Menu Close

what is ball tip steak banner

What Is Ball Tip Steak?

Ball tip steak is a boneless cut taken from the top of a cow’s hip bone called the Sirloin Primal. It’s very lean and less tender than better quality, higher priced steaks. However, with some tenderizing, a marinade, or slow-cooking, a ball tip can be a great meal at an affordable price. Consider using rubs, marinades and sauces to tenderize the meat along with a spiked mallet. The Sirloin Primal is separated into two main sections: the top sirloin butt and bottom sirloin butt. Ball tip steaks are cut from the bottom sirloin butt. Because this area of the cow gets a lot of exercise during its life, the meat is very lean and tough. But its juicy with good flavor and the meat is just as nutritious as more expensive cuts.

A ball tip steak is part of the Sirloin section of a cow which is very juicy and flavorful meat. There are two section to the sirloin: a top and a bottom. Great steaks like a top sirloin are cut from the top section where the meat is softer with a little more fat. But Ball Tips are cut from the bottom section right around the hip where meat is very lean and a bit tougher. But the flavor and juiciness is still really good.

When ball tip steaks are tenderized and cooked properly they make a great meal. You can overcome how lean they are by adding fats like butter or olive oil to the pan. They can also be made more tender by pounding them with a spiked mallet or using marinades, salts and tenderizers.

Ball Tips should be served sliced in very thin slices. But make sure to cut across the grain for the most tender meat.

What Is Another Name For Ball Tip Steak?

Another name for ball tip steak is sirloin tip steak or petite sirloin. And if the fat isn’t trimmed it’s sometimes called a round tip steak. The fat on a ball tip isn’t marbled so it doesn’t create much tenderness or flavor. There’s no real advantage to leaving the fat on so its trimmed prior to being sold.

what is ball tip steak infographic chart 1.0

What Does Ball Tip Steak Taste Like?

Ball tip steak has a taste very similar to Top Sirloin or Sirloin Filet because it’s cut from the same part of the cow. However it’s much leaner and tougher than premium cuts. But its also much less expensive.

The sirloin area on a cow has two parts, the top butt and the bottom butt. Steaks like Top Sirloin are cut from the top butt which has more fat and softer meat. Ball tip is taken from the bottom butt so its leaner and a bit tougher. So the flavor is relatively the same as Top Sirloin but the texture is tougher.

Because Ball Tip comes from a part of the cow that gets used a lot, the meat is lean and tough. Meat is muscle and exercised muscle is denser and leaner than muscles that aren’t used that often. On a cow these are areas like the tenderloin or rib section. But this makes Ball Tim a fantastic steak for marinating since the salt and acidic liquids will help tenderize it. It’s also great when sliced into small chunks for fajitas or shish kabobs.

Because Ball Tip is usually cooked with a marinade or sauces its flavor changes quite a bit. In its natural state it tastes like Top Sirloin. But when prepared it takes on the flavor of whatever sauce, seasoning or marinade you use on it.

Ball Tip is a great choice for many beef recipes because its cheap and flavorful. Try making fajitas, stews, steak tacos or shish kabobs. But it’s not the best choice if you want a grilled steak because it’ll be a bit tough and chewy.

How To Tenderize Ball Tip Steak

Ball Tip is not a tender steak. It’s flavorful and juicy but definitely needs some help when it comes to texture.

The best way to tenderize a tough steak is with a spiked mallet. Pound both sides of the steak with the mallet hard enough to create dimples in the meat. But don’t hit it too hard. Too much pressure can actually compress the meat and make it tougher.

Once both sides of the meat have dimples there are a few ways to tenderize a Ball Tip even more:

  • Soak the meat in an acid based marinade. Acids help break down and soften the meats muscle fibers.
  • Salt is another way to tenderize a tough steak. Cover it in ample amounts of coarse salt. But don’t use regular table salt because it’s hard to wash off. Once the steak has been salted for about 15 minutes rinse it off. You can then marinade it or season it for cooking.
  • Tenderizing powders work pretty well too.
  • Finally you can try a marinade of Coke. The sugars and acids is Coke can soften up a tough steak.

Ball tip isn’t the best choice if you want a whole steak. Even when tenderized it’s still a little tough. But if you marinate it and slice it thin, it’s an affordable steak that’s great for tacos, fajitas, stews or beef sandwiches.

Here’s an entire post we did on How To Tenderize A Sirloin Steak if you want to learn more.

How To Cut Ball Tip Steak

Ball Tip steak is very lean and has a visible grain to it. And as with any steak, you should always slice against the grain, which means against the direction the muscle fibers run. Muscle fibers run parallel to each other in rows. By slicing against, or across, the grain, you shorten them. This makes the steak easier to break down and chew.

It’s not just the meat itself that determines how tender it is. How you cut the meat also matters quite a bit. A skilled chef can cut a tough steak in a way that makes it seem tender and easier to chew than it really is.

First, find the direction of the grain (which way the muscle fibers are running), then slice across the grain rather than parallel with it (in the same direction).

Slicing meat with the grain (in the same direction as the muscle fibers), creates a chewier piece of meat.

Ball tip is best when tenderized, marinaded and then sliced into small pieces. When you slice it, make sure to cut across the grain. Slice the steak into as thin slices as you can. This will make the meat much easier to chew and great for fajitas, tacos or sandwiches. Or you could serve it sliced with some vegetables, onions or potatoes.

Are Ball Tip Steaks Any Good?

Ball Tip steaks taste just like a Top Sirloin or Sirloin Filet, however the meat is leaner and tougher. And for this reason they’re a much cheaper steak per pound. But because of their taste Top Ball steaks are really good in a lot of recipes. If you properly tenderize and cut them they’re great for cooking fajitas, steak tacos, sandwiches and beef stew.

The only real downside to Ball Tips steaks is the texture. But this can be overcome by tenderizing the meat with a spiked mallet, marinading in a acid based liquid and slicing it against the grain in thin slices. If you take all these steps, a Ball Tip is a pretty good steak.

Ball Tips are not the best choice if you want a whole grilled steak. They can be tough and chewy when not tenderized and sliced properly.

If you’re cooking a recipe that needs thin slices of marinated meat, Ball Tip is a good choice. They’re very affordable, juicy and have lots of flavor.

What part of the cow is Ball Tip Steak from infographic chart 1

Is Ball Tip The Same As Sirloin?

Ball tip steak is cut from the same area of the cow as a Top Sirloin steak, but its leaner and tougher meat. Ball Tip and Sirloin steaks are both cut from the meat on top of a cow’s hip bone. This area is separated into two sections, the top butt and bottom butt. Sirloin steaks comes from the top butt while Ball Tips come from the bottom butt. The bottom butt is leaner and tougher meat but it still has the same great flavor as the top butt.

Even though both a Ball Tip and Sirloin steak are cut from the same part of the cow, they’re from different sections of hip meat. They taste pretty much the same but Ball Tips are leaner and tougher meat. They’re also a lot cheaper. So no, Ball Tip steaks are not the same as Sirloin.

Sirloin steaks are great when eaten as a whole steak because they’re tender. However Ball Tips are better when tenderized and marinaded, then sliced into very thin slices.

If you want a grilled steak, choose a Sirloin. But if you’re making steak tacos, fajitas or a sandwich and want an affordable cut of beef, try a Ball Tip.

Is Ball Tip The Same As Tri-Tip?

Ball tip steak is cut from the same area of the cow as Tri-Tip. It’s just as tender and has the same flavor. But a Ball Tip has no outside fat and less marbling. This makes a Ball Tip a little less juicy if cooked past rare and harder to carve.

Ball Tip and Tri-Tip steaks are both cut from the meat on top of a cow’s hip bone. This area is separated into two sections, the top butt and bottom butt. Both Ball Tip and Tri-Tip steaks are cut from the bottom butt which is leaner and tougher meat than the top butt.

Even though both Ball Tip and Tri-Tip steak are cut from the same part of the cow, a Tri-Tip has more marbling. This makes it a slightly more desirable steak and therefore a little more expensive.

Ball Tips and Tri-Tips are great when tenderized and marinaded, then sliced into very thin slices.

How To Cook Ball Tip Steak

The best way to cook Ball Tip steak is to first tenderize it really well. Pound it with a spiked mallet to create dimples on both sides of the steak. But don’t hit it too hard. Over pounding beef can compress the meat and make it tougher.

Once the meat is pounded on both sides, use a salt bath, a tenderizing powder or marinade it in an acid based liquid. This will soften the meat even further.

The last step is cutting the meat properly. Slice Ball Tip steak across the grain in as thin a slice as possible.

Ball Tip stake is very lean and tough so preparation is extremely important before you start cooking.If you don;t handle the steak properly it’ll be tough and chewy.

Once you start cooking the steak, fats like oil or butter should be added into the pan. It has almost no fat of its own so you have to introduce it yourself.

Here’s a recipe for one of my favorites: Ball Tip Steak Fajitas.

Ball Tip Steak Fajitas

Steak Fajitas are one of my favorite ways to cook Ball Tip steak. Fajitas are great way to cook tough cuts of beef because the meat is sliced so thinly. And since Ball Tip is a very lean meat, you can add fats and moisture with oil, sauces, cheese, etc.

You don’t have to measure ingredients carefully when you make steak fajitas. So feel free to adjust quantities and substitute ingredients if you like.

Steak fajitas are quick and easy to make. Once the steak is prepared and ready to cook they only take about 15-20 minutes to prepare and serve.

Step 1: Marinade

The marinade is very important when you make Ball Tip Steak Fajitas. It includes all the fats and acids you need to both tenderize and flavor the meat.

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons mild chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine the ingredients in a resealable plastic bag or bowl. Then cover your ball tip steak slices in the marinade and refrigerate for 2 to 8 hours.

Don’t marinade the beef any longer than 8 hours. An acid based marinade will tenderize beef, but if you leave it marinading too long it actually gets tougher.

Step 2: Cook

Remove your steak from the marinade and pat it dry with a paper towel. Heat your grill, skillet or pan with some olive oil to a high heat.

Once the oil gets hot start carefully placing in the steak. Cook the steak 3-5 minutes per side depending on how thick you sliced the meat. The thinner the better.

A the same time you should saute’ your onions and peppers until tender. You should also have the rice cooking in either a pot or rice cooker.

After removing your steak from the heat, let it rest for about 5 minutes.

  • Sliced Onions
  • Sliced red and/or green bell peppers
  • Jalapenos
  • Brown or white rice

Step 3: Serve

Serving your fajitas is fun and easy. Either make them yourself or let the family fill the tortillas themselves.

Fill each corn or flower tortilla with a bed of rice followed by grilled steak, onions, peppers, sauce or salsa, cheese and a little sour cream. Add some Jalapenos or hot sauce at the end for a little kick.

  • Corn or flower tortillas
  • Refried beans
  • Shredded cheese
  • Tomatoes
  • Sour cream
  • Fajita sauce or salsa.
  • Hot sauce

Ball Tip Steak Nutrition

One 5 ounce (144 gram) serving of Ball Tip Steak contains 170 calories, 0 carbohydrates , 22 grams of protein and 8 grams of fat.

Ball Tip steak also contains the following vitamins and minerals:

  • Of the 8 grams of total fat 3 grams are saturated, o grams and monounsaturated and 0 grams are polyunsaturated
  • 65 grams of cholesterol
  • 20 mg of calcium
  • 1.4 mg of iron

These nutritional figures are in addition to whatever else you eat along with the beef and what you put on it. This includes marinades, seasonings, toppings, oils, etc.

Ball Tip steak is a nutritious meal with very little fat and 0 carbs. But it has lots of protein per serving plus essential vitamins and minerals. However just because steak is healthy when raw doesn’t mean it stays that way when you cook it. Be careful about all the other things eat along with the steak and what you put on it.

Since Ball Tip steak is not generally eaten as a “steak dinner”, you have to factor in everything that makes it a meal. Such as butter, oils, sauces, cheese, breads, vegetables, tortillas, sour cream, etc.

My favorite Ball Tip steak meals include fajitas, tacos and steak sandwiches. Using Ball Tip steak in a meal vs eating it as a “steak dinner” makes up for all the things it lacks like a tender texture and fats.

Storing Ball Tip Steak

A Ball Tip steak can be safely stored in the refrigerator for up to two days after you buy it, unless the “Sell By” date is before that time.

It should look deep red without a slippery film or an unpleasant smell when you’re ready to cook it. If you notice a film or there’s any sort of weird smell I wouldn’t cook it.

If you won’t be able to cook your steak within 2 days of buying it, place it in a freezer storage bag, remove as much air as possible and then place it in the freezer. Most steaks can safely stay frozen for 6-12 months before eating them.

Where To Buy Ball Tip Steak

If you’re interested in trying Ball Tip steak, visit your local butcher or head to a grocery or Walmart. Ball Tip is a common inexpensive cut of meat that’s usually available year round wherever beef is sold.

If you can’t find it, there are several great online beef seller that you can purchase Ball Tip from.

Summary: What Is Ball Tip Steak?

Ball tip steak is a boneless cut taken from the top of a cow’s hip bone called the Sirloin Primal. It’s very lean and less tender than better quality, higher priced steaks. However, with some tenderizing, a marinade, or slow-cooking, a ball tip can be a great meal at an affordable price. Consider using rubs, marinades and sauces to tenderize the meat along with a spiked mallet. The Sirloin Primal is separated into two main sections: the top sirloin butt and bottom sirloin butt. Ball tip steaks are cut from the bottom sirloin butt. Because this area of the cow gets a lot of exercise during its life, the meat is very lean and tough. But its juicy with good flavor and the meat is just as nutritious as more expensive cuts.

A ball tip steak is part of the Sirloin section of a cow which is very juicy and flavorful meat. There are two section to the sirloin: a top and a bottom. Great steaks like a top sirloin are cut from the top section where the meat is softer with a little more fat. But Ball Tips are cut from the bottom section right around the hip where meat is very lean and a bit tougher. But the flavor and juiciness is still really good.

When ball tip steaks are tenderized and cooked properly they make a great meal. You can overcome how lean they are by adding fats like butter or olive oil to the pan. They can also be made more tender by pounding them with a spiked mallet or using marinades, salts and tenderizers.

Ball Tips should be served sliced across the grain in very thin slices.

If you have any questions or comments about steak email any time.

Related Posts

SUBSCRIBE

Get Notified About New Articles, GREAT DEALS on Home Goods, Videos & Product Reviews.

We Update Weekly & It’s All Completely FREE.