Beef bottom sirloin butt

Other Names: Bell (or ball) tip, bola (Spanish), bottom sirloin, butcher’s heart, flap, noce (Italian), pointe de surlonge (French), thick flank (British), tri-tip.

General Description: One of three sirloin subprimals, the bottom sirloin butt is a boneless cut that is tougher than the top sirloin butt. This cut is further divided into three parts: the tri-tip, the ball tip, and the flap. Though rather lean, bottom sirloin cuts have good flavor and firm texture. The ball tip is a small portion of the larger muscle group called the knuckle. The bottom sirloin may be found cut into various boneless steaks, including the bottom sirloin flap steak, the ball tip steak, and the tri-tip steak.

The flap is actually a continuation of the flank and is usually sold ground or cut up for stew. It is quite flavorful but too tough to use for steak as is; it is sometimes run through a tenderizing machine and used for cube steak.

Part of Animal: The bottom sirloin butt is the lower portion of the sirloin, or upper hip, and lies between the butt end of the tenderloin and the knuckle in the round.

Characteristics: The bottom sirloin is lean and moderately tender with good flavor and medium-fine grain.

How to Choose: Choose meat that is not overly dark. Choose a regularly shaped ball tip that is well trimmed.

Amount to Buy: Allow at least 8 ounces of boneless meat per person because of trim waste.

Storage: Store larger cuts up to 4 days refrigerated; store steaks 2 days refrigerated.


  1. Cut ball tip into 2-inch cubes.
  2. Marinate overnight if desired, using bold flavorings and oil to moisten this lean cut.
  3. Skewer and grill over medium-high heat or broil to desired temperature.

Flavor Affinities: Chile peppers, fish sauce, jerk seasoning, molasses, mushrooms, peanuts, soy sauce, wine vinegar.

from Quirk Books: www.quirkbooks.com