Any tips for someone new to cooking beef?
First time in college cooking beef for myself instead the frozen commercial porocessed stuff
What cut should I start off with?
Burgers are my all-time favorite, followed by steak-ums cheesesteaks, and then arby's roast beef.
I'm on a tight budget also. Is Chuck Roast and Chuck steak the most ideal for me?
Chuck roast is fine if you have a slow cooker. Throw a sliced onion on top and add a little beef broth. Cook on low all day.
You can put it in a burrito, over pasta or rice, add BBQ sauce and a bun...
Every now and then you will see good deals on skirt steak. It is great with a hot pan or grill to give it a good sear and cooked rare to medium rare. More done than that, and while still flavorful, it gets tough. Super lean eye of the round steaks and roasts are also often good deals and as long as they are more towards rare quite good. I often toss a couple of them in a hot, salted skillet for the quickest of sears, pepper them well, and squeeze lemon on them.
1. Figure out if you like your steak bloody or not. To me, that dictates what cut you should get for steaks. If you like steak on the rarer side, there are cuts that are not so expensive that are very tender if cooked on the rarer side, but they turn into shoe leather if you go past medium, like a sirloin.
2. Learn about the braising/stewing cuts vs the steaks.
I like my steak bloody, and I love a good beefy flavor, so for me, my value steak cuts are top sirloin, sirloin tip, skirt, hanger.
I love pretty much any of the braising/stewing cuts.
Stop telling ppl you like steak ums and arby's if you want ppl to take you seriously when talking about beef. :-)
You might want to look into top round, which is frequently sold as London Broil. It's pretty inexpensive and goes on sale very often, at least where I live. I just bought a choice grade one for 2.99/lb. They come in 2-3lb amounts so you can either cook it all at once and use it throughout the week, or cut it up and freeze it in smaller portions before cooking.
It takes very well to different marinades, and can be cooked in a variety of ways, both in the oven and on a grill. It makes great sandwiches (make your own version of cheesesteaks!), or is even good sliced up and used in stir fries. Here's an example of a recipe where you can use it in a quick and easy stir fry: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2009/07/pe...
Another idea is to use ground beef to make meatballs for spaghetti & meatballs or meatball sandwiches. Here's an easy meatball recipe: http://www.canyoustayfordinner.com/20... you can sub out the dried herbs she lists for just your basic italian seasoning blend, to help keep the cost down.