This weekend not only kicks off the tourist season here at the Jersey shore, but also the grilling season. Basically from now until September at almost any given point between 12 noon and 9 pm you can walk out the door and smell that someone is grilling. Not only that, you can drive almost anywhere in my area and still smell the same. It’s what people at the shore do during the summer. People love the flavor of food cooked on the grill, and it’s a great way to cook without heating up the house. I have a family of manfolk (ok, child, teen and man) that love beef. Steak in particular. They’d probably eat it every day if they could. Good steak tastes great, but can often be accompanied by an unreasonable price tag. When I learned that Walmart was introducing USDA Choice Steaks, I was intrigued to learn more.
ABOUT WALMART USDA CHOICE STEAKS
According to the Hearth Patio & Barbecue Association’s 2012 State of the Barbecue Industry Report, almost eighty-six percent of households own an outdoor barbecue, grill or smoker. This year, meats, especially steak (83 percent), top the list of the most popular foods prepared using a grill.* Customers across the country can now enjoy Walmart’s premium selection and wide assortment of top quality USDA Choice steak, including T-bone, NY Strip, Filet, Ribeye, and Top Sirloin, at a great price. This new steak offering is available in Walmart stores nationwide just in time for the busy summer grilling season.
“Walmart now offers top quality USDA Choice steaks at a great price,” said Scott Neal, vice president of fresh meat and seafood for Walmart U.S. “We encourage customers to try the new USDA Choice steaks at Walmart’s everyday low prices, even if they haven’t considered Walmart for their steaks in the past. We believe in our new steak so much that we’re offering a full refund if a customer is not pleased.”
Walmart selects the best USDA Choice cuts, tender-ages the steak to perfection, and, as we do with all our steaks, makes sure it undergoes rigorous USDA inspections for quality and safety. In fact, only 1 in 5 steaks are good enough to be called Walmart Choice Premium Beef.
I’ve mentioned before that I love Walmart. My local Walmart is a regular Walmart, not a Super Walmart, which means they don’t have the big grocery. I love Super Walmart, but the nearest two locations to me are 30 minutes away. It was recently announced that my local Walmart will be converting to a Super Walmart within the next year and I’m very happy to hear it. (Hubby might not be happy to hear it, it could prove difficult to get me out of there.) A couple of days ago I was able to participate in a webcast with Chef Eric Lackey and Scott Neal, vice president of fresh meat and seafood for Walmart U.S. During the webcast I learned about the different types of Walmart USDA Choice Steaks that are now being offered, along with some helpful grilling info and tips.
The types of steaks available include
Walmart chose to have their Choice Steaks USDA rated so that the quality of meat would be consistent from store to store, and customers would know what to expect. One thing the USDA grades beef on is the marbling score. Chef Eric Lackey explained that marbling is the white pieces of fat in the muscles of the beef. The more marbling the better the beef is considered because it makes the beef more tender and juicy.
TOP FIVE GRILLING TIPS
- Start your grill with a chimney, rather than just continuing to douse coals with lighter fluid. (Clearly he’s seen my brother grill.)
- Create two heat zones on your grilling surface, one high and one low.
- Steak should be at room temperature for the best grilling results.
- Use tongs to turn your meat. Don’t use a fork, you don’t want to puncture the meat. (I’m guilty of this one.)
- Don’t constantly lift the lid. If you must lift the lid, lift it to the side so that what’s on the lid doesn’t drip down onto your meat.
We were having guests for a Coca-Cola 600 Viewing party, so we decided to try the new Walmart USDA Choice steaks then. I had to go near the Super Walmart anyway for something else, so it wasn’t a huge thing to pick some up. Our grill broke at the end of last season so we had to cook inside. We were very pleased with the quality of the beef. the steak was very tender and flavorful, and I would definitely buy it again.
Had we been able to grill, we would definitely have tried this recipe that Chef Lackey shared with us.
GRILLED RIBEYE WITH EVERGLADES RUB
Recipe created by Chef Eric Lackey of Flamestone American Grill in Oldsmar, Florida on behalf of the Walmart Choice Steak Challenge presented by Kingsford charcoal and Coca-Cola.
- 4 Walmart Choice Premium Ribeye Steaks
- 1 head roasted garlic (roast garlic in oven until golden and soft to mash)
- 4 tablespoons Everglades seasoning
- 1 teaspoon coffee, ground
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon dry thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Combine all dry rub ingredients. Set aside.
Rub each steak with an equal portion of roasted garlic paste on front and back. To prevent burning, do not get garlic paste on bone.
Divide dry rub seasoning for four steaks and thoroughly rub each steak and place in food storage container in refrigerator for 3-4 hours. This can be done up to one day in advance.
Preheat grill using charcoal, until briquets are consistently ashed over.
Remove steaks from refrigerator and let come to room temperature.
Put steaks on the grill and leave in one position on direct heat for 4-5 minutes, rotating to get nice grill marks and even flavor profile. Follow this timeline for medium rare.
And one more recipe, one that I’m really looking forward to trying when we get a grill.
GRILLED BEEFSTEAK TOMATO WITH HIMALAYAN PINK ROCK SALT CRUST
- 4 large, vine rip tomatoes, preferably large beefsteak
- 4 ounces Himalayan pink rock salt, or rock sea salt
- 4 ounces olive oil
Trim off top and bottom of tomato to remove core for grilling.
Rub each tomato with 1 ounce oil and 1 ounce salt. Let stand in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
Preheat the grill using Kingsford charcoal, until briquets are consistently ashed over.
Find hot spot and grill tomato until it starts to blister on top and bottom, about 4 minutes. Move to medium heat and cook until tender to touch (not mushy and collapsing), about 8 minutes.
Here’s some video from the webcast which contains more info on the new Premium Steaks at Walmart. If you’re like me and often cut your beef to see if it’s done, watch the video for tips on how to tell if your meat is done without cutting it.
Why Choose Steak at Walmart:
- High Quality. Walmart selects each and every steak. And, only 1 in 5 steaks qualify for the retailer’s USDA Choice Premium Beef label.
- Excellent Taste. Perfect marbling in these cuts makes them extra juicy and flavorful.
- Expertly Aged. All of Walmart’s steaks are aged for excellent flavor and tenderness.
For those of you that need to find out for yourself, go for it, you’ve got nothing to lose! Walmart offers a 100% money back satisfaction guarantee on the USDA Choice Steaks. If you aren’t satisfied with the steaks just bring your receipt into the store for a full refund. I think that’s pretty impressive on it’s own, letting the steak speak for itself. I don’t know of any grocery store around here that offer a money back guarantee on steak.
Walmart USDA Choice Steaks are packaged in a black tray and can be purchased at Walmart stores nationwide.
I received a Walmart giftcard so that I could try out the new Walmart USDA Choice Steaks. As always, please note that any personal opinions reflected in this post are my own and have not been influenced by the sponsor in any way.