Beef is an ideal kind of meat for stewing recipes.
There are some pre-cut chunks of beef available on the market to make it easier and convenient for your next stews.
But what if there are no packages of beef stew meat in your local grocery store, what can be used instead? Let’s accompany us and figure out the best beef stew meat substitutes in this article.
What is beef stew meat?
Beef stew meat is a kind of stew meat that is basically cut from any tough cut of beef (usually the chuck cut).
It is often cut into cubes before being cooked with stock, broth, or water, and other vegetables.
These tough cuts contain a lot of connective tissues, so they require a long cooking time over low heat to tenderize the meat by breaking these connective tissues.
The resulting dish should be fork-tender or even can melt in your mouth.
Beef stew meat is a rich source of protein and iron, as well as many other essential nutrients to give us energy for our days.
It can typically be found at most grocery stores and butchers around town.
Can you substitute beef stew meat in cooking recipes?
If you are trying to save some money on your grocery store bill, you can buy other substitute cuts instead of beef stew meat.
Or if you are craving some beef stew meat and there are no packages of this item left in the local store, don’t worry, there are many other options that can work well as beef stew meat alternatives.
The point is that you only need some cuts that have similar texture and flavor, so they can replace your regular beef stew meat in the next stewing recipe.
So there are many tough cuts without being too lean to prevent them from getting dry after being slow-cooked, and other kinds of red meat will be ideal to substitute for beef because they all provide a strong and rich flavor compared to white meat like poultry.
What can you substitute for beef stew meat?
Below are our suggestions on the best beef stew substitutes that you can choose the next time you are going to make a stew without beef chuck cubes:
Let’s start the list with another beef cut that can substitute for regular beef stew meat on the market that is typically made from beef chuck.
Beef brisket is the ideal alternative for numerous reasons: it is beef, so you can get the same flavor and it is tough, making it perfect for stewing or other slow-cooking methods.
You can purchase the whole large beef brisket cut and then cut it into cubes in your kitchen.
The stewing recipe might call for half or ⅔ of the cut, so the rest can be used for other recipes like roasting or smoking.
Since beef brisket is relatively expensive, dividing it into different meals will be an economical way.
2. Flat iron steak
Flat iron steak is another option for beef stew meat substitutes.
It has an intense taste of beef, and is quite tough, making it suitable to substitute other common stew cuts.
However, since flat iron steak is flat and thinner, as its name implies, the cooking time will be shorter.
3. Pork shoulder roast
It’s time to swap to another kind of red meat.
Pork can substitute for beef, despite the lack of a strong beefy flavor, it still has a richer taste that is different from chicken or turkey.
Pork shoulder roast has a tough texture with perfect marbling fat, making it suitable for slow-cooking recipes like roasting or stewing.
This cut is perfect for people who look for a more affordable cut and prefer a slightly milder taste than beef stew.
4. Boneless baby back ribs
Pork baby back ribs can also be used to replace beef stew meat.
This is a popular cut of pork that is ideal for barbecuing, smoking, or roasting, but also great for braising and stewing.
You can choose to leave the bone intact or remove it before cooking or serving to resemble beef stew meat as much as possible.
Baby back ribs have a wonderful taste and fatty but still meaty mouthfeel, that’s why they are one of the most expensive cuts of pork.
5. Lamb shoulder
Lamb is also ideal to substitute for beef because it also has a strong flavor of red meat.
Lamb shoulder will be best to alternate beef stew meat because it has more connective tissues than other cuts and is perfect for stewing to result in tender meat.
The bottom line
Beef stew meat is very convenient for stewing recipes, but it’s quite expensive and not always available on the market.
The good news is that there are numerous substitute cuts from beef or other kinds of red meat that can successfully replace beef stew meat in your next pot of stew, including pork or lamb shoulder, boneless baby back ribs, or beef brisket.
You can buy the whole cut and divide it into equal chunks on your own to prepare for the stews.
With these beef stew meat substitutes, there is no way to give up on your favorite stew.