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Cuts of Beef – Names & Numbers

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Last Updated on October 26, 2021

Your guide to Israel beef cuts. The Hebrew names and numbers of beef cuts and internal organs.

Hebrew: Helkay Basar –  חלקי בשר

beef cuts hebrew names

Your first few shopping experiences in Israel might have you pulling your hair out. There are many challenges and new food choices – one of them is determining which beef cut is most suited to your favorite recipes from home.

While our parents did their best to give us the best education and when we came out of school we knew for a fact that a cow is a cow, 1 = 1 and 5 = 5, but this is Israel and seemingly logical facts are sometime absurd and the opposite is true. English is read from left to right but we read Hebrew from right to left.  In Hebrew “she” is “he” (היא) and “he” is “who” (הוא). And so it is with cuts of meat. In the diaspora the hindquarter was not considered kosher (unless specially prepared) but in Israel you can find kosher hind cuts. In Israel 1 = 10 and 10 = 18.  Enough confusion.

Did you know that Israelis eat approximately 65kg of chicken per person/year – that’s the highest per capita in the OECD?

The names of beef cuts in Israel differ from other parts of the world. In Israel, beef is often sold by number.  You may need to ask your butcher for #3 or #5  instead of shoulder or brisket.

Frozen meats are cheaper than fresh, so if you buy frozen, look out for these numbers. To help you along, here is a list of Israeli beef cuts, their name and their equivalents abroad

Cut # Local Name in Israel Equivalent Abroad Use
#1 Entrecote #6 Rib, Ribeye, Forerib Steak, Roast-beef
#2 Tzlaot, Rifaan #3 & #4 Chuck, Blade Slow cooking or mincing
#3 Chazeh #14 Brisket / Clod Soup or pickling
#4 Katef Mercazi #16 Silverside, Thick Rib Slow roasts, stews or mincing
#5 Tzli Katef #5 & #16 Back Rib Slow roast or stew
#6 Fillet Medumeh #16 Foreshank Slow roast or stew 
#7 Shrir, Michaseh HaTzlah Chuck cover Mincing 
#8 Shrir Hazroar #15 Shin Soup, cholent, hamin, osso bucco 
#9 Kashtit / Shpundra Short Rib Slow cooking, soup, assado 
#10 Tsavar #1 Neck Soup or mincing 
#11 Sinta #7 Sirloin Roast-beef or steak 
#12 Fillet #7 Tenderloin, Fillet Roast-beef or steak 
#13 Shaitel #8 Rump Escalope, steak, shishlik, roast-beef
#14 Katchah, Avazit Top Sirloin Slow roast, stews or mincing 
#15 Yarcha / Chuck #11 Thick Flank, Flank Steak Stews 
#16 Kaf #9 Topside, Silver-side Steak, escalopes or roasting 
#17 Pladah, Kislayim #12 Thin Flank Mincing or rolled beef
#18 Shrir Achori #10 Shank, Leg Soup or slow cooking 
#19 Rosh HaYerech (Yarcha), Weisbraten #9 Silverside, Aitchbone Slow roast or stew 

The Internal Organs – חלקי פנים

Transliteration Hebrew Name English Equivalent
Lashon לשון Tongue
Kaved כבד Liver
Kayvah קֵבָה Tripe
Mo’ach מֹחַ Brains
Shkeidim שקדים Sweetbreads
Raya רֵאָה Lung
Klaya כִּלְיָה Kidney
Ma’i מְעִי Intestine
Lavlav לַבְלַב Pancreas
Eshech אֶשֶׁךְ Testicle
Lechi לֶחִי Beef cheeks
Zanav shor זנד שור Oxtail

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