An All-American Fourth: The Best Cuts of Steak and Menu Ideas for your Independence Day

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You could make the argument steak has surpassed apple pie and baseball as America’s most well-known food – and eating it is debatably our national pastime. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published data in 2018 showing that the United States clocks in at 97.1 kilograms (just over 214 lb.) of beef consumed per capita, per year. This impressive showing underscores why Americans love firing up their grills every July 4th to make steak sizzle for family and friends! What could possibly be more American than grilling meat, shooting off some fireworks, and blaring “Stars & Stripes Forever”?

Today, we’ve got several menu ideas for your upcoming star-spangled gathering. If you or any of your guests are not particularly bovine-inclined, fear not, for we’ve got a few beefless suggestions as well to help you celebrate America!

The Requisite Ribeye

The ribeye is a crowd-pleaser. Cut from the beef rib section of the steer, it’s renowned for its even and eye-catching marbling and often is cut to include a healthy cap of fat for some additional buttery flavor. Ribeye should ideally be cooked to no more than medium doneness (145 degrees Fahrenheit) and is best with a robust sear on both sides.

To achieve this, salt your steak approximately 40 minutes prior to grilling. The salt helps flavor the meat in two ways: firstly, it draws out moisture, giving our wet-aged, hand-cut Prime Beef Ribeye a slightly drier finish at the surface, and secondly, it breaks down proteins in the meat, allowing for a perfectly crisp, attractive and still-juicy sear on the steak. Because of the generally higher fat content of the cut and the high heat required to sear, watch out for flare-ups on the grill – remember, the fireworks come after dinner!

Wet-Aged Wonders on a Bun

You can’t have an Independence Day cookout without hamburgers, can you? Of course not! Impress your guests this year with our wet-aged half-pound steak burgers! Aged for 4-6 weeks and made from USDA Prime steak trimmings (only the top 2-3% of beef even qualifies to be labeled “USDA Prime”!), these delicately beefy ½ lb. patties are dripping with gourmet American beef flavor. Kick up an old favorite a notch or three by serving these gourmand-worthy patties instead of the same-old, ho-hum grocery store burgers this year.

For the full stars-and-bars experience, we recommend slathering them (or allowing your guests to) with an easy homemade burger sauce. To a ½ cup of mayonnaise, add 3 tablespoons of ketchup, 1 tablespoon of yellow mustard, 1 tablespoon of bread & butter pickle juice, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, and ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika. Add salt and black pepper to taste.

Serve with a spread of beefsteak tomato slices, pickles, and grilled onions, and your guests will be wishing you hosted an Independence Day cookout every weekend!

Plentiful Pasta

O.K., so breaking news: we love steak here at the Chicago Steak Company and Steak University, but we’re well-rounded, too. There’s nothing like a cool, crisp pasta salad with a variety of vegetables for you to get your carb fix in.

While America is front-and-center on that usually hot-and-steamy day in July, nothing refreshes like a healthy pasta salad from the equally balmy climes of democracy’s birthplace. Greek cuisine is famed for its use of pleasantly cooling and minty oregano, which gives this salad a distinctly Mediterranean feel.

First, grab a medium-sized bowl to make the dressing in. Pour out a ½ cup of extra-virgin cold-pressed olive oil (Greek varieties, while not required, are ideal because of their sweet finish and complete lack of bitterness. Oils made from Koroneiki olives are quite common and quite excellent), add a ¼ cup of freshly-pressed lemon juice, 1 clove of minced garlic, 1 tablespoon of dried oregano – and if you wish, an optional ¼ teaspoon of crushed red pepper, for a kick. Whisk, and pour over 1 pound of al dente-cooked farfalle, 1 pint of halved grape tomatoes, 1/3 cup diced red onion, 2 diced, medium-sized cucumbers, and an 8-ounce brick of feta cheese, cut into cubes. Mix well and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator to allow the dressing to sink in. The next day, you’ll be enjoying the heart-healthy flavors of Greece!

Cherish the Chesapeake and Save Room in your Bay for Maryland Crabcakes!

For those who feel like celebrating the American fishing tradition, there’s no better way to honor the Old Line State – home to Fort McHenry, where the “Star-Spangled Banner” was written one fiery evening – than with our authentic Maryland crabcakes.

They’re made with lumps of naturally sweet Maryland blue crab, and only just enough filler to hold these tender patties together. When you order Maryland crabcakes from the Chicago Steak Company, you’ll receive 8 ¼-lb. crabcakes, flash-frozen and packaged in a stylish black & gold gift box delivered straight to your door. All you have to do to give your guests a taste of the Chesapeake is to thaw them, gently sauté them in a little oil or butter until browned, and then simmer them for 5-8 minutes. Serve them with a lemon wedge and garnish with a nice 12-ounce ribeye for maximum satisfaction.

We’ve got you covered this Fourth with our menu suggestions for some unique & unforgettable grill-side festivities. Treat yourself and beat the heat this July with some real Midwest-raised Chicago steak! Get a head start on planning your get-together and order online or call 1-888-970-1118 today!