Last Updated On: April 12, 2021

If you’ve been reading our site, then you’re probably familiar with most standard beef cuts and frequently use them in your carnivore diet. But, what about the lesser-known cuts such as teres major beef?

If you haven’t tried this cut, then you’re missing out. We’re here to give you a quick rundown of this cheap and delicious option. We’re sure you’ll love it just as much as we do.

What Is The Teres Major Cut?

teres major meat

Teres major steak is a cut that comes from the shoulder or chuck area of the cow. It is also referred to as the shoulder tender, petite tender, or medallions.

If a good butcher is familiar with this cut, then they’ll be able to give you the best teres major tenderloin pieces.

It may seem like a new term, but it is sometimes called a beef clod to an American butcher.

It can be one difficult piece of meat to cut, but the flavor and tender texture seem like it might still be worth it.

Brief History

The teres major cut originated in Lockhart, Texas, and it’s a central part of a Texas mesquite-style BBQ recipe. It has been prepared since 1900 using the same recipe with low heat and a slow cooking method.

"It has become a popular part of the chuck because it resembles filet mignon, but it’s cheaper and just as tender.

There's a lot of work that goes into retrieving these small steaks (we only get 2 lbs from every 1,400 lbs beef!), but it's so worth it!"

 

- Porter Road Butchers [1]

meat questions

1. What Part of the Cow is Teres Major?

Teres Major comes from the shoulder area of the cow and lies directly above the flank and flat iron steak. It is part of the muscle and connective tissue that connects the shoulder blade to the front of the steer’s shoulder.

It resides near the chuck steak, which is usually reserved for a roast due to its tough exterior. This steak is never as tough as chuck roast meat, however. A good butcher will know exactly where to find the teres major bistro filet.

2. Is Teres Major Steak the Same as Beef Clod?

Beef clod is another name for the teres major cut of meat. You can ask for either of these names at a butcher shop, and you’ll get the shoulder tender to which we are referring. The beef clod is best served medium-rare or rare.

3. What Does Teres Major Steak Taste Like?

This cut of meat tastes like a beef tenderloin or a petite tender cut. It has more fat than a filet mignon, which makes it taste way better. It may not have the tenderness of a great filet, but it’s packed with more flavor.

There’s a reason that filets are often wrapped in bacon, which is to add extra fat to the cut. You will never find a teres major steak wrapped in extra fat since it cooks well by itself. Many people say it tastes pretty much like a mix of tenderloin and a filet.

4. What Makes it Taste so Great?

The reason this meat tastes so good is because it comes from a portion of the cow that has very little tough connective tissue. It is the muscle that connects the humerus to the back of the shoulder blade.

It is never sinewy or tough like other steaks from the shoulder area. It has a fantastic flavor without adding much to it except salt.

5. Why Is It Such A Rare Cut?

The teres major is a rare cut because it takes a lot of skill and practice to extract it from the chuck of the steer. It is much easier for a butcher to extract the flank and flat iron steaks. It is also a small piece of meat. You will rarely find any of these steaks over 10 oz.

6. Why is This Steak so Cheap?

This steak is cheap because it has less fat marbling than a standard filet or tenderloin. It doesn’t quite have the same buttery texture as an expensive ribeye, but it still has the intense flavor punch that many of us carnivores love. It is almost a third cheaper than filets.

7. Should You Trim the Fat on This Steak?

We recommend leaving the fat on the teres major steak when you cook it. It usually only has a small bit of fat towards the back and around the edges, which will help keep it tender when you sear it on the grill.

This steak has very little fat throughout so it’s not particularly marbled. The fat around the edges keeps the meat tender and moist over high heat.

Recommended Article: What's Our Favorite Knife for Cutting Meat?

8. What is the Best Way to Cook it?

searing

The most popular way to cook this tenderloin is to use a searing method, which we will explain in the steps below. You can also prepare this cut over indirect heat, which will take longer but add a smokey flavor.

Another thing we find fascinating about this cut is that it gets a bit thicker as it cooks. During our review cookout, we noticed that it came out a full half-inch thicker when we pulled the steak from the grill. While it doesn’t seem like a lot, the difference still makes a good story to tell.

Step 1

We would suggest that you cook this cut of meat on the grill every time. We like to season it with coarse salt and some pepper. You don’t have to do too much to it.

You can also season it with a rub or other steak seasoning, but if it’s your first time, then we would tell you to stick with the salt and pepper. Please don’t overdo it.

Step 2

Make sure that your grill is hot and nice so that you can get a great sear on each side of the steak. The best way to cook this meat is hot and fast.

Throw the meat on the grill and sear it on each side for about 3 or 4 minutes. You’ll see that the meat gets puffy and juicy almost right away.

If you like your meat really rare, then it will probably be done after a quick sear. If you would like a more medium-rare teres major, then turn off the grill and close the lid.

Leave the meat in the grill to bake in the heat until the desired doneness.

Next, get the meat off the grill and let it rest for 3 or 4 minutes. While searing, you can also insert a dual probe meat thermometer to check the temperature every minute.

9. What to Serve with the Teres Major Cut?

Since teres major meat is similar to a tenderloin, we think it goes best with savory side dishes. We love it with a savory mashed or baked potato recipe.

It also goes well with roast asparagus, cherry tomatoes, or other vegetables. We advise cooking what you like since this steak goes well with almost anything.

You can also prepare a peppercorn or mushroom sauce in just a few minutes that will help bring out the natural flavors of the meat.

10. Where Can I Buy Teres Major Steaks?

money

You might be able to see this cut of meat at your local grocery store, but the last time we went, we didn’t see it. Some people have been able to get it at a specialized or whole foods store.

We recommend checking with your local butchery to see if they have it in stock. If they don’t, they’ll probably be able to give you a call if they get any.

The other option is to shop around online with one of the meat delivery services that we use.

One of the best options is Snake River Farms, which carries the American Wagyu teres major cut.

Conclusion

Many of our readers come to our site because they are on the carnivore diet like us. Well, as you know, buying steak for every meal can get expensive. The teres major steak might be one new and inexpensive alternative to tenderloin or other pricey cuts.

It has tons of flavor, it’s tender, and it won’t break the bank. If you’re ready to check it out for yourself, click here to shop at one of our online meat delivery services.


References

  1. https://porterroad.com/products/teres-major#:~:text=The%20Teres%20Major%20is%20a,the%20shoulder%20of%20the%20cattle.

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