Tenderising Steak The Australian Way

Tenderising Steak The Australian Way

A sizzling, soft, and tender steak can make any barbecue enthusiast's mouth water. It's the juicy, tender, and smoky-flavoured beef that draws many people to barbecued food. You've probably noticed that not all barbecued meat turns out tender. Cuts of meat often require special treatment to achieve that desired tenderness, juiciness, and flavour.

Meat tenderisation is the process used to reduce the toughness of meat, making it tender, soft, and easy to chew. This process breaks down the meat fibers, making it more palatable. Meat tenderisation can be done at the packaging facilities or at home during meal preparation.

You can use meat tenderisers, marinate the cut in an acidic substance, or opt for low and slow cooking. Among these methods, low and slow cooking is the most common and accessible way to tenderise your steak.

There's much debate about smoking food and the best, most reliable method for tenderising your steak. You'll come across numerous recipes and techniques for tenderising steak, especially tougher cuts. The main concern is always finding the easiest and quickest way to tenderise the meat without compromising its flavor and texture.

While there are premium cuts naturally tender, they can be quite expensive. Why spend a fortune when there are easy and quick do-it-yourself methods for tenderising your meat? In any case, we'll provide you with an easy method for tenderising your meat if you opt for a leaner, organic cut. Our methods are simple and straightforward, without the need for overnight preparation.

The first step to preparing the best steak begins with selecting the right grade and cut of meat. Steaks are not all equal, and quality matters. While there are many factors to consider when choosing your steak, fresh meat is always superior to frozen. We also recommend opting for cuts with a vibrant colour that are moist and feel firm to the touch. This indicates quality meat that will result in the most tender and juicy steaks.

  1. SLOW AND LOW COOKING Cooking steak over low heat for an extended period is the most commonly used method to tenderise it. This process involves heat naturally breaking down the meat fibers, resulting in tenderness. Many people love to slowly braise or smoke beef steaks to achieve soft, tender, and perfectly cooked meat.

Utilise a professional food smoker for the results you deserve. 

Extended cooking hours break down the collagen, which contributes to the meat's toughness. You'll need some form of liquid to generate steam, keeping the meat juicy throughout and after cooking.

To ensure complete tenderness, we recommend cooking the meat slowly until the meat thermometer reads 88–96°C.

Remember, slow and low cooking demands patience, so be prepared to dedicate a few hours of your time.

  1. TENDERISING THROUGH POUNDING Pounding your steak is another way to tenderise it. Meat hammers or meat mallets are tools used to tenderise raw meat. You wield them similarly to a hammer, pounding the steak to achieve an even layer by breaking down the muscle fibers. A meat mallet has two sides – a flat side and a textured side – which you use to texture the steak.

Alternatively, you can opt for meat tenderiser machines that break up the meat fibers, creating channels for salt, pepper, and other marinades. These machines are simpler to use and less labor-intensive than meat mallets.

  1. MARINATING THE STEAK Marinating meat involves using acids, fats, and flavors. The acid is responsible for tenderising the meat, gradually breaking down the collagen and resulting in a tender piece of meat. Once marinated, the steak will remain tender even after cooking.


Select the appropriate tenderisation method. Pay attention to cooking time and temperature. Allow the steak to rest before serving for the best results. Note that some marinating techniques may not achieve the desired tenderness if the steak is on the leaner side.

Happy Cooking!

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