From a dieters point of view, beef has far too many calories. But what do you do if you still want a steak, but want to avoid a larger waistline? Are there any substitutes?
Yes Deer, it’s Venison
As long as the thought of it doesn’t put you off, you can try venison. Game meat is fundamentally leaner; therefore, the amount of calories per serving is lower. It’s particularly rich in iron (more than beef), and is great for energy levels. It’s full of B vitamins: B2 (riboflavin) and B3 (niacin), which help regulate your metabolism; as well as vitamin B6 and B12.
Due to the wild and pasture food that deer eat, the tiny amount of fat it does contain is likely to provide high levels of conjugated linoleic acid, which is thought to protect against heart disease and cancer.
Never tried venison, but curious on how it tastes? I can tell you; it’s a bit like a robust, spicy beef. There is a definite gamey element to it which is more noticeable if you prepare it without marinade or serve it without dressing. However, using the steak as a mince to use in a cottage pie, pasty, spaghetti bolognese where sauce features significantly, I doubt you would even question its gaminess.
When I first tried venison burgers, I was quite apprehensive. The initial mouthful was awkward as I struggled with my conscience. Nowadays venison is looked upon, not an alternative to beef, but as a stand-alone product of its own. People now view it as being a staple protein because it promotes healthier living due in part to its fat content.
Burgers made from venison mince tend not to shrink when cooked too. So what starts out as a good sized burger, will remain a decent, portion. You can’t say the same for beef.
A 125g steak of venison is around 130 calories. Compare that to beef, and the difference is phenomenal. 125g of beef steak is approximately 300 calories.
Now, which would you choose?
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