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What Exactly Is a Flat Iron Steak?

What Exactly Is a Flat Iron Steak?


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It’s one of the best inexpensive steak cuts, but what is it exactly?

Dreamstime

Some flat iron steaks have a line of sinew running through them.

Flat iron steaks are beginning to show up on more and more restaurant menus as a more affordable alternative to expensive steaks like fillets and New York strips. But what is a flat iron steak, exactly?

The flat iron steak actually comes from the shoulder of the steer. To be more specific, it’s from the primal cut called the chuck, the muscle group called the shoulder clod, and the muscle called the top blade.

Because it’s the shoulder, the chuck gets a whole lot of work, so the resulting meat is generally quite lean and tough, with lots of connective tissue (which is why it’s such a popular cut for braising). The top blade, however, retains that leanness but doesn’t have much connective tissue to speak of, so it results in a very tender and flavorful steak.

Any steak that comes from the top blade muscle can be called a flat iron steak, but they’re not all butchered in the same way. The muscle has a line of sinew running through it; some butchers include that line of sinew in the steak (forcing the diner to eat around it), and others butcher them in the other direction, slicing off the meat from the line of sinew lengthwise and dividing the resulting halves into individual steaks.

The flat iron might not get nearly as much attention as rib-eyes and strips, but it’s a quality cut of meat, lean and usually inexpensive enough for a nice weeknight dinner. To learn about the 50 best steakhouses in America, click here.


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


Flat iron steak is a tender cut of beef that not only has an interesting history but is also tough to find, much like ranch steaks or Denver steaks. Flat iron is not as prevalent in the butcher case as rib-eye, filet mignon, or flank steaks, but it is quite popular on restaurant menus in America and beyond.

Flat iron steak, which derives its name from its shape being similar to that of an old-fashioned clothes iron, has been around, in some form, for a while. The cut, or something similar to it, is known as the butler steak in the U.K. or the oyster blade steak in Australia and New Zealand. In some places, it can also be called book steak, petite steak, or shoulder top blade steak. Much like the Denver steak, the flat iron steak as we now know it was not “discovered” until 2002 by researchers at the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska, as part of the Beef Checkoff Program.

The cut is derived from the shoulder of the cow, specifically from the top blade of the chuck primal cut. For a long period of time, the region from where the flat iron steak is derived was waste meat or used in ground beef mixes. This was due to the connective tissue that ran through it, making it undesirable as a stand-alone cut.

The popularity of the flat iron steak among chefs—a classic “bistro steak”—is due to the versatility of the flavorful cut. According to our own Chef Yankel Polak, our in-house ButcherBox chef, “The flat iron steak is an industry darling, a new-age steak.”


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