The Cozy Cook

Cube Steak Recipe

This Tender Cube Steak is smothered in a delicious brown gravy with onions and pan fried on the stove top or in the Slow Cooker! Serve this over mashed potatoes, noodles, or rice, with roasted green beans or carrots!

A pile of mashed potatoes topped with cubed steak with brown gravy and onions with green beans on the side.

 

I had to laugh when I sent my husband to the store for some ground beef and he came home with cube steak. Not exactly the same thing, but it was definitely a happy accident. Although I love making hamburger steaks, sometimes it’s more fun to switch things up.

This recipe is a great way to change things up and is a bit easier than my Chicken Fried Steak recipe because there’s no breading involved. (Although the seasoning on this steak is going to WOW you!)

What is Cube Steak

  • Cube steak is a cut of Top Round or Top Sirloin that’s been tenderized, (pounded with a textured mallet), which leaves small indentations on the meat. This helps break down the muscle fibers, which makes it less tough and more tender.

How to Make It

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Tenderize the cube steaks until about 1/2 inch thick. Rub with seasoning mix and then with flour.

Cube steak with seasoning and flour on top before being cooked.

Sear the steaks in olive oil over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes per side.

Cube Steak before and after searing in a skillet.

Set the steaks aside on a plate. Melt butter in the skillet over medium heat and use a silicone spatula to “clean” the bottom of the pan with the fond. (The fond is what is leftover in the pan from searing the meat and adds good flavor to the gravy.)

Seared beef steak next to a skillet with butter melting in fond in a skillet.

Add onions to the butter and toss to coat. Saute for 15-20 minutes, until reduced to desired size/texture. (I like mine to cook until almost caramelized.)

Onions in a skillet before and after being softened and reduced.

Add the remaining gravy ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.

A skillet with brown gravy before and after it's thickened.

Add the steaks back to the pan and spoon gravy over the top. Simmer, partially covered, for 5-7 minutes or until gravy is thick and meat is to your desired level of doneness. Serve with mashed potatoes and buttermilk biscuits.

A skillet with cube steak smothered in brown gravy with onions.

Slow Cooker Method

  • Tenderize and season the steaks as outlined.
  • Sear for 2-3 minutes per side instead of 4-5 and set aside.
  • Prepare gravy as outlined, then transfer to the Slow Cooker along with the steaks.
  • PRO TIP: The above steps can be done the night before and cooked in the Slow Cooker the next day.
  • Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4.

Make-Ahead Method

  • Tenderize, season, and sear the steaks as outlined. Set aside, and prepare the gravy as outlined.
  • Remove from heat and let the gravy cool.
  • Store the steaks and gravy together in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days, then reheat on the stove top.
  • Add a little beef broth or a splash of water if you need to thin the gravy out during the reheating process.

Adding Mushrooms

  • For best results, cook mushrooms separately to release some of the water, concentrate their flavor, and give them a nice golden color. Remove them and only add them back at the end when the gravy is finished. This lets them retain their color, texture, and flavor.
  • Otherwise, feel free to add them during the last 3-5 minutes of softening the onions and keep them in the pan for the remainder of the cooking process.

Pro Tips

  • Aim for an internal temperature of 125° or so for tender results. It will increase an additional 5° or so after it’s removed from the heat.
  • The gravy recipe uses a combination of beef and chicken broth for depth of flavor, but all beef broth may be used.
  • Tenderizing the meat is key for melt-in-your-mouth texture. (Even though cube steak has already been tenderized, a second round at home makes a huge difference.)
  • Onions can be omitted if preferred, or mushrooms can be used instead.
  • cast iron skillet will give your steaks a nice crusty sear.

Storage

Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

What to Serve With Cubed Steak

A large skillet with 4 cubed steaks smothered in a brown gravy with onions.

Tools For This Recipe

(Amazon affiliate links)- Check out all of my kitchen essentials here.

  • Meat Tenderizer– Makes meat soft and tender, especially in this recipe.
  • Silicone Spatula– Used to ‘clean’ the bottom of the pot and work any meat remnants into the gravy for extra flavor. I use these every time I cook.
  • Deep 13-inch skillet– You’ll have this one forever.
  • Meat Thermometer– To check the doneness of the meat.
  • Better Than Bouillon– This is what I use every time I make gravy. It’s easy to measure out customized amounts based on what you need for a recipe and it takes up very little space in the fridge.
  • 1/2 cup Rubbermaid containers with lids: Add my cornstarch/cold water to these containers and cover & shake to combine. It’s the perfect size and takes seconds to combine the two.
  • Magnetic Measuring Spoons– I have these, they’ll keep your drawer organized.

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Cube Steak smothered in brown gravy with onions on a pile of mashed potatoes.

Cube Steak Recipe

5 from 3 votes
This Tender Cube Steak is smothered in a delicious brown gravy with onions and pan fried on the stove top or in the Slow Cooker! Serve this over mashed potatoes, noodles, or rice, with roasted green beans or carrots!

Ingredients

  • 4 cube steaks
  • 3 Tablespoons flour
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

Meat Seasoning

  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika

Gravy

  • ¼ cup cold water + 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 beef bouillon cube, or tsp better than bouillon
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced into ½ inch strings
  • 3 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter, separated

Instructions

  • See notes section below for Slow Cooker instructions.
  • Seasoning Prep: Combine the meat seasoning mix and set aside.
  • Gravy Prep: Combine the cornstarch and cold water in a medium bowl and whisk until incorporated and smooth. Add 1 cup chicken broth, 1 cup beef broth, 1 beef bouillon, 1 tsp onion powder, ½ tsp garlic powder and 1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce. Whisk to combine and set aside.
  • Meat Prep: Place saran wrap over each cube steak and use the rough end of a meat tenderizer to pound it thin, about ½ inch thick or so. This really makes a nice difference in the consistency of the meat even though cube steak has already been tenderized.
  • Rub seasoning mix on each side of the steak, then rub with flour.
  • Heat 2 TBS olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sear 2 steaks at a time for about 4-5 minutes per side. (Add a splash more olive oil if needed and adjust heat up or down slightly as needed as the steaks cook.) Set steaks on a plate to rest.
  • Leave the meat flecks in the pan, this is called “fond” and it will add flavor to the gravy. If you have any black/burnt areas, use a damp paper towel to carefully clean that out.
  • Melt 2 TBS butter over medium heat and use a silicone spatula to ‘clean’ the bottom of the pan. Add the onions and toss to coat. Cook the onions for 15-25 minutes, until desired consistency is obtained. I like mine very soft and reduced, almost caramelized. Be sure to stir them often as they cook.
  • Add the liquid gravy mixture and use a silicone spatula to clean the bottom and sides of the pan once again. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Add the steaks and any juices back to the pan and spoon some gravy on the top of each steak. Simmer with the lid partially covered for 5 minutes or so, until the gravy is thickened and the meat is cooked to your liking.
  • Optional: Remove from heat and melt 2 Tablespoons cold butter at the end for a silky, velvety finish. This is a technique that chefs use called “monter au beurre”.

Notes

Pro Tips:
  • Aim for an internal temperature of 125° or so for tender results. It will increase an additional 5° or so after it's removed from the heat.
  • The gravy recipe uses a combination of beef and chicken broth for depth of flavor, but all beef broth may be used.
  • Onions can be omitted if preferred, or mushrooms can be used instead.
  • cast iron skillet will give your steaks a nice crusty sear.

Slow Cooker Method:
  • Tenderize and season the steaks as outlined.
  • Sear for 2-3 minutes per side instead of 4-5 and set aside.
  • Prepare gravy as outlined, then transfer to the Slow Cooker along with the steaks.
  • PRO TIP: The above steps can be done the night before and cooked in the Slow Cooker the next day.
  • Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4.

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Recipe Rating




10 comments on “Cube Steak Recipe”

  1. I just made the cube steak with onion gravy tonight and it was fabulous! My husband is not a big fan of cube steak and he said it was really good! The gravy was so silky and flavorful! Will definitely be sharing this with others and making frequently! 

    • Hi Elizabeth! I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed this recipe, it’s definitely our favorite way to enjoy cubed steak and I love that this got your husband’s stamp of approval as well! Thank you so much for the review, I really appreciate it. -Stephanie

  2. Are these slow cooker directions correct? “Cook on high for 7-8 hours or on low for 3-4”. I think it’s really the other way around.

  3. soak the cube steak overnight in buttermilk for a steak you can cut with a fork.

  4. This was surprising tender and delicious! I’ve always passed by this in the grocery store thinking it would be to tough but it was a big hit with the family. I followed your tips for tenderizing and it definitely made a big difference. I also served with your homemade biscuits!

    • I am so happy to hear that m- I was so shocked by what a difference the second round of tenderizing makes as well! I’m so glad that you enjoyed it, thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review! -Stephanie

  5. Are we suppose to use flour in the seasoning mix and also separately after the seasoning mix?

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