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What is a good beef for beef stroganoff?

First time poster here!

So I made beef stroganoff for the first time this week. Flavor was delicious but the beef was very tough and dried out. I used Angus beef strips. They were barely browned (actually grey) when I removed from the pan so I don't think they were overcooked at the time that I removed. The strips were probably 2 inches in length and 3/8 of an inch in thickness.

Was it the type of beef/overcooking that caused it to dry out that quickly?

Any suggestions as to the type of beef and length of cut?


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  1. Top sirloin or tenderloin, cut thin into 1-inch wide by 2 1/2-inch long strips.
    It's got to be browned quickly, in butter, but the heat can be difficult to balance because the meat must brown quickly but the butter must be prevented from burning.

    2 Replies
    1. re: todao

      I agree. I go with top of the line beef as well. ilikefood123, I brown the beef to rare and transfer it to a plate right away. That allows more full-flavoured drippings to intermingle with the sauce when the beef goes back in. I reintroduce the beef to the sauce just before serving allowing sufficient time for it to reheat. I also pour the plate drippings in, but I'm sure you know that.

      1. re: todao

        I wouldn't buy from a store that had such vague labelling as "Angus beef strips." Sounds as though they're just trying to fool the consumer. The best compromise between quality and price is probably top sirloin.

      2. I intend no offense but "Angus beef strips" is meaningless.
        Angus is a breed of beef cow.
        "Angus beef" is a highly merchandised USDA choice beef but tells you nothing about the cut.
        Angus strip loin or angus sirloin or bottom round?
        All might be Angus but all different.

        My stroganoff is done with choice chuck.
        I would consider no other cut.

        1 Reply
        1. Sirloin. Stick with chuck for pot roast.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rememberme

            Chuck can be very tender and juicy if basically 'flash fried'. Just literally a minute in a hot pan. Ghee not table butter will not burn.
            I recently made BS using a large ribeye cut into appropriate sized pieces. Pretty damned tasty

            1. re: Puffin3

              Any tender steak meat will work but primarily trimmings from the tenderloin, strips & prime ribs are used in restaurants. It's a good dish to use up expensive by products.

          2. Beef stroganoff is one of my "signature" dishes - I've been cooking it for nearly 40 years. I use flank steak, cut across the grain to about the same size you describe, maybe a bit thinner.

            My meat gets pretty thoroughly cooked - well browned in a combination of butter and oil at high heat, then I add onions and cook them together, and finally do the same with the mushrooms - but it doesn't come out dry or tough. I almost wonder whether you *undercooked* your beef?

            1 Reply
            1. re: Allstonian

              My Stroganoff is always a sauté item using the end pieces and the chain meat, that which can't be cut for steaks, from beef tenderloin. Chain is the side piece from the butt end of the tenderloin that many meat cutters leave on that usually falls off when you cook it. In my restaurant days Beef Stroganoff was cooked at table side and never past just medium.

            2. a flat iron cut is cheap and very tender

              1 Reply
              1. re: pcheflbc

                I'm thinking you may have also crowded the pan when browning, which in turn, ends up steaming the meat (it tends to come out grey and tough).

              2. a nice piece of sirloin cut against the grain, very hot pan with a mix of butter and oil (for higher temps w/out burning the butter) and just a handful of beef strips at a time so that the pan isn't crowded and you can sear on all sides. Takes a while to work all the way through the meat, but soooooo worth it.

                1. Since getting the meat just right can be tricky, you might want to try meatball stroganoff instead - I don't have a specific recipe.

                  1. Classically, the Russian czars preferred prime tenderloin but many of us can't afford it. Assuming it was the good Angus that is as good if not better than choice, it should have been pretty good. It does sound like you overcrowded the pan. You need to have everything pretty much done and just sear them off and throw them into the stroganoff.

                    The other approach is the beef chuck route. That's good too but you need to braise it slow to keep it tender. Once it is tender then add the other stuff.

                    The meatball approach gives you the flavors without having the toughness or the braising.

                    The meatball approach is a very nice weeknight dinner.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: Hank Hanover

                      the meatball approach is good, but isn't it then Konigsburger Klops?

                      1. re: hill food

                        Gesundheit! Not sure what that is but it is probably closer to our own version of hamburger helper. :-)

                          1. re: Hank Hanover

                            Koenigsberger Klopse are meatballs in a creamy caper sauce, usually served with potatoes or rice. They are about as far from HH as humanly possible.

                            1. re: linguafood

                              I knew I would get in trouble there. I was referring to my meat approach.

                      2. I've gone as lean as sirloin, and as fatty as a ribeye. The trick is to not cook the meat completely through on the first pass, but rather to brown it, transfer to a bowl, then pop back in when you're finishing your sauce. Maybe your heat wasn't high enough when you tried to brown? As others have mentioned, I really have no idea what 'Angus beef strips' means, as Angus is just a breed of cattle, not a cut, so I can't advise you on that.

                        1. The cut size sounds about right. I tend to use Ribeye steak.A little expensive but packed full of flavour and the fat prevents it from drying out.You can actually make a stroganoff in under three minutes.I've seen it done on TV a bunch of times.I occasionally add garlic, red wine and soft fresh peppercorns and slow cook it for flavour, then serve with fresh pasta to give it more of an italian flavour and more richness.

                          1. My aunt makes the best beef stroganoff! Her recipe calls for FLANK strips. I have no idea what "flank" is exactly, but strips cut sideways work well. Flank is thin, so I like to use meat scissors to cut 2-3 inch strips. They shrink a bit when browned. Sauté with butter and onions. Pour in 3 cans of cream of mushroom soup, and heat until warm. Mix all that with one bag of cooked egg noodles. Enjoy!

                            1. ilikefood123,

                              Hmmmm.......I don't know what caused it to dry out quickly. But I have a suggestion for type of beef and how to prepare it! (see below).

                              Cubed chuck beef (either in butchers or supermarket). Ask butchers to cut in cubes -- they will know how. And in supermarket, it is already in cubed in package in the steak/meat section in supermarket.

                              Rinse the meat and place in frying pan with a little vegetable oil. brown on all sides. and the best way for flavor and texture would be to then transfer to a pressure cooker along with potatoes, carrots and onions with seasoning. If you don't have pressure cooker, you can place all ingredients in a pot of water on stove. Boil for about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

                              Either cooking method is delicious!

                              Hope it works out!

                              Good Luck!

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: BAM2014

                                That is not Stroganoff.
                                Since this post is from 2008 It has already worked out or not long ago.

                                1. re: BAM2014

                                  Yeah that sounds like a good stew, though.