Is Steak A Processed Meat? – The Truth!

is steak a processed meat

In this post, we’re going to answer the question, “Is steak a processed meat?”.

This is a question that concerns many steak eaters as we are told that steak is a much healthier alternative to processed meats and that we should be eating much more of it than we currently do.

However, there is much more to learn about steak than simply what it can do for us.

There is much debate over whether steak could be considered processed meat.

To answer this, we must first understand what makes a food processed and how it differs from unprocessed food.

Let’s get into it…

What Is A Processed Meat?

So what exactly is processed meat? Well, it is any meat product that has been modified in any way prior to sale.

This includes being salted, smoked, cured, or having other additives mixed with it.

So if the steak was added with salt, for example, it would be considered processed meat.

Processed meats are usually to extend shelf life or improve the taste. Some common examples include salami, ham, and bacon.

As such, processed meats are therefore usually higher in fat and salt than unprocessed meats.

The reason why meat is processed is to ensure that it can be sold to customers for longer periods of time.

It also ensures that the meat is safer for us to eat by removing harmful bacteria.

Supermarkets want to keep meat on their shelves for as long as possible to stop the food from going bad, so they will process it.

This makes processed meat easier to eat, especially for people who are sick or frail, which has made it popular with the elderly.

Unprocessed meats cannot be kept as long and therefore tend to be more expensive than their processed counterparts.

Is Steak Processed Meat?

Having learned what makes processed meat, we can now consider the question once again.

As steak is a type of meat, then it must be processed to some degree in order for it to be edible and for it to last longer than its natural state would allow.

However, steak is not generally considered a food that has been heavily processed. It is not salted or cured for example.

It can be argued that it has been cooked, but this is done merely to improve the taste and texture of the steak.

So is steak a processed meat? Yes, but only slightly! Steak is less processed than most meats available in supermarkets that you might buy.

However, there is no denying that it has been processed, even if this is minimal.

What About Raw Steak From A Butchers?

Buying steak that is raw from the butcher’s shop is not processed.

The steak has simply been cut from the cow and packaged up for us to take home and eat.

However, if meat is not cooked or prepared in any way before we choose to eat it, then we must accept that it is still a type of processed food as something must have been done to it prior to sale.

Personally, I like to buy my steak from the Butchers instead of supermarkets to avoid it being processed.

This is because I like to eat steak that is as fresh as possible and I don’t particularly like the idea of it being cut and packaged up in a factory somewhere.

Processed Meat Is Hard To Avoid

Almost all types of meat have been processed to some degree.

In fact, it is nearly impossible to buy unprocessed meat from supermarkets as the food would go bad very quickly.

We need to process beef because it can’t be kept fresh for long periods of time and we also need to kill harmful bacteria that could cause us harm if consumed.

Sadly in the modern world we live in there are lots of foods that are processed to make their shelf lives last longer.

It is for this reason why so many people are wary of buying “processed food”.

As such, it would be safer to eat unprocessed steak from a butcher’s shop rather than cutting corners and going with the cheapest option available in supermarkets.

Other Considerations

Keep in mind that steak from a butcher’s shop may cost you more, but if you eat less of it because it doesn’t have additives then you may find that it works out at a similar price.

Also, ask yourself how important avoiding processed food is to you and if your health is worth paying over the odds for steak.

Thankfully there are many types of meat available in supermarkets these days that aren’t processed, so you can always shop around to find these.

In my experience, I find that steak from a Butchers is far superior to supermarket beef as it tastes better and it hasn’t been ground up.

In contrast, steak from a butcher’s shop tends to be more expensive but I believe that this is because the cow has been killed on the spot rather than being put in a mass-production facility somewhere.

For me, going for a higher quality product is always the best option and I would rather pay more money for steak than eat cheap processed meat.


As a whole, supermarket steak is processed but only slightly.

It’s incredibly hard to find meats that haven’t been processed that are sold in supermarkets as they need to make the meat readily available at all times for their customers.

This is understandable and I don’t blame supermarkets for doing it.

However, I prefer to buy my meat from a butcher’s shop as it is less processed and the quality of the product is usually better.

It can also be argued that buying steak from a butcher’s shop may save you money in the long run because you won’t have to eat as much due to it being a higher quality product.

I think that the best way to eat steak is simply to buy it from a butcher, as you can tell by now that I enjoy eating steak very much and I don’t want to eat cheap processed meat.

Thanks for taking the time to read this article, I hope you now have the answer to is steak a processed meat?

Feel free to stick around and learn more about steak.

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