The Beef on Bison Meat

by Head Health Nutter on March 17, 2013

Have you ever tried bison burgers? I have once and I still crave them! I’m so happy for this post by guest blogger, Mara Fuchs, as I just recently discovered a buffalo farm about an hour away from Toronto. I’m going back to pick up some bison meat! 

Lately a craze is sweeping the nation and taking it s steakhouses and backyard barbecues by storm: bison meat. Yes, bison or buffalo, one of the American symbols of old is now ending up on American dinner plates more and more.

But what’s the deal with Bison meat? Is it tasty? Is it good for you? Will it challenge the title of America’s favourite meat, beef? Let’s take a look at those questions one by one.

Bison on the Carl Simmons Ranch near Valentine, NE.

Is Bison Meat Tasty?

Connoisseurs describe bison meat as a sweeter tasting beef with a few gamey notes. It has also been described as ‘rich’, ‘clean’ and ‘mouth-watering’. Bison meat is generally darker in colour than beef and has a distinct consistency. Bison does not marble so it is at first glance less tasty due to no intramuscular fat but the release of its flavour in medium or rare cooked burgers and steaks more than makes up for that.

Is Bison Meat Good for You?

Short story: yes. Bison meat contains less fat and more nutrients than beef and it is close enough in taste for you to be able to substitute it in dishes. Bison meat is pretty rare right now but if you manage to get it you’ll see just why health nuts are talking all about it.

Buffalo are always grass-fed and have a tendency to roam more than their cow counterparts. This means that the meat is leaner at 146 cal/100 gr compared to beef (176 cal/100 gr), pork (218 cal/ 100 gr), even turkey (149 cal/100 gr) and venison (158 cal/100 gr). Its sodium and fat contents are also comparably lower insomuch that you can safely say that bison meat is very good for you and can be substituted as a low cal, low fat version for almost any other meat, certainly for red meat.

Even the protein content of bison meat is higher than that of beef and, unlike beef and other common meats, bison meat is not known to have caused a single case of allergy, severe or otherwise.

Will Bison replace Beef?

Sadly, while bison meat is comparable to beef in regards to taste and consistency and also leaner, so far there is very little demand for it. Whereas the beef consumption in America stands at nearly 60 pounds per capita, bison meat stands at a less impressive 1 pound per capita. Still, with increased demand for healthy alternatives to beef you might see bison meat in a supermarket near you. There are already thousands of people who swear by bison meat and as demand increases prices will surely drop. So the next time you’re out shopping remember to check the meat counter for bison steaks or even try to source it locally.

About the Author

Mara Fuchs is a content writer and doctoral student who is crazy about health and cooking and likes to blend the two together in her writing. While visiting back stateside she grilled her first batch of bison steaks from http://www.milehighsteaks.com/ much to the delight of her family.

Have you tried bison meat? Will you after reading this post?

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