Why you’ll love this recipe:
All smothered steak recipes are a little bit different. But one thing they must be is comforting and flavorful with a thick, creamy gravy on top! This southern staple prides itself on sprucing up inexpensive cuts of beef. In this version, cube steak is slowly simmered in beef broth with mushrooms, and onions until it’s fork-tender.
- Made with budget-friendly cube steaks
- Makes delicious leftovers
- Easy to make & freeze
Why mess with a good thing? This smothered steak recipe is like the classic dish you grew up eating. Flavorful, comforting, rich, and creamy – just like Grandma’s.
Key Ingredient Notes:
Steak and gravy requires only six ingredients, plus seasoning! Here’s what you need.
- Cubed steaks – Cube steak is a tough, lean cut of beef that’s been through a mechanical tenderizer. It’s what creates the indentations in the meat. Since it’s already pounded and tenderized, it’s prepped and ready to go. If you can’t find cube steak, round, chuck, or sirloin steak are good options too. Just be sure whatever cut you use is pounded out thin so it cooks properly.
- Spices – It’s important to season the steaks before you dredge them in flour. This creates a depth of flavor once they’re pan-fried and smothered in brown gravy.
- All-purpose flour – Flour works double duty. It creates a crispy coating on the steaks and a roux to thicken the gravy.
- Onions & mushrooms – I used button mushrooms and yellow onions, because they’re easy to find. You can buy them pre-sliced in the refrigerated area of the produce section. Cremini mushrooms and sweet onions are a good choice too.
- Beef broth – Beef broth is the backbone of the rich, brown gravy. It reduces and thickens as it cooks. For the best results, use a high-quality beef broth or make your own.
How to make this recipe:
This steak and gravy recipe requires plenty of steps, but they’re all very simple!
- Season – In a small bowl, combine one teaspoon each of salt, pepper, and onion powder. Generously season both sides of the cubed steaks.
- Dredge – Place the flour in a small bowl and dredge both sides of each cube steak. Shake off the excess flour.
- Pan-fry – Heat three tablespoons of oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Sear steaks on each side until they’re crisp and golden brown – about 4 minutes per side.
- Rest – Transfer the steaks onto a clean plate and rest.
- Sauté – If necessary, add more oil to the skillet. Add the onions and mushrooms, then sauté until softened.
- Make roux – Add three tablespoons of leftover flour to the skillet. Cook with the vegetables until the raw smell is gone.
- Make gravy – Remove the skillet from the heat and whisk in two cups of beef broth until the mixture is lump-free. Place the pan back on the heat and season the gravy.
- Cook steaks – Transfer the seared steaks back into the pan along with any juices. Cover and cook the steaks on low heat until fork-tender, about 20 to 40 minutes. If the gravy gets too thick, thin it out with a splash of beef broth.
- If you use another cut of steak, be sure to pound it thin with a mallet before dredging it. A thin steak will cook quicker than a thick one.
- After you’ve pan-fried the steaks, use a wooden spoon or spatula to scrape up the brown bits in the bottom of the pan.
- Slice the mushrooms a 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch thick. They shrink as they cook.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- Reheat in a skillet over medium heat until hot and bubbly, or in the microwave until warmed throughout. I recommend reheating smothered steak and gravy in a skillet. If you overheat it in the microwave, it can get tough and chewy.
- It freezes well too! Transfer the cooled steaks and gravy to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Place the container in the refrigerator to defrost overnight, then reheat in a skillet.
What to serve with smothered steak:
- Mashed potatoes – Light and fluffy garlic roasted mashed potatoes for the win!
- Garlic Butter Rice – This easy side dish goes perfectly with gravy steaks.
- Roasted broccoli or green beans – Can’t go wrong with green beans or broccoli.
- Instant Pot Baked Potatoes with Crispy Skin – The fluffiest baked potatoes on planet earth.
- Oven Roasted Vegetables – Perfectly roasted veggies every time.
Smothering means to braise or slow-simmer a tough cut of steak in liquid to tenderize it. This technique involves
cooking the meat in a covered pan over low heat for a long period of time with a moderate amount of liquid. Slow-simmering concentrates the flavors of the rich gravy.
You can smother any thinly cut or pounded inexpensive cut of beef. A round steak, cube steak, and sirloin tender steak are good options!
Cube steak is a lean and tough cut of beef, typically from the round or top sirloin, that’s been flattened and run through a mechanical tenderizer. This is what gives the steak its signature look and unique name. It’s commonly coated, pan-fried, and simmered in gravy, but can be used in any slow-cooked meal.
- 4 cubed steaks Note 1
- 2 teaspoons salt divided
- 1 ½ teaspoons black pepper divided
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 large yellow onion sliced
- 1 8 ounce tub of mushrooms sliced
- 2 ½ cups beef broth
- 3 to 4 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
- In a small bowl combine 1 teaspoon each of salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. Mix well.
- Generously season both sides of the cubed steaks with the prepared seasoning.
- Place the flour in a shallow bowl and dredge the cubed steak in the flour. Make sure to coat all sides very well. Shake off excess flour.
- Heat three tablespoons of oil in a large pan on medium high heat. Add the steaks in a single layer and sear for 4 minutes on each side or until they get a nice golden color. Remove from the pan and set aside
- Add more oil to the same pan, if there isn't enough left. Add the sliced onion and mushrooms. Sauté on medium heat until the onion and mushrooms have softened.
- Add about three tablespoons of flour to the pan and cook it in with the vegetables, until the raw smell is gone. Use the leftover flour from the dredging process.
- Take the pan off the heat and whisk in 2 cups of beef broth. Whisk until all the four is dissolved and the gravy is lump free.
- Bring it back to the heat and let it come to a simmer. Add a teaspoon of salt and half a teaspoon of pepper and mix well.
- Return the seared streaks to the pan, along with any accumulated juices.
- Cover and cook for 20 to 40 minutes on low heat or until the steak is fork tender. The time depends on the thickness of the steak. The cubes steaks were done around the 30-minute mark.
- If the gravy thickens too much, add a little bit of beef broth to thin it out. I ended up adding another ½ cup of broth.
- Serve hot over mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables.
– Store leftover steak and gravy in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
– Reheat in a skillet over medium heat until hot and bubbly, or in the microwave until warmed throughout. I recommend reheating smothered steak and gravy in a skillet. If you overheat it in the microwave, it can get tough and chewy.
– It freezes well too! Transfer the cooled steaks and gravy to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Place the container in the refrigerator to defrost overnight, then reheat in a skillet.
* Disclaimer: All nutrition information are estimates only. Read full nutrition disclosure.
Sharing of this recipe is encouraged and appreciated. Copying of full recipe to any social media is prohibited.