Whether you want to compare prices, make sure you’re not getting swindled on your steak, or just want to splurge on one of the most expensive steaks in the world, you’ll find your answers here. These five expensive steak cuts will set your wallet back a bit (okay – a lot), but they’ll be worth every penny when you put them in your mouth. Here are the most expensive options and best steak cuts your money can buy:
A5 Japanese Kobe Beef
Japanese Kobe steak is one expensive meat. In fact, it’s usually considered the most expensive steak in the world, although prices vary by location, restaurant, etc. In fact, Japanese Kobe is often hailed as having the best marbling of any steak that your money can buy.
Japanese Kobe beef undergoes a strict grading process, and only 3,000 cattle make the cut annually to be called authentic Kobe beef. Therefore, if you see this cut in a restaurant, you can bet that you’ll pay a pretty penny for a single serving of the most expensive meat per pound.
However, not all Kobe beef is equal. Japanese butchers use a grading system, similar to the USDA’s beef grading system, to note the highest-quality Kobe steaks. And the A5 grade is the cream of the crop.
Each cut of Kobe beef gets graded according to its marbling, color, fat color, and texture. With a grade of A5, you’re getting the very best Kobe beef Japan has to offer. That’s why you can expect to pay almost double for an A5 Kobe steak than you would Kobe beef with a lower grade.
A5 Japanese Kobe Beef Price Per Pound: $400 and up
Japanese Kobe Beef
That’s not to say that non-A5 Kobe beef is cheap in any way. Japanese Kobe beef without a grading of A5 made our list as the second most expensive steak cut in the world because you should still expect to shell out a lot of money for this prime cut.
C1 is the lowest grade Kobe beef can have. Even with that grade, you’re looking at a $250 per pound price tag. That’s because, no matter the grade, Kobe beef is considered the best your money can buy. Expect to pay more as the grade goes up, with most A-grade Kobe beef costing $300 or more per pound.
Japanese Kobe Beef Price Per Pound: $250 and up
Japanese Wagyu Beef
This incredible cut of steak is known for its perfect marbling, thanks to being taken from Japanese-raised cattle who are specifically bred and raised to create some prize-winning beef.
Wagyu cattle raised in Japan have special diets that consist of grass, straw, and other natural grains. Japanese cattle farmers also ensure that their cattle have just the right amount of fat and muscle content to enhance marbling and flavor. Wagyu is so coveted and revered that it even has its own grading system, with A5 being the best grade you can own.
As an interesting side note, Costco offered a discount to its members a few years ago, marking down an A5 Japanese Wagyu Ribeye from $1499 to $1199 for 11 pounds of the steak.
Japanese Wagyu Price Per Pound: $150 to $200
American Wagyu Beef
American Wagyu beef is much like the Japanese version, only it comes from American cattle using Japanese cattle-raising and feeding practices. So, it’s safe to say that the steaks will offer much of the same characteristics and flavor as one another, but American Wagyu undergoes the USDA Prime grading system, rather than the Japanese grading system.
You won’t pay much less, on average, for an American Wagyu steak than you would a Japanese, but you could save a little money. To learn more about the American Wagyu steak, you can click here to read our Steak University article.
American Wagyu Beef Price Per Pound: $100 to $150
Filet mignon comes from the tenderloin, which is arguably the most tender cut you can find. The reason filet mignon can be even more expensive than the tenderloin per pound is that the average animal only holds about 500 grams, or just over a pound, of the filet portion.
Filet mignon may be expensive beef, but most steak gurus can’t get enough of its ridiculously amazing texture. And, with so many ways to dress it up with a sauce or seasoning, it can’t go wrong. Check out Steak University’s filet mignon articles and recipes for some flavor inspiration.
Filet Mignon Price Per Pound: $30 to $100
Beef tenderloin is where you’ll find filet mignon. But because filet mignon is just a portion of the full tenderloin, it’s more expensive per pound than the beef tenderloin itself. However, that doesn’t make the beef tenderloin a cheap piece of meat. Expect to pay about $30 per pound of this delectable cut, which enthusiasts often say is well worth the price because of its robust flavor and super-tender texture.
If you’re looking for a more affordable beef tenderloin, consider asking the butcher to give you an untrimmed one. Of course, you’ll need to trim off the fat and slice it yourself, but you could save about $5 per pound doing some of the work.
Beef Tenderloin Price Per Pound: $20-$30
Porterhouse steak is usually a bit costlier than a New York strip and is also a staple of some of the best steakhouses across the country. The reason this steak is up there in price is that it’s actually two steaks in one. You’ll find a New York strip on one side of the bone, and on the other side, a tenderloin filet. So, it makes sense that you’ll pay a little more for this cut than you would a New York strip, simply because you’re getting a strip steak with your porterhouse order.
Porterhouse Price Per Pound: $20 to $25
New York Strip
New York strip steak is one of the most expensive steaks that you can typically find in most steakhouses, butcher shops, and grocery stores. Although it’s more accessible than some others, it still can be super pricey, especially when compared to lower-end cuts available for purchase.
This cut isn’t as tender as the filet or even the ribeye. The gem of the New York strip is in its flavor. When you think of a beefy steak, you probably imagine what this cut tastes like. It’s full of delicious, beefy flavor that cooks to perfection in a pan or on the grill.
New York Strip Price Per Pound: $15 to $20
Who can deny that a ribeye is one of the most delicious cuts of steak to grace steakhouses? People love ribeye for its bold flavors and perfect marbling. It’s also versatile, lending well to various steak meals and being an excellent match for your favorite steak side dishes. Its popularity probably has a lot to do with its high price tag, but it also has lots of qualities that other steaks simply can’t compare to.
And if you choose bone-in ribeye, expect to pay more than a boneless version. That’s partly because you’ll also pay for the weight of the bone rather than just the meat. But when it comes to ribeye, having the rib bone attached is part of the draw of the cut. Cooking ribeye with the bone can lead to even more flavor and tenderness, so it’s common to see bone-in ribeyes priced $2-$5 more per pound than boneless.
Ribeye Price Per Pound: $15 to $20
A t-bone steak is basically the same thing as a porterhouse steak, only smaller. While porterhouse steaks must include a filet that’s at least 1 ¼ inches thick, a t-bone’s filet only needs to be ¼ of an inch thick. That’s a pretty significant difference for a piece of meat, and that’s the primary reason why you’ll pay as much as $15 less per pound for a t-bone steak than a porterhouse. Still, priced as much as $20 per pound, t-bones are far from cheap.
T-Bone Price Per Pound: $10 to $20
Conclusion: Is It Worth the Price to Splurge on the Most Expensive Beef Cuts?
If you don’t want to splurge on 100 dollar steaks, that’s totally understandable. There are plenty of cuts that are more affordable than top-dollar steaks that still provide excellent texture and flavor. But, if you’re looking for the highest grades of steak in the world, you’ll need to be ready to spend some money. Fortunately, when you buy from Chicago Steak Company, you’ll know you’re getting the best steaks your money can buy. Check out our selection of American Wagyu steaks, aged to perfection and vacuum-sealed to keep them fresh while they ship. Or try one of our gourmet steak assortment boxes to try a variety of premium cuts of beef delivered directly to your doorstep.
Expensive Steak Cuts FAQs
Generally, A5 Kobe beef makes some of the highest quality steaks in the world. A5 is a rating given to the best-of-the-best Kobe beef. Kobe is rare on its own, coming from cattle raised in a specific area of Japan. Therefore, Kobe with an A5 rating is even rarer and some of the best that your money can buy in terms of marbling, color, and overall quality.
Kobe is typically a more expensive meat than Wagyu because it’s rarer to find. Kobe beef comes only from one specific area of Japan, whereas Wagyu beef comes from Japanese Wagyu cattle. Only about 3,000 cattle classify as Japanese Kobe beef every year, which lends to its expensive pricing.
Japanese Kobe beef, Japanese Wagyu beef, American Wagyu beef, filet mignon, and beef tenderloin are some of the best steaks in the world based on overall quality. These cuts tend to be on the higher end of the price spectrum, too, because of their coveted textures and quality.