Tips on Buying Beef

Shopping for meat can be a challenge because there's always such a variety to choose from. Purchasing lean cuts of beef can be an important step in making sure you have a healthy diet. Below are some tips to help you the next time you purchase beef.

    1. Choose three-ounce servings (for a total of six ounces per day). Start with four ounces of raw meat to end up with a three-ounce cooked serving. This will account for the cooking losses. A three-ounce cooked serving of beef is about the size of a deck of cards.

    2. Look for beef labeled with the "USDA Select" grade. It is lower in fat and calories than "Choice" or "Prime." Marbling (the flecks of fat in the lean) makes the difference.

    3. Use the "loin/round" rule of thumb for beef. Cuts with these words on the label will be lean choices.

    4. Tenderize lean cuts of meat by cooking them slowly in liquid, or marinating them before cooking. Pounding, grinding and slicing across the grain can also help.

    5. Keep your meat selections lean. Trim all visible fat and let the remainder drip off during cooking. When you prepare meat: broil, grill, bake, roast on a rack, or microwave.

    6. Remove fat from stews, soups and casseroles by chilling them and skimming the hardened fat from the top.
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