Cheap Eats is a series from LGCM dedicated to helping you eat delicious cuts of high quality meat and seafood without breaking your bank.
What’s the Cut?
For this entry in the Cheap Eats series, we’re featuring Beef Top Butt Steaks, aka Beef Top Sirloin Steaks. Top Butts (as we call them around LGCM) come from the sirloin portion of an animal, which is towards the rear of the loin. No, a Top Butt steak doesn’t come from the butt of a beef. Why is it called a Top Butt? We don’t know. But at this point it’s too late to change the name, so we’re just rolling with Top Butt.
Top Butts are a larger, boneless steak that generally weigh around 1 pound each. They have a small fat cap on the top of the steak and a moderate amount of interior marbling. Since they are larger steaks, we do generally recommend serving the steak for several people. When sliced into strips, like you see in the photo at the top, the steak will easily feed two as an entree or it can feed more as an appetizer.
What does Top Butt Taste Like?
Legend has it that an English King knighted the best tasting part of beef “Sir Loin” and that’s how the sirloin got its name. Fittingly, this steak certainly has rich beef flavor even if the legend is untrue. And, yes, the legend is untrue. No matter, Top Butts are flavorful pieces of meat that will taste similar to New York Strip Steaks. They’re a little less tender than other loin steaks like New York Strips or Tenderloins, but they’re still more tender than steaks cut from the round or chuck of an animal.
Why are Top Butts Such a Good Deal?
Compared to the Tenderloin, located right on top of it, or the New York Strip, located right in front of it, the Top Butt steak is priced much lower. The reason for the lower price is that Top Butts aren’t quite as tender as some of the other more “premium” steaks. This isn’t to say they’re chewy, because they’re not. They’re just not quite as tender. Since they’re less tender, they cost less money, as simple as that.
It’s easy to compensate for the small loss in tenderness just by cutting the steak into strips across the grain of the meat. This will help break up the muscle fibers so that you don’t get chewy bites. If you’re okay with this tradeoff, you can get a flavorful steak that’s great on the grill for a less money than you’d pay for a New York Strip!
How do I Cook Top Butts?
Top Butt is perfect for the grill! For a quick and easy meal, you can just season the steak with our Ultimate Steak and Roast Rub and then grill it for 5 minutes per side until it reaches medium well doneness. Once it’s done cooking, slice it into thin strips across the grain to serve with your favorite veggies. It’s a perfect meal for two. For more flavor, try a quick marinade on the steak before grilling.
Top Butt is also great as an ingredient in prepared beef dishes like the kabobs you see above. Check out all of our recipes for Top Butts below:
Top Butt Steak Marinated in Red Wine – this recipe has a quick and easy red wine marinade. You’ll learn a lot about marinades!
Beef Kabobs – a classic beef kabob recipe with beef and veggies. Simple!
Island Beef and Shrimp Kabobs – this recipe takes surf and turf and puts it on a stick.
Cajun Beef and Bean Burritos – grill a Top Butt, add beans, Cajun seasoning and wrap it up in a burrito!
Tangy Lime Grilled Top Round Steak – we really like the combination of lime juice and Worcestershire sauce for this marinade. A great party dish! The recipe calls for a top round steak, but you can substitute a Top Butt for a more tender steak.
If I Like Top Butt Steaks, What Are Some Other Cuts to Try?
Top Butt steaks are very much a “in the middle” steak. They are in the middle of the tenderness scale and the middle of the price scale. If you think Top Butts are great and would like to try something even less expensive, but also less tender, you can try a top round steak, like the one you see pictured above in the Tangy Lime Grilled Top Round steak recipe. If you think the flavor of the Top Butt is great, but you’d like a more tender steak, then try a New York Strip. They’re pricier than a Top Butt but absolutely delicious!
Thanks for reading Cheap Eats, our series dedicated to helping you find budget friendly cuts of meat and seafood. We hope you enjoyed this installment – subscribe to our email list or keep checking our blog to get more great content from LGCM!