cook pounding red meat

9 Ways to Tenderize a Meat

‘’I don’t want my meat to be tender’’, said no one ever. Obviously, we all want to find in our plate a meat that is tender. It’s one of many pleasures in life.

Of course, there are meat cuts that are more tender. You just have to cook them and there you go; a little heaven in your mouth! But there are cuts that possess less tenderness, and for those, there are tips.

Here’s a list of 9 tips and tricks to help you get that tenderness you want, generally speaking of steak.

1. Pound the meat

Using what we call a meat mallet, some kind of toothed-hammer, pound the meat for about a minute or two on the whole surface. You can cover with a cloth to avoid making a mess.

2. Marinate with fruits

Think of adding fruits in your marinades. You could also marinate only with blended fruits.

Some fruits have enzymes that softens meat and tenderize it. Use fruits such as kiwi, pineapple or mango.

Leave the fruit paste for an hour. Take it off completely before cooking the meat. The cut won’t taste like fruit anymore, but will however have some sweetness left.

3. Power of salt

It’s true that we add salt in almost everything (don’t exaggerate though). In fact, you can tenderize meat with salt before the cooking part. Add a big and good layer of salt on both sides. And like the fruit paste, leave for an hour and take it off completely, and then cook.





4. Marinate

The good old marinade could also do it.

Though, you should use a liquid marinade, including an acid ingredient, in order to help eliminate muscle tissues inside the cut.

Read: Marinade vs Dry Rub: What Should We Use?

5. Jaccard

The jaccard is a tool that mainly does the same thing as the meat mallet, mentioned above, but spikes the meat deeper, breaking more meat fibers.

Spiking meat with the help the jaccard’s needles allows the marinade to penetrate the meat’s flesh and will give more flavours.

6. Patience is key

A slow-cooking helps meat tenderizing. If you leave it to cook slowly, such as at the simmer or crockpot, you give time to the muscular tissues to divide just a little more.

7. Patience is key – Part II

This tip is not for everyone, because it surely takes time and not everyone is well equipped. We’re talking about dry-aging.

Meat aging, mostly beef, is a technique which consists of tenderize it by letting it ‘’age’’ under climate-controlled conditions. The more you ‘’age’’ meat, the more it’ll be tender.

8. Perfect temperature

It’s a banal tip, yet not necessarily used by a lot of people. To assure a perfect internal temperature, it’d be smart to have a meat thermometer. 

Then, having the good temperature for your meat, chances are tenderness will be there too.

What is the ideal internal temperature for my meat? 

Read: Maillard's Meat Internal Temperature Guide

9. Before you eat

And the final step! After letting your meat to rest a few minutes, it’s time to cut it. Caution! Do not cut in any way.

Cut it opposite to the fibers. This last step will cut off the remaining muscle tissue, if, of course, there are still some. 

Maillard, online butcher shop

No more excuses! Your meat will now be tender as ever. And if you don’t wanna go through all these steps, Maillard takes care of it by offering you exceptional quality meat cuts with exceptional tenderness.

Shop now:



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