinary possibilities at your fingertips to create a delicious, satisfying and healthy meal.

For Beef Grading Go HERE

The following is the path that great beef steaks and roasts take to get to your favorite meat case.
The weights are approximates.
Today the carcass, in most cases, is processed at the packinghouse into primal cuts for delivery to retail market.
For the purpose of this article will will assume the carcass is delivered to the retail market in hindquarters and forequarters, just like it was in the old days.

Live weight 1200—–Carcass weight 590 lbs

This is the path from beef carcass to individual beef cuts.

Carcass to Primals Path
(1)Chuck to Sub-Primals (i.e. Shoulder Clod)
(2) Sub Primal to Individual Cuts (i.e. Beef Clod Roast)

The Beef carcass consists of a FOREQUARTER and HINDQUARTER.
The Beef carcass has 13 ribs.
The FOREQUARTER is separated from the HINDQUARTER between the 12th and 13th rib, leaving 1 rib on the HINDQUARTER and 12 ribs on the FOREQUARTER

The forequarter is separated into two primals, CHUCK (ribs 1 to 5 inclusive) and RIB (ribs 6 to 12 inclusive)

The hindquarter is separated into two primals, ROUND and LOIN

Primals are groups of muscles from a particular section of the carcass.

Sub-Primals are produced, from the Primals, by meat cutters at retail market meat departments.

NOTE: The amount of Beef processed and boxed at the packing house, and delivered to supermarkets, began to grow in the 1970s.
Very little beef comes into retail operations in carcass form anymore.
I suspect, with the interest in grass-fed beef, this might change back going forward

Sub-Primals are then cut into individual cuts.

Beef cuts can be single muscles (ribeye) or can include sections of several muscles (Porterhouse (part of tenderloin & top loin)

Cuts from the center of the animal (LOIN & RIB ), which get little or no exercise, are the tender cuts, cooked using DRY HEAT
Cuts from the CHUCK or ROUNDwhich get the most exercise, are the tough cuts, cooked using MOIST HEAT

Cut names may vary from region to region or country to country.

Popular Cuts From Each Primal.
Bone-in cuts in RED
Stew meat can be made from any part of the primals.
Meat for grinding can be made from any of the primals.
CHUCK…generally requires MOIST HEAT Method (described here)
Sub Primal: Brisket
chuck blade steak—chuck blade roast—chuck 7-bone steak—chuck 7-bone roast—o-bone steak—o-bone roast—boneless chuck steak—boneless chuck roast—chuck eye steak—chuck eye roast—flat iron steak—shoulder clod roast-shoulder steak—brisket whole—brisket flatcut—brisket point cut—petite roast—flanken ribs—neck pot roast
Other Names: western grillers—cross rib roast—english cut roast—espaldilla

RIBusually cooked using DRY HEAT Methods (described here)
Sub Primal: Plate
rib steak large end–rib steak small end–rib
roast( ribs 9-12)–large end rib roast ( ribs 6-9)–whole rib roast–boneless ribeye steak–boneless ribeye roast–beef back ribs
Other Names:Delmonico steak/roast–Market steak–Spencer steak–Standing rib roast

LOINusually cooked using DRY HEAT methods
Sub-Primals: Short Loin–Headloin.

t-bone steak–porterhouse steak–top loin steak–top loin steak–top loin roast
Other Names: new york steak–new york strip steak–new york strip roast–shell roast
strip loin roast–Kansascity steak–filet mignon–filet steak-chateaubriand

top sirloin–top sirloin roast–bottom sirloin steak–bottom sirloin roast–tritip steak-tritip roast–tenderloin steak–tenderloin roast–sirloin butt
Other Names: filet mignon–filet steak–chateaubriand–culotte–triangle–cattleman steak–

ROUNDgenerally requires MOIST HEAT methods
Sub Primal; Knuckle
round steak full cut—round steak full cut—top round steak—top round roast—bottom round steak—bottom round roast—eye round steak—eye round roast—sirloin tip steak—sirloin tip roast—silverside roast—rump roast—rump roast—watermelon roast—heel of round roast—hind shank—
Other Names: london broil—milanesa-


Typical Yields From A Beef Carcass
Live Weight
Dressing %
Slaughter Weight
Top Round
Bottom Round
Stew/ Ground
Fat/ Bone
Strip Steak
Sirloin teak
Tenderloin Steak
Stew/ Ground
Fat/ Bone
Rib Roast
Rib Steak
Short Ribs
Stew/ Ground
Fat/ Bone
Blade Roast/ Steak
Arm Roast/ Steak
Cross Rib Pot Roast
Stew/ Ground
Fat/ Bone
Flank, Brisket, ect.
Flank Steak
Pastrami Squares
Outside Skirt
Inside Skirt
Boneless Brisket
Stew/ Ground
Fat/ Bone
Kidney, Hanging Tend.
Breaking Fat
% of Carcass Pounds
4.85% 32.5
4.38% 29.4
2.36% 15.8
1.09% 7.3
4.68% 31.4
4.49% 30.1
2.75% 18.5
1.37% 9.2
2.10% 14.1
2.15% 14.4
0.95% 6.4
3.18% 21.3
3.72% 25.0
3.23% 21.7
1.29% 8.7
1.21% 8.1
2.31% 15.5
1.18% 7.9
4.75% 31.9
4.98% 33.4
3.56% 23.9
11.68% 78.4
4.40% 29.5
0.50% 3.4
0.41% 2.8
0.31% 2.1
0.35% 2.3
2.24% 15.0
12.24% 82.1
2.82% 18.9
0.69% 4.6
3.90% 26.2
Total Yield
In Lbs

Cooking Methods Described

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Roasting is to cook foods by surrounding them in dry heat usually in an oven or by spit roasting over an open fire or on an outdoor grill.

Broiling is to cook foods at a high temperature with an overhead heat source, four to six inches below the heat source. meat is usually only turned once during cooking

Sauteing is to cook fast in a small amount of fat. The pan should be preheated to allow the food to be seared quickly.


In this method of cooking, the food is cooked using convection heating. The food is put into an enclosed area where heat is then applied and the movement of heat within the confined space, acts on the food to cook.

Boiling is cooking in liquid at 212 °F at sea level. The liquid may be water, a seasoned liquid, wine, stock, or a mixture
to 205 Simmering is cooking in a liquid just below the boiling point. The temperature of the liquid is 185 °F
Poaching is to cook in a liquid that is not actually bubbling at 165°F to 180 °F It is usually used to cook delicate foods such as fish and eggs.


In the process of cooking using the stewing method, food is cooked using a lot of liquid. Different kinds of vegetables are chopped, diced or cubed and added to the pot with pieces of selected meat, fish or chicken is also chopped and added to the stew. The liquid is slightly thickened and the stewed food is served in that manner.


Grilling is done an on open grid or grate over a heat source.
The heat source can be electric,charcoal, or a gas flame.

There are two types of frying:

Pan frying is done in a moderate amount of fat over moderate heat.
This method is used for larger pieces of meat, turned more than once during cooking.

Deep fat frying
is to fry foods completely submerged in fat, meat must be fried at 350°F to 360°F degrees to minimize fat absorption of the nutrients are not lost in cooking.

The method of cooking food by barbequing is usually associated with fund raising activities, parties or picnics. It is most suitable to cooking meat cutlets, fish or chicken pieces. The food is usually marinated with spices and tenderizers (for meat cuts) for sometime before it is cooked. With this method of cooking, a sheet of metal with stands is heated up and oil is used to cook the food. A sufficient amount of oil is heated up and the food is added.


Steaming is cooking foods by exposing them directly to steam, on a rack above the boiling liquid, by wrapping foods tightly, or in a covered pan allowing the food to cook in its own steam, it is a good method for fish, not meat.

To cook food items briefly in boiling water is known as blanching, meats are placed in cold water and brought to a boil or placed directly into boiling water.
After a brief cooking time, they are removed and plunged in ice water to stop the cooking process and to set the color. Meats are blanched briefly to leach out impurities or salt.