Head out to a buzzy New York restaurant and you’ll see it on the menu: a hulking piece of dry-aged beef, "for two," sold at an astronomical price. Minetta Tavern’s Côte de Boeuf is $140. The 40-ounce rib eye at the Dutch is a cool $125. Perla’s 56-day-aged rib eye is $95. They’re all excellent, but they’re also damn expensive — and beef prices are expected to increase by as much as 10 percent this summer. What’s a budget-minded person in search of properly seared flesh to do? Fortunately, you’ve got options: Here are truly great steaks around the city that are (relatively) affordable, ensuring that carnivores can get the meat sweats without having to sweat the price, too.
Hanger Steak ($15)
This Best of New York-winning steak is salted, grilled, and then drizzled with garlic-steeped butter. But even though the preparation’s basic, the steak’s still packed with flavor. No wonder it’s the most popular item on the menu.
Korean-Style Hanger Steak ($29)
It’s clear why this is one of the few dishes that has stayed on the Dutch’s always-changing menu. You can splurge for a $52 bone-in New York strip for two, or a $125 beef rib eye, but this hanger steak with kimchee-fried rice and a farm egg is almost as satisfying, at a fraction of the price.
Elephant and Castle
Sliced Steak ($18.75)
The West Village neighborhood landmark’s hanger steak with merlot ginger sauce is the most grandiose dish on a menu filled with omelettes and crepes. Sometimes you want to eat steak in your sweatpants, and that’s okay.
Runner & Stone
Grilled Rib-Eye ($28)
Get ready for a serious, fatty plate of cow. Roasted potatoes and market vegetables are also included, which is nice because they don’t distract from the main event.
El Toro Blanco
Carne Tampiqueña ($24)
The Mexican hot spot’s Creekstone Farms skirt steak is paired with Mexican cheese enchilada, salsa verde, chimichurri, and cactus salad. It’s a traditional preparation that goes particularly well with margaritas and tequila shots.
The Spotted Pig
Skirt Steak ($28)
It’s a well-known fact that April Bloomfield doesn’t screw around, especially with her meat. She prepares her grass- and corn-fed beef simply with horseradish cream and roasted beets.
Wok Charred Black Angus Ribeye ($26)
This chunk of meat is accented by black pepper caramel and "holy basil." It might seem like gilding the lily, but holy shit, that sounds delicious.
Grilled Flat Iron ($25)
Bond Street’s French bistro is serving its steak with frites, sauce Choron (tomato-accent béarnaise), and Bordelaise. The richer, the better.
Filet Mingon ($26)
The tenderloin filet is considered by many to be the king of steaks, and it’s hard to find at a reasonable price. This variation is seared and paired with sweet and sour onions, mashed potatoes, and horseradish cream.
Flank Steak ($15)
This discreet bar-restaurant on Elizabeth Street serves Thai-inspired small plates until midnight. During brunch and lunch, the flank steak comes with market vegetables, Tamarind sauce, and rice; at dinner, scallion mash potatoes and steamed asparagus.
Grilled Prime Hanger Steak ($25)
One of the top places in Williamsburg for cheap(er) eats offers a traditional hanger steak with hand-cut fries, Bordelaise sauce, and herby Maitre d’butter.
Saxon + Parole
Hanger Steak ($28)
Here’s an easy choice to make: the eight-ounce marbled 28-day aged Black Angus beef comes from Creekstone Farms. Better, in Grub’s opinion, than spending $36 on Saxon’s seven-ounce fillet.
Painted Hill Farm Flap Steak ($25)
The Carroll Gardens restaurant gets its name from the Brooklyn farmers who drove their cattle across low tide so the animals could graze on Governors Island grass. Steak is a specialty here, and this cut is plated with roasted bone marrow, buttered toast, and an herb salad.
New York Strip Steak and Frites ($28)
Phillip Kirschen-Clark is now cooking at this West Village favorite, and he’s aiming to push the restaurant in a French direction. We doubt he’s taking this all-natural, 28-day-aged Angus beef off the menu.
Bar Steak ($29)
Yes, it’s easy to spend a fortune at one of the most expensive bistros in New York. But this eight-ounce hunk of flank-cut, organic beef hails from a farm in upstate New York, and it comes with the restaurant’s excellent pommes frites.