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Ground Beef Fat Percentage

by (90)
Updated November 25, 2014 at 4:08 AM
Created March 16, 2014 at 7:50 PM

What percent fat to buy on grass-fed ground beef?

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690 · March 18, 2014 at 6:36 PM

@raydawg

that's because fat is bad! :)

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26182 · March 18, 2014 at 2:47 PM

if the fat separates from the chili you either (1) Don't cook it long enough OR (2) Are not reheating it right. You have to bring the chili to a simmer, and then give it time to slowly get back to 160 degrees before you serve it.

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17402 · March 18, 2014 at 9:29 AM

It's funny how advertising screws it all up - they sell it as "85% lean" instead of 15% fat... lol.

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0 · March 17, 2014 at 10:58 AM

The fat contains the bulk of the nutrients, and it is much more satisfying than the lean portion. 80/20 is a fatty cut. It has higher omega 3, more antioxidents, and lots of otherwise hard to get fat soluable nutrients.

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519 · March 17, 2014 at 6:31 AM

I completely agree... I stick to 80/20 and 85/15. Not sure why people still advocate excessive fat?

Medium avatar
208 · March 17, 2014 at 4:05 AM

Why? Beyond the fat holding the toxin in conventional I don't see the point of loading up on grass fed beef fat unless you have some need to eat lots of fat.

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9 Answers

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690 · March 18, 2014 at 6:45 PM

When buying GF ground beef (I usually buy other cuts) and I have a choice of "lean" percentage, I divide the price per pound by the lean percent and then buy the "cheapest" one. I figure I'm buying the protein. This seems like a good value approach, unless I'm missing something?

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3217 · March 17, 2014 at 10:44 PM

I have two options at Whole Foods: 85 lean, or 93 lean. I always choose the 85. In fact, on the off occasion when 85 isn't available, I get really really cranky.

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1240 · March 17, 2014 at 2:58 AM

It depends what I'm using it for. Most of the time, I want the 85% lean, because I want the CLA and other healthy fatty acids. If it's going into chili or some other soup and I don't plan to pre-brown it, I get the leaner variety, usually 90%. I do that simply because the fat that separates in chili and soups is off-putting to me.

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26182 · March 18, 2014 at 2:47 PM

if the fat separates from the chili you either (1) Don't cook it long enough OR (2) Are not reheating it right. You have to bring the chili to a simmer, and then give it time to slowly get back to 160 degrees before you serve it.

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5650 · March 17, 2014 at 2:04 AM

when i buy it from the farm, it's 80/20. i think the trader joe's ground beef i get is 85/15. honestly, i dont really pay attention too much haha

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208 · March 16, 2014 at 11:15 PM

My local provider does not add any fat to his beef, it just gets ground up as it is. I don't know the percentage, but they don't shrink much in the pan. Compared to regular supermarket beef which leaks out lots of water and fat in the pan.

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26182 · March 16, 2014 at 11:12 PM

If I am paying the price of grass-fed (and I usually do), I do not buy "ground beef". I get a cut that I want (usually 2/3 chuck, 1/3 sirloin or 1/2 Tri-Tip, 1/2 Hanger) and I ask the butcher to grind it up.

Don't worry about the fat content, worry about the quality of the cut.

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0 · March 16, 2014 at 10:38 PM

Rule of thumb: if grass-fed, get the fattiest cut. If conventional, get the leanest cut.

Medium avatar
208 · March 17, 2014 at 4:05 AM

Why? Beyond the fat holding the toxin in conventional I don't see the point of loading up on grass fed beef fat unless you have some need to eat lots of fat.

3e0e57c7428e1fa0b2fcada9fc1659b0
0 · March 17, 2014 at 10:58 AM

The fat contains the bulk of the nutrients, and it is much more satisfying than the lean portion. 80/20 is a fatty cut. It has higher omega 3, more antioxidents, and lots of otherwise hard to get fat soluable nutrients.

Af679502f1e31c0c59c79bd08f324b35
519 · March 17, 2014 at 6:31 AM

I completely agree... I stick to 80/20 and 85/15. Not sure why people still advocate excessive fat?

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1262 · March 16, 2014 at 10:06 PM

whatever the cow provides...

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123 · March 16, 2014 at 8:23 PM

I usually buy extra lean or lean, depending what is available or on sale. 7% fat. Here is some good info:

http://livehealthy.chron.com/hamburger-meat-paleo-diet-1834.html

and...

http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/what-to-eat/the-leanest-and-fattiest-cuts-of-steak

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17402 · March 18, 2014 at 9:29 AM

It's funny how advertising screws it all up - they sell it as "85% lean" instead of 15% fat... lol.

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