What Is A Coulotte Steak? And How Is It Cooked?

Coulotte steak, a flavorful and tender cut, can be grilled, stir-fried, or marinated to perfection. It offers a beefy taste with excellent marbling, making it a versatile and budget-friendly option.

Steak Cuts

If you’re consistently buying the most common steak cuts, you’re missing out. While T-Bones and New York Strips are delicious in their own right, they’re also some of the most expensive cuts you’ll find at your local butcher.

But by branching out into less common cuts, you can get the best of both worlds: A great price, and unforgettable flavor.

Case in point: The coulotte steak. Also known as the sirloin strip, sirloin butt cap, or top sirloin cap steak, this flavorful steak can be prepared in a versatile range of recipes.

Once you get to know it well, you might never go back to your usual steak cuts! So please, allow me to share what I know about the coulotte steak with you — including how it tastes, the best ways to cook it, and the best way to order it either online from a site like Snake River Farms, Porter Road, or FarmFoods or from your local butcher.

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What Does Coulotte Steak Taste Like?

Because it’s taken from the loin primal cut, coulotte steak will have a pronounced “beefy” flavor. It often has excellent marbling, with a texture that’s close to a strip steak.

They’re not quite as strongly flavored as a ribeye, since there’s a fair bit of connective tissue that doesn’t contribute to the flavor.

Even without a marinade, a coulotte steak will be quite tender — but with just a little bit of salt, pepper, oil, and vinegar, its flavor and texture will really shine.

How to Cook Coulotte Steak

As one of the most tender cuts from the sirloin, the coulotte steak is an extremely versatile piece of meat. Really, there’s almost no wrong way to cook it!

But in my experience, three preparations really make a coulotte steak stand out: Grilling, stir frying, and marinating (with a sauté afterwards). Let’s take a closer look at each!

Method 1: Grilling

Coulotte steak is flavorful and tender enough to prepare it in every backyard barbecue enthusiast’s favorite way: On the grill!

Look for a steak that has good marbling and not much visible connective tissue, with a deep red color that indicates its beefy flavor.

Rub that steak with salt and pepper, get your grill going as hot as you’d like, and sear it for a few minutes on each side.

Let it rest for five minutes, then slice it thinly across the grain.

I wouldn’t take a coulotte steak much past medium, as it will lose a lot of tenderness if you overcook it. If you prefer your steaks medium-well or well done, consider using a marinade beforehand; more on that in a moment.

Also, Korean cuisine has a treasure trove of beef recipes for anyone willing to branch out and try something new.

Maybe you’ve even seen the awesome Korean barbecue restaurants, where you grill your own steak in the center of the table? If not, you’ll definitely want to check it out in this video from Eater:

Method 2: Stir Frying

Taking another cue from Asian cuisine, using a stir frying method with your coulotte steak will let you cook it to tender perfection in no time.

Served over rice with a simple soy sauce dressing or your favorite stir fry sauce, this can make a fast and filling meal any night of the week.

There are three tricks to succeeding with stir fried beef:

  1. Cut your steak into thin, evenly sized strips. I aim for 3 inches long, an inch wide, and about a half inch thick.
  2. Make sure your pan is extremely hot before throwing the beef in. This will create a quick sear, sealing in the juices of each piece.
  3. Keep your beef moving constantly from the time you throw it in the pan, and take it out just before it looks done; it will continue to cook a little after it’s off the heat source.

Of course, a wok is the traditional way of stir frying ingredients. Its tall, sloped walls and thin metal allow you to reposition what you’re cooking, either dropping it into the hottest part of the pan or moving it up to the cooler sides. If you don’t have a wok, don’t worry: A simple sauté pan will work quite well, too.

Method 3: Marinating

Our third and final method is best reserved for anyone who likes their steak fully cooked (medium well to well done).

If you try to cook an unseasoned coulotte steak this way, you’ll likely end up with an overly chewy steak — and nobody wants that.

That’s why I always recommend marinating your coulotte steak if you’d like to cook it to well done.

For a simple but delicious marinade, you can use a bottle of dark beer and season it with salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder.

Pack your steak away with the beer mix in a resealable plastic bag, and leave it in the fridge for 6 to 8 hours. Then grill or stir fry it up however you’d like! It will be extra flavorful, and stay nice and tender.

Where to Buy Coulotte Steak

When you’re looking for any cut of beef, your local grocer or butcher is a great place to start. Ask for a coulotte steak by name, but keep in mind that they may know it better as a sirloin strip.

And if you’re having trouble finding a coulotte steak in your area, you can always order a sirloin cut online from Snake River Farms, Porter Road, Crowd Cow, or FarmFoods; the grass-fed top sirloin from Nebraska Star would definitely do the trick!

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Coulotte Steak FAQs

Here are a few common questions about Coulotte steak.

What kind of steak is a culotte?

Coulotte is a lesser-known steak that deserves more attention. It is a top sirloin cap, but people don’t always treat it as such. It seems like all of the attention goes to other cuts of meat, but this is indeed a great choice for those who want something a little different.

Is Coulotte steak tender?

Coulotte steak is very tender, and that is why it is a shame that more people don’t know about it and appreciate it. You can’t get much better than what you get from Coulotte steak in terms of how tender and tasty it is. This steak definitely deserves more attention.

What is another name for a Coulotte steak?

There are various other names that Coulotte steak goes by including rump cap, top sirloin cap, and fat cap. If you see any of those names out there, just know that they are all referring to Coulotte steak.

What does Coulotte steak taste like?

Buttery and delicious, Coulette steak certainly should get more attention than it currently does. People put it on the back burner because they favor other types of steak, but this is certainly a choice worth considering.

Coulotte Steak Comparisons

Here’s how coulotte steak compares to other common cuts of beef.

Coulotte Steak vs Ribeye Steak

A coulotte steak is cut from the top butt muscle of the sirloin, which is located between the rump and loin. It can also be referred to as a sirloin flap steak or inside skirt steak. In fact, it’s a great skirt steak alternative.

A ribeye steak comes from the section of beef that does not contain any bones or tough connective tissues. The name is derived from the ‘eye’ or round bone that runs through the center of the cut.

The ribeye tends to have a higher fat content than other cuts of beef, which contributes to its intense flavor. Both are tender cuts, but it depends on how they’re prepared as to whether you’ll want leaner steaks for your family.

The ribeye steak tends to cost more per pound than the coulotte steak. This is largely due to distribution and demand of the two cuts of beef.

The ribeye cut, being served in more high-end restaurants, is typically more expensive on a per-pound basis. In some countries, the coulotte steak is known as a sirloin flap steak and is less expensive due to its lack of popularity among upscale restaurants.

Coulotte steaks tend to be leaner, but have a very rich flavor that can be enhanced with marinades or rubs.

The ribeye is a more flavorful cut of beef, but has a larger amount of fat marbling throughout the meat. This helps with flavor and moistness while cooking, but also increases the overall calorie content of this cut.

The appearance between the two steaks is fairly similar. The coulotte steak, however, may have a larger portion of the top butt removed in order to obtain this cut.

Two other cuts that can be confused with the coulotte steak would be flank steak and skirt steak, but both are leaner overall than the inside skirt cut of beef.

On versatility, Coulotte steak is a lean, flavorful cut of beef that can be prepared several different ways. Because it is so tender, you can broil it in the oven or pan-fry on the stove top.

The ribeye steak tends to do better when grilled or roasted in an oven, but also is great when cooked on a flat-top grill.

The coulotte steak can be used as a substitute for any recipes that call for flank steak, skirt steak, or any other leaner cut of beef. It also makes an interesting addition to stir fry dishes and soups.

The ribeye is best prepared with dry heat methods such as grilling and roasting because the high fat content tends to make it less moist when cooked in other methods.

Coulotte Steak vs Filet Mignon

Coulotte steak is a top loin muscle. It is less tender than filet mignon which comes from the tenderloin. Filet mignon is extremely lean with almost no fat content, while coulotte steak has more marbling and thus contains more natural flavor.

Both are well known for their flavor. Coulotte steak has more of a beefy taste while filet mignon can be described as mild because there is less fat.

Filet mignon usually sells for twice the price of coulotte steak, but it takes half the weight to produce a single cut versus using 4-5 oz to make coulotte steaks.

Coulotte Steak vs Picanha Steak

Coulotte steak is often compared to Picanha, a popular Brazilian cut. Picanha is also from the beef chuck primal, but it has more fat throughout the entire cut.

Coulotte steak contains less marbling which keeps it leaner, but makes it slightly tougher than picanha which can be cooked up as tender as a filet mignon because of its high fat content.

Coulotte steak and Picanha both have a beefy flavor, but coulotte steak has slightly more fat which can make it juicier and richer tasting. Coulotte steaks and picanhas usually sell for the same price per pound, give or take $1 or so.

Coulotte Steak vs Tri Tip Steak

A coulotte steak is a cut of beef from the top sirloin butt. The tri tip steak, also known as Newport Steak or triangle steak comes from the bottom sirloin butt and contains more fat than a top sirloin butt.

Despite containing a higher amount of fat, a coulotte steak usually weighs about 3 ounces, whereas a tri tip steak weighs about 5 ounces. Coulotte steaks are usually more tender and flavorful than tri tip steaks due to their higher marbling content.

Coulotte Steak vs Top Sirloin

Top sirloin comes from the top portion of the back near the hip bone. The steak is lean with less marbling than coulotte, which causes it to be less tender and flavorful, but still possesses a hearty flavor.

Coulotte steaks are generally thicker, so they can be roasted or grilled, usually with a center bone that makes it easy to serve. Top sirloin is usually sold boneless and it takes less time for the meat to cook.

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