Carving Beef: How to Properly Cut Roasts

Carving Beef: How to Properly Cut Roasts

We’re committed to bringing Alberta the finest cuts of grass fed and finished beef, but what good is quality food if you’re unsure about how to prepare it? Today, we would like to focus on carving roasts the right way. Because each roast cuts differently, in this blog we’ll be teaching you everything you need to know about carving cross rib roasts and sirloin tip roasts.

Are you ready? Let’s dive into the details!


  • Let roast rest for 15-20 minutes before carving. This keeps juices intact.
  • Using a carving knife, create a smooth slicing motion.
  • When using an electric knife, guide the blades and bear down lightly.
  • A carving fork allows you to steady the roast, and carve safely.
  • Cut off some meat on the backside of the roast, so it sits flat on a cutting board.
  • Trim off any extra fat and save it for delicious stew meat or kabob meat.
  • Cut only the number of slices needed for the meal. This helps to keep leftover portions juicy. Nice thick slices hold in juice and retain moisture.
  • Always cut against the grain to maintain tenderness.

What does it mean to cut against the grain? 

Watch this quick video to learn more.


This lean cut comes from the shoulder. The layers of fat and meat make the roast juicy and flavourful when cooked slowly.

  • Slice meat crosswise, going against the grain. This is essential for maintaining a tender cut of beef.
  • If the roast is tied with string, always cut the direction of the string. Butchers always tie the string against the grain, so this is an easy way to identify the grain.


Comes from the top of the hindquarter, behind the loin. This is a leaner cut of beef, and it yields a rich, beefy flavour. It is also generally the most tender of the roasts from the hind.

  • This cut requires a very sharp carving knife.
  • Again, be sure to slice across the grain. This shortens the fibre and guarantees a tender piece of meat.
  • Slice each piece ¼” thick minimum, to ensure each slice is juicy and flavourful.
  • Want to try something different than just roast beef slices? Sirloin tip roast also tastes phenomenal when cut into cubes for skewers.

Roasts are perfect for quick weeknight meals, or Sunday suppers with the whole family! Shop our new online store for high-quality, premium cuts of beef!

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