HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


Beef liver?

It's so cheap! But what could you possibly do with it? Google hasn't been terribly informative.
Asian recipes especially appreciated, if they exist.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. My suggestion is to dust in flour, dip in eggs and pan saute to your desired temperature. Serve with pan fried onions and crisp bacon.

    If you like a sauce with your liver, don't laugh, but milk or cream with balsamic vinegar reduced make a nice sauce. It may sound weird, but a chef served it to me that exact way many years ago and I enjoyed it and still revive the recipe on occasion to this day.

    Beef Liver is also used in many restaurants and catering halls for chopped liver. Another surprise I realized made by a chef in my past life at a premire caterer.

    1. You can stir-fry them with some ginger, garlic and green onions.

      OR ... you can serve them chilled.

      Drain and cool.
      Prepare a marinade of soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, diced garlic, salt and pepper, and red chili oil.
      Combine liver and marinade.
      Refrigerate overnight and serve garnished with Chinese parsley.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ipsedixit

        The odor of boiling liver is pretty off-putting - I saute it with smothered onions and bacon fat, then add a soy marinade.

      2. I cut up apple smoked bacon in about 1.5" sections and cook it with plenty of sweet onions. Once the bacon is crisp and the onions are caramelized I pull the bacon and onions from the fat. Lightly dredge the liver in seasoned flour and saute in the bacon fat. I then add the onions and bacon back to the pan and finish with demi glace.

        1. i'm not sure if the taste of pork and beef liver is much different... but how about a la Portuguesa? i like 'Iscas com Elas' (Liver with 'Them'. 'them' here means boiled potatoes because nothing else will do.) 'Iscas a Lisboa' (Lisbon style liver) is more or less the same if you like bacon. very simple to make but first you must soak the liver [around 5hrs in the fridge] in white wine, vinegar, bay leaves, garlic etc to tenderise and make it milder.

          1. I usually get beef liver with my periodic cooperative beef purchase, and I usually use it for pate de campagne made with half beef liver, half pork.

            1. Beef liver is perfect for the South Asian offal curry known as katakat. If you choose to panfry it, I would give it a long soak in milk to get rid of some of the stronger taste.

              1. Do you mean calves liver or the liver of a mature beast.

                If the latter, then I've no idea as I've never seen it on sale. If calves liver (which is not at all cheap where I am), then perfect for "fegato alla veneziana".

                3 Replies
                1. re: Harters

                  New Jersey Prices:

                  Calves Liver.........4.99-7.99

                  Beef Liver............1.49-2.49

                  1. re: fourunder

                    The beef liver I've gotten comes from bulk beef purchases. Some friends and I split shares in one or more sides of grass fed beef, and after splitting up the muscle cuts, the offal and bones are giveaways, and I usually get a pound or two of beef liver for pate.

                  2. re: Harters

                    In Canada, beef liver (from mature animal) is extremely cheap. I hate to say this, but we feed it to our cats for a treat every so often. I still haven't gotten over being forced to eat it as a child.

                  3. I'm picking up a whole lamb Saturday. I'm not sure I've ever tried lambs liver.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Fritter

                      Lamb's liver is as cheap as chips where I am.

                      Make an onion gravy (you might want to add a bit of mustard or Worcestershire Sauce). Boil potatoes and mash. Thinly slice liver and fry quickly. Eat.

                      Are you also getting testicles and the other good offally bits?

                    2. Chopped liver is just as good made from beef liver as chicken. Follow any recipe that calls for adding hard-boiled eggs and onions caramelized in lots of oil (or, preferably, chicken fat).

                      1. Wow, you guys!
                        CH comes through again. Thanks!

                        1. Curious- has anyone tried grilling liver before? If so, any suggestions for how to do it properly? Have about 1 lb from a free-range cow- looks like it's from a mature animal, so I have rinsed it well and am soaking it in cold salted water overnight.

                          It's already cut into strips, but it looks like there's a thin membrane running along the edge....should I cut that off before cooking?

                          If grilling isn't a good idea, looks like there's plenty others here. Thanks!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: 4Snisl

                            I'm not sure I would grill liver strips directly on a grill.

                            I've known people who have skewered chicken liver for grilling, but they've always turned out dry and a bit dull.

                            One way to grill liver, is to wrap them in heavy duty foil with some garlic, thyme and onions, and topped off with a light splash of dry white wine. You'll get an aromatic and tender liver dish.

                            1. re: ipsedixit

                              Thanks for the advice! I do enjoy liver a little pink in the middle, and suspect it would be hard to time that on the grill.

                              The foil idea sounds wonderful- never thought about pairing thyme with liver.....have some thunderstorms coming through today, but hope it'll clear up in time for dinner!

                          2. Since liver and mustard are classic I am thinking liver and ginger would be similarly good together. Add onion and garlic in a quick saute, some soy sauce or oyster sauce, a sprinkle of chives, a squeeze of citrus and serve over rice. Liver and onions are classic so subbing shitake or other Asian shrooms might be nice as well.

                            1. Just bought beef liver at my local farmer's market....$1.99/lb! Haven't had it since I was a kid, Tonight it's soaking in the juice of 2 lemons, will be sauteed in bacon and onions tomorrow night. Hoping that won't be too long marinading in the lemon!

                              It's great to read these other ideas for cooking it. IF I like it (not sure, it's been so long!) I'll be trying some of these other ways too cook future liver purchases.

                              1. Spread that pate everyone keeps mentioning on some bahn mi.

                                1. Lidia Bastianich has a recipe using liver in the filling for ravioli. That particular recipe does not appeal to me, but I can see sauteeing it with onion and garlic and then grinding it and mixing with egg to make a dumpling filling.

                                  Some copycat recipes for White Castle Slyders call for mixing pureed liver with the ground beef, for a smoother-textured burger.

                                  1. I slice it in 3/8" thick slices about 3" x5" and put it on a medium high heat griddle.

                                    Cook to medium, so that there is a touch of pink instead (needs to have some moisture) and serve on white toast with dark fried oinions or bacon..............
                                    OR plate it and serve with the onions, bacon and mashed potatoes with a rich brown gravy on top.

                                    I prefer the taste of beef liver to calves liver which doesn't stand up to the onions, bacon or gravy.

                                    Also, I find chicken livers and some calves liver to be too mushy, I don't want to eat paste.

                                    My wife uses 2/3 chicken liver to 1/3 beef liver when making chopped liver and makes sure to coarse grind the beef liver so there is a little bite when eating

                                    1. I tend to just pan fry it also, but I have seen a ton of new ideas here I can't wait to try out! Just thought I'd throw in my two cents from how I made mine tonight. I soaked my beef liver in milk for about 45 minutes. I then rinsed it off, and patted them dry. I had mixed flour, salt, pepper, a big pinch of dried dill weed, and about a tablespoon of dried parsley. I dredged the liver and put on a medium-high skillet with olive oil for about 3-4 minutes or so per side (my pieces weren't real big). I know it continues to cook a little bit after, so I take them off when they're still the tiniest little bit pink. Then at the last minute I splashed in some balsamic vinegar over all the meat and turned the meat once to get it all over. Then I plated with onions to cover.

                                      I also found that it paired very well with something I kind of messed up on. I realized too late that I only had a couple of potatoes to mash, so I added a medium size peeled sweet potato to the pot when boiling. I made them the same way I normally would make mashed potatoes, and it was just a tiny bit sweet and paired very well with the sweet balsamic liver and caramelized onions!!

                                      I've seen suggestions of apples cooked down a bit, and I think that would be very good with this also.