Understand the Grade of Beef You're Buying.

Here you’ll learn about the different grades of beef, what makes our Prime Angus Beef superior, and how to truly live the prime life. There’s nothing more important to living the prime life than understanding the beef you are buying, especially how they are graded and what those gradings mean. Otherwise, you can pay an arm and a leg for average quality beef.

Top Three Beef Grades by the USDA

First, all beef is inspected for wholesomeness by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and is graded for quality and consistency. The top three grades of beef on the USDA scale are Prime, Choice and Select. Where they fall on the grading (quality) scale are:

  • USDA Prime: Considered to be the top 3%
  • USDA Choice: Accounts for the next 57%
  • USDA Select: Bottom 40%

grades of beef

Always know what grade of beef you are buying. If it is not specified using the USDA scale, verify what you are getting. Many retailers do not specify the grade of beef they are selling and market their beef with misleading marketing terms. You pay more for a fancy name and get less quality.

Even with full disclosure, you may still not know the quality you are getting. For example, beef graded to be USDA Choice means the steak you are purchasing falls somewhere within the 57% of beef below USDA Prime. Your steak could be great, or very chewy. Good luck. Why our Premium Angus Beef is Superior.

Certified Steak sources only the highest quality angus beef without exception. There are many brands of beef, but only one Angus brand exceeds expectations. We guarantee our beef to be the most flavorful, tender and juicy cuts available. We source only Angus that meet very stringent requirements:

Standards for All the Angus Beef We Offer

Marbling and Maturity
1. Modest or higher marbling – for the taste that ensures customer satisfaction
2. Medium or fine marbling texture – the white "flecks of flavor" in the beef that ensure consistent flavor and juiciness in every bite
3. Only the youngest classification of product qualifies as "A" maturity – for superior color, texture and tenderness

Uniform, consistent steak size
4. 10 to 16 square-inch ribeye area
5. Less than 1,000-pound hot carcass weight
6. Less than 1-inch fat thickness

Quality appearance and tenderness
7. Superior muscling (restricts influence of dairy cattle)
8. Practically free of capillary ruptures (ensures the most visually appealing steak)
9. No dark cutters (ensures the most visually appealing steak)
10. No neck hump exceeding 2 inches (safeguards against cattle with more variability in tenderness)