Denver Steak: What Is It and How to Cook

How To Cook Denver Steak

Denver Steak: A delicious choice for the steak lover in you.

If you have never heard of this cut of meat before, do not feel too bad. The Denver steak came into existence about 10 years ago as the result of an investigative project designed by professional butchers named the Beef Checkoff Project.

A steak is born

The creation of the Denver steak was the result of a big-deal investigation which was conducted by food scientists, and founded by none other than the Cattleman’s Beef Board itself.

It all came together in the year 2009. The purpose of the investigation was to figure out how to produce a brand new cut of meat from the chuck roll, which is not always regarded as a “high end” cut of meat, and is typically used just for roasts and stews.

The result was a cut of meat with a high level of marbleization and the right amount of tissue and fat to make it suitable for the grill, while still being “technically” a slice of chuck roast.

The name given to it was “Denver” steak, as a way to make allusion to the beautiful city that is part of the Cattleman’s Beef Board host state of Colorado. Clearly, it is all part of a smart marketing technique to bring people to try this innovative new creation.

So what does the Denver steak look like?

Denver steaks are not filet, so they are not thick, however, they are tender. So tender, in fact, that they rank #4 in tenderness among all cuts of steak. They are cut in a quadrilateral form, and their level of marbleization makes it easy for consumers to identify the “grain” on the surface. This is good, because you need to slice the steak against its grain in order to get the best texture and flavor results.

How to cook and cut a Denver steak

A Denver steak may probably be no thicker than one inch. For this reason, it is best to flash grill it on super high heat for no longer than 45 seconds on each side. This, of course, is to achieve a medium rare finish. It is not recommended to fully cook these types of steaks.

In terms of taste and texture, think about this: The Denver steak is the first cousin of the flat iron steak. This said, both steaks are to be treated similarly as muscular cuts of beef. Slice against the grain always.

Cooking a Denver steak

It is rare to see a Denver steak in your typical meat departments. This is why you may want to contact your local butcher to purvey these cuts for your neighborhood store.

Once you get your hands on these awesome steaks, the sky’s the limit.

Marinate Or Season Prepare The Steak

Marinating and seasoning

These steaks are think and super tender. In order to maximize their texture and flavor, consider marinating the steaks in a brine consisting of:

  • olive oil
  • rosemary
  • crushed garlic
  • adobo, or salt/pepper mixture to taste

Let the steaks stay in the mix (in a zip lock bag) for 6-48 hours for maximum flavor.

Process

  • Heat your grill to high heat
  • You will flash-grill your Denver steak for no more than one minute on each side. The recommended time is 45 seconds on each side to get to a medium-rare finish, which is recommended.
  • The olive oil will aid in the cooking process because it will protect the meat from becoming overcooked, while creating a crispy texture on the surface.

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Denver Steak Recipe
Print Recipe
3.87 from 15 votes

Denver Steak Recipe

A Denver steak may probably be no thicker than one inch. For this reason, it is best to flash grill it on super high heat for no longer than 45 seconds on each side. This, of course, is to achieve a medium rare finish.

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Denver Steak
Servings: 4
Calories: 180kcal

Ingredients

Marinating and seasoning

  • Olive oil

  • Rosemary

  • Crushed garlic

  • Adobo, or salt/pepper mixture to taste

Instructions

  • Let the steaks stay in the marinating mix (in a zip lock bag) for 6-48 hours for maximum flavor.

  • You will flash-grill your Denver steak for no more than one minute on each side. 

  • The recommended time is 45 seconds on each side to get to a medium-rare finish, which is recommended.

  • The olive oil will aid in the cooking process because it will protect the meat from becoming overcooked, while creating a crispy texture on the surface.

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 180kcal

Sides and more

Denver steaks are amazing with just about anything that you typically use to adorn a steak. These include:

  • Baked potato or sweet potato: You do not want to take the focus off your “star” main dish. Instead, opt for mild-tasting starches that will not opaque the taste and texture of the meat. A nice baked potato or sweet potato bar with options for toppings is a great way to mix it up and make steak night fun.
  • Roasted, fried potatoes with rosemary and oregano: Fry up potato halves and sprinkle with salt, pepper, oregano and rosemary. Add garlic salt as an optional choice.
  • – Garlic bread rounds: Denver steaks are very tender and juicy. Dip the juicy renderings on deliciously crispy garlic bread. Otherwise, make it into a garlic bread steak sandwich.
  • Truffle fries: Nothing goes better with anything than truffle fries. If you can’t get this fancy, consider frying your French fries on truffle-laced olive oil, which is becoming quite popular in supermarkets everywhere. Truffle-laced salt is also a thing that is starting to cause a huge sensation among households. Find it online, or procure it through your local farmer’s market.
  • Cheesy rice or risotto: Try not to overpower your steak with a super-cheesy rice. Instead, boil your rice with olive oil and water, then incorporate Monterrey jack cheese in small amounts, just enough until you can see the cheese melting. Sprinkle with pink Himalayan salt.
  • Roasted vegetables or house salad: Roast the veggies on the grill, or put together a fresh batch of leafy greens, tomatoes, and every other fresh green you can find.
  • – Grilled white corn: Grill your corn right on the grill along with your steak for about 5-7 minutes. Butter it up!
  • – Sautéed Mushrooms: Use the famous steakhouse restaurant recipe. All you need is sliced mushrooms, a stick of butter, burgundy wine, beef broth, and optional white onion in small chunks. Sautee altogether.

Drinks

As with all steaks, a refreshingly sparkling drink goes quite well. Consider drinks that are not too heavy on your stomach:

  • Sparkling soda water, lemon and sugar with mint leaves
  • Lime and cherry lime sodas
  • India Pale Ale (IPA) beer
  • Red wine, preferably Merlot or Pinot Noir. If you want to go for white wine select a nice Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc. Moscato is a sweet table wine which you may enjoy, if you like to mix flavors a lot. Sparkling rose wine is also a favorite for steak lovers.
Add Drinks To Delicious Steak

Would you like to try a Denver steak?

Call your local butcher and procure this interesting cut of steak for your next cookout. This super tender steak is the perfect size, flavor and texture for a quick meal that anyone can cook easily.

Pair the steak with one of our suggested side dishes and enjoy one of the newest rock stars in the market. Tell everyone that you are one of the few lucky cooks who knows how to recognize, cook, and enjoy a great Denver steak.

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