A portion of the leg, which is used extensively for movement. As a result, it is typically cut into cross sections called Shank Cross-Cuts which are braised to make flavorful, fork-tender dishes such as Osso Buco.
Beef shanks are an amazing source of collagen, which is the main component of connective tissue. Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body and helps to build your bones, skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments. It also plays an important role in digestive health.
Since beef shanks are naturally a tough piece of meat, there are limits to what you can do with it. They MUST be simmered in moist heat for a long period time in order to be tender and delicious. For that reason, they are commonly found in slow cooker and soup recipes.