Beef liver is rich in protein and iron, but like many other organ meats, it is high in cholesterol, so it should not be consumed often.
It is usually pan-fried with onions and has a rich, intense flavor. It is available in most well stocked supermarkets or from a butcher or specialty meat market. It is highly perishable, so it should be frozen if it is not cooked within 24 hours of purchase.
Shopping on a budget usually means planning your shopping list around your protein, since typical protein sources – like meats, fish and nut butters – tend to be among the more expensive staples at the grocery store. Shopping for less expensive meats, like beef liver, can help you get your protein while reducing your grocery bill. Not only is the liver relatively inexpensive, but it offers plenty of nutrients that will benefit your health.
HEALTH BENEFITS FOR BEEF LIVER
Beef liver is a great source of protein, with each 3-ounce serving supply 17 grams of the nutrients. Protein keeps your cells and tissues healthy and strong.
It’s required for growing muscles – and those muscle gains you want to see from your gym routine – but protein also strengthens and nourishes your skin, hair, nails and other protein-rich tissues like tendons and bones. As a bonus, protein content will make your meal more satisfying.
Add beef liver to your diet, and you’ll also get an abundance of iron. Liver is among the best sources of iron available, and a 3-ounce portion of beef liver provides 4 milligrams of it. That means just one serving of beef liver will provide half the day’s iron intake requirements for men, and slightly more than one-fifth of the daily iron needs for women.
That iron helps your cells generate energy, plays a crucial role in circulating oxygen throughout your body, and also helps your immune system kill harmful pathogens, like viruses and bacteria.
In addition to a generous amount of iron, beef liver contains a boatload of vitamin A. Just 3 ounces of liver has more than 14,000 International units of vitamin A – which is more than your entire daily needs for the day. That vitamin A offers several health benefits, from playing a role in your vision to supporting healthy cell growth.
However, beef liver is so high in vitamin A that you should eat it only occasionally. If you ate beef liver every day, you’d risk developing vitamin A toxicity, which can harm your skin, liver, and even prove fatal in extreme cases.
SERVING TIPS FOR LIVER
While liver offers plenty of nutritional benefits, cooking it properly is key to enjoying it, since overcooked liver has an unpleasant tough and grainy texture.
Try stir frying strips of beef liver to better control the cooking time – and load up your stir fry with healthy veggies, like sliced bell peppers, mushrooms and summer squash for added nutrition. Serve the stir-fry over cauliflower “rice” or zucchini “noodles,” and keep the leftovers to use as a topping for leafy green salads.