Today marked the start of my senior year in college at The Ohio State University. As I prepared for what I hope is a fun-filled educational year, I began thinking how beef as a protein would empower me throughout my 15-week semester, long nights of homework, and early morning test days. In the spirit of school, I decided to create a poem using the word ‘beef’ and the essential products and nutrients that it provides us throughout our daily life, especially as another year of school lies ahead of us. Good luck to those getting back in the routine of listening in class and doing homework, and remember, you do not have to be a student to enjoy the numerous benefits of beef that it provides to you on a daily basis!


B- by-products from beef cattle allow 99% of the animal to be used. From automotive care, medical use, and sporting equipment, a by-product from the beef animal is sure to impact you in your daily life!


Whether its an afternoon game of baseball, painting your fingernails before dinner, driving your car, or eating a gummy bear, beef is a by-product in all of these everyday items.

E- essential nutrients that your body needs to maintain health. Beef provides 10% of 10 essential nutrients, including zinc, iron, and protein, in less than 10% of the daily recommended caloric intake. Eating a three ounce serving of lean beef provides 25 grams (about half) of the daily value of protein we need to fuel our bodies.


Beef is a great source of ten essential nutrients that help to keep you healthy and focused throughout your busy day.

E- energy! Start your morning off right by eating beef for breakfast to help power you through your day. B vitamins help maintain brain function and riboflavin helps convert food into fuel to help you stay awake and alert throughout both early morning classes and late night labs.

5207.00_Brkfst_Burrito 044

Why drink several cups of coffee in the morning when eating beef for breakfast can replace your tired feeling and give you the needed nutrients and energy to get you through your day.

F- fuel for the finish. Whether it’s finishing up your seven page paper or studying for an exam, with beef, you will feel energized and your brain will still be sharp because beef contains beneficial vitamins and minerals to help fuel you throughout your entire day. Beef provides you with that late night “kick” to help you ace your paper and test!


As an excellent source of protein, beef gives you the fuel you need to stay alert, awake, and on task even late at night!


Remember, with beef, all things are possible!

Happy Tuesday!


Go Lean with Protein

Incorporating lean protein into your diet does not have to be boring! Just remember-when shopping for a cut of beef that is lean, just look for the words loin and round. There are more than 29 cuts of beef that meet government guidelines for lean. Many of America’s favorite cuts are even lean! A good goal to set is to try to get 25-30 grams of lean protein (like beef) per meal. Protein gives your body many benefits such as: building and replenishing muscles, preventing overeating, and maintaining a strong and lean body. One 3-ounce serving of beef provides 25 grams of protein and ten essential nutrients!

Protein is critical to giving your body the fuel it needs to

Protein is critical to giving your body the fuel it needs participate in whatever you choose!

I know that I personally have trouble finding time to balance my diets. Some days, I am just happy if I eat three square meals. This is not conducive to planning a wholesome meal plan that my body needs to fuel me through the day. Luckily Beef, it’s What’s for Dinner came up with a 30 day protein challenge. If you sign up for the challenge, you will receive emails every day with goals, tips, and inspiration to keep you on track for your protein goal. I tried this challenge, and it really helped me start on the path to eating a more balanced diet rich in protein. If you sign up for the protein challenge, but decide you do not wish to receive the daily emails anymore, opting out is very easy.


Don’t know what 3 ounces of beef looks like? It’s about the size of a smart phone.

Join in the conversation, and use the hashtag ‪#‎ProteinChallenge‬ when you post about your adventures during the 30 day protein challenge! After I started this challenge, I really noticed a positive difference in the way I felt, especially after I exercised.


See for yourself, sign up here!

Happy Meaty Monday!

Rachel Purdy
Princess Farmer


Five Tips to Master Memorial Day Grilling

With Memorial Day next Monday, beef is the number one protein of choice for this holiday, and grills will be heated up cooking steaks and hamburgers across the United States. As we invite family and friends over to enjoy a juicy steak or hamburger, here are five tips that you need to remember so you have the most savory and best experience this holiday.

1. When cooking steaks, cook for a total of 14 minutes, seven minutes on each side, flipping only once.


Set a timer for 14 minutes, flipping the meat only once at seven minutes to get an even grill on both sides.

2. Steaks should be cooked to a minimum of 145 degrees whereas hamburgers should be cooked to a minimum of 160 degrees. The only way to ensure your beef is cooked to the proper temperatures is to use an instant read meat thermometer.

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Insert the instant meat read thermometer sideways into the thickest part of the beef to get an accurate temperature reading.

3. Use tongs rather than a fork to flip steaks and take steaks off the grill. A fork will pierce your steaks or hamburgers and the juices inside that add flavor and tenderness will be lost.


Flipping steaks and hamburgers with tongs rather than forks ensures juices will stay inside the meat as it cooks and rests.

4. Let your steaks and/or hamburgers rest at least five to seven minutes before serving. The heat from the grill causes the juices inside the meat to flow and without letting your steaks or hamburgers rest prior to cutting them open, all the juices would flow out onto your plate and not cause as juicy or flavorful eating experience.

resting steak

Allowing your steaks or hamburgers to rest prior to serving it will ensure you and your guests enjoy a flavorful, tender, and juicy eating experience this holiday!

5. Cut against the grain of your steaks. Hamburgers, because they are ground beef, do not have a grain, but all cuts of steak do. It is important to cut against the grain of the meat so you do not have a chewy eating experience.

against the grain

Cut against the grain to keep the juices and flavor into the meat and avoid chewiness.

As you celebrate your Memorial Day with firing up your grill, remember these five simple tips so you and your guests have the best eating experience with the steaks and/or hamburgers you grill. Although this day is your time to shine as a chef, do not forget to thank the Veterans that have served so we can live in a free country.


Happy Memorial Day, happy grilling, and thank you Veterans!


Profile: Strip Steak

As an agricultural communication major, taking journalism classes and learning how to write magazine articles and news stories is part of my class requirements. Part of my news writing class was learning how to write a profile story. Not only can you profile a person, but I have decided to profile a delicious cut of steak prior to the Nashville Southern Women’s Cooking Show that we will be traveling to this week to educate moms, millennials, and more about different cuts of beef to cook, as well as quick and easy recipes.

While at the cooking show, we will have a chance to demo a recipe on stage, one that uses the Strip Steak!

strip uncooked (2)

As you can notice by the fat content throughout these, Strip Steaks are a very tender and flavorful cut of beef.

The Strip Steak comes from the short loin of the beef animal, also having the more prominent names of Kansas City Strip or New York Strip Steak. In relationship to where the Strip Steak is located within the animal, it is a muscle that does very little work and is therefore a very tender and lean cut.


Located in the Short Loin, this muscle does little work producing tender cuts of meat such as the Strip Steak and T-bone Steak.

 Without the bone, the cut is called the Strip Steak, but if the bone is left in the meat then it is called a T-bone steak, therefore both of these steaks come from the portion of the short loin alike.


In regards to cooking Strip Steak, the three most popular cooking methods are grilling, broiling, and pan frying. No matter which way you choose to cook your Strip Steak, all three produce a juicy and delicious steak. Because the Strip Steak is so tender, it is not a cut that requires being marinaded, however it is a versatile cut and personal preference will decided if you want to use a marinate or simple rub to add your choice of flavor.

While in Nashville, the recipe that members of the National Beef Ambassador Team will demonstrate cooking with Strip Steak is called Grilled Steaks Balsamico. With only 464 calories and 30 grams of fat, this 30 minute recipe is sure to offer you a fresh new taste of one of your favorite lean cuts of beef, the Strip Steak!

grilled strip

Check out the Grilled Steaks Balsamico recipe here!



Students Engaging Students With Beef


There is a major disconnect between beef producers and beef consumers. And being a college kid, the gap is unfortunately even greater among my peers on my university’s campus. I have the opportunity to be apart of an incredible organization known as Oklahoma Collegiate Cattlewomen. Last week, the organization took the initiative to dedicate an entire week to target college students and educate them about beef. The first annual Eat Beef Week was a fantastic hit! Each day offered a unique, creative way of engaging students to tell beef’s story.

Advocacy Workshop – Monday night students had the opportunity to gain useful tips to use when advocating for the beef community. From social media basics, to conversation starters, the workshop focused on encouraging students to tell their beef stories in a transparent, sincere way.


Twitter Party- On Tuesday, people were encouraged to take part in a Twitter party hosted by OCCW. The topic focused around common questions surrounding the beef community, such as what measures beef producer take to make sure their cattle are taken care of. Participants had the opportunity to win Eat Beef merchandise also.

#EatBeefWeek #EatBeef @OCCW_okstate


Interactive Beef Campus Event- Wednesday, stations were set up in a high-traffic area that encouraged engagement from students. Stations included focus areas about the value of beef in a healthy diet, what cattle eat, and beef trivia. Beef samples were also available to passersby. This activity was very successful in encouraging genuine and honest conversation about the modern beef community.


Beef Taste Testing- Thursday, OCCW members had the opportunity to taste unique cuts of beef that are not as common in our area, such as the tri-tip roast. Those in attendance also gained valuable information about many beef cuts as well as tips that will help to improve their beef-eating experience.


Farmland, The Movie Screening- Friday evening, Farmland, The Movie was screened at a centralized location on campus as a way to show a transparent representation of where our food comes from.



Moral of the story: those involved in the beef community have an incredible story to tell and we want to share that story with you! Take every opportunity to learn more about your food sources. Research credible sources and ask those directly involved with your food production to learn from the true experts. Educating and learning is all about conversations. Don’t be afraid to have those conversations.


God bless, folks!


Kalyn McKibben

Blonde Beef Babe

Confidence Cooking with Beef

As a millennial, I am often faced with a feeling of being overwhelmed when I am in the meat isle at the grocery store. Not only is there an array of cuts of beef to choose from, the price can also cause “sticker shock” for a single college student looking to stay on a budget, but also include beef as a part of her daily protein. While in Denver, Colorado last week, we had the chance to become “chefs” in the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association kitchen and learn various ways to become confident cooking with beef. Below are five ways I learned how to become more confident cooking with beef that I believe all consumers can include into their confidence level with beef as a protein as well.

  1. Know your beef cuts    There are a handful of different ways to cook your beef and every cut has a recommended cooking method. Cuts that come from high mobility areas, such as the round, need to be marinated to get flavor into them and cooked on low heat for extended hours, versus cuts such as the chuck where mobility is minimum, cooking methods of high heat are best.

    Visit the interactive butcher counter at to learn quick and simple recipes to try with all your favorite beef cuts!

  2. Buy Family Packs/Let the freezer be your friend    Look in the meat case for family packs or bundles that include a variety of items at lower prices per pound. Family packs include different cuts that can please the taste buds of mom, dad, and kids at a more an affordable price. For packs that you cannot use all in one meal, put meat in a Ziploc bag and place it in the freezer. Beef is good up to three months in the freezer.

    steak in bag

    Separating steaks into individual freezer bags to store in the freezer ensures a safe product when you are ready to unthaw and cook it. Steaks can be in the freezer for up to 3 months-be sure to date your bag!

  3. Less is More    Millennials want simple and easy recipes they feel confident creating. Recipes with eight or less ingredients are more intriguing to the millennial audience because they do not look complicated and seem manageable in the kitchen.
  4. Stir-Fry is a go-to meal    Quick, easy, and fresh, stir-fry is great go-to 30 minute meal that is sure to please your taste buds. With Top Sirloin as a lean cut and including your personal favorite vegetables and sauce, you can mix and match making Asian or Italian stir-fries (just to name a few).


    Stir-fry can consist on a variety of vegetables or fruits, pastas, and rice! For a quick meal that feeds a family of four and costs less than a large pizza, try some tonight!

  5. Let your meat rest    While meat is being heated and cooking, there are many proteins within the meat that because of the heat are swirling around. If you slice your meat open as soon as it comes off the heat source, all the juices inside the cut of meat will flow out and the meat will taste flavorful and be dry. Letting your meat rest at least five minutes after taking it off the heat source will allow the proteins to slow down inside the meat and the juices will also begin to soak up. Therefore, once you cut the meat open, the juices, flavor, and tenderness will stay in place and a much more flavorful, joyous eating experience will be had.

    resting steak

    Before you cut into your juicy steak, let the heated proteins inside cool down and rest to ensure your eating experience is flavorful and delicious.

With these five simple tips, you too can be more confident about the beef you cook!

Have a terrific Tuesday!



“Running with Beef” in NYC

New York City as a huge metropolitan area has a tendency to drawl large numbers of crowds for events such as the NYC half marathon. Many New York natives believe ground turkey is better for you than ground beef. When comparing 95% lean ground turkey to 95% lean ground beef (comparing apples to apples…in the ‘Big Apple’) lean ground beef wins being more nutrient dense, having more vitamins the body needs to sustain its health, and lean ground beef also has less overall calories.


Contrary to mosts belief, ground beef tops the health charts over ground turkey in many nutritional areas, some primary ones being overall calorie intake and protein

During my time in “The Big Apple” I had the opportunity to interact and engage in conversation with approximately 20,000 half marathon runners. Using check-off dollars to engage in conversations with consumers from the northeast part of the nation is important as beef production numbers are not as large as what they are in western region states.

As a part of the NYC Health and Fitness Expo in such a health conscious city, is was very beneficial to promote beef as a protein to runners, especially as an excellent recovery protein with needed vitamins and nutrients such as zinc, iron, and B vitamins. During long distant races, beef is an excellent protein for the #fuelforthefinish. Beef is a nutrient rich protein that gives runners the energy they need to not only sustain them throughout miles of a race, but it also is a great recovery protein for the fact that it has the needed vitamins and nutrients one’s body needs to reenergize and help with recovering muscles.


Let #teambeef be your protein to power YOU through the finish!

Educating and having hands-on interactive beef incentive recipes is important as we continue to reach a vast number of consumers as athletes stressing the quality of health beef provides before, during, and after the race. At the beef booth, we promoted runners making their own chilly spice mix to partner with one pound of ground beef. Not only was this a simple and fun interactive spice mix, the promotion of cooking it with beef in the crockpot the night before the race sparked many runners interests as they were excited to know there was a recipe with beef that they could eat and not have to spend time preparing it after running 13.1 miles.


The Chili Spice Bar allowed runners and family members to engage in a hands-on interactive activity as well as engage in “beefy” conversations

Spending the past three days in New York City interacting with city-goers and athletes was very eye-opening and interactive. It is important as beef producers we take the time to promote our protein to athletes and consumers in northeastern states who can benefit from eating the “world’s most efficient multi-vitamin.”

All for the love of beef in NYC!


Surviving the Cafeteria

I live in the dorms, and consequently eat a lot of cafeteria food. If you aren’t careful, it can be challenging at times to incorporate beef into your diet when someone else is determining the menu. Here are my tips for beefing up your cafeteria experience:

  1. Suggestion cards are there for a reason. If you do not like your current options, ask for them to be changed! There is a better chance of change occurring if you speak up about what needs changed.

    Make your voice heard!

    Make your voice heard!

  2. Mix and match. One of my favorite dishes is a steak salad. This is rarely an option from the choices they have. What I do is make a salad at the salad bar, and then grab a steak from one of the stations in the cafeteria and mix them myself. By mixing and matching portions of the menu they have, you can really add variety to your diet.

    Steak and salad are a great combination!

    Steak and salad are a great combination!

  3. Plan your meals ahead of time. At my university, the menus are posted online a week in advance. This makes it very simple to plan what you will eat each day of the week. It also makes it easy to incorporate all of the food groups into your diet because you are more aware of what you are eating.
  4. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Sometimes you might not know what an item on the menu is. Try it! If you find out you do not like it, then you know not to get it again.

    There are usually several options

    Trying new things will help you determine what you like or don’t like!

  5. Snack smart! Sometimes college schedules do not allow room between classes to grab lunch. On those days, one of my favorite snacks to power through my day is beef jerky and baby carrots.

    Beef jerky is great way to get the benefits of beef on the go!

    Beef jerky is great way to get the benefits of beef on the go!

Taking control of your diet can be challenging initially, but it really is worth it.

Happy Meaty Monday!

Rachel Purdy
Princess Farmer

Beef: the Tastiest Multivitamin

I recently went to the doctor and had some routine blood work done (don’t worry, I’m a healthy human!). They wanted to check my iron levels. I learned that iron deficiency is a big issue (especially for women). In fact, 12% of women aged 12-49 are iron deficient. My levels were right where they needed to be. A balanced diet helps me to maintain my health and participate in any activity I choose!


Beef is my protein of choice. Not only is beef delicious, it is rich in nutrients that my body needs. One serving of lean beef provides 12% of the iron you need every day. You can have all that, and more for around 150 calories. Most snacks are around that many calories, and you do not receive half of the nutrients that beef provides.


Calorie for calorie, beef provides more nutrition than other protein choices.

Beef is also an excellent source of protein! You can get almost half of your daily protein from one serving of beef! One of the biggest reasons I eat beef on a regular basis is because it provides me with the energy to run. Protein gives you energy to get through the day. Protein also helps grow hair and nails. So if you want long, beautiful, locks of hair, you better be eating your beef!

Healthy hair starts with eating protein.

Healthy hair starts with eating protein.

If you feel yourself getting sick, reach for the beef instead of the orange juice! Zinc helps the immune system fight off invading bacteria and viruses. Beef happens to be a great source of zinc as well. One serving of beef provides over one third of the zinc you need in a day.

Keep your body happy and healthy by giving it what it needs through what you eat. Thankfully eating right doesn’t have to be bland. Tasty beef recipes can be found here. Happy meaty Monday!

Rachel Purdy
Princess Farmer

4 Major Reasons Why You Should Care About the 2015 Dietary Guidelines

Dietary guidelines are a set of government-recommended eating habits that are meant to help people enjoy healthy lives. The guidelines are updated every five years. The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee met December 15, 2014 to discuss the 2015 guideline draft. The committee is scheduled to publish the final draft of the guidelines in early spring 2015.

Recently, I had the opportunity to hear from Nina Teicholz, investigative journalist and author of the best selling book, The Big Fat Surprise. In the book, Nina, formally a vegetarian, addresses the importance played by lean meat in a healthy diet. Based on the 2015 guideline draft, lean red meat has been completely deleted from the dietary recommendations. You may be wondering the exact implications the rearrangement of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines could have on you. Here are few examples of why this decision is such a big deal.

1. Ever since the beginning of the government- recommended Dietary Guidelines in 1980, obesity has increased  almost exponentially. The guidelines have always focused more on carbohydrate-dense foods such as pasta, cereals, and whole grains, suggesting 6-11 servings per day. In contrast, the daily recommended intake of vegetables is 3-5 servings per day and 2-3 daily servings of meat and protein.

Dietary Guidelines

2. Even though the Dietary Guidelines are “recommendations”, public schools often apply the guidelines to their lunch programs. Imagine this already sparse school lunch without meat. Do you think that would provide badly needed nutrients to a child whose only meals come from the school?

school lunch

Growing up, I lived in a very low socioeconomic community. I knew of several kids who solely depended on the school for all and any of the food they ate.

3. All fat does not make you fat. Our bodies depend on healthy fats to metabolize essential fat-soluble A, D, E and K vitamins.

  • Vitamin A: aids in eyesight
  • Vitamin D: helps build strong bones
  • Vitamin E: aids in the formation of red blood cells
  • Vitamin K: blood clotting agent

fat soluable vitamins

4. Like mentioned above, current diet recommendations focus more toward high-carb, low-protein eating patterns. Not only is it difficult for our bodies to receive needed fats to metabolize certain vitamins without meat, it also makes it incredibly challenging for our bodies to function without abundant amounts of protein needed to make such things as DNA, enzymes and hormones. Studies have shown that high-carb, low-fat diets make it especially difficulty for people, particularly middle-aged women, to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

overwight moms

Because women’s metabolisms tend to slow as they age, our bodies struggle to break down the carbohydrates as efficiently, making it difficult to lose weight.

Remember: a single three ounce serving of beef provides an excellent source of protein, zinc, and vitamin B12! 






God bless, folks!


Kalyn McKibben

Blonde Beef Babe