I purchased a beef heart last spring during a local grassfed beef sale and had been intimidated by it ever since. Since it has the potential to be tough, I wanted to use the pressure cooker (Instant Pot) to cook it. It turned out great!
Finally, I made my way to the bottom of the freezer. I shrugged, thawed my beef heart overnight in the fridge, and the next day popped it in the pressure cooker with low expectations. It turns out that beef heart is delicious! What a pleasant surprise. For an organ meat, it’s not weird at all, and it isn’t tough like I expected. It was easy to cook in the Instant Pot.
Beef heart was rich in CoQ10, and that it is recommended by Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions to serve your family organ meats often. She recommends grinding up heart meat and mixing it in with ground beef. Other than that, there have been very few further mentions of heart, its benefits, and how to cook or serve it. It turns out, though, that CoQ10, which is super high in heart, is also super beneficially especially in aging people.
CoQ10 For Cardiovascular Disease and Inflammation Treatment
CoQ10 improves energy, augments the immune system, and acts as an antioxidant. (source)
Though CoQ10 is produced in humans, supplementation may also be useful especially with aging.
There is evidence that supplementation positively affects mitochondrial deficiency syndrome and the symptoms of aging based mainly on improvements in bioenergetics. Cardiovascular disease and inflammation are alleviated by the antioxidant effect of CoQ10. (source)
Despite the knowledge of the importance of CoQ10, it was hard to track down many studies of where it can be found in food. Placating ‘in fresh fruits and vegetables’ was thrown around in various mainstream articles, without specifics. Upon further digging, I found that CoQ10 is super high in heart and liver of any animal, most specifically heart!
See the tables below comparing mg of CoQ10 in heart vs liver, muscle meat, vegetables, and grains.
And lucky for us, heart is also inexpensive, easy to prepare, and delicious!
Another win for organ meats, and the traditions of eating every part of the animal.
How Long to Cook Beef Heart in the Instant Pot
Beef heart is super easy to make in the Instant pot and it comes out tender and delicious! Cook on high pressure for 75 minutes, adding salt and 1 cup of broth or water.
Think of the beef heart as a nice big flavorful roast. In my experience, heart is even easier than roasts to cook since it doesn’t dry out.
Here we cook the heart on its own, but you could quarter peeled onions and cook them with the heart, or add sliced carrots and celery as well with no change in cooking time.
Beef heart can be purchased as pieces from US Wellness Meats, or your local butcher probably can set one aside for you.
Beef Heart in the Instant Pot
Beef Heart cooks up easily in the Instant Pot and is a tender, mild-flavored organ meat that is rich in CoQ10, protein, B12, folate, and more.
- 1 beef heart 3-4 lbs
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup water
- 2 onions optional
Peel and quarter optional onion, and place in the bottom of the Instant Pot.
If not cut in half, cut beef heart in half and remove any hard bits (it may already be trimmed and there is nothing to do). Place in the Instant Pot on top of the onion if using, and sprinkle with sea salt. Pour water around the salted beef heart.
Place the lid on the Instant Pot, and set to 'seal'. Cook on high pressure for 75 minutes on high pressure. Allow pressure to release naturally for at least 15 minutes.