Mixing Lean and Fatty Ground Meat

The friendliest place on the web for anyone that enjoys cooking.
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

4mylgl6

Assistant Cook
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
3
Location
Chicago
Hi,
There's many recipes that call for fatty ground beef for things like meatballs, ragu, etc.
Since I need to have precise control over my fat intake, I would prefer to mince a lean cut like beef rump, and mince beef suet into the mix separately, so I can be sure to reach a good ratio of 80/20 or so. Fatty cuts like shoulder can be pretty inconsistent in their fat content (could be negligible differences if you're only interested in flavor, but diet-wise these differences are substantial to me). So my question is - would this technique work well, or do you have to use a cut that's naturally fatty?

Thanks for any help!
 

Sir_Loin_of_Beef

Chef Extraordinaire
Joined
Apr 19, 2011
Messages
12,197
Location
Sandy Eggo
80/20 lean to fat ratio is a standard for store bought ground beef, and it would be cheaper and less labour intensive than grinding your own and blending it, so why would you want to make your own?
 

4mylgl6

Assistant Cook
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
3
Location
Chicago
It may be standard where you live. Around here there's no standard ratio or reliable labeling and it's very inconsistent. And like I said, diet-wise I need to be pretty strict.
 

dcSaute

Sous Chef
Joined
Apr 24, 2011
Messages
912
"Around here there's no standard ratio or reliable labeling and it's very inconsistent."

are talking about cuts of meat from a (sub)primal or "ground beef"
if you are in Chicago USA that sounds very suspicious for ground beef - 80/20 to 95/5 is clearly labeled in retail supermarkets.

if you are on a low fat diet, there's little need to add fat back in - trim off all the fat and use the lean meat.

I sense there's more to the story - so you'll need to fill in some of the mystery blanks....
 

dragnlaw

Site Team
Staff member
Joined
Feb 16, 2013
Messages
7,507
Location
Waterdown, Ontario
I also suggest you use only lean meat. Fat is for flavour and moisture and lightness. Both of which you can add yourself.
Flavour obviously with spices and herbs.
Moisture and lightness with milk soaked bread cubes. (Soak semi-stale bread cubes in milk, squeeze out excess milk)
Egg also to help bind.

Mixing is also important so that you don't end up with rock solid meat. I use my hands with fingers splayed out, pulling in from the outside of bowl and push fingers into the mixture. I think of it as almost kneading like bread motion but without the compressing of the dough. Continue 'til well mixed. This helps to prevent compacting/compressing your meat mixture.
 

karadekoolaid

Head Chef
Joined
Jul 16, 2006
Messages
1,317
Location
Caracas
All the supermarkets I´ve been in in Cincinnati label the amount of fat on their beef so I´d just buy that.If you´re very particular, you could ask your butcher to recommend the best cuts for you and, if he´s a really local butcher, he might trim the fat off for you as well.
 

4mylgl6

Assistant Cook
Joined
Dec 25, 2021
Messages
3
Location
Chicago
Thanks for the replies.
I am originally from Chicago, currently residing in a remote part of Thailand - so, trust me, no labeling.
I know it's possible to add breadcrumbs, milk, egg etc., but like I said I prefer to use the right amount of beef fat, both flavor-wise and diet-wise. So if anyone has some input about my original question, I'd be glad to hear it.
Does blending lean meat+fat produce the same results as using a naturally fatty cut? Or is there an inherent difference in the meat or how the fat and lean are binded together?
 

dragnlaw

Site Team
Staff member
Joined
Feb 16, 2013
Messages
7,507
Location
Waterdown, Ontario
Ah-ha - so you see, your location posted is/was very misleading, hence our my answers based on where I thought you were.

Not knowing what kind of beef you are getting there, which increases substantially due to you also say you are in a remote part of Thailand.

With all this in mind, my only other suggestion would be to grind your beef. Cook it separately, drain off all the accumulated fat, weight them, remix to the percentages you would like.
 

dragnlaw

Site Team
Staff member
Joined
Feb 16, 2013
Messages
7,507
Location
Waterdown, Ontario
Hi,
There's many recipes that call for fatty ground beef for things like meatballs, ragu, etc.
Since I need to have precise control over my fat intake, I would prefer to mince a lean cut like beef rump, and mince beef suet into the mix separately, so I can be sure to reach a good ratio of 80/20 or so.

Fatty cuts like shoulder can be pretty inconsistent in their fat content (could be negligible differences if you're only interested in flavor, but diet-wise these differences are substantial to me). So my question is - would this technique work well, or do you have to use a cut that's naturally fatty?

Thanks for any help!

I also think you've answered your own question. A particular cut of meat from one animal to another is going to contain different amounts of fat. If your diet must be super strict I, personally, would not take the chance.
 

karadekoolaid

Head Chef
Joined
Jul 16, 2006
Messages
1,317
Location
Caracas
I live in Venezuela, so I probably have the same issues that you do. I get the butcher to remove as much fat as possible (and they will happily do it here) and then mince it for me - twice.
Doing it yourself is perfectly feasible, but it´s a heck of a lot of work, especially if you´ve got an issue with fat intake.
 

Latest posts

Top Bottom