Introduction Outback Steakhouse is a popular restaurant chain known for its hearty steaks, sides, and Australian-inspired cuisine. One aspect of Outback’s cooking methods that has drawn attention is their use of beef tallow as a cooking oil. In this article, we’ll dive into what beef tallow is, why Outback Steakhouse uses it, and the controversy surrounding its use in the restaurant industry.
What is Beef Tallow?
Beef tallow is a type of animal fat that is derived from beef. It is made by rendering or slowly heating, beef fat to separate the liquid fat from the solid fat. The resulting liquid fat is then cooled and solidified to form beef tallow.
Beef tallow has a high smoke point, making it a popular cooking oil for frying and sautéing. It also has a rich, savory flavor that adds depth to dishes, particularly in the case of steaks.
Why Does Outback Steakhouse Use Beef Tallow?
Outback Steakhouse has used beef tallow as a cooking oil for many years. The restaurant chain touts its use of high-quality ingredients, including its choice of cooking oil. Beef tallow is known for its ability to enhance the flavor of food, particularly when cooking steaks.
In addition to its flavor-enhancing properties, beef tallow is also a stable oil that does not easily break down or go rancid when exposed to high heat. This makes it an ideal choice for high-heat cooking methods, like frying, which is commonly used in the restaurant industry.
Outback Steakhouse Beef Tallow Menu
Outback Steakhouse offers a variety of menu items that are cooked in beef tallow, including:
- Signature Steaks
- Forkless Features
- Forkless Features
- Chicken, Ribs, Chops & More
“Aussie-tizers” is a term used by Outback Steakhouse to refer to its selection of appetizers. Some of the Aussie-tizers on Outback’s menu that is cooked in beef tallow include:
- Bloomin’ Onion: This is Outback’s signature appetizer and one of its most popular menu items. The Bloomin’ Onion is a large onion that is cut into the shape of a flower, breaded, and deep-fried in beef tallow until crispy.
- Kookaburra Wings: chicken wings that are deep-fried in beef tallow and coated in the restaurant’s signature spices. Served with a side of blue cheese dressing and celery.
- Aussie Cheese Fries: a dish featuring fries topped with a mixture of melted Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheese, finished off with crumbled bacon bits and a side of house-made ranch dressing.
- Bloom Petals: an appetizer consisting of petals cut from the restaurant’s famous Bloomin’ Onion® dish, accompanied by its spicy signature bloom sauce.
- Sydney ‘Shrooms: made of mushrooms that are lightly battered and fried, served with a side of house-made ranch dressing.
- Volcano Shrimp: made of crispy shrimp that are coated in a spicy Volcano sauce and garnished with green onions.
- Alice Springs Chicken Quesadilla: featuring a quesadilla stuffed with juicy grilled chicken breast, sautéed mushrooms, crispy bacon, melted cheeses, and a drizzle of honey mustard sauce.
- Aussie Signature Sampler: made of Bloomin’ Onion® petals with the restaurant’s signature spicy bloom sauce, Steakhouse Mac & Cheese Bites with house-made ranch dressing and a sample-sized serving of the Aussie Cheese Fries.
- Gold Coast Coconut Shrimp: a dish made of shrimp that are hand-dipped in batter, rolled in coconut, and fried to a golden crispy texture. Served with a side of Creole marmalade.
Outback is known for its steaks, which are cooked on a grill using beef tallow to enhance their flavor. The steaks on the menu include options like:
- Outback Center-Cut Sirloin Steak: expertly prepared by using the center cut of the sirloin for maximum tenderness. It is seasoned and seared to bring out its natural flavor, making it lean, hearty, and full of taste.
- Victoria’s Filet Mignon: made from a thick cut of the most tender cut of beef, expertly seasoned and seared to ensure maximum juiciness in every bite.
- Ribeye: Featuring a well-marbled, juicy, and flavorful cut of meat that’s grilled without the use of wood for a unique natural flavor.
- Sirloin + Your Choice of Shrimp: Signature center-cut sirloin paired with the option of Grilled Shrimp or Gold Coast Coconut Shrimp
The following are some of the sides on Outback Steakhouse’s menu that is cooked in beef tallow:
- French Fries: Outback’s French fries are cut from whole potatoes and fried in beef tallow until crispy.
- Sweet Potato Fries: Outback’s sweet potato fries are sliced and fried in beef tallow until crispy.
- Onion Rings: Outback’s onion rings are thick-cut and crispy, and are fried in beef tallow until golden brown.
Forkless Features are a line of handheld dishes, which are designed to be eaten without the need for utensils. These items can be easily held and consumed without the use of a fork or knife. These dishes include:
- The Bloomin’ Burger: a burger cooked in beef tallow and topped with crispy Bloomin’ Onion® petals, melted American cheese, tomato, lettuce, and a drizzle of the restaurant’s signature spicy bloom sauce.
- The Outbacker Burger: a classic burger offered at Outback Steakhouse, topped with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, and mustard. You can opt to add additional bacon to their burgers for extra flavor and texture.
- Grass-Fed Burger with Aged Cheddar: A premium burger option at Outback Steakhouse made with 100% grass-fed, sustainably raised beef and topped with aged Cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and a flavorful herb aioli.
- Crispy Chicken Sandwich: a hand-breaded and lightly fried chicken fillet, tossed in spicy Buffalo sauce and served on a bun with lettuce and house-made ranch dressing.
Chicken, Ribs, Chops & More
- Chicken Tender Platter: made of crispy white meat chicken tenders. It is served with a choice of honey mustard or Buffalo sauce, and a side of Aussie Fries.
- Golden Fried Coconut Shrimp: A platter of 32 Golden Fried Coconut Shrimp, coated in batter and rolled in coconut, served with Creole marmalade dipping sauce
Potential Health Benefits of Beef Tallow
Beef tallow has some potential health benefits, although some of its aspects may also raise concerns. Here are some of the potential health benefits of beef tallow:
- High in Saturated Fat: Beef tallow is high in saturated fat, which is a type of fat that is solid at room temperature. Saturated fats have been found to increase HDL (good) cholesterol levels and have a neutral effect on LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.
- Rich in Vitamin D: Beef tallow is a good source of Vitamin D, which is important for maintaining strong bones and a healthy immune system.
- Contains Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA): Beef tallow is a rich source of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a type of fatty acid that has been shown to have potential health benefits, such as reducing the risk of certain types of cancer and improving heart health.
- Stable at High Heat: Beef tallow is a stable cooking oil that does not easily break down or go rancid when exposed to high heat. This means that it can be used for high-heat cooking methods, like frying, without producing harmful compounds.
It’s important to note that while beef tallow has some potential health benefits, it is also high in saturated fat, which can increase the risk of heart disease if consumed in excessive amounts. Additionally, some people may have concerns about the ethical implications of using beef tallow, as it is a byproduct of the meat industry and may come from animals that were raised in inhumane conditions.
Controversy Surrounding Beef Tallow
While beef tallow has been a staple cooking oil in the restaurant industry for many years, its use has become somewhat controversial in recent times. Some health experts and organizations have raised concerns about the high saturated fat content of beef tallow, which can contribute to heart disease and other health problems.
Additionally, some animal rights activists have criticized the use of beef tallow in restaurants, as it is a byproduct of the meat industry and may come from animals that were raised in inhumane conditions.
Beef tallow is a traditional form of cooking oil that has been used for thousands of years, dating back to ancient civilizations such as the Egyptians, Romans, and Greeks. They used tallow for various purposes, including cooking and as a source of fuel for lamps.
In the Middle Ages, tallow was commonly used as a cooking oil in Europe and was also used to produce soap and candles. As technology advanced, new cooking oils were introduced, but tallow remained popular in many regions. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, tallow was widely used as an industrial lubricant and an ingredient in soap and cosmetics.
With the increasing popularity of vegetable oils in the mid-20th century, the use of tallow declined. However, in recent years, there has been a resurgence in the use of tallow and other animal fats as cooking oils due to a growing awareness of the health benefits of these traditional fats. Beef tallow is now widely used in traditional cooking, as well as in the production of various food products, cosmetics, and industrial products.
History of Outback Steakhouse Restaurant
Outback Steakhouse is a casual dining restaurant chain that was founded in Tampa, Florida, in 1988. It was created by Bob Basham, Chris T. Sullivan, Trudy Cooper, and Tim Gannon with the goal of bringing the Australian-style steakhouse concept to the United States. The first Outback Steakhouse restaurant was opened in 1988 and the chain has since expanded to over 1,000 locations across the world.
Outback Steakhouse is known for its menu of steak, chicken, and seafood entrees, as well as its casual, laid-back atmosphere that features decorative elements inspired by the Australian Outback. Over the years, the chain has become one of the largest casual dining restaurant chains in the United States, and it has won numerous awards and accolades for its food and service.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is beef tallow used for in Outback Steakhouse?
Beef tallow is used as a cooking oil in some menu items at Outback Steakhouse. Outback Steakhouse beef tallow items are known for their high smoke point and rich flavor, making it a popular choice for frying and sautéing.
What are the side effects of consuming seed oils?
Consuming large amounts of seed oils can lead to a variety of health problems, including inflammation, oxidative stress, and an imbalance of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids. Some seed oils are also high in unhealthy trans fats. It is important to limit the consumption of these oils and choose healthier alternatives.
Are there health benefits of consuming beef tallow?
Yes, beef tallow is a source of healthy saturated fats and contains important vitamins and minerals. It has been shown to have a beneficial impact on cholesterol levels and overall heart health.
What type of cuisine does Outback Steakhouse serve?
Outback Steakhouse is a casual dining restaurant that serves a variety of cuisine with an emphasis on steak and grill items. They offer a range of options including steaks, burgers, chicken, seafood, salads and sides.
What is the atmosphere like at Outback Steakhouse?
Outback Steakhouse has a casual, relaxed atmosphere, with warm lighting and comfortable seating. The decor typically features Australian-inspired elements such as paintings, maps, and sculptures. The restaurant is a great choice for a casual dinner with friends and family or a date night.
Conclusion on Outback Steakhouse Beef Tallow
Overall, Outback Steakhouse has a reputation for using high-quality beef tallow in their cooking, which have a rich flavor and can enhance the taste of their dishes. Beef tallow is made from the fat of cattle and has been used in cooking for centuries. In comparison, seed oils such as soybean, canola, and corn oil have gained popularity in recent years due to their low cost and ability to withstand high heat, but they have a neutral taste and can have negative health effects such as inflammation and increased risk of heart disease.
On the other hand, seed oils are high in polyunsaturated fats, which are prone to oxidation and degradation when heated. This can lead to the formation of harmful compounds and decreased nutritional value.
Whether or not to use beef tallow in cooking is a personal decision that depends on a variety of factors, including individual health concerns and ethical beliefs. Regardless, it is important to be informed and make informed choices when it comes to the foods we consume. As with any food, moderation is key, and consuming excessive amounts of any type of fat, including beef tallow, can be detrimental to one’s health.