Has anyone brined beef?

Wondering if anyone has tried brining beef? I mean brining in the same way as you would pork or chicken; water, salt sugar, not dry brining. Curious why I’ve never seen it suggested. I brine pork and chicken regularly and like the results, anyone have any insight on this? I have a couple bone in strip steaks I’m considering brining.

That’s a really good question. I associate brining beef with making corned beef.
Well marbled beef shouldn’t really need the extra moisture from a brine the way leaner chicken and pork do. Dry brining adds good flavor to beef without the moisture.

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I dry brine steaks often.

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I never brine, but often marinate. Less time and more flavor.


Well because often with beef you go the other way and dry age. Actually want to loose moisture and concentrate the beefy flavor. The reason people wet brine chicken and pork is that modern husbandry and breeding have produced flavorless meat. Brining brings flavor by drawing in salt. Brining beef would make it wet and mushy imo. Dry brining for a day or so uncovered in the fridge makes a steak sear and crust much better. You want the surface of steak to be dry to sear. On the other hand if you are going to braise the meat, like corned beef, go ahead.


Yes, but maybe not exactly water, salt and sugar. Closer to marinate

Yes! It does take planning but if I’m spending on a New York strip, I’m planning.

Tonight! Clearly not the best example of a “crisp, darkly browned crust”, but it was good.

And to get back on topic, I have brined brisket for pastrami.

Because it’s more effective to the end outcome to salt, dry brine, or marinate steaks.

You can wet brine, but you’d need to careful not to do it for too long.

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Nice. What a nice carbon steel pan! Oh the steak is ok too.

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Sometimes I imagine making it like new. But I use it almost every day.

Thanks all. Maybe I’ll stick with dry brining and leave the experiment with wet brining for a less expensive cut.


Yes I do it all the time, but with a larger cut of beef such as eye of the round. Brining in salt, sugar mix for several days to make salt beef (aka corned beef)

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I used to. When we lived in Europe, I corned my own beef for St Paddy’s… i started it 10 days - 2 weeks before the day and turned it every couple of days.

Our Irish neighbours raved about it, although spiced beef is far more traditional at Christmas.

I feel like any cut of beef that would benefit from a wet brine really should be cooked in a method (low and slow, i.e. braising) that would make wet brining redundant.

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I haven’t subscribed to Cooks Illustrated or Cooks Country in over 10 years, but did for the prior 20. I can’t remember the details, but they tested wet brines on beef, and concluded that the results were poor.

Part of it is the sort of hammy texture and flavor wet brines give. For mild cuts like chicken and pork this isn’t too big an issue (though personally I don’t really like wet brining chicken much for this reason), but with a premium cut of beef it seems a bit wasteful to dilute the flavor.