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Beef Fajitas - want to use more tender cut than skirt steak...

Hi guys!
I want to make fajitas tomorrow and although they always turn out pretty good when I use the typical skirt steak, I am willing to spend the extra $$ on a more tender cut of meat. I know DH likes rib-eyes - can I just use that?

What recommendations do you have for other cuts and is there anything additional to keep in mind if straying from the chewy, less-tender cuts? (Such as marinating time, slicing, etc.)

Thanks!!

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  1. Filet mignon works if you like it - I'm not really a fan myself, as I find it too lean and rather flavorless. Hanger steak is quite tender if you don't overcook it - that might work well.

    I don't think of ribeye as being a particularly tender cut (though I love it). You might consider flank steak or flap meat for something new, although neither are really more tender than skirt.

    1 Reply
    1. re: biondanonima

      My first though was flap meat but definitely not really considered a particularly tender cut but would be great in fajitas.

    2. During the Summer I grill a lot of flank steak. When there are leftovers, I slice it thin and use for fajitas.

      I have never made skirt steak so I don't know how it compares to flank steak but flank has always worked out well for me. Sliced thin and against the grain.

      1. Flank, flap, sirloin. All great deals at Costco.
        Flap is the new flank at our house ;-)

        12 Replies
        1. re: monavano

          Sirloin Flap Meat is amazing. Almost as flavorful as skirt but more tender.

          But always remember to grill whole, rest, and then cut across the grain for serving. Don't pre-cut like a stir-fry. That guarantees added toughness.

          Not all Costcos have the Flap.

          I wouldn't recomment a rib-eye. You could grill one whole and then slice for service, but I think it lacks the intense flavor and frankly I think the texture is wrong for this use.

          On the other hand, I once asked the server at Lawry's, probably the #1 Prime Rib place in LA, what they did with all the leftovers, and he grinned and said, "Tacos, man!" So what do I know?

          1. re: acgold7

            DH grilled up a flap last night, and it was sublime. I ate way too much!
            Oh, and I used a soy and butter sauce that I made for wilted chard and shrooms.

            1. re: monavano

              <...drool...>

              I usually get the flaps by the four-pack in the cryo when Depot has them on sale. They mark them down as they approach their pull date so we generally get them for three or four bucks a pound. Sometimes I freeze a couple but often we just blast through them over the course of a couple of weeks.

              I grill them whole and the first time we did one my 17-year-old saw it and asked what it was. I told him it was skate wing. He bought it for a couple of minutes before he caught on and called me an a**hole.

              1. re: acgold7

                I wish my local Depot had sirloin flap.

            2. re: acgold7

              Flap is my 2nd favorite steak cut, after hanger. Whole Foods usually sells flap though in my experience it's often mislabeled.

            3. re: monavano

              I've been buying flap at Costco but it's near the same price as strip steak

              1. re: scubadoo97

                Yes, flap meat at Costco has gone way up lately - I'm sure part of it is increased popularity, but all beef prices have been rising.

                1. re: biondanonima

                  Actually flap's been that price for the last few years. Those NY strips are just a great deal. Especially when they look like this

                   
                    1. re: scubadoo97

                      Interesting. At our end of the country, at Costco the NY strip is about $1 more per pound than the Flap, within the same grade. If you move up to the Choice strip, it's about $1.50 more.

                      1. re: acgold7

                        At whole foods flap is sold at sirloin prices

                        1. re: acgold7

                          If you Google "Boxed Beef Prices" the latest trade price for each cut will be listed. I have found R.D. to be about 20% - 25% higher than the trade price (their markup).

                          Currently trade price for 180 choice strip is $6.10 and 185A choice flap is $4.50 so your Costco price spread is pretty much on the mark.

                          At this time of the year, the trade price of 180 choice strip is normally high $4 to low $5. Me thinks grilling is going to be an expensive endeavor this summer when the typical 25% Memorial Day price jump kicks in.

                          Might be worth stocking up now, dry, portion & and vacuum seal for the summer.

                2. I prefer arrachera (flank steak). Don't overdo the acid in the marinade, or marinate too long (1 hr. Is sufficient). My favorite is pineapple juice since it's both an acid, and has tenderizing enzymes. Grill fast, and hot and pull @ mid-rare. Tent loosely and let rest (15 mins.). Slice thinly on the bias, and against the grain.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: letsindulge

                    Arrachera is flap meat, not flank steak.

                    ETA: Many sources refer to arrachera as flank or skirt steak. But at the carnicerias I frequent, it's flap meat.

                  2. If you have a lot of time try using flaken cut short ribs.