When thinking about what cut of meat is best for beef biltong, you also need to consider the pros and cons of how much fat is on the meat. Beef is the most popular choice of meat and although the UK doesn’t have the same variety of game meat as Africa. England has some fantastic game meats like Pheasant & Venison which make fantastic biltong.
Best cut of Beef for Biltong
You can use any cut of beef to make beef biltong, but the end result will be wildly different depending on what you use from a fillet or sirloin being the most high-end cuts to a skirt or brisket on the cheapest side. I really wouldn’t recommend using a skirt or brisket cut of beef, these work best when they are slow-cooked.
We use a Beef Silverside cut for all our Lekker Bru biltong, it’s very similar and just above the Topside and below the Rump. The Silverside cut is a firm but tender meat with less fat than the Topside cut. The fat that lines the Rump and then down into the Silverside is FULL of flavour and in our view a key ingredient.
Using leaner cuts of meat like a fillet is fine to use, it will result in lower fat biltong but this can really affect the flavour and moisture of the end result.
What cut of meat is best for beef biltong?
There are two choices here, beef or game. Naturally both very different in terms of taste and fat content. In a recent blog, we explored the health benefits of Game biltong which is especially healthy even more so than beef. Game meat is healthier than beef because it is leaner, contains lower cholesterol.
I’d recommend experimenting with both, a good quality joint of Silverside beef is quite robust and sliced at around 1-1.5cm in thickness should take around 4-5 days to dry. However, a leaner game meat like venison or pheasant could take as little as 2-3 days depending on your drying conditions. Have a look at this blog for more details on drying your biltong meat.