ranch steaks and carrots

Recipes to Cook Some of the More Unique Cuts of Meat

Last Updated on April 15, 2021

Chicken breasts, ribeye, pork chops: These are all familiar hunks of meat that grace our tables every week.

Have you ever felt like branching out? Ever think about giving some of the more unique cuts of meat you see on restaurant menus and in the butcher’s case a try?

If so, we have you covered. ButcherBox offers a variety of cuts of meat difficult to find in typical grocery stores, from steaks to ribs to roasts.

Have you had your fill of braised short ribs or pork spare ribs? Try some Korean-style beef flanken short ribs or boneless country style ribs.

Do you need a new kind of beef roast to grace your oven? Try Coulotte roast, which boasts a thin layer of fat that keeps the beef rich and delicious.

There are also several kinds of steak, from flat iron to Denver steak to ranch steak. Whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong.

Beef Flanken Short Ribs

With all the flavor of thick beef short ribs, these beef flanken short ribs are unique in that they can be grilled or braised without growing tough. This is because they’re cut from a cross-section, thinly across the bones.

For cooking inspiration, look toward South Korea for a galbi-style recipe. Braise these beef flanken short ribs with a blend that is sweet and savory, like in this Korean BBQ short ribs recipe. An intensely flavorful marinade features notes of soy sauce, honey, rice wine, sesame oil, Asian pear, garlic, and more.

Bavette Steak

True bavette steak, also called flap steak, can be tricky to find in the U.S. despite its popularity in The United Kingdom. It’s a finely-textured, flat steak cut from the bib of the sirloin.

With a distinctive grain and tender meat, it’s akin to skirt steak and flank steak. In fact, it’s often confused with hanger steak. It’s meant to be cooked hot and fast, so flash-fry it, sear it, or grill it up. Cut it thinly across the grain for best results.

Here’s a simple, quick-cooking marinated bavette steak recipe to get you started.

Flat Iron Steaks

Flat iron steaks used to contain a tough sinew that made them less appealing, but researchers found a new way to cut them from the shoulder. Flat iron steaks are very lean yet rich with marbling, making for a deeply flavorful and meaty steak.

Flat iron steaks are best grilled or seared, and pair well with full-bodied sauces like a red wine glaze. Or, impart intense flavor directly on to the steaks with this pepper crusted flat iron with root vegetable mash recipe.

Coulotte Roast

While you may not have heard of it, the coulotte roast is one of the more tender cuts from the sirloin. It’s a large, boneless cut from the top of the sirloin cap. You’ll probably notice its thin layer of fat on top, which keeps the roast moist and delicious.

You can roast it whole or slice it into smaller steaks. Be sure to slice against the grain! Here’s an orange nutmeg coulotte roast with honey and herb-roasted parsnips to try. You’ll love the blend of sweet, savory and spicy flavors, and that it comes together in under an hour.

Denver Steak

The Denver steak comes from the same muscle as the ribeye, so it’s no shock that it’s amazingly marbled and rich. In fact, the Japanese—who call it the “zabuton” — liken it to a plush sitting cushion.

We recommend searing it or grilling it — high heat, fast-cooking preparations work best. You can stick with the Japanese theme and serve it with a miso-based sauce, like in this recipe.

Ranch Steak

Cut from the shoulder muscle, ranch steak is very lean — it’s typically trimmed of all fat. Still, it’s deeply flavorful. In fact, ButcherBox’s grass-fed ranch steaks boast a distinctive earthy flavor. They’ll cook up tender as a filet, but carry a deep, almost pot roast-like beefiness to them.

Grill or sear these lean steaks and serve them medium-rare. They’ll hold up to whatever flavor profile you want; this Cajun ranch steak with blueberry and asparagus salad heads for crisp and tart flavors.

Boneless Country Style Ribs

You know your baby backs and spare ribs, but have you tried boneless country style ribs? Cut closer to the shoulder of the pig, these ribs have denser marbling (read: more flavor and richness) than other cuts.

They respond well to a variety of cooking methods, including low and slow and high-heat and fast. You can cook them up in a slow cooker with your favorite sauce, sear them in a cast iron pan and finish them off in the oven, or grill them. These boneless country style ribs with chimichurri pesto and jicama slaw ensure bold, bright flavors.

Shaved Steak

Thinly-sliced steak perhaps isn’t such a novel concept, but this shaved steak is trimmed from the rib section, and is consistently tender and full-flavored, unlike other thin-sliced beef you can buy at the store.

Shaved steak comes together quickly on the stovetop, so it lends itself to things like stir-fry, beef gyro meat, and sandwich meat. Hello, Philly Cheesesteaks. Or, chili cheesesteak stew?

Courtney Hamilton is a writer and editor with over seven years' experience in journalism, blogging, communications, and other media. She has written for publications like PaleoHacks, PaleoPlan, The Center for American Progress, OC Weekly, and more. 
Check out more of her work at www.courtney-hamilton.com.