All posts by Jeff Fidler

cook cajun & creole low carb

Cajun and Creole Cooking The Low Carb Way

Great Low Carb Cajun and Creole Cooking

When it comes to big, bold flavours full of spice and loaded with vegetables and protein, you don’t need to look any further than Cajun and Creole cooking. Made famous in the great state of Louisiana, these vibrant cooking styles have a lot of similarities between them, but also a few differences that help distinguish the two from each other. In this article, we’ll discuss the key elements of Cajun and Creole cooking styles, as well as provide a few amazing recipes that you’ll definitely love. So, without any further delay, let’s start with a look at the world of Cajun cooking!

Overview of Cajun Cooking

The word ‘Cajun’ is actually derived from the word ‘Acadian’, which refers to French colonists from the New Brunswick area of Canada and who came to the Louisiana area as a result of forced relocation early in the history of North American settlement. Forced to be resourceful and quickly learn how to survive in an unfamiliar environment, the early Cajuns developed a wide range of distinctive foods that focused on maximizing their use of ingredients and letting very little go to waste.

Cajun cooking is stereotypically known to be quite spicy, however this is a bit inaccurate. A better way to describe Cajun cuisine would be heavily seasoned, and not always relying on hot pepper powders like cayenne in every dish. In fact, the most distinguishing aspect of Cajun cooking is the dedication to a trio of vegetables that are found in an overwhelming majority of Cajun recipes. This trio is known as the ‘holy trinity of Cajun food’, and consists of onions, bell peppers, and celery.

Overview of Creole Cooking

The origins of Creole cuisine are decidedly different from those of Cajun, in spite of sharing many similar ingredients. Creole was a term used to describe a more affluent and fortunate group of settlers in the Louisiana region who came directly to the area from France and Spain in the 18th century, as well as locals who had emigrated to the urban areas from other parts of the world. It is for this reason that the typical ingredients in Creole cuisine include a broader range of spices and seasonings that were more readily available in the wealthier urban areas of Louisiana and popular among the diverse population.

In addition to having a broader base of spices drawn from a more international palette, Creole and Cajun cuisine also differ in elements such as how they approach base culinary processes like making a roux. Creole roux typically uses butter and flour, whereas Cajun roux uses oil and flour. While this may seem like a minor difference, the resulting flavours are quite distinctive, and this is one of the main identifiers between the two types of cooking.

In a nutshell, the simplest way to describe the differences between Cajun and Creole cooking is to describe Cajun as ‘rustic’ or ‘rural’, and Creole as ‘urban’ or ‘fancy’.

Now that you’ve got the basics on the differences between Cajun and Creole cuisine, let’s explore a few delicious low carb recipes that bring the flavours of Louisiana home to your kitchen.

Low Carb One-Skillet Cajun Jambalaya

Jambalaya is one of the most widely known foods in the world of Cajun cooking. It’s a flavourful stew consisting of a variety of meats and vegetables, and uses plenty of seasonings and spice to produce the unmistakable taste known around the globe. Typical jambalaya includes rice, but this particular recipe from Kevin at FitMenCook.com swaps out the traditional rice for one made from cauliflower, adding even more vegetable content to this already healthy and low carb dinner.

Low Carb Shrimp Creole

Shrimp and seafood are extremely common in Cajun and Creole recipes, which is no surprise given that Louisiana is right on the Gulf of Mexico and has a massive fishing industry. This means that you’ll find all kinds of recipes that use shrimp in them. This particular recipe for low carb shrimp Creole comes from Scott at IdRatherBeAChef.com, and it’s just brilliant. It’s got just the right amount of spice, so it’s not too hot and not too mild, but of course you can adjust it either way if you prefer.

Low Carb Gumbo

You’d be hard pressed to find a Cajun or Creole restaurant that doesn’t have gumbo on its menu. Gumbo is a stew similar to jambalaya in the main ingredients, but differs in the fact that gumbo usually has a thicker texture, and is served alongside rice instead of incorporating the rice in to the stew. This particular low carb gumbo recipe comes from Lindsay at ThatsLowCarb.com, and uses a tasty mix of shrimp and andouille sausage to complement the vegetables in a way that you will definitely fall in love with.

Conclusion

Bringing the flavours of Louisiana to your kitchen table is easy with recipes like these. Cajun and Creole foods are a great way to spice up your weekly meal plans with some big flavours and plenty of healthy vegetables and proteins to help you stay on track with your low carb diet. Also, if you’re interested in adding some Louisiana spice to some of your other favourite dishes, check out this Cajun Spice Rub from Hot Mamas, which is great for beef, chicken, pork and seafood. We hope that you’ve enjoyed learning more about Cajun and Creole foods.

springtime dinner recipes

Ideas For Low Carb Dinners for Spring

6 Fresh and Fun Low Carb Dinner for Springtime

When springtime rolls around and the weather starts to shift from cold and dreary to warm and sunny, it’s only natural for our minds to turn to a different perspective when it comes to the recipes we choose and foods we make. We start to look for meals that use fresh vegetables and lighter flavours that reflect the changes of the season. That’s why we’ve put together this helpful list of delicious, low carb recipes that are perfect dinners to enjoy during the springtime.

In this list, you’ll find a wide array of recipe ideas, including main courses, side dishes, salads, and more. These recipes range from simple twists on old classics, to new and exciting creations we’d bet that you’ve never tried before. Whether you’re looking for a fast and easy dinner, or something fancy and made to impress your guests, you’ll definitely find something here that will fit the bill. Let’s get right to the first recipe on our list!

Red Coconut Curry Meatballs with Cauliflower Rice

We’ve decided to start this list of springtime dinner recipes with a meal full of delicious flavours and bright, vibrant colours. The distinctive taste of red curry pairs very well with these savoury chicken meatballs and the fluffy cauliflower rice, and everything is perfectly complemented by the freshness and vivid purple colour of the cabbage salad. All in all, this is a wonderful low carb meal to serve on a bright spring day, and its sure to be a big hit.

Cold Spiralized Sesame Noodle Salad

Keeping with the theme of bright colours and fresh flavours, this unique salad utilized spiralized carrot, cucmber, and zucchini noodles in place of traditional wheat or flour-based noodles. The result is a salad that works perfectly as either a side dish or light meal, and the Asian style dressing is a wonderful combination of tart and sweet that we’re sure you’ll love. This recipe is light, bright, and fun to make.

Lighter Cobb Salad

You may think that a Cobb Salad is really nothing new, but there are always new ways to add a fun twist to a classic recipe. In this version, things are kept light and fresh, with a healthy dressing to drizzle over the colourful arrangement of greens and reds. Bacon, chicken, and egg provide the protein, while lettuce, tomatoes, and avocado help round out the vegetable ingredients. It’s a simple variant of a well-known favourite, and the taste of the blue cheese dressing is an absolutely perfect way to top the whole thing off.

Chipotle Turkey Burgers with Guacamole

These tasty little burgers are a great way to serve up something different for dinner on a warm spring evening. The ground turkey patties are infused with a simple blend of chipotle pepper, garlic which gives the meat a nice little kick that works well with the cool, fresh toppings like guacamole, tomato, and onion. Just like any burger, you can swap out traditional buns for your favourite low carb burger bun. Alternatively, you could opt to keep the carb count even lower by sandwiching the patty and your toppings between two crisp leaves of your favourite lettuce. However you decide to build them up, these burgers are simply delicious.

Lemon Salmon with Basil

Simple dinners are sometimes the most satisfying, and this recipe for a fresh salmon fillet paired with basil definitely fits in to that category. The fresh citrusy taste of the lemon goes very well with the flavour of the salmon, and easily pairs well with any variety of seasonal vegetables including asparagus, zucchini, and more. This recipe is ready in under 30 minutes and uses just a handful of commonplace ingredients. The results, however, speak for themselves. This is definitely a great way to prepare one of the most popular types of fish for a nice family springtime meal.

Grilled Chicken and Veggie Kababs

Finally, we’ve found what is probably the most colourful recipe on our list. Kebabs are such a great way to prepare a healthy and delicious dinner in very little time, and it also lets everyone customize their dinner by selecting their own unique combo of meat and vegetables. In this recipe, you can easily build out your own vibrant assortment of vegetables to choose from, such as green or yellow zucchini, all colours of bell peppers, red onions, and more. Here’s a chance to get creative and try some new vegetables to accompany your grilled chicken. Have fun with this one!

Conclusion

Spring is the season of change, so it just makes sense that you should work on changing up your meal plans and work in some exciting, fresh new recipes to try. We certainly hope that this interesting collection of springtime recipes has inspired you to try out some new and unusual flavours, as well as revisit some old classics that you may have forgotten about. In addition, as you get your barbecue grill fired up for the season, why not try some tasty new seasonings on your favourite steaks, chicken, pork, and seafood? The selection of rubs and seasonings available from Summer Kitchen here at The Low Carb Grocery has a wide array of tastes to choose from. You can check out the full range of Summer Kitchen spices and rubs here. These seasonings are a great way to add some unusual flair to your grilling experience.

organic beef snacks nicks sticks

Nicks Sticks Organic Beef Snacks

All About Nicks Sticks Organic Beef Snacks

Snacking on the low carb diet can present a few challenges for many of us. Sometimes it can be tough to find a healthy snack that checks all the right boxes on our lists, including low carb count, great taste, and filling enough to satisfy our cravings. Fortunately, there are brands out there like Nicks Sticks that come to the rescue with delicious high-protein snacks that deliver everything a hungry low carb dieter could want.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at Nicks Sticks, including how the company got its start and what their philosophy means to their customers. We’ll also take a look at some of their most popular products and share a few links where you can find them here at The Low Carb Grocery.

History of Nicks Sticks

The origins of Nicks Sticks go back to a small town in Iowa where founder Nick Wallace grew up. With the importance of hard work and quality embedded deep in Nick’s vision for the company, Nicks Sticks was founded with the purpose of delivering only the finest quality products made from pure and simple ingredients. Nicks Sticks are made only from 100% organic beef from free-range cows that are raised on a green grass diet. It’s this combined dedication to quality and natural approaches to raising their cattle that is one of the biggest reasons for the success of Nicks Sticks.

Why is Grass Fed Beef Important?

There are many notable differences in the beef that comes from grain-fed cattle when compared to the beef that comes from grass-fed cattle. Most notably, grass-fed beef has been shown to have lower levels of saturated fat, higher levels of omega-3’s, and high doses of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), In addition, the grass-fed process of raising cattle is a more ecologically friendly approach. It’s for these reasons and more that Nicks Sticks are always made from grass-fed beef, free of hormones and antibiotics.

Nicks Sticks Beef Snacks

Aside from the main ingredient of grass-fed beef, you’ll find only a simple list of other ingredients that are used to make Nicks Sticks. Nicks Sticks refuses to use ingredients like MSG, nitrates, sugar, or red dye in their products. You’ll only find grass-fed beef, organic seasoning salt, and a proprietary blend of spices in each and every beef snack from Nicks Sticks.

Original Nicks Sticks Beef Snacks

These are the sticks that made Nicks Sticks famous. These beef snacks have a big, bold flavour and a wonderful firmness and texture that make them the perfect beef stick. Each stick is about 120 calories, with 10g of protein, 8g total fats, and zero carbohydrates or sugars. You can find Nicks Sticks Original Beef Snacks here.

Spicy Nicks Sticks Beef Snacks

If you’re a snacker who likes their beef sticks to have a bit more kick to them, you’ve got to try the Spicy version of Nicks Sticks Beef Snacks. They’ve got all the same goodness as the Original Nicks Sticks, but with the added heat from Jalapeno peppers to give them a unique spicy taste that you’ll love. You can find Nicks Sticks Spicy Beef Snacks here.

Conclusion

Beef sticks are a great way to work in some more protein to a low carb meal plan, without the risk of adding in any additional carbs or sugars. They’re a convenient snack that tastes great, is easily portable, and does a great job of satisfying hunger. Whether you keep a stash in your office desk to get you over the mid-afternoon slump, or are planning a summer road trip, Nicks Sticks are a perfect snack option that’s healthy and delicious. You can be sure that when you buy Nicks Sticks, you’re getting a top-quality beef snack made from only the finest natural ingredients, and with a taste that can’t be beaten. Check out the full range of Nicks Sticks products here at The Low Carb Grocery.

french toast recipes low carb

Great Recipes For Low Carb French Toast

Experience the World of Low Carb French Toast

Ooh, la la! It’s time to learn more about that delicious breakfast food that’s been a favourite around family tables for generations; French toast. Like pancakes, waffles, and cereal, you may not think that French toast looks like an ideal low carb meal on the surface. However, just like those other foods, there are plenty of ways to prepare them the low carb way and still have a delicious and satisfying breakfast that everyone will love.

In this article, we’ll learn about the origins of how French toast came to be such a popular breakfast food, as well as explore some common toppings that you can add to make your French toast unique and even more tasty. In addition, we’ll share a few fantastic low carb French toast recipes that will definitely put a smile on the faces of the whole family. Let’s get started!

Origins of French Toast

For starters, the dish we know as French toast ironically does not trace its origins back to France. It was actually ancient Rome where the first instances of a recipe similar to French toast occurs in records. While many variations emerged throughout Europe, it was actually in England in the 17th century when the term ‘French toast’ was actually coined. Within France, the recipe is actually called ‘pain perdu’, which translates directly as ‘lost bread’ and is a nod to the fact that traditionally the dish would be made with old or stale bread as opposed to a fresh loaf.

The Basics of French Toast

While there are many regional variations of the recipe, French toast follows a fairly standard set of directions and ingredients. Slices of bread are dipped and coated in a mixture of eggs and milk or cream, and then pan fried to a golden brown. Usually, simple combination of spices such as cinnamon or nutmeg are added to the egg mixture to further enhance the flavour. The slices of French toast are often served with a variety of toppings to suit the taste preferences of the location in which it is prepared. For low carb dieters, substituting traditional bread for low carb varieties will produce French toast with a much lower carb count and make it more suitable for your meal plan.

Popular French Toast Toppings

While the basic recipe for French toast is fairly simple, things get much more varied when we start to explore the world of toppings that can be used to add some more flair to your breakfast. These toppings are often influenced by regional tastes and local availability of foods, while some simply are the result of some creative inspiration.

Syrups

Of all the toppings commonly used to accompany French toast, table syrup or maple syrup are the most common. The sweetness of the syrups complements the taste of the egg and spices, creating a rich and flavourful breakfast meal. Low carb dieters should opt for a low-sugar or sugar free syrup to help keep the carb counts under control. Check out our selection of low-sugar and sugar free syrups here.

Fruit

Fruit and berries are very popular options for topping French toast, and the cool, fresh sweetness they bring are a subtle but pleasant way to accentuate the flavours of the warm, savoury toast. Stick to fruits that are lower in natural occurring sugars to help keep carb counts low. For more information on which fruits are best, check out our guide to low carb fruits here.

Whipped Cream

If you want a little bit more decadence added to your French toast, whipped cream will do the job. Just be sure to get a whipping cream made to fit a low sugar diet so that you don’t accidentally crank up the amount of sugar.

Chocolate

Chocolate is another delicious way to top off your French toast and make it a bit fancier. You could simply use a sugar-free chocolate syrup like this one from Walden Farms, or get even fancier by grating or shaving off some sugar-free dark chocolate like this dark chocolate bar from Torino and sprinkling it on the top of your French toast. Yum!

Powdered Sugar

Another very popular way to finish French toast is with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. Now, don’t go using regular old powdered sugar. You’ll be happy to learn that we’ve found a fantastic recipe for do-it-yourself sugar-free powdered sugar that you can use, and it tastes great! Check out this recipe for Sugar-Free Powdered Sugar from Katie at ChocolateCoveredKatie.com.

Now, without further ado, let’s get to three fantastic recipes for low carb French toast that will have you scrambling to update your weekend meal plan. Here we go!

Low Carb French Toast with Cinnamon

Starting with a low carb twist on a classic version of French toast, this delicious recipe from Lisa at LowCarbYum.com has everything you need at an extremely low total carb count. It’s simple to follow and can easily be made in batches and frozen for a fast and delicious breakfast on those mornings where time is short but your hunger is real.

Low Carb French Toast Sticks

This fun recipe from Megha and Matt at KetoConnect.net is great for making little French toast sticks that you can dip in to your favourite syrups, jams, or even peanut butter. The kids will just love this! In addition, this recipe has the added benefit of using a keto-friendly bread which helps keep the carbs even lower.

Low Carb Overnight French Toast

We’re ending this list of recipes with something really special. As if French toast wasn’t already yummy enough, this amazing Low Carb French Toast Bake from Carolyn at AllDayIDreamAboutFood.com definitely takes things to the next level. Featuring a low carb count, low sugar count, and the extra convenience of being able to be prepared the night before, this is one recipe that you’ll be keeping permanently bookmarked.

Conclusion

Well, if that’s not enough to make your cravings start, we’re not sure what else to say! French toast is one of those delectable breakfast foods that low carb dieters no longer need to avoid. These recipes, products, and tips will help you put delicious French toast back on your meal plans, much to the delight of the whole family. Why not plan a fancy French toast breakfast one day this weekend, and have some fun experimenting with these new recipes? We certainly hope you enjoy these ideas for tasty and healthy low carb French toast.

summertime drinks sugar-free

Great Sugar-Free Summer Drink Ideas

Stay Cool with these Fun Sugar-free Summertime Drinks

Now that the heat has arrived, and summer time fun along with it, we thought we’d put together a fun collection of fresh and cool beverages you can use to stay cool on even the hottest summer days. All of these drink ideas and recipes are perfect for low carb dieters since they will contain very little sugar and many are even completely sugar-free.

We’ve included a wide range of drink styles to choose from, including some light and fresh flavoured water beverages, as well as sweet and fizzy concoctions the kids will go nuts for, and a couple of deliciously smooth blended drinks that you’ll just love on those hot, sunny days. Plus, we’ve thrown in a couple of suggestions for some hip alcoholic drinks that you may enjoy while sitting on your deck or dock, enjoying the warm summer breezes. Now, since the sun is up and the daylight won’t last forever, let’s check out this list!

Naturally Sweetened Sugar-Free Lemonade

What list of summer drinks would be complete without a fresh lemonade recipe? We’re starting out in true summer style with this fantastic version of lemonade that is naturally sweetened with Stevia and contains no added sugars. The best lemonades are made from scratch, using fresh squeezed lemons and pure, clean water. For an even cooler version of this drink, blend this recipe with ice and make the best tasting frozen lemonade you’ve ever had. Another way to switch things up is to add a shot of vodka, and you’ve got your very own hard lemonade that works great for backyard barbecues with friends.

Cucumber-Mint Infused Water

It’s no secret that the healthiest drink you can choose when you’re thirsty is clean, fresh water. That’s all well and good, of course, but sometimes you just need a bit more flavour, which is why infused water beverages are becoming more and more popular. They’re easy to make and are extremely refreshing with just a light amount of flavouring, making them the perfect drink to help you cool down after some hard work in the gardens, or even if you’re just lounging by the pool. This recipe for cucumber-mint infused water is the very definition of light and refreshing, and we’re sure you’ll love it.

Iced Matcha Latte

For several years now, Matcha has been gaining popularity around the world for its fantastic health benefits. Matcha powder is loaded with antioxidants, helps aid in boosting metabolism, and has detoxifying effects, just to name a few. It’s fantastic as a way to add these benefits to a wide variety of drinks, and it’s what makes this particular latte so perfect for low carb dieters looking for a tasty and healthy summer drink. Blended with coconut oil, vanilla bean, and cashew milk, this is an easy drink to make and it’s just packed with health benefits.

Homemade Sugar-Free Kool Aid

This one’s for the kids, but we’ll also admit that we definitely still enjoy the fresh taste of this drink no matter how old we get. You’ll be amazed at how much great taste you get out of just three simple ingredients and the short time it takes to mix up a batch of this fruity drink. The clever blend of fruity teas and flavoured stevia sweeteners is truly unique, and also allows you to easily customize it to your personal tastes or whatever your kids might prefer. Just be sure to make lots of it because this stuff goes fast!

Keto Electrolyte Drink

For the fitness buffs among us, it can get pretty tiresome choosing between plain old water and sports drinks that are loaded with sugar, but this creation is the perfect alternative for post-workout hydration. This keto electrolyte beverage is lightly flavoured with sea salt, aloe vera juice, and lemon juice so it’s a bit tart and very easy to drink. It quickly replenishes your body with electrolytes, and gets you refreshed fast.

Low Carb Margarita

Well, now it’s a party! What drink goes better with a hot summer patio than a tasty, fresh margarita? The only problem is that traditional margarita recipes can have lots of sugar in them, but not this version. This recipe is totally sugar free and tastes amazing, especially when the sun is beating down and the pool is open for the season. For a slightly different taste experience, try making one batch with a gold tequila and a different batch with silver tequila. Each type of tequila has unique flavours, and you’ll notice a subtle difference in the taste of your margaritas. For a fast and easy margarita alternative, check out Baja Bob’s Sugar Free Margarita Mix to make a great margarita in a snap.

Strawberry Lemon Infused Iced Tea

Just like lemonade, iced tea is the kind of drink that’s just synonymous with summer time and hot days. This recipe adds some extra fruity flavours to the classic taste of iced tea and sweetens the blend naturally with stevia. This drink is great to make in big batches and keep in the fridge, so you can fill up your tumbler or travel mug with a refreshing treat on your next summer road trip.

Sugar Free Sodas from Zevia

For those of us who like something fun and fizzy to sip on during those hot and humid days of summer, Zevia makes a wide variety of carbonated sugar-free sodas. Choose from classic soda flavours like root beer, ginger ale, and grape, or try something new with taste sensations like black cherry, cucumber lemon, and mandarin orange. Check out the full range of Zevia sugar-free diet sodas here at The Low Carb Grocery.

Conclusion

Once the warmth of the summer descends this season, you’ll be prepared to beat the heat with this fun collection of refreshing summer drinks. Whether you like something light and fresh, or sweet and sassy, this list has something for everyone. We recommend you use this selection of drink ideas as inspiration for your next backyard barbecue or pool party and wow your guests with some unique and interesting healthy drink choices that taste great. Stay cool!

choose the best cuts of beef

Choosing the Best Cuts of Beef

Tips and Advice for Choosing Great Cuts of Beef

All around the world, beef is one of the most popular kinds of meats used for a vast array of recipes and different styles of cuisine. Of course, it’s easy to see why. It’s a versatile meat to cook with and can provide very different results depending on the method of cooking, and the cut of beef that is used in the recipe. However, things can easily go awry if the cooking method and the cut of beef don’t line up with their best use case scenarios. If you’re not careful, you could end up with a tough, leathery piece of meat, and that’s not going to please anyone. So how do you make sure that you’re choosing the best beef for your desired recipe?

There are many different things to consider when choosing the right cut of beef for a particular use. These factors include what part of the cow the beef comes from, how much or how little fat there is on the beef, how you intend to cook it, and more. In this article, we explain the different kinds of beef that are available, as well as how the different styles of cooking will dictate what the best cut of beef is for that particular method. Choosing the right cut for your recipe is easy, as long as you keep these rules in mind. First, let’s start by taking a look at the different kinds of beef that you may find at your butcher shop.

Kinds of Beef

There are several different ways that beef is categorized and graded. The first consideration we will look at is the common grading system used by the USDA to indicate the level of quality of a particular cut of beef. The USDA scale of beef generally starts with Select as the most common level of grading. Beef that is deemed to be of higher quality is marked as Choice, and the finest grades of beef are marked as Prime. There are many factors that are considered in determining the correct grade for beef, including marbling of fat within the meat, thickness and consistency, and visual appearance.

In addition, you will likely see reference to the breed of cattle beside each type of beef as another indicator of its properties. The most common type of cattle used for beef in North America is the Angus, which can only be called Angus if it meets very specific breeding criteria. In addition, you can also find beef imported from other regions of the world such as the British Herefordshire, the Italian Piedemontese, and the Japanese Waguyu types of cattle.

Common Cut Styles for Beef

Regardless of the type of cattle used or the grade of the meat, the styles of cut used to describe the shape, size, and source of the beef are the same across all kinds. Here, we will describe the different cuts, and list the styles of cooking and preparation they are best suited for.

Steaks

This is a unique category, in that there are many different types of beef that are considered to be ‘steaks’, and each has their own unique characteristics.

Filet mingon is one of the most common steaks and is a circular cut of beef with no bones that is taken from the tenderloin, which gives it a delicious melt-in-your-mouth experience when prepared correctly.

T-bone steaks are aptly named due to the t-shaped bone embedded in them, which gives them a unique look and helps to keep the meat moist. The porterhouse is generally larger than the t-bone but is very similar in style as they both come from the short loin area. Strip steaks also come from the short loin and can be found in boneless or bone-in styles.

Other popular styles of steak include flat-iron steak (cut from the shoulder area), top sirloin (cut from the top muscle of the short loin), skirt steak (cut from the diaphragm muscle), rib eye (cut from the rib area), and hanger steak (cut from the short plate, similar to the skirt steak).

Steaks are most commonly prepared on a grill, and then served fresh alongside a wide variety of side dishes, or they can also be sliced and used as an ingredient in other recipes. Many people choose to season their steaks with a wide range of spices, seasonings and rubs. Brands such as Summer Kitchen and Hot Mamas offer many different kinds of seasonings that are perfect for steaks. You can choose from hot and spicy blends, savoury flavours, or perhaps even something sweet if the mood strikes you. Here at The Low Carb Grocery, we offer a full selection of delicious steak seasonings and spice rubs.

Roasts

Beef that is intended to be roasted, broiled, or prepared using ovens, slow cookers, smokers or other cooking devices is generally cut in much larger sections than beef intended for grilling.

Eye of round and bottom round roasts are generally inexpensive and are very versatile cuts of beef, ideal for a basic roast beef dinner. They are usually prepared using a low-and-slow cooking method to tenderize the meat and produce an enjoyable meal when sliced. Other roasts with similar characteristics to eye of round and bottom round are top sirloin, sirloin tip, and top round roasts. These are all perfectly suited for oven roasting and slicing thin for a variety of uses.

For the finest cuts of beef for roasting, people generally opt for cuts such as the rib eye, tenderloin, or tri-tip, all of which produce a more flavourful final result. Tri-tip and shoulder roasts can also be prepared on the grill, adding some other preparation options to choose from.

Beef Cuts for Stewing or Frying

When the beef is intended to be simmered as part of a stew or fried quickly as part of a stir fry, you can choose from many different cuts to achieve a delicious end result. For recipes that call for longer cooking times, perhaps prepared in a slow cooker or crockpot, you can use beef chuck or round roasts for excellent results. If your recipe is more of a stir fry style, you’d be better served to use a thinly sliced steak such as a sirloin, rib eye, or top loin. These cuts are more tender and will produce better results with the higher temperatures and shorter cooking times associated with wok and stir fry cooking.

Other Uses for Beef

Aside from grilling, roasting, simmering and frying, beef can also be used in other dishes such as casseroles, tacos, burritos, meatballs, chili, shepherd’s pie, and many more types of foods. In these instances, it’s common for ground beef to be used, but depending on what is used to create the ground beef, the fat content will vary. Normally, this is indicated with certain terminology on the packaging of the ground beef, such as medium, lean, or extra lean ground beef, in order of decreasing fattiness. While there is very little difference in the beef itself once it is cooked, there will be a substantial difference in the amount of fat to be drained as you compare a medium ground beef to an extra lean ground beef. If you require plenty of drippings for sauces or gravy, then you may want to avoid overly lean ground beef as it will not produce much of it. For more information on making a great gravy, check out our guide to low carb gravy and sauces.

Conclusion

As you can see, there is lots of variety in the world of beef which is a big part of the reason why it is such a common meat around the world. It’s versatility to create a diverse range of tastes and textures makes it the perfect source of protein in countless recipes in cuisine of all types. Now, the next time you head to the butcher shop in search of the perfect grilling steaks for your next barbecue, or perhaps a nice roast for a big family holiday meal, you’ll be better equipped to navigate the offerings of beef behind the counter and make a great choice that everyone will love. Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll end up with the perfect cut of beef, every time.