15 best & easy beef shank substitutes for a tastiest cooking

Beef Shank is an ideal cut for soup, beef stock, and beef bourguignon. Although Beef Shank is cheap but not often seen in shops.

Therefore, is there a substitute for beef shank -that can replicate lean meat with low fat?

Not all types of beef cuts can go with either beef bourguignon or osso buco; here, I bring some ideal Beef shank substitutes that not only replicate the taste but also pair well with any seasoning.

What cut of meat is beef shanks?

Beef shanks are cut lower leg meat of a cow (the front of the leg below the knee). This cut of meat is very difficult and therefore is not often used in steak dishes. 

However, it can be cooked for a long time in moist heat in other ways, such as stewing or braising, which will help to tenderize the meat. Beef shanks are also often used to make stocks and soups because of their rich flavor.

Most preferable meat cut for beef bourguignon or osso buco.

What is beef shank used for?

A beef shank is a tough, sinewy cut of meat best suited for slow-cooking methods like braising and stewing. When cooked properly, the beef shank can be a delicious and flavorful addition to any dish.

However, because of its tough nature, the beef shank is not typically used for grilled or roasted dishes.

What can you use instead of beef shank?

A few other options can be used in place of beef shank. Some good substitutes include:

Oxtail, beef neck, veal shank, short ribs, beef arm, brisket, beef tendon, chuck roast, skirt steak, silverside beef, round steak, also vegan options like Tempah, seitan, mushrooms, vegan beef shank, etc.

Each of these cuts of beef will provide a similar flavor and texture to a beef shank. They may require to be cooked for slightly longer, but overall they make excellent substitutes.

Best Beef Shank Substitutes for Soup or Stew

1. Oxtail

oxtail is good beef shank substitute

For a beefy flavor in your dishes but want to switch things up, try substituting oxtail for the beef shank.

Oxtail is a type of cut taken from the tail of a cow and is a great choice if you’re looking for a leaner meat option, and it’s also full of collagen, which can help add richness and depth of flavor to your soup and stew.

This cut is usually used for stews and soups because it contains a lot of collagen, which helps to thicken these dishes. Oxtail is also a fine source of protein and minerals such as iron and zinc.

2. Beef neck

The beef neck is a cut of meat that comes from the neck of a cow. This area of the animal is not as well-known as other parts, such as the beef brisket or chuck.

However, the beef neck can be just as flavorful and tender if it is cooked properly.

Two main types of cuts come from the beef neck: the boneless neck and the bone-in neck. The boneless version is more common in stores, but both types can be used for a variety of dishes.

The beef neck is often used for stewing or braising since these cooking methods help to break down the tough connective tissues. This cut of meat can also be grilled, roasted, or even smoked.

When shopping for beef neck, look for cuts that are relatively lean and have a small amount of marbling. Avoid any pieces that have a lot of gristle or fat.

The beef neck is best cooked using low and slow methods so that the meat has time to become tender, and it is used in stews, braises, and soups. 

It can also be grilled, roasted, or smoked. The beef neck is an adaptable cut of meat that can use in a variety of dishes.

If you’re looking for a cheaper beef shank alternative, the beef neck is a great option. It’s just as flavorful and hearty but won’t cost you as much. Simply substitute beef neck for beef shank in any recipe and enjoy.

3. Beef tendon

beef tendon is good replacement of beef shank

Another good replacement for beef shank in soup is the beef tendon. This type of connective tissue can be found in various cuts of beef, made up of elastin fibers and collagen, which give it its sturdy yet elastic nature.

Beef tendon is usually used in Asian cuisine, where it is simmered for long periods of time to break down the tough fibers, where it’s simmered for hours to make a delicious soup or stew.

But if you are careless, it can also be quite rubbery. It can also be roasted or grilled and is sometimes used as a chew toy for dogs.

4. Chuck roast

A chuck roast is a cut of meat from a cow’s shoulder area. It’s a fairly tough cut of meat, so it’s often used for dishes like pot roast or beef stew. 

However, if you cook it properly, a chuck roast can be quite tender and delicious.

To get the most out of your chuck roast, be sure to cook it slowly using moist heat methods like braising. This will help to smash down the tough muscle fibers and make the meat more tender.

Chuck roast is also a great choice for shredded beef tacos or burritos. When cooked correctly, the beef will be nice and moist with plenty of flavors. Be sure not to overcook this, as this will dry out the meat.

If you can’t find beef shank, chuck roast makes a good substitute. It’s a little more tender than the beef shank, but it will still benefit from braising. Just cook it for the exact time to get the best results.

5. Short ribs

If you’re looking for a beefy, hearty dish that will warm you up on a very cold winter day, try this recipe for the beef shank substitute with short rib stew.

Beef shank is a very tough cut of meat that helps from slow cooking, and the short ribs add a rich flavor to the dish. Serve with egg noodles or mashed potatoes for a complete meal.

The short ribs are a type of cut that is taken from the beef chuck primal. Short ribs are typically well-marbled and have a lot of flavors. They are often used for braising or slow cooking, as they can become tough if cooked too quickly.

When it comes to taste, short ribs are more flavorful than the beef shank. This is because they have more fat content, which helps to add savor to the meat. Short ribs also tend to be a bit sweeter than the beef shank.

As for uses, both cuts of meat can be used in a variety of dishes. Short ribs are often used in stews and braises and also often used as an ingredient in other dishes such as tacos and burgers.

6. Veal shank- Ideal Alternative to Beef Shank in Osso Buco or Beef bourguignon

veal shank is nice alternate of beef shank

A veal shank cut that is taken from the lower leg of a calf. It is a leaner, tougher cut of meat than other veal cuts, such as the loin or rib. The veal shank must be cooked slowly in order to tenderize the meat.

The most favored way to prepare veal shank is osso buco, a dish in which the veal shank is braised with vegetables and white wine. Veal shank can also be roasted, grilled, or stewed.

When selecting a veal shank, look for 1 that is well-marbled with fat and is a pinkish color. Avoid veal shanks that are too pale or have excessive amounts of fat. 

A veal shank is a versatile cut of meat that can use in a variety of dishes. Whether you braise it, roast it, or grill it, veal shank is sure to add flavor and depth to your meal.

Although veal shank has a much milder flavor than beef shank also more tender and has a higher fat content.

7. Skirt steak- boneless beef shank substitute

Skirt steak is a cut of beef from the plate, which is the lower belly of the cow. It’s a long, flat piece of meat with a lot of connective tissue and fat running through it. Skirt steak is tough and chewy, but it has a lot of flavors.

The most suitable way to cook skirt steak is to grill it or pan-sear it. Skirt steak is often used in fajitas, tacos, and stir-fries. This can also be thinly sliced and served as a steak sandwich.

When shopping for skirt steak, look for a piece that is reddish-brown in color and has a bit of marbling. Avoid any steaks that have a lot of gristle or are overly fatty.

Skirt steak is best when it’s cooked quickly over high heat. It can be tough if overcooked, so keep an eye on it while it’s cooking. When skirt steak is cooked to medium-rare, it will be very juicy and flavorful.

8. Silverside beef

Silverside beef is a cut of meat that comes from the hindquarters of the cow. This is a lean cut of beef that is typically used for roast beef, corned beef, or other similar dishes.

Silverside beef can be quite tough if not cooked properly, so it is crucial to know how to cook it correctly in order to enjoy its full flavor and texture. When cooked properly, Silverside beef is a delicious and healthy option for any meal.

There are many different ways to cook Silverside beef, but one of the most famous methods is to delay cooking it in a crock pot or Dutch oven.

This cooking method helps tenderize the beef and brings out its natural flavors. Slow-cooking Silverside beef is a great way to make a tasty and nutritious meal for the whole family.

9. Substitute Beef Arm for Beef Shank

beef arm is good substitute of beef shank

For a hearty meal, then the beef arm is a great option for substituting beef shank. It is versatile and relatively inexpensive, making it a great choice for budget-minded cooks.

With a small creativity, you can turn this tough cut of meat into a mouthwatering dish that your whole family will enjoy.

The beef arm is a type of cut that is taken from the shoulder region of the cow. It is a relatively tough meat cut, making it best suited for stewing or braising.

When cooked properly, the beef arm can be quite tender and flavorful. There are many ways to prepare beef arms. It can be roasted, stewed, braised, or even ground up for burgers or meatloaf.

The most favorite way to enjoy this cut of meat is in a slow cooker recipe. The beef arm is also often used in Mexican dishes such as barbacoa and carnitas.

This beef arm shank recipe is perfect for a winter meal. The beef arm shank is cooked until tender in a red wine and vegetable broth and then served with creamy mashed potatoes.

You can also substitute the beef arm shank for beef chuck or beef brisket in this recipe. Just be sure to cook the beef until it is very tender before serving. 

10. Round steak

Round steak is a type of cut taken from the cow’s rear end. This particular cut includes the hind leg and buttock regions. The round steak is a leaner cut than some other steaks, such as ribeye or sirloin.

This can be a bit tougher to cook. When cooking round steak, it’s important to not overcook it, as this will make it even tougher. There are various ways to prepare round steak, including grilling, baking, frying, or braising.

Round steak can be used in a number of different dishes, such as stews, stir-fries, or fajitas. This can also be cooked on its own and performed with a variety of sauces or toppings.

11. Brisket

If you’re looking for a beef shank substitute, try the brisket. Brisket is a cut of the beef chest area of the cow. It’s a tough cut of meat, but it’s perfect for slow-cooking methods like braising.

Just like beef shank, brisket is full of flavor and will become tender and succulent when cooked properly.

Brisket can be used in various dishes, including sandwiches, tacos, stews, and chili. It is also often served simply sliced thinly and filled with barbecue sauce on the side.

Boneless beef shank substitute

You can substitute boneless beef shank in recipes in a few different ways.

· Use a leaner cut of beef, such as a chuck roast or round steak. These cuts will have less fat and may not be as tender as the shank, but they will still work in most recipes.

· use pork loin or pork shoulder in place of beef shank. Both cuts are fairly lean and will work well in most formulae calling for the beef shank.

· lamb leg or lamb shoulder in place of beef shank. Lamb has a similar flavor to beef and will work well in most recipes.

Vegan Substitute for Beef Shank

1. Seitan

If you’re searching for a vegan beef shank alternative, look no further than seitan. This is made from wheat gluten and has a chewy, meaty texture that makes it a perfect replacement for beef in any recipe.

Plus, this is high in protein and low in fat, so it’s a healthy option as well. Simply cook seitan in the same way you would beef shank and add it to your favorite dishes. You won’t even be capable of telling the dissimilarity!

2. Crimini Mushrooms

crimini musrooms are good alternate of beef shank

If you want to add more earthiness and depth of savor to your next dish, consider using crimini mushrooms as a beef shank substitute.

Criminis, also known as baby Bellas, have a hearty texture and slightly nutty flavor, making them ideal for everything from savory stews to umami-rich sauces. 

Plus, they’re an amazing source of vitamins and minerals like selenium, potassium, and copper. So if you’re looking for a mouthwatering and nutritious way to add some extra oomph to your cooking, give criminis a try!

3. Vegan Beef Shank

This slow cooker recipe is hearty, filling, and perfect for a winter meal.

This Vegan Beef Shank Stew is the perfect dish for a cold winter night. It’s hearty, filling, and full of flavor. The most suitable part is that it’s made in a slow cooker, you can set and forget it. This stew will become a new family favorite.


1 vegan beef shank

1 large onion, chopped

3 carrots, peeled and diced

3 celery stalks, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups vegetable broth

1 (14.6 ounces) can of diced tomatoes, undrained


1. Combine the beef shank, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, rosemary, and pepper in a large bowl.

2. Pour the mix into a slow cooker.

3. Add the broth and tomatoes.

4. Cover and cook on low heat for 8 hours or until the beef shank is cooked through.

5. Serve hot with some crusty bread. Enjoy!

4. Tempeh

Tempeh is a vegetarian food made from soybeans. It has a nutty, earthy savor and a firm texture. This can use in place of the beef shank in many recipes.

Is beef shank the same as beef chuck?

No, The beef chuck is the shoulder of the cow and is generally considered to be less tender than other cuts of beef. Shank is the cow’s leg and is also generally tougher than other cuts.

However, both the chuck and shank can be used for a variety of dishes if they are cooked properly. 

Stews and braises are usually ideal for these tougher cuts of meat because they break down the difficult fibers and make them more palatable. When cooked correctly, both the chuck and shank can be quite flavorful and provide good value for your money.

FAQs Related to Beef Shank & Its Alternatives

Q1. What is a beef shank called?

A beef shank is a cut of beef from the cow’s Shank portion. This cut is tough and dry and contains a lot of muscle tissue, making it best suited for braising or stewing. Beef Shank is also known as the foreshank or hindshank.

Q2. How long does beef shank cook for?

Beef shank is a difficult cut of meat that benefits from slow cooking. For best results, cook beef shank in a slow cooker or oven for several hours. It will allow to tenderize the meat and make it more flavorful.

How long you cook beef shank will depend on the recipe you are operating and your personal preferences. Generally, beef shank should be cooked for at least 3-4 hours.

However, some recipes may call for longer cooking times. If you are still selecting how long to cook your beef shank, consult the recipe or your butcher for guidance.

Q3. What kind of meat is shank meat?

Shank meat is typically a tougher, dry, and leaner cut of meat from an animal’s shank, such as a cow, lamb, or pig. Because it is a hard cut of meat, it is often used for stewing or braising beef bourguignon. Shank meat can also be ground up and used for burgers or other ground meat dishes.

Q4. Are beef shanks expensive?

No, beef shanks are not expensive. They are a relatively affordable cut of beef. When buying beef shanks, look for ones that are well-marbled with fat, as this will help to keep the meat moist during cooking. Also, trim any excess fat from the meat before cooking.

Q5. Is shank good for stew?

Shank meat is ideal for stew, while others may prefer another type of meat. Ultimately, this is up to the individual to choose what they believe tastes best in a stew.

Q6. Can you pan-fry beef shank?

No, If you pan-fry beef shank, then it becomes tougher, so best used in stock, soup, stew, etc., all slow and long cooking methods.

Q7. Is beef shank the same as soup bones?

Beef shank and soup bones are not the same things. Beef shank is a lower leg cut of meat from a cow, while soup bones are typically scraps of meat and bone that are left over after the cuts of meat have been removed. Soup bones can be used to make beef broth or other soups, while the beef shank is usually cooked as a beef stock or stew meat.

Q8. Are beef shanks the same as short ribs?

Beef shanks and short ribs are two different types of beef cuts. Short ribs are taken from the rib area, while beef shanks are taken from the shin area. Both cuts are tough and require slow cooking in order to become tender. When cooked correctly, they can make a delicious and hearty meal.

Q9. Can you substitute beef shanks for veal shanks?

Yes. Beef shanks are a great substitute for veal shanks.

Q10. Is brisket a shank?

No, brisket is not a shank. A shank is a cut of meat from the leg of an animal, typically beef or lamb. Brisket is a cut of the breast or lower chest meat of an animal, typically beef.

Q11. Where to buy beef shank?

You can purchase beef shank at most butcher shops or grocery stores that sell fresh meat.

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