A non-tender steak will often be chewy. On the other hand, a chewy steak is excessively tough and not at all tender. A specific cut or a certain muscular animal can source the chewing sensation. Steak can be effectively made less chewy by marinating it.

A variety of factors influence a steak’s texture.

It will be easier to avoid these situations if you know what makes a steak chewy, resulting in a juicy, tender steak.

Here are several possible explanations for your steak’s chewiness.

Cooking method

The fat will evaporate if the steak is cooked for an excessively long time, leaving it tough and chewy.

The way the steak is cooked can have a significant influence on how tough it turns out. When a steak is grilled, its internal fat breaks down, but if it is heated too fast, it can also break down and become tough.

A steak can be prepared in various ways, including frying, baking, and grilling. The way the steak is cooked can have a significant influence on how tough it turns out.

Length of cooking time

Overcooking a steak is one of the most frequent causes of chewy steaks. A steak will get chewier and harder as it cooks for longer.

Overcooking a steak dissolves all the fat and tissue; while this can contribute to the steak being more tender, if all the fat and tissue are destroyed, the steak may freeze up and become chewy.

When you take the steak off the fire, the cooking process does not end. It’s better to take it off earlier than wait too long.

Some folks don’t mind the chewy texture of a well-done steak because they like it.

Cooking temperature

Charred meat on the grill.

The texture of the steak can vary depending on the cooking temperature.

The steak will either overcook or burn outside while the inside is undercooked if it is cooked at a very high temperature.

Although everyone has a unique taste for the ideal temperature or level of doneness for steak, it is recommended to cook it over high heat for the shortest time.

The connective tissue and lipids break down as the steak heats up.

When done too fast, the steak’s juices might leak and become chewy. If the steak is not cooked to the right temperature, the connective tissues and fat won’t break down and distribute throughout the meat.

Cutting into it too soon

They must rest when steaks are taken off the grill or the oven. The juices in a steak will seep out if you cut into it before it has had time to rest and redistribute.

As a result, the steak will have a chewy and dry feel.

Chefs advise giving the steak 10 minutes to rest for every pound of weight.

The type of cut

High-quality steaks have more fat and better marbling, which means the fat is spread more evenly throughout the meat.

Because they have less fat, lower-quality steaks are more prone to be chewy.

The fat melts while the steak is grilled, aiding in the meat’s tenderization.

The steak will stay tough if low fat is distributed throughout the meat.

Consider one of these cuts if you want a steak that won’t likely be rough and chewy.

  • T-Bone
  • Porterhouse
  • Ribeye
  • Top Sirloin
  • Filet Mignon

The following cuts have the highest likelihood of becoming chewy:

  • London Broil
  • Brisket
  • Chuck
  • Flank
  • Shank
  • Round

Fat content

Overcooked beef sliced with​​ a knife

The juice and flavor that pour from a piece of steak after it has been cooked are due to the lipids in the steak. The color of the steak changes as it is exposed to heat, turning into a golden brown hue that makes your mouth wet when you see the cooked meat.

A steak has more taste, and the more fat it has. It explains why the fattier the animal or the portion of its body with the most fat, the more tasty and juicy the meat is. As a result, a piece of steak made from an animal’s parts with less fat would be rather rough and chewy.

Connective tissues

The word “connective tissue” refers to the collagen membranes, tendons, and ligaments that keep the piece of steak together. A steak will be harder and chewier if it has more connective tissues because they are also what give a steak its hardness.

You are encouraged to order steaks not close to an animal’s muscular components to avoid this toughness and chewiness. This is because steaks made from animal parts with a lot of muscle have more connective tissue overall.

The harvested animal from which steak is made

As a result of having more muscle fibers than a young animal, an aged animal’s steak is tough and chewier. The food it is fed also influences the texture of an animal’s meat. You should choose younger animals given grass forage if you want tender and flavorful steak.


The steak itself may not have been of the highest quality, you may have chosen a tougher cut with less marbling, or a combination of these factors may have caused the steak to come out chewy.

The next time you cook steak at home, take into account the tips above and take note of the factors that might result in chewy steak so that you can choose the ideal steak to cook on your grill or stove.