Have you ever considered why some cuts of meat are bone-in and others are boned-out? Here we shall tell you a little more about why having the bone in or out could change the meat.

Bone-in or ‘On the bone’

You are probably more used to boned meat when you have a chop, whether a pork or lamb chop. Joints can have the bone in and are mostly in their natural state, for example, a leg of lamb. A rack of ribs will, of course, would not be the same without the bones. The T’ bone steak has the bone in, and it’s the shape of a ‘T’, hence the name. We have lamb T’ bone steaks too. We have sirloins steaks available ‘on the bone’. Finally, the big daddy Tomahawk whacks a big punch with its large bone.

Bone-out or ‘Deboned’

Most of our meat has the bone removed. These are the steaks in the butchery world. A joint that has had the bone removed and the resulting flesh rolled and strung to form a roasting joint, we call a rolled joint. We usually roll beef and pork joints as the bones are huge! Belly pork with its strips of flavourful fat and the crispy skin is usually bone free. Of course, mince, bacon, and sausages are all bone out. If you are not keen on the bone, then our pork loin chops are a great choice.

Taste difference?

The jury is still out on whether the bone makes a real difference to the flavour of the meat. Some will argue that the marrow and collagen seep through into the meat. Others explain that the bone is too hard for the marrow or collagen to pass over. Blind taste tests have shown little difference in the meat. I for one, think meat cooked on the bone, with the resulting bones then cooked up for a broth is the answer! One of our earlier recipes utilizes the marrowbone for a salad with sirloin steak.


One thing that does change when choosing bone-in or bone-out meat, is cooking times, and the consistency of the meat cooked through. Bone takes longer to heat, so the meat closest to the bone is a little cooler and less ‘well done’ meaning more tender. Plus, there is a retention of moisture when cooking bone-in, this means juicier meat. There is great satisfaction when the meat falls from the bone after cooking.


Carving is definitely easier with a rolled piece of meat, so bone-out certainly wins here. However, gnawing away at a bone at the end of your meal certainly hits some primaeval pleasure zones! As Dave found out last month, click for his recipe, peppercorn BBQ bone-in brisket


What do you think? Do you prefer bone-in or out? Let us know.