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Frequently Asked Questions

Why choose Carrisito Ranch?

Some say we're OLD FASHIONED - maybe we are, but we believe in providing quality meats - without antibiotics, hormones, or chemicals. We're doing things much the same way as our family always has. We're family owned and operated and have been for four generations. We believe in ethical ranching and in being stewards to the land. We believe if we take care of the land and our livestock, they will take care of us. We so thankful for all that God has blessed us with and extremely excited to bring BEEF & PORK from Our Ranch To Your Table !

Do you provide Grain Finished & Grass Finished Options?

YES! All of our BEEF and PORK is born and raised with plenty of space to roam at our ranch in Santa Ysabel. We do offer both grass finished and grain finished BEEF.  Our grain finished Beef is finished with ALL NATURAL grain at the Ranch. We also offer 100% pasture raised and pasture finished Beef.

What is Dry Aged?

All of our BEEF is dry aged. For one thing, this means that all of the water waste is taken from the beef. You will find that our hamburger patties stay larger in your frying pan than may store purchased options. Thus you get more for your money per pound. We also dry-age the entire beef for 20-28 days. This is longer than large packers. Dry again adds flavor and tenderness to all cuts of our beef. YES our ground beef is also DRY AGED!  

Does Dry Aged BEEF Smell Different Than Fresh BEEF?

Dry aged BEEF does does have a different smell than fresh meat. Many describe its smell as "earthy".  It’s not a bad smell! It does not have the "iron" smell that fresh meat has (due to the fact that its dry aged it has less blood present in the meat). It has a characteristic musky aroma. This is perfectly normal, and is in fact to be expected of properly dry aged meat. 

Does Vacuum Sealed Beef Smell Differently?

Vacuumed sealed meat may smell "stronger" at first. All the oxygen is taken out of the package and the meat is suffocated. When you first open the vacuum sealed package it may have a "strong" smell, but that will soon go away as the meat is able to "breath". How you defrost the beef will also affect this initial smell. Defrosting in the refrigerator or under cool running water is recommended. 

Color Questions

There are no added dyes or chemicals to hold the color of our BEEF, therefore our beef will not be as bright red as meat that is dyed. Today most meat consumers see is dyed with red dye. Also if your beef is vacuum sealed this will also affect the color. All the oxygen is taken out of the package and the meat is suffocated - this results in the meat having a "dull" appearance right when the vacuum sealed bag is opened. Meat that is inside vacuum-sealed packaging turns brownish because it is deprived of oxygen. This will soon go away as the meat is able to "breath". Once the vacuum seal is opened and the meat is exposed to oxygen again, the meat will "bloom", returning to red within 10 to 15 minutes.  Check out our blog post for more info on color dye! 

Are you organic?

We are not ‘certified’ organic. However, our BEEF is All Natural and Hormone Free in every way. We have been raising beef in the same manner for four generations. We are happy to answer any questions that you have. Becoming certified organic is costly and time consuming. We would rather communicate directly with out customers. We know that our tradition and reputation can being more piece of mind for your all natural LOCAL source of meats than any sticker on a package could. We want to avoid any extra red tape and extra cost to our consumer - that is not actually providing any real tangible benefit to our consumer. Our goal is to bring meat from our Ranch to Your Table in the most cost effective and natural way possible. 

Our family consumes the same exact meat you are purchasing. We only want to eat the best and most natural beef and pork as well so rest assured it is completely ALL NATURAL. 

Is your BEEF & PORK meat antibiotic free?

ABSOLUTELY - one of the benefits of pasture raised beef here in Sunny Southern California is few sick animals. If we do have an animal that needs antibiotics in life saving situations then we do of course care for them. However, these animals are then never used for our beef or pork production. 

Is your BEEF & PORK meat hormone Free?

We never use growth hormones or added hormones of any kind EVER.

Do you use mRNA Vaccines?

We do not and will not us mRNA Vaccines. Here in sunny California we are blessed to live in a climate where there is little illness. 

What is the best way to defrost my meat?

It is recommended to thaw meat in the refrigerator. Or if your meat is vacuum sealed you can also thaw it under cool running water.

If Shipped Will My Meat Arrive Frozen?

Your meat should arrive refrigerator cold—below 40°F as measured with a food thermometer. Your meats could arrive partly frozen (solid) or frozen and can be placed in the freezer for later use. We recommend checking the internal temperature of any meat that isn't solid and immediately discarding anything that isn't at a safe temperature. In accordance with USDA Freezing and Food Safety Guidelines, meats that are refrigerator cold, partly frozen (solid), or frozen can be placed into the freezer for later use. You should immediately discard any meat that’s above 40°F or meat that is exactly 40°F that may have been so for more than 2 hours. If any of your items don’t meet these guidelines, please contact us so we can make this right.

There are two questions to ask:

  1. Is the meat still Frozen?

    1. If the answer is YES then defrost and cook as normal OR place in the freezer for future use.

    2. If the answer is NO then move to question two.​

  2. Is it cold to the touch AND below 40°F ?

    1. If the answer is YES then refrigerate and cook as normal OR refreeze for future use. ​

    2. If the answer is NO then discard and contact customer service.

According the the USDA, the safe zone for raw meat is below 40°F.

How Much Meat Do I Need?

A question we often get is “How much meat do I need?” The starting rule of thumb is:

  • Boneless Meat: 1/2 lb. per person for adults and 1/4 lb. per person for children.

  • Bone-In Meat: 1 lb. person for adults and 1/2 lb. per person for children.

Then adjust for your situation.

  • Are you feeding any seniors or teenagers?

  • Do you want leftovers?

  • Do you have any other main dish items?

Can we visit the Ranch? Do you offer tours?

Unfortunately we do not offer tours. We are a working cattle ranch and ENTIRELY family run. Our family of four cares for our entire heard as well s the upkeep of the Ranch - so we are extremely busy tending to our livestock and providing a great source of natural protein for our customers. Unfortunately we are not able to accommodate any tours. However our cattle can be seen from Highway 79. 

You can purchase meat at the Ranch on the 2nd Friday and Saturday of the Month from 9-Noon or by appointment! 

What Does Carrisito Mean?

"Carrisito" means "Pleasant Place" in Swiss-Italian.

Why So Many Brands?

 Cattle brands are very symbolic in western culture and each has a story and a legacy attached to it. Call us sentimental. 

What Breed of Cattle Do You Raise?

We raise BEEF Cattle. We raise a mixed herd of Angus, Charolais, Hereford, Simmental. We have selectively bred our heard for four generations to get the finest beef cattle possible. We often sell steers to our local 4-H and FFA kids and consistently place in the top of the "Carcass Contest" and market classes.

Due To Animal Safety Policy - No Dogs Allowed

Our goal is to keep our livestock and your pet safe! Dogs may come and remain in your car - we sincerely appreciate your understanding! ​


Why are dogs not allowed at Carrsitio Ranch? Do you not like dogs?

No! We love dogs, we love our dogs! We have several working cattle dogs - without which we would not be able to operate. As the country song goes...

Well, a good dog on the ground's worth three in the saddle, No matter where you're from, Been many good dog was a friend to a man, But Sam was the greatest one, He was a hound of hounds, He was the wonder of all walkers, He loved howlin' at the moon, He loved treein' that raccoon, Most of all, he was my best friend, And he's gone too soon - Sturgill Simpson (Click Here to Listen!)

We are proud to create dog food and dog treats out of the offal of our beef! We are honored to be able to use the whole animal Hoof to Tail! Carrisito Ranch is a working cattle ranch – first and foremost. We sincerely appreciate our customers who purchase meat and support our family business. We strive to share the legacy of the cowboy and to provide our community with a natural, local, "ranch to table" protein.


We have a bio-security program in place in order to protect our animals and your pets. We strive to be all natural all the time – and prevention of disease is the best method. Our concern is food safety and bio security. Animals brought in from outside of our ranch could potentially bring disease, worms, mites, or some other foreign body that could cause substantial harm to our livestock or vice versa. This could be devastating to our animal program. Outside animals can pose a food safety risk to produce, introduce disease to livestock and they can also frighten or upset livestock.


You may ask - what risks do outside animals pose for livestock? When outside animals are present on a ranch there are diseases that can be spread to and by our livestock. Zoonotic diseases are diseases spread between humans and animals and include E. coli O157:H7, salmonella, and others. The most common way for these diseases to spread is through direct contact, indirect contact, vectors, and contaminated food. It has been estimated that six out of ten known infectious diseases impacting humans are spread also by animals. Furthermore, we do not allow pets as we do not have an area for the animals to urinate and defecate that is not a contamination risk for our livestock and working cattle dogs. All areas of our ranch are used for grazing or are areas where rain water run off goes into our grazing land. For more information on zoonotic disease risks and preventive controls visit the CDC Zoonotic Diseases webpage:


Additionally, we have newborn livestock on site and the presence of an unfamiliar canine could cause those animals to behave erratically. This would pose an immediate threat to those newborn animals and to patrons interacting with those animals especially small children. Excitement or barking – though maybe not malicious will stress the newborn livestock. Finally, we have guardian dogs and working cattle dogs who are instinctively programmed to protect our livestock from coyotes, bobcats, mountain lions, and other predators. Even if your pet is not threatening, they could be perceived as a threat and could be harmed. We understand your love of your animal, and your desire to have your pet with you. However, it is our duty to protect the health and safety of our livestock, our patrons, and your pets. Allowing outside animals onto our farm would prohibit us from doing so.


If you have a service animal and need special accommodations due to this policy, please contact us in advance at (760)703-4926 and we will be happy to accommodate you. Thank you!

How Much Meat Do I Need?

How To Thaw / Prepare Your Thanksgiving Turkey?

Read our blog post here

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