10 Different Types of Meat From Cow

types of meat from cow
By depositphotos.com

Several types of meat from cows are available in the culinary world to suit varied palates and cooking preferences.

Knowing the many varieties of meat from cows, from soft and luscious cuts to those with intense flavors, will help you make wise decisions in the kitchen. 

A cow is made up of several fundamental cuts, each of which produces a different cut of beef.

Exploring these types of meat from cows’ qualities and typical applications makes a wonderful and varied culinary experience, 

whether it’s the delicious chuck from the shoulder, the rich and tender brisket from the breast, or the melt-in-your-mouth filet mignon from the tenderloin.

Join us as we explore types of meat from cows and learn about the numerous cuts that give our dishes depth and taste.

1. Ribs

By depositphotos.com

This is the first on our list of types of meat from cows. Ribs are a primal cut of meat from a cow that starts at the chuck section and extends towards the hindquarters, typically consisting of 6-12 ribs.

This cut is known for its rich flavor and can be slightly chewy due to the presence of fatty tissue.

Ribs can be prepared in various ways, including braising, smoking, roasting, grilling, or broiling. 

When cooked properly, beef cuts from the ribs produce a succulent and flavorful result.

Some popular rib cuts include bone-in rib-eye steak, cowboy steak, back short ribs, prime rib, and rib-eye fillet.

Whether you prefer the tenderness of a prime rib or the meaty goodness of short ribs, ribs offer a range of options for beef enthusiasts seeking a hearty and satisfying dining experience.

2. Short Plate

A short plate is a primitive cut of flesh from a cow’s underbelly that spans the bottom portion from the front legs to the hind legs.

In contrast to other cuts, the brisket portion of the cow’s underbelly is not included in the short plate.

Because of its distinct flavor and thin texture, this cut is perfect for quick cooking over high heat. 

A short plate is ideal for braising since it has cartilage surrounding the ribs, and because of its relatively high-fat content, it may also be utilized to prepare ground beef.

Beef bacon, hanger steak, skirt steak, short ribs, ground beef, and pastrami are common small plate cuts in supermarkets.

The small plate is coveted for numerous culinary applications due to its adaptability and strong flavor character.

3. Shank

This is the first on our list of types of meat from cows. The flesh from the cow’s thigh, or “shank,” is found in the bottom part of the animal.

It is made up of two connective tissue-filled shanks. Shank cuts are rarely found in most grocery and retail establishments because of their reputation for being sinewy and dry. 

They are, however, inexpensive for lean ground beef or beef stock.

Shank slices are popular for meals like osso buco and soup meat because they have a low-fat content of about 7%.

Braising is the suggested cooking technique to soften the meat enough to chew while also tenderizing it.

Despite its toughness, shank meat can be prepared in various mouthwatering ways to produce savory and delightful dishes.

4. Flank

A beef cut recognized for being delicious and boneless, the flank is one of the types of meat from cows found beneath the loin.

Although flank steak was formerly seen as an inexpensive cut, its popularity has increased, driving up prices. 

However, it’s crucial to remember that beef flank might become tough if cooked incorrectly.

Cuts of meat should be marinated before cooking to make them more tender. In braised meat meals and recipes that call for ground beef, flank steak is frequently used. Skirt steak and flank steak are two common flank steak cuts.

The distinct flavor and thin texture of flank cuts, which make them appropriate for quick cooking techniques over high heat, can be appreciated when cooked and sliced against the grain. 

Additionally, the flank contains ample cartilage around the ribs, making it a perfect choice for braising, while its relatively higher fat content allows for the production of flavorful ground beef.

5. Round

A primal beef cut called round includes the cow’s hip, rump, rear legs, and knee muscles.

It is a reasonably priced beef cut renowned for its dense connective tissue and robust structure.

Due to their hard-working muscles, rounds are naturally tough, but with the right cooking methods, they may be turned into tender and tasty meat. 

Round cuts can be marinated to make them more tender and can be grilled, roasted, braised, or pan-seared.

Top round steak, rump roast, eye of the round steak, and top round are common round cuts.

Rounds can also be roasted and cut thinly for use in sandwiches. Round pieces can be made into tasty dishes despite their roughness using the proper cooking techniques and seasonings.

6. Tenderloin

The tenderloin is one of cow flesh’s most desirable and soft portions. It extends from the short loin to the sirloin and is located within it.

This premium cut’s extraordinary delicacy and delicate flavor have made it famous. Butchers often sell the entire tenderloin as individual steaks or full slices. 

The tenderloin’s pointed tip end yields the highly sought steak filet mignon, while the central cut is utilized to make the renowned Chateaubriand.

Tenderloin is best prepared using broiling or grilling techniques because it is naturally delicate.

Ball tip roast, filet of sirloin, and tri-tip steak are popular cuts made from the tenderloin. Go with the tenderloin if you want a meal that will melt in your mouth.

7. Sirloin

This is the next on our list of types of meat from cowsSirloin is a highly regarded primal beef cut located in the cow’s upper middle section, just behind the short loin. It offers a range of flavorful cuts and is known for its versatility in cooking.

While top sirloin can be slightly chewy due to the muscles in this region, it tastes similar to that of a porterhouse cut.

To enhance tenderness, the top sirloin is typically sliced against the grain.

Pan-frying is a popular cooking method for this cut, although it requires careful attention to prevent overcooking. 

On the other hand, the bottom sirloin consists of three parts: the flaps, the tri-tip, and the ball tip.

These sections are excellent for barbecuing, roasting, and even ground beef.

Cuts from the sirloin, such as tri-tip roast, tri-tip steak, and top sirloin steak, offer a range of delicious options for meat enthusiasts.

8. Short Loin

The short loin, often known as the hindquarters or back of the cow, is a highly sought-after primal piece of meat.

Some of the best beef cuts, including the renowned strip steak, are produced there.

The short loin, which has a relatively modest length of about 18 inches, can produce over twelve distinct steak pieces. 

Short loin cuts are typically delicate and are best prepared to utilize dry heat techniques like grilling or broiling.

Porterhouse steaks, T-bone steaks, strip steaks, and top loin steaks are a few typical short loin cuts.

When cooked to perfection, these cuts are prized for their tenderness and preferred by steak lovers for their great flavor and juicy texture.

9. Brisket

A popular beef cut called brisket comes from the cow’s pectoral muscle, specifically the area of the cow’s breast.

It is renowned for having a rough and fatty texture, necessitating slow cooking techniques to break down and tenderize the flesh. 

Despite being initially rough, brisket may be cooked properly to produce exceptionally tender, melt-in-your-mouth meat.

It is a well-liked option for bbq and is frequently cooked slowly and low to develop a deliciously smoky flavor and soft consistency.

In addition to being frequently used in pot roasts, brisket is a crucial component in dishes with corned beef and pastrami.

Brisket continues to be a favorite among meat lovers thanks to its flavorful and adaptable nature.

10. Chuck

This is the last on our list of types of meat from cows. Chuck meat is a flavorful and versatile type of meat that comes from a cow’s shoulder.

As one of the primal cuts, chuck includes the neck and shoulder parts, resulting in a cut that is known for its rich taste. 

While chuck meat can be tough due to the cow’s constant use of its shoulders, it is an excellent choice for braised dishes as the connective tissue in this cut tenderizes during cooking.

Chuck is also commonly used for ground beef, offering a balance of meat and fat that adds juiciness and flavor to burgers and meatballs.

With its affordability and robust flavor, chuck cuts are a popular choice for those looking to savor delicious beef on a budget.


The types of meat from cows offer a variety of meat cuts, each with unique qualities and culinary applications.

Making educated judgments when selecting cuts for your cooking can be easier if you know the many types of meat a cow produces.

There is a cut to fit every desire and style of cooking, from the tasty and tough chuck to the soft and melt-in-your-mouth brisket, the short loin with its assortment of steaks, the adaptable sirloin, and the flavorful flank and rib cuts. 

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