Steak cuts can get rather perplexing if you don’t know a lot about the basic cuts of meat. Bavette steak is one of those cuts that cause a lot of confusion.
This steak cut is known by different names and looks very similar to popular flank and skirt steak cuts.
So, what is bavette steak? Bavette steak comes from the abdominal part of the cow, the area adjacent to the flank and bottom sirloin areas. This is a relatively affordable cut of beef with a rich beefy flavor and grainy loose texture.
Continue reading if you have ever been confused about bavette steak and didn’t know whether you should get it or not.
In this article, you will learn all about the bavette cut, how it differs from other steak cuts, what are the best ways to cook it, and more.
What Is Bavette Steak?
Bavette steak is a steak cut from the abdominal area of the cow. It is also known as flap steak. Sellers may also label bavette steak as a sirloin tip or a sirloin flap.
Bavette steak was also once called the butcher’s cut. It was a cut that butchers kept for themselves until everyone learned how delicious yet affordable this cut was.
Different sources state that the word bavette refers to any flat cut of beef, including the flap steak, skirt steak, and flank steak.
This is due to the fact that the French word bavette translates into the English word bib. The latter is often used to refer to flat cuts of beef and pork.
Bavette steak is long and flat with thick and thin parts. It is very similar to skirt and flank cuts of steak in terms of shape.
Bavette Steak Cut
Bavette steak is not considered to be a primary steak cut like rib-eye or sirloin. This is why you can find it at a lower price though all cooks know that you can make bavette steak taste amazing if you cook it right.
You can expect bavette steak to have beautiful marbling though it is a relatively lean cut of beef. It has a loose and tender texture when cooked right.
Bavette steak is also grainy and very fibrous as it comes from one of the most active parts of the cow.
Due to its fiber-dense nature, it is recommended to tenderize bavette steak before cooking it. You can do this by pounding the meat or by marinating the bavette steak.
We recommend you marinade the bavette steak. Due to its unique texture, bavette steak soaks up the marinade really well.
Bavette Steak Vs Flank Steak
Some sources claim that flank steak is another name for bavette steak. But bavette steak is not the same as flank steak.
These two cuts come from different areas of the cow. Bavette steak comes from the bottom sirloin area which is above the flank area.
In other words, bavette steak comes from the area where the flank, short loin, and bottom sirloin areas meet.
To not get it confused, remember that there are three long thin steak cuts – flank, skirt, and bavette (flap).
What Does Bavette Steak Taste Like?
Bavette steak is a very flavorful cut with a robust beefy flavor. This is a good thing as the flavor of bavette steak stands out even when you pair it with different sauces and side dishes.
If you are looking for a cut that is closer to bavette steak in terms of flavor and texture, get the onglet.
The onglet, also known as the hanger steak, comes from the area between bavette and skirt steak. Flank steak also has a rich beefy flavor and comes close to bavette steak in terms of taste.
If you like cuts with a strong beefy flavor, it would be a wise choice to buy bavette steak and cook it properly to achieve juicy and tender results instead of spending a lot more money on such fine cuts as filet mignon.
Filet mignon is an expensive cut of meat that has a tender texture but a very mild beefy flavor.
How Do You Cook Bavette Steak?
There are a few methods for cooking bavette steak. No matter which method you choose to use, the important thing is achieving a juicy, tender, and almost crumbly texture.
When cooking bavette steak, pay attention to the timing. You shouldn’t overcook bavette steak.
This cut of steak is best served rare, medium-rare, or medium. Cooking bavette steak for too long will yield a dry texture.
Here’s a great tutorial from Kristen Kish on Westholme on YouTube.
How Long Should You Cook Bavette Steak?
How long you should cook bavette steak depends on the cooking method you are using, the level of doneness you are aiming for, as well as the size of your bavette steak.
In general, though, bavette steak isn’t cooked longer than 15 minutes.
The Best Ways To Cook Bavette Steak
Bavette steak is a relatively affordable cut of beef that turns out juicy and delicious if you cook it right.
Searing and grilling are the best cooking methods to use for bavette steak. Cooking bavette steak to perfection is also possible using the sous vide cooking technique.
Read on to learn how to cook bavette steaks using different cooking methods.
On The Grill
One of the best and quickest methods to cook bavette steak is on the grill. Grilling is also a healthier way to cook steaks compared to pan-frying.
As bavette steak has thin parts, hot and fast grilling results in perfectly cooked meat.
When grilling bavette steak, it is best to use direct and indirect heat grilling techniques. Using the two heat zones helps you avoid burning and overcooking bavette steak as its one side may be thinner than the other.
Here’s how to cook bavette steak on the grill:
- Marinate the steak beforehand or rub it with a dry rub of your choice.
- Preheat the grill so that you have direct and indirect heat zones.
- Put the steak on the grill over the direct heat for two minutes then flip it to get the other side nicely seared too.
- Move the steak over the indirect heat and cover it.
- Remove the steak from the grill when the temperature in the thickest part reaches 130°F.
- Allow the meat to rest for 10 minutes before serving it.
In A Cast Iron Skillet
Another great method for cooking bavette steak is searing it in a cast iron skillet. You can use pans made of other materials too but cast iron is the gold standard when it comes to pan-searing steaks.
Cast iron retains and distributes heat well. A properly preheated cast iron skillet sears the exterior of the steak flawlessly while cooking the interior to perfection.
Here’s how to cook bavette steak in a cast iron skillet:
- Remove the steak from the fridge and let it come to room temperature. You can also marinade the steak beforehand using your favorite ingredients.
- Season the steak with salt and pepper.
- Preheat the cast iron skillet and reheat some olive oil and butter in it.
- Put the steak in the skillet and cook for 3 minutes per side or until you reach your desired level of doneness.
- Let the steak rest for a few minutes before your slice and serve it.
In addition to cooking bavette steak in the pan from start to finish, you can also sear it in the pan for a couple of minutes and then transfer the steak into the oven to continue cooking it.
Translated from French, sous vide means under vacuum. It implies vacuum-sealing food in bags and cooking it in water for a longer period of time at low temperatures. To use this technique, you will need sous vide cooking device.
Sous vide is a good cooking technique for steaks. It works well for not only tender but also tougher cuts of steak.
The sous vide cooking technique works well for bavette steak. But you shouldn’t cook bavette steak in the sous vide longer than two hours. The long cook time makes bavette steak tough and chewy.
Sous vide for bavette steak is a great cooking technique for people who always have a hard time getting it cooked to the right degree.
With sous vide, the steak is heated at a consistent temperature. Being able to control the heat, you can get perfect results every time.
Here is how to make sous vide bavette steak:
- Set the sous vide cooker to 130°F.
- Season the bavette steak with salt and pepper.
- Vaccum-seal the steak in a plastic bag.
- Place the steak in water for two hours.
- After two hours, remove the steak from the bag and put it in a hot pan. Don’t forget to add some butter to the pan.
- Brown the steak on all sides for only a few seconds per side.
- Let the bavette steak rest for a few minutes before you slice it.
How To Choose A Good Bavette Steak?
Choosing the right cooking method for bavette steak is important if you want it to taste good. But before you get to cooking the bavette steak, you should learn how to choose a good one.
When choosing bavette steak, the most important thing to consider is the freshness of the meat. The bright red color and firm dry texture are two of the key indicators of the freshness of the meat.
Pay attention to the thickness of the bavette steak too. Bavette steaks are flat with some parts thicker than others.
If you are not very good at cooking steaks, we recommend you choose the thickest bavette steak as it is very easy to overcook a thin steak.
Make sure the steak has some marbling to it too. Those white flecks that make the steak look marbled are fat. As you cook the steak, it makes the meat softer and more delicious.
It is a good idea to buy a dry-aged bavette steak. Dry-aged steaks tend to be more expensive but spending extra money on them is worth it as the meat is more flavorful and tender.
Depending on your preferences, you may also buy grass-fed or grain-fed bavette steak. While there is no compelling evidence on which one is better grass-fed beef is said to deliver a higher amount of nutrients and a better flavor and texture.
If you have decided to buy grass-fed bavette steak, know that it is normal for it to have meat that is deeper in color and fat tissues that have a yellow-orange hue to them. The latter is the result of the cattle grazing on healthy grass.
How To Store Bavette Steak
Bavette steak, similar to other cuts of steak, lasts only 1-2 days in the fridge. Fresh vacuum-packed bavette, on the other, may last up to 14 in the fridge.
You can freeze bavette steak to make it last longer. Bavette steak stored in the freezer will be good for up 12 months.
We recommend you use it as soon as possible to avoid freezer burn as well as texture and flavor changes.
What To Serve With Bavette Steak
A perfectly cooked bavette steak is an amazing centerpiece for any meal. You can pair bavette steak with different side dishes to turn it into a wholesome breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
When it comes to side dishes for bavette steak, you have many options. Here are a few ideas:
- Fried eggs and guacamole. If you are the type of person that enjoys steak for breakfast, serve bavette steak with guacamole and fried eggs. This hearty breakfast will keep you full for hours.
- Potatoes. Steak and potatoes are a combination everyone loves. You can serve bavette steak with potatoes cooked in your preferred way – mashed, roasted, fried, or pureed.
- Roasted vegetables. If you are not sure what to serve with bavette steak, go with roasted vegetables.
- Green salad. If you want to have bavette steak for lunch or dinner but want to keep it light, serve sliced bavette steak over a bed of green salad mixed with a refreshing lemon vinaigrette. You can also add red onion, avocado, cucumbers, tomatoes, and feta cheese to your steak salad to make it more filling.
- Asparagus. Pan-fried bavette steak with asparagus is an easy yet fancy-looking and delicious dinner option. You can also serve bacon-wrapped asparagus with bavette steak.
- Mushroom sauce. Mushrooms and steak are another unbeatable combination. The best mushrooms to serve with steak are portobello mushrooms. Cook them in white wine or cream and serve on top of perfectly cooked bavette steak.
- Risotto. Creamy risotto will go well with pan-seared bavette too. You can make it all cheesy or add your favorite vegetables, such as mushrooms, broccoli, tomatoes, etc.
Is Bavette Steak The Same As Skirt Steak?
Bavette and skirt steaks are not the same. Skirt steak comes from the area below the rib of the cow.
In terms of their shape, bavette and skirt steaks are similar. Both are long and flat though bavette steak is usually thicker.
Similar to bavette steak, skirt steak is not considered to be a primary steak cut either. But like any other secondary cut, it will taste amazing if you cook it right.
Why Is Bavette Steak So Cheap?
Bavette steak comes from the abdominal part of the cow. As this is a well-exercised part of a cow’s body, cuts taken from this part are tougher and thus less expensive.