Is Sirloin Beef or Pork? Settling the Confusion Once and For All

Sirloin is one of those cuts of meat that often causes confusion among home cooks and meat lovers. Is it beef or pork? Where on the animal does it come from? How do you cook it? We’re here to settle the sirloin confusion once and for all

What is Sirloin?

The term “sirloin” refers to a specific cut of meat located on the back of cattle and pigs

On cattle, the sirloin comes from the back, between the rib primal and the round primal. It sits above the flank and behind the short loin where popular steaks like T-bone, porterhouse, and strip steaks are cut.

The sirloin is divided into several subprimal cuts including the top sirloin, bottom sirloin, and tri-tip. Top sirloin steaks are the most tender while bottom sirloin is much larger and less tender. Tri-tip is a small triangular muscle popular for grilling.

On pigs, the sirloin comes from the upper hip area close to the loin primal. It contains portions of the tenderloin and hip bone. Pork sirloin can be cut into chops, roasts, and cutlets.

Is Sirloin Beef or Pork?

The simple answer is that sirloin can come from both beef and pork. However, there are some key differences:

  • Beef sirloin comes from the back behind the rib section while pork sirloin comes from the upper hip close to the loin.

  • Beef sirloin is very popular for grilling steaks while pork sirloin is more often roasted or cut into chops.

  • Beef sirloin is considered a tender cut while pork sirloin is a bit tougher and leaner.

  • Top sirloin is the most prized beef sirloin steak while pork sirloin chops are valued for their leanness.

So while both animals produce meat called “sirloin”, the specific cut, texture, and cooking methods do vary between the two.

Sirloin Cuts: Regional Differences

To make things even more confusing, the terminology and cuts associated with sirloin vary between countries!

In the United States, sirloin refers to the back section behind the short loin where steaks like the top sirloin are cut.

In the UK, Australia, and South Africa, the term sirloin refers to the short loin section where Porterhouse and T-bone steaks originate. What Americans call sirloin, these countries call the “rump”.

And it gets even more complicated from there! For example, in Canada the term “sirloin tip” is used instead of tri-tip.

The main takeaway is that sirloin terminology is not totally standardized globally and there are many regional differences in naming conventions and cut locations. When in doubt, ask your local butcher for clarification.

How is Sirloin Cooked?

Cooking methods for sirloin vary depending on whether it comes from beef or pork. Here’s a quick guide:

Beef Sirloin

  • Grilling: The most popular preparation. Cook over high heat 3-5 minutes per side for medium rare.

  • Broiling: Cook 5-6 minutes per side under the broiler.

  • Pan-searing: Cook in a very hot skillet for 1-2 minutes per side to develop a nice crust.

  • Roasting: Roast in the oven at 350°F until it reaches desired doneness, about 15-25 minutes.

Pork Sirloin

  • Roasting: The preferred cooking method. Roast in the oven at 350°F until it reaches 145°F internal temperature.

  • Grilling: Also works well for boneless chops. Grill over medium high heat for about 4-7 minutes per side.

  • Pan-searing: Good for cutlets or chops. Cook 4-5 minutes per side in a hot skillet.

  • Braising: Great way to make sirloin extra tender. Brown the meat then braise for 1-2 hours on the stovetop or in the oven.

The most important thing is to use a meat thermometer and avoid overcooking. Pork should reach 145°F and beef between 125-135°F for medium rare doneness.

5 Delicious Sirloin Recipes to Try at Home

Once you understand the difference between beef and pork sirloin, it’s easy to cook up delicious recipes at home. Here are 5 of our favorite sirloin dishes:

1. Grilled Sirloin Steak with Chimichurri

Flavorful grilled steak is taken to the next level with a bright, herby chimichurri sauce. A perfect summer dinner!

2. Slow Roasted Pork Sirloin with Apples

Boneless pork sirloin roast is rubbed with herbs and roasted alongside sweet apples for a fall-apart tender entree.

3. Thai Beef Salad with Sirloin

Grilled sirloin steak sliced thin makes a tasty topping for this fresh and crunchy Thai salad piled with veggies and a zesty dressing.

4. Sirloin Stir Fry with Vegetables

Quick and healthy weeknight meal featuring lean beef sirloin stir fried with broccoli, peppers, mushrooms, and noodles.

5. Sirloin Pork Chops with Peach Salsa

Juicy pan-seared sirloin chops are served with a fresh and vibrant salsa made with peaches, jalapeño, and cilantro.

Nutrition Facts: Beef vs. Pork Sirloin

When it comes to nutrition, sirloin from both beef and pork offer some useful benefits:

  • Excellent source of protein. Beef has about 22g per 3oz while pork has about 21g.

  • Lower in saturated fat than other cuts like ribeye or pork belly.

  • Rich in important vitamins and minerals like B12, selenium, zinc and iron.

  • Very low carb making it ideal for low carb and keto diets.

Pork sirloin is a bit lower in total fat and calories than beef. Both make a great choice for healthy, lean protein to include in a balanced diet.

Is Sirloin Expensive?

Compared to premium cuts like ribeye and tenderloin, sirloin is very affordably priced. In general:

  • Beef sirloin costs $7-12 per pound

  • Pork sirloin costs $3-6 per pound

Of course, prices vary by quality, region, and whether organic/grass-fed. But sirloin remains one of the more budget-friendly cuts of beef and pork available.

Sirloin Tips for Getting the Best Results

Follow these tips when buying and cooking sirloin:

  • Choose USDA Choice grade beef for best flavor and tenderness

  • Look for pork sirloin with a decent vein of marbling for added moistness

  • Allow steak to come to room temp before cooking for more even cooking

  • Use a meat thermometer and avoid overcooking

  • Let meat rest 5-10 minutes before slicing for juicier results

  • Top roast with compound butter or pan sauce to boost flavor

  • Marinate sirloin before cooking to make it extra juicy and flavorful

Is Sirloin Beef or Pork? The Final Answer

While the name “sirloin” applies to cuts from both beef and pork, there are definite differences when it comes to the meat’s location, cooking methods, and characteristics.

Beef sirloin comes from the back section and is often grilled as flavorful steaks. Pork sirloin comes from near the hip and is more often roasted or braised into tenderness.

But no matter which animal it comes from, sirloin delivers a big meaty flavor at an affordable price point. A tasty, versatile, and budget-friendly cut that every home cook should have in their repertoire!

Beef or Pork which is best?


Is sirloin steak pork or beef?

The Beef Loin Sirloin Steak, Pin Bone is the first cut from the sirloin area of the beef loin. This steak looks much like the beef loin T-bone and porterhouse steaks in that it contains the T-bone the large eye muscle and the tenderloin muscle.

What kind of meat is sirloin?

Sirloin – Sirloin steak comes from the top of the cow’s back. It has just the right balance of tenderness and flavor. These cuts are often large and don’t have much fat.

Is steak a pork or beef?

Steak is a cut of meat that’s typically associated with beef, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be beef. Other meats, such as pork, lamb, and fish, can also be cut into steaks. Beef, on the other hand, is a type of meat that only comes from cattle.

Are pork loin and sirloin the same?

Steaks cut from a rib roast are pork loin chops or pork rib chops. Pork Top Loin Roasts are created by the butcher by tying two top loins together with the fat sides out. Pork Sirloin Roasts (a.k.a. loin pork roast, pork hipbone roast, pork loin end roast) are lean but less expensive than pork tenderloins.

What is a beef sirloin steak?

Beef sirloin is one of the two major subprimals of the beef loin primal cut, which runs from the 13th rib to the end of the hip bone. Butchers separate the sirloin into the top butt and the bottom butt; lean but flavorful top sirloin steaks are an affordable option for the grill while a tri-tip cut from the bottom makes a good choice for roasting .

Where does sirloin steak come from?

Sirloin steak comes from a part of the cow that’s also known as the sirloin. It sits on the back of the animal toward the rear, right by the tenderloin and behind the short loin, where you’ll find other popular cuts like the T-bone and porterhouse. The sirloin area is actually split into two parts, top sirloin and bottom sirloin.

Is sirloin a good steak?

Sirloin is also one of the more economical cuts of steak and is great for any budget. Care needs to be taken while cooking sirloin, however, because this cut can easily get tough. But if you take the right amount of time and attention a sirloin demands, it can be a great steak for an everyday dinner.

Is sirloin steak good for weight loss?

Choosing the leanest cut for weight loss… According to White, “Sirloin steak tends to be one of the leanest cuts of beef making it a great option in a health-conscious diet. When comparing cuts of beef, look for [a] lower amount of saturated fats per serving.”

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