Hidden Gems Box

Hidden Gems Box

Welcome to our blog all about the Hidden Gems Box! Your quick guide to cooking with exciting new beef cuts! Hidden gems are less common beef cuts that are rarely or never seen in the grocery store and can even be difficult to source from your local butcher. We’ll go through each cut explaining where on the carcass it comes from, cooking options, tips for success and recipes to try. Hover over each recipe and click to open the link. Lets do It!

Gemstone Grass Fed Grass Finished Beef Blog - Hidden Gems Box

Denver Steak

The Denver steak comes from a specific part of the chuck called the flap or chuck flap. When cut properly these steaks show beautiful marbling and are loaded with beefy flavor! The easiest way to enjoy a Denver steak is to fire up the BBQ and cook them just like any steak. Try it with your favorite BBQ sauce or seasoning.


  • Cut against the grain, always! Check out this 30 second video to refresh you on what it means to cut against the gran.
  • Denver steaks are excellent cooked medium rare. Sear both sides on high heat and then place on lower heat until the internal temperature reaches 135-140 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • We recommend using an electronic meat thermometer.

If you want to make it a little more complex, try this Grilled Soy-Tamarind Denver Steak marinade recipe from epicurious.

Petite Tender

The petite tender is the common name for a small shoulder muscle called the Teres Major. This petite tender is hidden beneath the cross ribs and is not very active. Because there is little motion this cut is typically very tender. Don’t expect it to be quite as tender as the tenderloin but it does have more flavor. There is only one petite tender per side of beef and it weighs approximately 10-12 oz. Definitely a hidden gem! One whole piece may be enough for two people but we recommend playing it safe and planning for one tender/person.

Try any of the following methods to cook a petite tender: Grilling / Smoking / Oven Baked / Pan Fried


  • The petite tender can be cooked whole as one piece or cut into grilling medallions and then grilled.
  • If cutting into medallions always cut against the grain. This cut is long and narrow so its easy to tell. Just cut thick slices across the width of the tender.
  • If you cook it whole first, slice it against the grain before serving or it could seem tough.
  • Optional: Remove the silver skin from the outside of the petite tender before seasoning and cooking. Use a sharp knife and be careful!

Try this quick and easy Pan Fried Garlic Herb Rub Recipe from Alderspring Ranch.

Tri-Tip Roast

Tri Tip Roast is a very popular cut in California and is becoming more common in Canada. This cut is triangular in shape and comes from the tip of the bottom sirloin. A variety of cooking methods work well for a tri-tip, but the most interesting might be on the smoker. It can be smoked to perfection in just 3-5 hours making it a simple quick alternative to a large brisket. That’s why some people call it a California Brisket!. Note that the tri-tip is also leaner than a brisket. If you dont own a smoker there is no need to worry. Tri-tip works well as an overn roast, or you can slice the tr-tip into steaks for the BBQ!


  • Always cut against the grain when slicing to eat. Tri-tip is challenging because the grain changes as you move across the roast. Check out this short video by BBQ expert Jess Pryles showing you how to cut against the grain on a tri-tip! We highly recommend you watch this! Side note: we love Jess Pryles Hardcore Carnivore spices!
  • Our tri-tip comes with the fat cap on. You will notice in the Jess Pryles video the fat cap has been removed. You can remove the fat cap and any silver skin with a sharp knife. Some people like to leave the fat cap on especially for low and slow cooking methods.
  • If you are using spices it can be difficult to see the grain once the tri-tip is cooked. Here is a little trick. Before you season with spices take your knife and make a notch where the direction of the grain changes so you have a reference point. Or score the roast lightly all the way along the grain directions in a few places so that you will be able to see the direction once its cooked.

Here are two recipes that we like from Traeger Kitchen. Traeger Tri-tip roast or Reverse Seared Tri-Tip with Chimichurri Sauce.

Flank and Skirt

In the Hidden Gems Box we use flank and skirt interchangeably since they are fairly similar and the same cooking methods can be used for both. The flank is positioned in between the back leg and the belly of the carcass. This muscle is long and thin and gets lots of exercise so it needs to be cooked properly or it can be tough. Skirt steak comes from the plate area just in front of the flank. Like the flank, it is long, thin and known for great flavor and unique texture. There are many options for cooking. One of the more common ways to prepare skirt or flank is to grill the steak, slice it into thin pieces and add a chimichurri sauce.


  • To minimize toughness cook very quickly at high heat, searing the outside and staying at medium rare. The other option is to braise low and slow to break down the connective tissue. Avoid overcooking on the grill or it will be tough.
  • Cut thin pieces and slice against the grain, as always!
  • Try a marinade if you want even more flavor or tenderness.
  • Skirt is a better option for fajitas or stir-fry. Flank works too, but it will be more chewy.
  • Flank is an excellent high quality substitute for stewing beef.

Flank steak works amazing in this Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef recipe from The Recipe Critic.

If you have skirt in your box try this Grilled Skirt Steak recipe from I Wash You Dry. Includes chimichurri sauce recipe.

Use either Skirt or Flank in this Authentic Carne Asada recipe from The Stay at Home Chef.

Hanger Steak

Hanger steak, or onglet in French, is found in the plate section of the carcass and literally hangs from the diagram. There is only one hanger steak on each carcass which is why it belongs in our hidden gems box! Hanger steak has a very rich flavor and you can occasionally find this cut on fancy bistro menu’s. This steak will require a little work at home to trim up some of the connective tissue and remove the coarse cartridge that runs down the length of the steak. Don’t worry, we have some great videos to get you familiar with what needs to be done. Sharpen you knife and play butcher for a few minutes, its all part of the hanger experience!

Preparing your steak:

We recommend you watch Jess Pryles demonstration on how to trim and BBQ hanger steak. Also watch this clip from the Urban Butchery Channel for a more extensive demonstration on trimming the hanger.


  • Use a sharp knife and be very careful!
  • If you find that hanger steak has too much of a mineral taste for you, try a marinade to help balance out the flavors.

Try this delicious Marinated Grilled Hanger Steak recipe from Anne Burrell at the Food Network.

Thank-you for cooking through our Hidden Gems Box! As a farm-to-table beef business one of the most challenging aspects is moving all of the cuts from the carcass evenly. Your effort to eat nose to tail helps local companies like ours be sustainable. We hope this blog provides you with everything you need to know to make the most of these hidden gems!

Let's Connect!

Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up-to-date with all of our pro tips, recipes, and upcoming events!

Back to blog