Cheap Cuts Of Beef For Slow Cooker

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If you are looking for Cheap Cuts Of Beef For Slow Cooker, then you have come to the right place. Here is the list of Slow Cooker Beef Stew Recipe that you could use in a slow cooker.

If you have a slow cooker, you probably know that it offers the ability to make some awesome Slow Cooker Beef Recipes without spending much time on it. The best part is that the health benefits of beef is numerous. While preparing dishes for your slow cooker may not require much effort, getting high quality meat will make a huge difference.

Cheap Cuts Of Beef For Slow Cooker

Slow cookers are an indispensable kitchen appliance for time-poor people and meal prepping machines who want to bulk cook as conveniently and easily as possible.

Using a slow cooker will allow you to save money as you make nutritious meals (like hearty chicken stew and lamb shanks in red wine sauce). That’s because the best cuts of meat for slow cooking are often the cheapest!

Cheaper cuts of meat, like chuck steak and gravy beef, tend to be rich in tissues like sinew and muscle. These tissues, while not ideal for pan-frying or grilling (as they seize up and become chewy), break down nicely during the slow cooking process, leaving you with flavoursome, tender meat that melts in your mouth.

So without further ado, here are the best cuts of meat to use when slow cooking.

Best cuts of beef for slow cooking

1. Gravy Beef

A great option for making beef casseroles and stews is gravy beef (also known as beef shin, or Osso Bucco when sold with the bone in), which comes from the cow’s shin area. This cut is rich in sinewy tissue that becomes gelatinous during the slow cooking process, resulting in tender meat that falls apart at the touch of a fork.

Gravy beef is known as Osso Bucco when the bone is left in. It is perfect for making beef and dark ale stew.

2. Chuck steak

One of the most commonly used cuts for slow cookers is the chuck steak – usually used for making beef stew. The chuck is the shoulder and upper arm of the cow which makes it very tough, but trust us when we say that it becomes amazingly tender after it’s spent a few hours in your slow cooker. Best of all, it’s cheap as chips! 

3. Beef short ribs

While you’ll usually see beef short ribs on the grill, it’s actually one of the best ‘slow cooker meats’ you can get! A slow cooker will help you get that pull-off-the-bone texture that you’re looking for. Best of all, there’s not much prep work needed; just marinate and chuck it in, bones and all.

4. Beef Cheeks

As the name suggests, beef cheeks come from the facial cheek of the cow. Unlike other secondary cuts of meat like chuck steak or gravy beef, beef cheeks take a long time to cook – anywhere between 8-12 hours. The end result, however, is totally worth the wait, which is why this once overlooked cut of meat is rising in popularity amongst chefs and home cooks alike.

5. Beef Brisket

In Australia, roast beef gets all the glory while beef brisket tends to fly under the radar. This cut of meat, which comes from the breast or lower chest of the cow, is perfect for slow cooking. This section is rich in connective tissues that render down and soften during the slow cooking process. But beware: beef brisket can be prone to drying out, so select a piece of meat that is visibly marbled throughout. 

Best cuts of lamb for slow cooking

6. Lamb shanks

Lamb shanks are a bit more complicated to prepare compared to the other cuts but it’s so worth it! When it’s raw, it’s tough and gamey, but after being slow-cooked, it practically falls off the bone. Before cooking it, it’s important to remember to trim the meat so that the meat doesn’t shrink in on itself.

7. Lamb neck

When it comes to slow cooking, few cuts of meat hit the taste trifecta like lamb necks. Rich in fat and cartilage wrapped around the bone, this cut of meat will instantly add flavour and depth to any slow cooked meal.

On a road trip to Dorper Ewes, a farm in Amarula in northern New South Wales, Fast Ed explained his love of lamb neck, “You’ve got this perfect balance of connective tissue, which is where all the flavour comes from, just the right amount of fat and plenty of meat as well.”

Unlike other cuts of meat typically used for slow cooking, lamb necks are also great for grilling on the barbecue. 

Slow Cooker Beef Stew Recipe

Buying a cheaper cut of meat at your butcher is a great way to save some money on your weekly shop. Don’t be afraid to ask them what they recommend.

Slow cooker steak and mushrooms

1. Slow cooker steak and mushrooms

This slow cooker steak and mushroom dish will fill the house with a lovely aroma as it slowly cooks. Serve it up with a creamy mash and some green beans and watch it disappear.

2. Slow cooker beer stew

This slow cooker beef stew is packed full of veggies and is a meal in a bowl. Flavour it with your favouite beer and serve it up. This is real winter blokes comfort food.

3. Slow cooker beef ragu

Like a classic beef bolognese but better, this hearty ragu will satisfy your pasta cravings. It’s an ideal dish for the weekend when you can throw the ingredients into the slow cooker and leave them to stew to perfection.

Slow cooker beef

4. Slow cooker beef

A classic pulled beef recipe, cooked in the slow-cooker for extra goodness. Delicious served on rolls with salad.

Slow cooker beef rendang

5. Slow cooker beef rendang

This mildly spiced slow-cooked coconut beef is a delicious change from a regular beef casserole. Enjoy with a big bowl of rice for a warming winter’s meal.

Slow cooker beef bourguignon

6. Slow cooker beef bourguignon

This classic French beef bourguignon is a wonderful winter warmer. It’s worth taking the extra time to prepare and brown the ingredients before adding them to the slow cooker, but once it’s bubbling away, you can forget about it until dinner time.

Slow cooker beef, red wine and mushroom casserole

7. Slow cooker beef, red wine and mushroom casserole

This full-bodied and versatile casserole will have them coming back for more. Serve it with a wide pasta such as pappardelle, mashed potato and green beans or over creamy polenta. You can even use the leftovers to make a pie.

Slow cooker beef and barley soup

8. Slow cooker beef and barley soup

This slow cooker beef and barley soup is packed with vegetables and the slow cooking creates a lovely thick broth. It is the perfect set and forget winter soup.

Slow cooker beef with red wine shallot gravy

9. Slow cooker beef with red wine shallot gravy

Put this on at the start of the day and come home to the comforting aroma of a delicious dinner ready and waiting. Slow cooking the beef makes it beautifully tender while the red wine shallot gravy just begs for some crusty bread to mop it up!

Slow cooker shredded beef nachos

10. Slow cooker shredded beef nachos

This is a great meal to serve to a crowd. Cook the beef in the slow cooker well ahead of time, then put the whole thing together just before your guests arrive. It’’s perfect for movie or football night, or any occasion where you want maximum taste and minimum fuss.

Slow Cooker Beef Recipes

Crock Pot Recipes That Make Great Use Of Inexpensive Cuts Of Meat

A lot of the cheapest cuts of meat we can already guess — typically, a ground meat is going to be cheaper than a whole steak, right? But with this exception made, we can say that typically, the cheaper cuts of meat are typically going to be tougher than more expensive cuts. That doesn’t mean they can’t be delicious — many tougher, cheaper cuts are flavorful and tasty, they just need to be prepared a different way. For instance, flank steak is one of the cheapest steaks on the market. But when it’s been marinated for a long time — or cooked slowly in the Crock-Pot for a long time — it’s absolutely earth-shatteringly delicious. Another cheap cut featured here: chicken leg quarters, also called the whole chicken leg, are made of both the thigh and drumstick. They can either be cooked whole or separated, and they are the least expensive cuts of chicken. 

A Crock-Pot can also be used for fast fall dinners that are full of fall flavor but are also just as tasty year-round. Similarly, it’s just as good an idea to use the slow cooker in spring and make the most of seasonal spring ingredients. For parents who focus on nutrition, try some healthy, family-friendly Crock-Pot meals. 

Having said that, a slow cooker really comes into its own for cooking those cheap cuts of meat low and slow, while everyone gets on with their day. The family can come home to a tasty, filling meal with less effort at the end of a busy day. Add a salad or a healthy side, and dinner can be on the table in minutes.

Slow Cooker Pork Roast With Apples

1. Slow Cooker Pork Roast With Apples

Pork loin roast is just $1.86 for boneless cuts, on average, making it the cheapest cut of pork. We love this slow cooker pork roast with apples, which makes use of this typically fairly tough cut of meat by cooking it in the slow cooker for hours with lots of great spices.<

2-Ingredient Crock-Pot Barbecued Chicken Legs

2. 2-Ingredient Crock-Pot Barbecued Chicken Legs

We love a recipe that tastes great and uses as few ingredients as possible — not to mention a slow cooker one, which means it basically does the work for us. Check out this perfect 2-ingredient Crock-Pot barbecued chicken legs recipe.

Crock-Pot Mexican Casserole

3. Crock-Pot Mexican Casserole

Our family goes nuts for this Crock-Pot Mexican casserole, which is healthy, gluten-free, and makes use of either ground turkey or chicken, according to preference. It’s packed with black beans and quinoa, making it a good source of protein.

Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

4. Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

This recipe for slow Cooker Mongolian beef makes use of flank steak, which is a tough cut of beef but a more flavorful one. It’s a perfect way to use this cut, and is delicious with steamed broccoli in a garlic sauce and rice.

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

5. Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Kids love this slow cooker turkey chili, which is healthier and less expensive than a beef chili! While ground beef is the most economical cut of beef, ground turkey is even less expensive — and has less fat, too.

Slow Cooker Lamb Shoulder

6. Slow Cooker Lamb Shoulder

When it comes to cooking lamb, we adore lamb chops, but have to recognize that they’re a treat, rather than an everyday meat. The cheapest is lamb shoulder, which is delicious in the slow cooker!

Slow Cooker Chicken Quarters With Potatoes & Carrots

7. Slow Cooker Chicken Quarters With Potatoes & Carrots

This recipe for slow cooker chicken quarters with potatoes & carrots creates a whole meal using the cheapest cut of chicken. Potatoes are always inexpensive, and one can use large carrots chopped up, rather than baby carrots, to cut costs — full-size carrots have more vitamins, too.

Health Benefits Of Beef

1. Beef Provides a Large Source of L-Carnitine

L-carnitine is an amino acid that occurs naturally in meat products.

In the table below, we can see the L-carnitine content of beef compared to some other animal foods and plant foods ;

Why is L-Carnitine Important?

Among other functions, L-carnitine plays a part in fat metabolism.

As part of this, L-Carnitine does the job of transporting fats into our mitochondria for burning.

It’s important to clarify that our body can synthesize sufficient amounts of L-carnitine for general needs; this makes it a non-essential amino acid.

The body synthesizes L-Carnitine within the liver and the process relies on the amino acids L-lysine and L-methionine .

As a result, deficiencies are rare.

However, research suggests that a higher dietary intake of L-Carnitine may have some positive health impacts.

Various studies show the following findings;

Heart Health 

A meta-analysis of randomized trials suggests that L-carnitine improves patient outcomes. Specifically, it exerts an effect on hypertension, oxidative stress, nitric oxide, and inflammation.

A further systematic review found that L-carnitine is associated with a 27% reduction in all-cause mortality in heart failure patients .

Diabetes

A systematic review shows that higher L-carnitine intake in type 2 diabetes patients improves fasting glucose levels and the overall cholesterol profile .

Weight Loss

According to a systematic review and meta-analysis of nine randomized controlled trials, subjects using L-carnitine supplementation lost “significantly more weight” than the control group .

It’s worth noting that while there are many L-carnitine supplements around, the absorption rate is poor in comparison to beef.

In fact, our body only absorbs around 14-18% of the synthetic form of the nutrient .

Key Point: L-carnitine is an amino acid that naturally occurs in beef. It has a positive impact on various health markers.

2. Beef Provides the “Master Antioxidant” Glutathione

Commonly known as the ‘master antioxidant,’ glutathione has a score of research linking it to;

  • Anti-aging benefits
  • Increasing longevity
  • Preventing illness
  • Reducing the risk of chronic disease
  • Strengthening the immune system

It helps protect every cell in our body from cellular damage, which can lead to many chronic diseases.

On the other hand, a deficiency in glutathione contributes to oxidative stress and inflammation .

As a result, keeping glutathione levels high is important for our overall health.

Subsequently, the question becomes “how can we keep our glutathione levels high?”

Endogenous Glutathione Production and Dietary Sources

First of all, our body produces glutathione endogenously.

In other words, our body uses raw materials (in this case: amino acids) to make glutathione.

For this process to occur, we should have adequate levels of the amino acids cysteine, glutamate, and glycine .

These amino acids are known as glutathione precursors, and each of these amino acids is present in beef.

On the positive side, beef also contains a reasonably high source of complete (pre-formed) dietary glutathione.

Key Point: Keeping our glutathione levels high is critical for good health, and beef is a food that helps us to achieve this. Glutathione detoxes our body better than any ‘detox plan’ or supplement can.

3. Beef is High in Protein and Helps Improve Muscle Mass

There are numerous reasons why we should strive to ensure a sufficient protein intake and these include;

  • Protein is the building block our body uses to repair and make bone, skin, and cartilage.
  • Sufficient protein helps us to build and maintain lean muscle mass.
  • Out of all macronutrients, protein is the most satiating, and it discourages food cravings.

Beef is packed with health-promoting amino acids, and it’s one of the single biggest sources of protein in the human diet.

For instance, a 6oz (170g) portion of 80% lean beef provides 46g protein.

Should we opt for a leaner variety of beef, the protein content can be even higher .

The Importance of Lean Mass

As we age, building—or at least holding on to—lean mass should be a priority.

Research shows that older adults with lower muscle mass are at a higher risk of mortality.

Speaking bluntly, the more skeletal muscle mass someone loses as they age, the higher their risk of an earlier death .

Also, the rate of muscle protein synthesis rapidly drops as we age, making it a lot harder to build and maintain muscle .

Considering this, we should ensure we’re eating a sufficient amount of protein – this is especially essential for elderly people.

On this note, beef is one of the best protein-rich foods out there.

Key Point: Protein is essential for optimal health, and especially so as we age. Beef provides an abundant amount of this macronutrient.

4. Beef is Extremely Rich in Minerals

If you’re looking to increase your intake of various minerals, then beef is one of the best options to consider.

First of all, beef is relatively nutrient-dense in minerals.

Here we can see the mineral content of 80% lean beef ;

As shown in the table, beef provides more than half of the day’s recommended amount of selenium and zinc.

Many people have deficiency issues with some of these minerals.

So, the nutritional value of beef can help fight prevalent global deficiencies in iron, magnesium, and zinc .

Key Point: Beef is rich in several essential minerals—especially iron, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc.

5. Eating Beef Helps Prevent Iron Deficiency Anemia

We touched on mineral deficiencies in the last point, but iron deficiency anemia deserves a mention of its own.

Sadly, iron deficiency anemia is a growing epidemic around the world.

In a developed country such as the United States, nutrient deficiencies shouldn’t be a cause of death, yet anemia kills thousands every year.

To be exact, the latest release of statistics showed that Anemia hospitalized 146,000 Americans in one year. 5,219 of these people died .

Globally it’s even worse, and according to the World Health Organization, 1.62 billion people suffer from iron deficiency anemia .

Heme and Non-Heme Iron

There are two types of iron available in food, and we refer to them as heme and non-heme iron.

  • Heme Iron: Heme iron is the most bioavailable form of iron, and meat and other animal foods exclusively contain it.
  • Non-Heme Iron: Non-heme iron is found in plant foods such as fruit, vegetables, and nuts. In comparison to heme iron, our body finds it more difficult to absorb.

One of the best health benefits of beef meat is that it contains a substantial amount of heme iron.

The best source of all? Beef liver.

Interestingly, anemia disproportionately affects females. Perhaps this isn’t a huge surprise when we think about how society seems to shame women who eat meat.

The imagery of women smiling while eating a bowl of salad is quite ubiquitous.

Key Point: Eat more beef to help prevent iron deficiency anemia.

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