New York Strip vs Ribeye: What are the Differences and Similarities

New York Strip vs Ribeye

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Sometimes, choosing a steak comes down to personal preference, but being aware of the distinctions between the various steak cuts can help you make an informed choice and ensure that you get what you want. 

In this article we will explain the differences between New York strip and ribeye. Both of these cuts of meat are excellent and great for grilling, but there are clear distinctions between them. 

I will explain the main differences, talk about their flavor profiles, and much more.

New York Strip vs Ribeye Steak: Here is the Difference

New York strip and ribeye steaks are both excellent steak options. However, there are distinctions between each cut that you should be aware of since they might influence cooking methods and eating choices.

The primary distinctions between a New York strip and a ribeye steak are the fat content and fat distribution throughout the meat. The New York strip’s fat content concentrates on the outer area of the meat cut, forming a distinctive thick fat rim on the outside edge of the steak.

This fat cap is typically discarded and not consumed, but it keeps the steak moist during cooking or grilling.

Whereas ribeye has most of its fat content and marbling through the entire meat, including edges, center, and everywhere. This fat content distribution allows for a few things. First, the meat has a more tender texture and, second, a richer flavor. 

Lastly, and the most factual difference, between a New York strip and a ribeye is where the steaks are cut from the cattle. 

A New York strip is cut from the short loin behind the ribs , a subprimal cut from the loin. The loin is a primal cut that yields both the sirloin and the short loin. This muscle, which doesn’t see too much action, helps with the tenderness and texture.

On the other hand, ribeye comes from a primal cut, which is the rib portion of the cow. The “eye of the rib” is trimmed off the rib bone to yield the “ribeye” steak.

Know your Ribeye Steak

This muscle, the longissimus dorsi, stretches from the hip bone to the shoulder of a cow. The rib section is one of the nine principal cuts of the caracas of a cow. Ribeye is a subprimal, boneless rib cut.

showing ribeye steak marbling
image: BBQ Grill Academy

Compared to other steak cuts, ribeye steaks are exceptionally tender and marbled with fat. Ribeye is a popular cut of beef often served at barbecues and restaurants. This is because the fat in the meat imparts a delicious flavor and a supple, juicy texture.

Flavor Profile

Ribeye steak has a very juicy, salty fat rich flavor profile thanks to its heavy fat content and marbling. This amount of fat content helps keep the meat moist. 

Know your New York Strip

The New York strip is a steak cut from the short loin. This cut is from a muscle, the longissimus, which does not see too much action, so it is tender. The NY strip does not have as much fat or marbling as the ribeye, which means it has a “beefier” flavor, which some like. 

showing new york steak marbling

However, the NY strip is not as lean as the filet mignon. This steak can also be found in a T-bone steak. Basically, an NY strip steak with the filet attached to the T bone is a T bone steak.

Flavor Profile 

The NY strip is a happy medium as far as texture and tenderness. It’s not as “marbley” as a ribeye but not as lean as a filet. As far as flavor goes, the ribeye will greet you with a juicer, “saltier” taste profile, while the NY strip will taste more like beef.

Comparison Table

New York StripRibeye
Which has more fat?X
Which is more tender?X
Which is more expensive?X
Where is the steak cut from?Short loinRib ( primal )

Similarities between a New York Strip vs Ribeye

Both come from the longissimus dorsi, which refers to two muscles along the spine and outside the rib cage. While the ribeye originates from a region around the neck and along the top ribs, the New York Strip is taken from the short loin primal in the back.

Since both of these cuts are derived from underutilized muscle groups, they are renowned for their robust flavor and tender texture.

Where to Find a Good New York Strip or Ribeye Steak

Where you buy the meat is as important as how you cook it. You can have all the skills and the best equipment in the world, but if you don’t start with a good cut of meat, the results won’t be the best. 

To get good cuts of meat, find a good local butcher shop. Butcher shops are more selective and are likely to offer you better quality meat than a big chain grocery store. Butchers can also trim steak cuts and give you a ready-to-cook piece.

steaks on table

My preference, and many chefs’ and pitmasters’ trick, is to purchase from high-end butchers like Snake River Farms, as they can offer a wide range of steak cuts, including NY strip steaks, loin steaks, beef steaks, and even WAGYU beef.

Most people are OK with cooking an OK steak from a big box store, but if you are serious about steaks and are looking to make a flavorful steak, are cooking for a special occasion, or simply want a premium steak, I recommend taking a look at Gold Grade Steaks. These are going to be your most tender and juicy steaks. 

It is hard to find black and gold-grade steaks in local markets because, first, the average person does not know what black and gold grass stakes are, and second, these cuts are high-end choices that come at a premium price. Again, if you are serious about your steaks and want to cook premium steaks, the Black and Gold grades are above USA Prime.

Best Cooking Methods

There are different ways to cook a good steak, but in the end, the goal is for the steak to be cooked properly. Some people like to pan fry, a hot skillet. Others use an indoor electric grill but to get the most flavor and because we are all about BBQ and grilling, we like to grill our steaks over an open fire. 

grilling steaks

Grilling 

I like to use a method called reverse searing. The reverse sear method is when you first grill or cook the steak at a low temperature to allow the internal temperature to reach the desired doneness level and then sear the steak. This is a good method, especially if you like your steak medium or medium well.

The traditional searing method can dry or even burn the meat if exposed to high heat for too long while trying to get the steak to such high temperatures. If you want to grill a rare steak, even medium rare, a quick sear will do. 

I like to set up a two-zone grill so I have indirect heat for cooking the steak to temperature and direct heat to perform the sear.

New York Strip Steaks on the Grill

Add salt and pepper to taste and place the steak on indirect heat until it reaches the internal temperature you are after. Then throw the steak over direct heat to do a quick sear. Let the steak rest and serve. 

Grilling a ribeye-The beauty steak

Ribeye is a tender cut, but if you cook it too fast, it can be ruined. If you are dealing with a thick cut of steak, the reverse sear method is a good way to achieve good results. 

Add a little salt and pepper or a good steak rub and slow cook until the steak is cooked to the desired doneness level, then sear.

Q & A

Is New York strip steak more tender than a ribeye?

Because the ribeye has more marbling, it is softer than the New York strip. The NY strip is a leaner steak.  Both the ribeye and the NY steak are great steaks.

Conclusion

NY strip and ribeye are two steaks with a rich beefy flavor. The ribeye is a juicy steak with a lot of marbling. The NY strip is leaner. The main difference is the location of the stakes. The NY strip is a strip loin steak, whereas the ribeye is from the upper rib cage. 

In the ribeye, the fat is spread throughout the meat, whereas in the NY strip, the fat is on the outer rim of the meat.

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