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Beef Chat

Oct302014

Trick or Treat?

Published by Heath Larson at 8:48 AM under General | Nutrition

We take Halloween seriously in our household.  In years past, I've been the one to come up with unique costume ideas for our children that they also enjoy wearing.  This year, though, things are different.  Our children are now old enough to form their own opinions on the topic, and they have made their opinions known:  They will be "Olaf" and "Elsa" from the Disney movie "Frozen."  This is of course fine by me, I just hope they don't get lost in the hundreds of other trick-or-treaters wearing the same thing!

 

In the same vein, when it comes to meal choices, it is important to be able to tell the healthy food from the impostors.  I travel frequently for my career.  While I pack as much food from home in my cooler as I can, I have to eat out for at least 1-2 meals per trip I take.  Something I have noticed when eating out is that restaurants are trying very hard to create healthier-sounding menu options.  The problem is that many such options aren't really healthy at all.  Searching for a truly healthy choice on the menu can be almost as challenging as finding "your" Princess Elsa on Halloween night.  For example, salad is usually a healthy choice, right?  How about a Pecan-Crusted Chicken Salad from a common "fast casual" restaurant?  Think again.  That one salad packs 1080 calories and 71 grams of total fat!  Hmm, perhaps a vegetarian option would work better...a favorite airport sandwich stop of mine has a California Avocado sandwich that sounds good...provided I can handle taking in nearly 1000 calories and 11 grams of saturated fat in one sitting.  Yikes.

 

Fortunately, there's a simple solution to all of this, and it's not skipping lunch.  Lean beef.  Rather than spring for that gargantuan healthy-sounding chicken salad covered with dressing, beat your hunger with a strip steak and grilled vegetables.  A 3 oz serving will only set you back 160 calories and will still pack in plenty of protein and b-vitamins.  And nearly every restaurant has some form of steak on their menu!  Not sitting down for lunch?  Today, I was able to snag two small grilled steak tacos on corn tortillas with fresh vegetable toppings from a quick, authentic Mexican restaurant for a quick protein fix before my flight, so I didn't starve while traveling home.

 

So whether you're searching for your "princess" this Friday in a sea of trick-or-treaters, or searching for a healthy lunch on the road...don't be deceived.  It's hard to be wrong when you pick lean beef.  Happy Halloween!



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Oct152014

Cook Once, Eat Twice (or more) with Roast Beef

Published by Amber Groeling RD LD at 9:42 AM under General | Nutrition | Recipe

Does your busy schedule leave you strapped for time to prepare a healthy meal?  Repurposing leftovers can be a great solution for the dinner dilemma.  Roast is the epitome of Fall “comfort” food, and is an easy way to cook once and prepare two or more meals.  The first step is to determine which type of roast you would like to use.  A round roast will result in a much leaner roast, and the leftovers can be sliced and used in a variety of ways.  Or, you can use a flavorful chuck or arm roast, which is not as lean, but offers a tender roast that can be shredded for leftover dishes.  Try these two basic roast recipes and the repurposed leftover ideas with your family.

Quick Italian Beef Roast and Vegetables -- Cook Once: QUICK BEEF ROAST

INGREDIENTS 1 beef Eye of Round Roast (2 pounds) 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon dried basil 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 1/8 teaspoon pepper Vegetables: 3 medium zucchini or yellow squash, sliced (1/2-inch) 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 teaspoon lemon juice 1/2 teaspoon dried basil 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes halves

Heat oven to 325°F. Combine salt, 1/2 teaspoon basil, oregano and pepper; press onto beef roast. Place roast on rack in shallow roasting pan. Insert ovenproof meat thermometer so tip is centered in thickest part of beef. Do not add water or cover. Roast in 325°F oven 1-1/4 hours for medium rare doneness. Remove roast when meat thermometer registers 135°F. Transfer to board; tent with foil. Let stand 15 to 20 minutes. (Temperature will continue to rise about 10°F to reach 145°F for medium rare.) Increase oven temperature to 425°F. Combine vegetable ingredients, except tomatoes, in large bowl; toss. Place on rack in pan. Roast in 425°F oven 15 minutes or until tender. Add tomatoes; toss. Carve roast. Serve with vegetables. Season with salt.

INGREDIENTS

1 beef Eye of Round Roast (4 pounds)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/8 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

Nutrition

INSTRUCTIONS FOR QUICK BEEF Roast

  1. Heat oven to 325°F. Combine salt, 1/2 teaspoon basil, oregano and pepper; press onto beef roast. Place roast on rack in shallow roasting pan. Insert ovenproof meat thermometer so tip is centered in thickest part of beef. Do not add water or cover. Roast in 325°F oven 1-1/4 – 2 ½ hours for medium rare doneness.

  2. Remove roast when meat thermometer registers 135°F. Transfer to board; tent with foil. Let stand 15 to 20 minutes. (Temperature will continue to rise about 10°F to reach 145°F for medium rare.)

  3. Carve roast. Serve with desired vegetables. Season with salt. Reserve half of the roast beef slices for one of the meal ideas below.

Eat Twice (or more):

  • Beef Fajitas or Tacos: Heat 1 tsp of each; chili powder, cumin and paprika in a skillet over medium heat.  Add oil and sliced beef, toss to heat. Remove beef from heat and set aside.  Add 1 sliced bell pepper and one onion to skillet and cook until softened.  Serve on whole-grain tortillas with salsa, low-fat cheese, plain Greek yogurt and cilantro

  • Black & Blue Salad: Toss romaine and butter lettuce with sliced beef, low-sugar dried cranberries, pecans and Bolthouse Farm’s Greek Yogurt based Blue Cheese Dressing

  • Steak Philly’s: Prepare Au Jus, toast whole grain buns and top with saluted pepper and onions then pepper jack or Monterey jack cheese and beef slices.  Place under broiler until cheese is melted.  Serve with Au Jus. 

 

Slow Cooker Shredded Beef - Indian Variation -- Cook Once: SLOW COOKER SHREDDED BEEF

Makes 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

1 beef Shoulder Roast, Arm Chuck Roast Boneless or Blade Chuck Roast Boneless (2 to 2-1/2 pounds)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil (optional)

1 large onion, chopped

2 tablespoons minced garlic

Salt and pepper

Recipe Variations (recipes follow)

INSTRUCTIONS FOR SLOW COOKER SHREDDED BEEF

1.       For optional browning, heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Brown beef roast on all sides.

2.       Place onion and garlic in 3-1/2 to 5 quart slow cooker; place roast on top. Cover and cook on LOW 9 to 10 hours or on HIGH 5 to 6 hours or until roast is fork-tender.

3.       Remove roast from slow cooker. Skim fat from cooking liquid, if necessary and reserve 1 cup onion mixture. Shred beef with 2 forks. Combine shredded beef and reserved onion mixture. Season with salt and pepper, as desired. Continue as directed in Recipe Variations below, as desired.

Eat Twice (or More):

  • Mexican Shredded Beef for Tacos or Enchiladas: Combine tomato or tomatillo salsa and beef mixture, as desired. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in warmed flour or corn tortillas topped with pico de gallo, slice avocados, shredded cheese, chopped cilantro and/or chopped white or green onions, as desired. For enchiladas roll beef and salsa mixture up in tortillas and place in a baking pan.  Cover with enchilada sauce and cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes, or until bubbly. 

  • BBQ Shredded Beef: Combine prepared barbecue sauce and beef mixture. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve on whole wheat rolls topped with creamy horseradish sauce, coleslaw, Cheddar cheese slices, chopped green bell pepper and/or canned French fried onion, as desired.

  • Asian Shredded Beef: Combine prepared hoison or teriyaki sauce and beef mixture. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in lettuce or cabbage cups topped with shredded carrots, sliced cucumber, chopped fresh cilantro or mint, sriracha or crushed red pepper flakes and/or chopped peanuts, as desired.

  • Indian Shredded Beef: Combine prepared Indian cooking sauce, such as Tikka Masala or Vindaloo. Place in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover, vent and microwave until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve in naan or pita bread topped with toasted chopped pistachios or coconut, raisins, Greek yogurt or mango chutney, chopped fresh mint or cilantro and/or sliced cucumber or green onion, as desired.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION FOR FOUR-WAY SLOW COOKER SHREDDED BEEF

Nutrition information per serving, using Shoulder Roast: 161 calories; 5 g fat (2 g saturated fat; 3 g monounsaturated fat); 57 mg cholesterol; 64 mg sodium; 3 g carbohydrate; 0.5 g fiber; 23 g protein; 7.2 mg niacin; 0.3 mg vitamin B6; 2.6 mcg vitamin B12; 2.8 mg iron; 26.0 mcg selenium; 5.5 mg zinc; 89.1 mg choline.



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Aug282014

Labor Day

Published by Katie Sawyer at 7:32 AM under General | Nutrition | Recipe

Summer is rapidly coming to a close. School is back in session for most, the football season will officially kick off Saturday and Labor Day – the unofficial end of summer – is just a weekend away.

 

Before you pack up the grill and resort to oven-baked meals, use the three-day weekend to enjoy some great beef recipes. Beef is a great source of protein to keep kids full longer and vitamin and nutrients, which are essential to everyone’s diet.

 

If you are looking for more great beef recipes or information on beef cuts and marinades, log onto www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com. Most importantly, the site has a great list of 30-minute meals for those busy, weekend dinners.

 

Here is a great recipe for your last grilled feast:

 

 

SMOKY STRIP STEAKS WITH MEXICAN-STYLE GRILLED CORN

INGREDIENTS

1.      2 beef Strip Steaks Bone-In, cut 1 inch thick (12 to 15 ounces each)

2.      4 ears corn, husked

3.      1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise

4.      2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

5.      Salt

6.      Lime wedges (optional)

 

Seasoning:

1.      1 to 2 teaspoons chipotle chile powder

2.      2 teaspoons brown sugar

3.      2 teaspoons fresh lime juice

 

INSTRUCTIONS FOR SMOKY STRIP STEAKS WITH MEXICAN-STYLE GRILLED CORN

  1. Combine seasoning ingredients in small bowl. Spread 2 teaspoons seasoning mixture evenly onto beef steaks. Spread remaining seasoning mixture onto corn. 
  2. Place corn on outer edge of grid over medium, ash-covered coals; grill, covered, 15 to 20 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, times remain the same) or until tender, turning occasionally. Place steaks in center of grid over medium, ash-covered coals. Grill, covered, 9 to11 minutes (on gas grill, 9 to 12 minutes) for medium rare (145°F) to medium (160°F) doneness, turning occasionally.
  3. Spread mayonnaise and sprinkle cheese evenly over corn. Carve steaks into slices. Season beef and corn with salt, as desired. Squeeze lime wedges over beef and corn, if desired. Serve beef with corn.



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Aug062014

Excuses, Excuses

Published by Heath Larson at 9:47 AM under Agriculture | Beef Team | General | Nutrition

As a longtime runner, I've heard plenty of excuses and smart remarks when others find out about my distance running hobby.  One of the classics I've heard multiple times is:  "I only run if someone is chasing me."  Oh really?  Well, consider the following situations:

 

It's early spring.  On the ranch, that means it's time to round up the cattle from the feedlot and take them to pasture.  While the "take them to pasture" part is the near-celebratory end to a winter of feeding and calving in brutal weather conditions like we had last winter, the "round up" part never fails to create excitement.  There are gates to open, vehicles of all types to drive, and at the end of it, hopefully some 80+ cow/calf pairs and their calves end up in the loading pen for preventive medication before being hauled to pasture for the next 4-5 months.  During our last roundup, we had several cows with no desire of going where they needed to be.  At one point, after an hour of fruitless attempts to bring them into the loading pen, we were close to completing the task.  Then, without warning, the "crazy one" turned around and bolted for the open pasture, with 10 more cows trailing behind.  There was no time to jump in a pickup, turn it around, and give chase.  There was only time to run.  I may not have set a world record for "fastest 3/8 mile across a rutted pasture in jeans and work shoes," but I like to think I came close.  I barely beat the leader to the open gate on the other side of the pasture, and we managed to get the job done shortly thereafter. 

 

I travel for my career, and frequently have tight connections between flights.  Most of the time, I am able to get to my gate in plenty of time by utilizing a brisk walking pace.  However, when I'm trying to catch the last flight home that day and I have 20 minutes to get to the train, go up and down 6 different escalators, and walk at least 1/2 mile with my carry on in tow...well, it's not really a walk anymore.  While I haven't always "made it," I know my family is appreciative when I do get home on time.

 

When it comes to helping out on the ranch or getting home to see my family, there's no time for flimsy excuses.  Do I enjoy training for my next race?  Not usually, because it takes a lot of time and effort to stay in shape!  But I often fall back on my training when life calls for a little extra speed, endurance, or adventure, and that is invaluable to me.

 

Along the same lines, flimsy excuses have no place in your nutritional plan.  I hear how unhealthy "red meat" is from my colleagues frequently...but what is their basis for this?  And have they considered how using beef as a lean source of protein compares with other animal and plant protein sources?  Nothing else comes close!  I also hear "I don't eat red meat because of the hormones they put in it."  First off, if hormones are a problem for you, you can find plenty of non-hormone beef out there.  Second, the hormones in a typical serving of beef are far, far less than are found in many common vegetables that make up a huge part of healthy diets nowadays...not to mention the elevated amount of hormones found in many human medications taken daily!

 

Find the truth.  Ditch the excuses.  Then, go outrun everyone that still thinks you're crazy, and celebrate your victory by refueling with lean beef!



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Jul242014

Taste the Homegrown Goodness

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy seasonal fruits and vegetables. If you do not grow your own garden, you can still enjoy fresh, local produce.  And, you may not even have to travel to a farmers’ market or farm stand to pick up your local produce, many grocery stores including Hy-Vee have teamed up with local farms to ensure the freshest, most nutritious choices right where you buy the rest of your groceries. 

The term local often means that the food was grown within 400 miles from where it will be consumed.  While this is not near as close as your back yard, you will find many vendors much closer, all you have to do is ask. At Hy-Vee our Homegrown label ensures that you are purchasing the freshest items from local family farms. The Homegrown signs indicate where your food was grown and how far the farm is from your Hy-Vee store.

According to the Food Marketing Institute’s U.S. Grocery Shopping Trends report, the top reasons for purchasing locally grown foods include freshness (82%), supporting the local economy (75%) and taste (58%).

Local, seasonal fruits and vegetables are typically more budget-friendly because they are harvested during their peak season for you to enjoy. Many popular produce is packed with a nutritional punch!  The fiber found in sweet corn can aid in weight management and digestive health.  Bell peppers and watermelon are loaded with antioxidants and vitamin C to promote immune health.  Zucchini and other squash has been found to contain compounds that may help control blood pressure.  Tomatoes are naturally sweet and a great source of lycopene which may help prevent against prostate cancer. 

Don’t hesitate! Now is the time to fill half of your plate with seasonal fruits and veggies, along with 4 oz. of lean beef and a serving of whole-grain.  Try this refreshing Steak and Grilled Ratatouille Salad to take advantage of the summer’s bounty!

STEAK AND GRILLED RATATOUILLE SALAD

Steak & Grilled Ratatouille Salad --

Total Recipe Time: 45 to 50 minutes

Makes 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

1 beef Top Round Steak, cut 1 inch thick (about 1-1/2 pounds)

1 small eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices

2 large red or yellow bell peppers, cut lengthwise into quarters

1 medium zucchini, cut lengthwise in half

1 medium yellow squash, cut lengthwise in half

1/2 cup grape tomato halves

9 cups mixed baby salad greens

Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Shaved Parmesan cheese

Marinade:

1/2 cup olive oil

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS FOR STEAK AND GRILLED RATATOUILLE SALAD

1.       Combine marinade ingredients in small bowl. Place beef steak and 1/2 cup marinade in food-safe plastic bag; turn steak to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 6 hours or as long as overnight, turning occasionally. Cover and refrigerate remaining marinade for salad.

2.       Spray vegetables, except tomatoes, with nonstick cooking spray.

3.       Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Place steak in center of grid over medium, ash-covered coals; arrange vegetables around steak. Grill steak, covered, 12 to 14 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, 16 to 19 minutes) for medium-rare (145ºF) doneness, turning occasionally. (Do not overcook.) Grill eggplant and bell peppers 12 to 15 minutes; zucchini and yellow squash 8 to 12 minutes, covered (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, eggplant 6 to 8 minutes; bell peppers, zucchini and yellow squash 7 to 11 minutes) or until tender, turning occasionally and basting with remaining reserved marinade.

4.       Cut grilled vegetables into 1-inch pieces. Carve steak into thin slices. Toss lettuce, tomatoes and grilled vegetables with remaining 1/2 cup marinade. Divide vegetable mixture between 6 serving plates. Arrange beef steak slices over vegetables. Season with salt and pepper, as desired. Sprinkle with cheese, as desired.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION FOR STEAK AND GRILLED RATATOUILLE SALAD

Nutrition information per serving: 334 calories; 19 g fat (4 g saturated fat; 12 g monounsaturated fat); 61 mg cholesterol; 162 mg sodium; 12 g carbohydrate; 5.2 g fiber; 3 g protein; 6.2 mg niacin; 0.7 mg vitamin B6; 1.5 mcg vitamin B12; 4.1 mg iron; 31.4 mcg selenium; 5.4 mg zinc.

This recipe is an excellent source of fiber, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, iron, selenium and zinc.



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Jun122014

Great Grilling for Father’s Day – The MyPlate Way

Published by Amber Groeling RD LD at 8:48 AM under General | Nutrition | Recipe

Looking for that perfect gift for dad this Father’s Day?  Make him a meal that is both delicious and nutritious. Lean cuts of meat such as sirloin or flank steak are great options. Serve with vegetables, fruit and whole grains.   

 

Marinating helps enhance the flavor of meat, without adding a lot of extra calories, fat or sodium found in many sauces.  Marinades also serve to tenderize tougher cuts of meat. It is recommended to marinate in the refrigerator, not at room temperature, to avoid the growth of harmful bacteria. Marinades only penetrate the surface of the meat; therefore, flat cuts of meat such as steaks will benefit more from marinades than large cuts such as roasts.  Try this flavorful steak and delicious summer salad for a your father this Father’s Day!

 

 

Coffee Peppercorn Flank Steak

The coffee in this marinade creates an umami or savory flavor punch when combined with the steak!

Make it a meal: Serve with millet corn and avocado salad (recipe below) and

berries with a dollop with whipped cream for dessert.

http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/7a/6e/1e/7a6e1ef530b8811cde7d5b2bf2b2e614.jpgMakes: 4 servings

All you need:

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/images/MyPlateImages/JPG/myplate_green.jpg3 tablespoons strong brewed coffee

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns, crushed

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound flank steak, trimmed of fat

All you do:

1.       Whisk coffee, vinegar, oil, sugar, garlic, peppercorns and salt in a glass dish large enough for meat to lie flat. Add steak and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours.

2.       Heat grill to high.

3.       Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Lightly oil grill rack (see Tip). Place steak on grill and cook for 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice thinly across the grain and serve.

Tips & Notes

  • Make-Ahead Tip: Marinate the steak (Step 1) for up to 8 hours.

  • To oil a grill rack: Oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. Do not use cooking spray on a hot grill.

Nutrition Per serving: 230 calories; 9 g fat (3 g sat, 4 g mono); 45 mg cholesterol; 3 g carbohydrates; 2 g added sugars; 23 g protein; 0 g fiber; 337 mg sodium; 284 mg potassium.

Source: www.eatingwell.com

 

Millet Salad with Sweet Corn & Avocado

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Hnr7Kpz9gYk/TnlGWL8F27I/AAAAAAAAECM/OEgM6tmAew0/s1600/Millet+Salad+1.jpgServes: 10 (1 cup size serving)

Ingredients:

1 cup uncooked millet, rinsed and drained

1 tsp sea salt, divided

4 cups fresh sweet corn kernels (about 8 ears),

    frozen defrosted corn

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1/3 cup fresh lime juice plus 1 tsp zest

2 Tbsp chopped green onions

1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 ½ tsp cumin

2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped

4 cups chopped tomato

1-2 diced avocado

Directions:

1.        Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add millet; cook 8-10 minutes or until fragrant and toasted, stirring frequently.  Add 2 ½ cups of water and ½ tsp salt; bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until water is almost absorbed.  Stir in corn kernels; cook, covered, 5 minutes.  Remove mixture from pan and cool to room temperature.

2.       In a large bowl combine ½ tsp salt, cilantro, lime juice, green onions, olive oil and cumin.  Add the jalapeno peppers, tomato and avocado.  Gently stir in the millet mixture and toss to coat.

3.       Cover and chill 30 minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving): 190 calories, 5.5 g fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 250 mg sodium, 36 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 6 g protein

 



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Jun052014

Grass-fed vs Grain-fed

Published by Katie Sawyer at 10:18 AM under Agriculture | Coffee Shop Talk | Nutrition

It’s officially grilling season which means Americans are on the hunt for quality beef cuts and possibly a fact or two about where their meat came from. During a recent interaction with consumers, I found myself explaining to more than one person grass-fed versus grain-fed beef.

 

We fed our cattle both grass and grain. About eight months of the year, our cows grazing in pastures, enjoying green grasses in the Kansas Flint Hills. The other four months – during the winter – our animals are on our farm and enjoy a diet of corn silage, dry distillers grain and hay. This is also the time they are calving so nutrition is vital for both mother and baby. By industry standards, this makes our cattle grain fed.

 

To be classified as grass-fed, cattle must only consume grasses. That means no grains, ever. Many people assume that grass-fed cattle produce healthier beef. This has been proven untrue.

 

A recent article outlines two studies comparing the nutritional component of grass-fed beef to grain-fed beef. The results showed a slight different in fats but no significant nutritional difference.

 

Ground beef from grass-fed cattle naturally contains more omega-3 fatty acids than from grain-fed cattle (three times as much), but is higher in saturated and transfat. At the other end of the spectrum is premium ground beef, such as from conventionally produced Certified Angus Beef or cattle with Japanese genetics (available as Wagyu or Akaushi ground beef). Ground beef from these cattle is very high in oleic acid, and also much lower in saturated and transfat, than ground beef from grass-fed cattle.” - Grass-Fed Vs. Grain-Fed Ground Beef -- No Difference In Healthfulness by Stephen B. Smith, Texas A&M University

 

Read the entire article at http://beefmagazine.com/beef-quality/grass-fed-vs-grain-fed-ground-beef-no-difference-healthfulness

 

Consumers must also be aware that grass-fed does not mean anti-biotic-free or hormone-free. Producers of both types of cattle can use both resources to help treat sick cattle.

 

Some consumers believe there is a noticeable taste and texture difference between grass and grain-fed beef and therefore chose one over the other. For those that don’t have a previous bias or favorite, selecting a type of beef based on nutritional components means both are great options. And with both grass and grain fed, you will find 29 lean cuts to enjoy this summer grilling season.



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Apr252014

Spring is here

Published by Katie Sawyer at 7:41 AM under Beef Team | General | Nutrition

When I think of spring, flowers, green grass and road races come to mind. I appreciate the foliage and chirping birds but I really love the opportunity spring provides to participate in a local road race nearly every Saturday morning.

 

This winter was a brutal one that kept me on my treadmill and off the dirt roads. But with the sun rising earlier and temperatures warming, I’m happily hitting the road, my dogs at my side, for morning training runs.

 

I purposely enroll myself in several road races throughout the spring and early summer months as motivation on those long, brutal, windy runs. I know that it takes sweat and determination during the daily runs to succeed in the weekend races. But outside of my running, there are several other factors that help create a productive racing season, nutrition being the most important.

 

Protein is a huge part of my diet and it becomes more so as I build my mileage. Because my husband and I raise cattle, we always have ground beef and various steak cuts in our freezer. That makes it easy and affordable to enjoy lean beef as often as we like.

 

Carbohydrates may get all of the attention but protein is essential to continued peak performances. Beef delivers the protein and nutrients that muscles crave for strengthening and rebuilding. My goal is to get an animal protein in every meal to keep my energy levels high, my huger at bay and my muscles satisfied.

 

I officially kicked off my spring racing season a few weeks ago and after a few Saturdays off, I’m ready and excited to hit the starting line and run my way through spring.



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Apr042014

Details, Details

Published by Heath Larson at 9:10 AM under Beef Team | General | Nutrition

The start of the Boston Marathon is less than three weeks away.  It's crunch time.  Thankfully, the long training runs of 16 miles and longer are complete.  However, even with the best of training, there are many seemingly insignificant details that I will be busy dealing with before toeing the line on April 21st.  One example:

 

Electrolytes--The last time I ran the Boston Marathon was in 2009.  With only 4 or 5 miles to go, I just KNEW that something wasn't quite right.  But, spurred on by the raucous crowds, I was too stubborn to stop to figure it out.  In fact, I even quit stopping for water and Gatorade.  Bad idea.  When I finally drug my poor carcass across the finish line, I was quickly carted to the medical tent.  Elated about my finish but a bit "foggy" from the electrolyte imbalance, I was relieved when the staff cured me with a true miracle remedy: Two bags of the best potato chips I've ever tasted.  My electrolytes and hydration need to be dialed in on race day to prevent a reprise of this awful experience.

 

When I also think about the details of pacing strategy (math+hills+weather=confusion), crowds (Is it even possible to run fast in a crowd of 36,000?), blister avoidance (ouch), and chafing (even worse), it's easy to become overwhelmed.  However, to ignore these details is to invite disaster.

 

Most of us know that lean beef contains a large amount of muscle-building protein without a lot of calories.  But what about the details?  What about some of the unsung, dare I say, "forgotten" nutrients?

 

Zinc--Lean Beef is the number 1 food source for zinc. Many may know that zinc helps maintain a healthy immune system, but it also plays an important part in synthesizing protein.  How about that?  A high amount of protein, and an increased ability to process it too...all in that single 3 oz. serving of lean beef!

 

Vitamin B12--Lean beef is also the number 1 food source for vitamin B12.  This vitamin helps convert carbohydrates (which all runners love) into glucose (energy).  What more could a runner ask for?  Better hair in the finish line photo?!  Amazingly, vitamin B12 is important for healthy hair too!

 

I'm looking forward to putting all the details together for a solid race while representing Team Beef in Boston.  Many of them will have to come together at the last minute.  One thing, however, has already been decided:  There's nothing better than a steak the night before the race.

 



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Mar202014

National Nutrition Month

Published by Amber Groeling RD LD at 3:48 AM under Coffee Shop Talk | General | Nutrition | Recipe

March is National Nutrition Month. The theme for 2014 is “Enjoy the taste of eating right.” The key to eating right is to combine both taste and nutrition to create healthy meals.  During busy weeknights, meals need to combine great taste and nutrition, along with convenience.  Lean beef is a tasty solution to this dinnertime dilemma.  With 29 cuts meeting the requirements for lean, beef is a tasty and nutritious addition to any meal.  Plus, lean beef is an excellent source of high quality protein, zinc and iron; and can be simple and easy to prepare.  Portion size is key, the recommended serving for beef is 3-4 ounces of cooked lean beef.  To complete your meal, aim to fill half of your plate with veggies and fruits, ¼ whole grain and one serving of low-fat dairy.  Try these winning recipes during your busy weeknights.

 

Buffalo-Style Beef Tacos - Combine cooked ground beef crumbles with buffalo wing hot sauce, as desired. Cook until heated through; spoon into hard or soft corn tortillas. Top with shredded lettuce, chopped carrots and celery. Drizzle with low-fat ranch or blue cheese dressing. Serve with Healthy Choice frozen yogurt and fresh or frozen berries.

 

Rock and Roll Beef Wraps

 

Rock and Roll Beef Wraps - Consumer -- A colorful way to introduce quinoa to your kids with ranch-seasoned Ground Beef and slaw.

A colorful way to introduce quinoa to your kids with ranch-seasoned Ground Beef and slaw.

Makes 4 servings

INGREDIENTS

1 pound Ground Beef (93% lean or leaner)

1 cup water

1/3 cup uncooked quinoa

2 tablespoons dry ranch dressing mix

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups packaged broccoli or coleslaw mix

4 medium whole grain or spinach tortillas (7 to 8-inch diameter)

Toppings (optional):

Apple slices, red bell pepper strips, cucumber slices, carrot slices, sliced almonds or chow mein noodles

INSTRUCTIONS FOR ROCK AND ROLL BEEF WRAPS

1.       Heat large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add Ground Beef; cook 8 to 10 minutes, breaking into 1/2-inch crumbles and stirring occasionally. Remove drippings.

2.       Stir in water, quinoa, ranch dressing mix and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender. Stir in slaw; cook, uncovered, 3 to 5 minutes or until slaw is crisp-tender, stirring occasionally.

3.       Divide beef mixture evenly among tortillas; garnish with toppings, as desired. Fold over sides of tortillas and rolling up to enclose filling.

·         Cooking times are for fresh or thoroughly thawed Ground Beef. Ground Beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160°F. Color is not a reliable indicator of Ground Beef doneness.

Nutrition information per serving: 418 calories; 12 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 3 g monounsaturated fat); 76 mg cholesterol; 695 mg sodium; 41 g carbohydrate; 6.8 g fiber; 31 g protein; 6.4 mg niacin; 0.5 mg vitamin B6; 2.3 mcg vitamin B12; 5.6 mg iron; 19.6 mcg selenium; 6.6 mg zinc; 84.2 mg choline.

This recipe is an excellent source of fiber, protein, niacin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, iron, selenium and zinc; and a good source of choline.

 

Asian Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry  -- Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry

Complete meal in minutes! 

Serves: 4

Ingredients:


1 ½ lbs. chuck tender fillet, cut across the grain into thin strips

1 tsp. sesame oil

1 tbsp. canola oil

1-2 cloves garlic, minced

4 cups assorted precut Asian veggies (if frozen, cook a few minutes longer)

3 tbsp. water

½ cup prepared stir-fry sauce, House of Tsang classic stir-fry is a good one

2 cups cooked hot brown rice

2 tbsp. dry-roasted peanuts, optional

Directions:

  1. Place the water and veggies in a large nonstick skillet.  Cover and cook over medium-high heat four minutes, or until crisp-tender.  Remove and drain.

  2. Heat the same pan over medium-high heat with both oils and garlic.  Add beef in batches; stir-fry 1-2 minutes until outside is browned.

  3. Return all beef and veggies to pan.  Add stir-fry sauce and heat through.  Spoon over rice.  Sprinkle with peanuts if desired.

    Nutrition Facts per serving (with ½ cup rice): 390 calories, 5 g fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, 1100 mg sodium, 35 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 35 g protein *Recipe provided by The Beef Council



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