The Best Cuts of Beef for Making Shaved Steak at Home

Shaved steak has become an increasingly popular way to enjoy beef lately The thin slices cook quickly while staying nice and tender You get all the great beefy flavor without the chewiness you might find in a thicker cut. But when you go to buy beef for shaved steak, what cut should you be looking for?

There are a few solid options each with their own pros and cons. Here I’ll break down the most common cuts used for shaved steak and help you figure out which is right for you.


Ribeye is probably the most traditional choice for shaved steak. When you get a nice ribeye you’ll find it has the perfect mix of marbling and texture. Those qualities make it excellent for cooking fast on a hot grill or griddle.

The extensive marbling provides plenty of fat to keep the meat moist and flavorful. That fat will start to render out quickly when exposed to high heat. At the same time, the meaty texture gives it enough body not to completely fall apart when cooked rare or medium-rare.

The one downside is that ribeye tends to be one of the more expensive cuts of beef. You’re definitely paying a premium for that beautiful marbling. If cost isn’t as much of a concern, then ribeye is hard to beat for shaved steak.

Chuck Eye Roll

The chuck eye roll comes from the front shoulder of the cow. It offers a nice balance between cost and quality. You get a decent amount of marbling to keep things juicy and tastes. But because it comes from a well-worked area of the cow, the meat also has a pleasantly chewy texture.

When cutting a chuck eye roll into shaved steak, try to slice it against the grain. That will help break up some of the long muscle fibers found in this cut and keep your steak tender. Overall, it provides a nice middle ground in terms of flavor and cost.

Chuck Roast

Another option from the shoulder region is chuck roast. This comes from a similar part of the cow as the chuck eye roll but contains more connective tissue. All that collagen is what helps chuck roast become so wonderfully tender after hours of braising.

But for shaved steak, you want to avoid the tougher connective tissue. Try to find a chuck roast on the leaner side if you plan to turn it into shaved steak. Then be very diligent about cutting across the grain to mitigate any chewiness.

Chuck roast does have the big advantage of being one of the most budget-friendly cuts of beef. If you put in a little extra prep work, you can end up with tender and tasty shaved steak at a very reasonable price.

Skirt Steak

Skirt steak has become more popular lately, often seen in fajitas and stir fries. When sliced thinly against the grain, it makes an excellent choice for shaved steak as well. The long, thin shape means you can slice off beautiful shaved pieces with ease.

One downside is that skirt steak is pretty thin to begin with. So you may need multiple steaks to feed a crowd with shaved steak. But it does usually cost noticeably less than fancier cuts like ribeye.

And while it won’t be quite as rich as a well-marbled ribeye, skirt steak still has a nice beefy flavor. When cooking shaved steak, much of the flavor comes from sauces and seasonings anyway. So skirt steak can make a very satisfying option, especially for weeknight meals.

Flank Steak

Like skirt steak, flank steak provides long, thin slices perfect for shaving. It comes from the belly region of the cow. That means flank steak is naturally pretty lean. But it makes up for that with an incredibly rich, beefy taste.

Just be extra careful about cutting across the grain when preparing flank steak. The long, dense muscle fibers can quickly lead to a chewy texture if sliced improperly. When shopping, try to find a flank steak that has some nice marbling between the muscles. That intramuscular fat will help keep your shaved steak tender and juicy.

Sirloin Flap

Also sometimes called sirloin tip, flap meat comes from the bottom sirloin. It provides a slightly looser texture and grain compared to flank or skirt steak. That means you have a bit more leeway when slicing it for shaved steak.

Sirloin flap doesn’t have the most intense beefy taste. But it usually costs a good bit less than fancier cuts. And the looser grain means it will stay tender with a wider margin of error. Just watch out for large pieces of gristle running through some flap cuts.

Bavette Steak

This underrated cut comes from the bottom sirloin like flap meat. However, bavette steak offers a longer, thinner cut that’s perfect for shaving. You’ll also find it has a bit more marbling than flap steak while still keeping cost down.

The only trick is that bavette steak can sometimes be tough to find. Ask your butcher, as they may keep it in-house rather than displaying it. The rich flavor and tender texture make it a hidden gem for shaved steak if you can get your hands on some.

Top Round

Top round provides an extremely lean and affordable option. But that lack of fat means it can quickly become dry and chewy when cooking shaved steak. Look for a thicker, fatter top round roast and diligently slice across the visible grain.

Adding a marinade before cooking can help mitigate the lack of natural juices as well. Top round won’t provide the richest flavor or tender mouthfeel. But the low cost makes it enticing for large gatherings or as the basis for saucy dishes.

Eye of Round

Taken from near the rear leg of the cow, eye of round shares some qualities with top round. You get an exceptionally lean, tight grain that can easily become tough. There’s also very little marbling coming from this active muscle group.

Eye of round does usually cost a little bit less than top round. But topping out at around $7-8 per pound, it’s not drastically cheaper either. And the lack of fat means it can quickly go from shaved steak to shoe leather when cooking. Probably better to spend up for a more forgiving cut.

The Best Cuts for Shaved Steak

If I had to rank all these popular options for shaved steak, my top choices would be:

  1. Ribeye
  2. Skirt Steak
  3. Sirloin Flap
  4. Chuck Eye Roll
  5. Bavette Steak

Ribeye offers the perfect texture and fat content but at a premium price point. Skirt steak provides excellent value, readily shaves into thin slices, and has nice flavor. Sirloin flap is also affordable while staying tender and easy to slice. Chuck eye roll gives you moderate marbling at a reasonable cost. And bavette would rank higher if it was easier to find consistently.

The most important thing is proper slicing technique. Make sure to cut very thinly against the grain. That will help mitigate the chewiness you might get in some of the more affordable cuts. Proper cooking method matters as well. Go for high, direct heat like a grill or pan to quickly sear while minimizing moisture loss.

Now that you know the best options, you can find the right cut of beef for shaved steak to perfectly suit your cooking needs and budget. Let us know in the comments which one you prefer!

The Philly Cheesesteak Trick No One Knows About


What cut of meat is a shaved steak?

These days, you can easily find packs of shaved beef at supermarkets like Trader Joe’s. Many butchers will also shave meat for you on the slicer behind the counter. The cut can be sirloin, ribeye, top round, or even flank or skirt steaks.

What is the best cut of steak for cheesesteaks?

Cheesesteak meat You want a cut that isn’t too lean—the fat is necessary for juiciness and flavor carry-through. Obviously, ribeye steak is the best, but it can be a little pricey for a few sandwiches. Chuck could work for a budget approach, but you might get it cut just a little thinner than the ribeye.

What kind of meat is used in Philly cheesesteak?

A classic Philly cheesesteak consists of thinly shaved steak (usually ribeye or top round) and is traditionally cooked on a griddle. It’s a wonderful sandwich.

What is a good cut of beef?

Beef | Shaved beef, shaved steak or thinly sliced cube, round steak, even flank steak or skirt steak will work. Most grocery stores now carry this cut of beef, try and get the shaved ribeye, it’s the best! Butter | Don’t knock it, it adds a ton of flavor! Caramelized onions | Wit or Wit Out?

What is shaved steak?

Shaved steak is athinly sliced beef cut that is typically used in popular dishes such as Philly cheesesteak sandwiches and stir-fries. The key to making shaved steak is to slice the beef as thinly as possible, which ensures that it cooks quickly and evenly.

How to make shaved steak?

The key to making shaved steak is toslice the beef as thinly as possible, which ensures that it cooks quickly and evenly. The right beef cut can also make a huge difference in the tenderness, flavor, and texture of the shaved steak. Why is Choosing the Right Beef Cut Important for Shaved Steak?

What is a good beef cut for shaved steak?

Sirloin is another great beef cut for shaved steak. It has a more mild flavor compared to ribeye but is still tender and juicy. Sirloin is also a more affordable option compared to other beef cuts, making it a popular choice for those on a budget.

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