Ok, who loves steak, but limits how much they eat for health concerns? Are you looking for a healthy alternative to steak that won’t clog those precious arteries. Well, look no further. The answer to those prayers is none other than bison. You know, those animals that were almost driven to extinction. At one time, the great bison herds of North America numbered 30-60 million according to scientists. Driven to near extinction by hunting and slaughter, there were only 541 bison left in the early 1900’s. Now there are over 400,000 bison in North America today, many of which are raised commercially. Bison is synonymous with the term “American Buffalo”, but Bison is the proper name. Another name of bison, Tatanka, came from the Native Americans, however you know that if you ever saw the movie Dances with Wolves.
So, why should you consider bison meat. First of all, bison is very low in fat. For example, a serving of choice beef has 10.15 grams of fat. The same cut of bison will only have 2.42 grams of fat. Calories per serving will also be lower as well, 219 vs. 143. How is that possible, you might ask. Well, the reason is how the bison are raised. Bison are usually free-ranged, eating nothing but grasses. They are not injected with hormones or antibiotics, so you are eating the meat in its purest sense.
Sounds great, but how does bison taste? In my opinion, bison taste is superior to beef. Bison has a richer and sweeter flavor than beef. It actually does taste similar to beef, but with some extra added flavor.
Well, this all sounds pretty good. There must be some downside to bison, right? Since bison is considered a gourmet/specialty food, the price is a little higher than beef. The bison steaks I picked up at whole foods, cost $21.99/lb. But when you figure you are getting less fat and more protein per lb, bison meat is actually quite a bargain. You will feel fuller on less bison meat as compared to beef. Also, a couple of home-cooked bison steaks will be much less costly than a night out to your favorite steakhouse.
There must be care taken when preparing bison. Because of the low-fat content, bison meat will cook much faster. In addition, I would not recommend cooking bison steaks anything over medium. If you do, you will experience a dry steak because of the low-fat content. The steaks that I picked up at Whole Foods were almost 2″ thick. I cooked them on my grill at 700 degrees for about 4 minutes per side. The steaks were done perfectly to medium, just like we like ’em!!!!
- 2 Bison Delmonico Steaks, about 2" Thick
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt
- Fresh Ground Pepper
- Brush steaks with extra virgin olive oil.
- Sprinkle steaks with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.
- Return steaks to fridge and marinate for 15-20 minutes or longer.
- Preheat gas grill to 700 degrees.
- Cook steaks approximately 4 minutes per side for medium. Do not overcook steaks.
- Allow steaks to rest 5-7 minutes before serving.