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New York Strip vs Sirloin: Do They Differ?

In this article, we’ll have a battle between New York Strip vs Sirloin steaks. Not everyone is familiar with steak cuts, let alone the differences between these two.

This guide will give you an in-depth comparison between the New York strip and sirloin steak. This way, you can decide which one is best for your culinary needs and, of course, your budget. Read on to find out all you need to know about these two common steak cuts.

serving board with raw steaks

What is New York Strip Steak?

New York Strip steak is also called Kansas City steak, strip loin steak, or just strip steak.

Strip steak got its name because a famous steakhouse in NYC uses it in its signature dish. This popular place is Delmonico’s Restaurant, which has been there since 1837.

New York strip steak is one of the cuts from the short loin. This is the area below the backbone, also called the longissimus dorsi section.

The muscles here do not get much exercise. As a result, the beef from this area is the most tender. For this reason, chefs consider New York strip steaks among the most premium beef cuts.

The NY strip steak forms the larger part of the T-Bone or Porterhouse steak. The tenderloin comprises the remaining smaller section. If you’ve had a Porterhouse steak before, then chances are you’ve also eaten strip steak.

Retailers also sell NY strip steak under the following names:

  • ambassador steak
  • strip loin steak
  • shell steak
  • hotel-cut steak


You can find the strip steak with or without the bone. The meat itself has a slightly marbled appearance. This look is due to the high amount of intramuscular fat.

To identify the NY strip, look for an irregularly-shaped piece of meat with one side wider than the other.

You can also look for a visible rim of fat on one edge. Usually, strip loin steaks are at least an inch thick. This thickness enables them to stay moist even after cooking.


This cut of beef has a fine grain. NY strip steak is tender when cooked properly but is less tender than the prized ribeye. The strip steak’s lovely texture makes it easy to cut and cook.

And, of course, strip loin steaks will give you a satisfying chew. Its fat cap and decent marbling give it a deliciously juicy texture too.


Because of the thick rim of fat on the edge of this cut, New York strips are one of the tastiest steaks. They are less tasty than the ribeye but taste more flavorful than most steaks.


NY strip steak is among the most expensive cuts you can buy.

You can get bone-in strip steaks (shell steaks) from $4.38 to $13.00 a pound. The boneless ones go for $4.99 to $18.24 per pound.

Plate with raw New York strip steaks.

What is New York Sirloin steak?

Sirloin steak is a beef cut taken from the sirloin subprimal section of the cow. This area runs from the hips to the last rib bone, which you’ll find towards the animal’s rear. It sits beside the short loin, from which you get the NY strip.

This part of the cow gets lots of exercise as the animal uses it to move. Because of this, beef from this part is firmer and tougher.

There are two types of sirloin: top and bottom sirloin. Steak cuts can be from any of these parts, but cuts that come from the top are usually labeled “top sirloin.”

Meanwhile, cuts from the bottom are commonly tagged as “sirloin steak” or “sirloin.”


The sirloin steak is a lean cut of meat. It looks like a thick slab of red meat with little to no marbling. It is boneless and may or may not have a fat cap.


Since the fat lends moisture to the steak, its near-absence in this cut makes sirloin steak firmer than NY strip steak. But, when cooked correctly, the sirloin steak is juicy and tender.

It can be a bit chewy, but the texture is pleasant enough to enjoy.


A sirloin steak does not have a flavor as intense as a NY strip steak. This flavor difference is because it lacks fat. Fat is responsible for a more indulgent steak taste and experience. Nevertheless, the sirloin steak is beefy and will satisfy your meat cravings.


The top sirloin steak is among the most affordable steak cuts. It sells for $4.98 to $5.99 per pound.

Serving wooden board with raw sirloin steaks on top.

New York Strip Vs. Sirloin Difference

Both these steak cuts are delicious and filling, but they differ in many ways.

First, the New York strip steak is from the short loin. The sirloin steak is either from the top or the bottom sirloin.

Aside from that, they differ in appearance, so you can easily tell one from the other. The NY strip steak has a distinct marbling, while the sirloin steak has very little marbling if any.

NY strip steak’s more fat content gives it a richer flavor and a more tender texture. Meanwhile, the leaner sirloin steak can also be tender, but it is chewier than strip steak.

The New York strip steak is among the priciest steak cuts. It is usually served as a main dish with sides of vegetables.

In contrast, sirloin steak is one of the most affordable cuts available. It can be your main dish as well. But it is so versatile you can also use it to make delicious steak sandwiches. You can add it to stir-fry dishes too.

New York Strip Vs. Sirloin Cooking Tips

Due to the fat cap attached to the NY strip steak, it is a more forgiving cut than the sirloin.

The strip steak is naturally more flavorful, so it doesn’t need much seasoning to taste great. A dry rub would enhance its flavor, but most times, plain kosher salt is enough.

On the other hand, sirloin steak is best marinated with spices and herbs before cooking. These extra flavors will compensate for the lack of fat and make it tastier. As for cooking, the lack of fat is an advantage for sirloin steak, making it more versatile.

You can cook these cuts by grilling, baking, frying, broiling, and pan-searing. But it is important not to overcook them as doing so will make them dry and tough.

With steak, the rule of thumb is either hot and fast or low and slow. That is, either a short cooking time in high heat or slow cooking at low temperatures.

Open grill with cooked new york steaks topped with herbs.
Which One Has More Fat?

The New York strip steak has more fat than a sirloin steak. Aside from the fat cap on one of its edges, the strip steak has fat marbling throughout.
The sirloin cut is lean and, therefore, more susceptible to drying. For this reason, you should cook sirloin steak with more care and caution than strip loin steak.

Which One Is Better?

It depends. The verdict of the better steak cut boils down to individual preference. If you are after the flavor and the texture, then NY strip steak is a clear winner.
But if affordability and versatility matter more to you, then sirloin steak is better.


The New York strip steak and sirloin steak are good for a steak night. The NY strip steak is among the most prized cuts. It is tender, with decent marbling that lends flavor and moisture.

On the other hand, the sirloin steak is a leaner beef cut. It usually doesn’t have marbling, so it can easily get tough. For this reason, you should cook sirloin steak carefully. So, who wins the battle between New York strip vs. sirloin steak? You be the judge.

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Natalia | Flavorful home
Natalia is a recipe developer, food photographer, and home cook. She started Flavorful Home to document her recipes and share home cooking tips. She loves creating flavorful and nutritious meals while keeping the cooking process simple and joyful!
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