There are many ways to cook cube steak, from sauteing to baking or even slow cooking. One of the most common pan fried cube steak recipes is chicken fried steak, where it is breaded and fried to be like fried chicken. Another common option is a cube steak and gravy recipe.
What is Cube Steak?
According to Purdue University, cube steak refers to a cut of beef, usually top sirloin or top round, that has been mechanically tenderized or tenderized with heavy pounding of a standard meat tenderizer. There are cooks who insist that traditional tenderizing mallets mash the meat too much to produce the proper cube steak, so they use either specialized machines or a set of rods to pierce the meat in all directions.
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The beef is generally tough, so the tenderizing helps cut the fibers that make the meat difficult to chew. The best ways to cook cube steak involve pan broiling or moist heat, to avoid drying the meat out too much. Pan broiling is a good option because it's easy, fast and tenderizes the steak without drying it out.
Many grocery stores carry cube steak with their ground beef so it's widely available and easily fits into your meal plan. You can find pan fried cube steak recipes, cube steak recipes without flour and many more, depending on your dietary restrictions and preferences.
Read more: Can You Eat Meat After Sell-By Date?
Ways to Cook Cube Steak
Though you can place the meat in a slow cooker or pressure cooker if you find cube steak recipes without flour that call for that cooking method, the most common way is to cook it in a skillet on the stove.
Preheat a skillet over medium-high heat and spray with a small amount of cooking spray to prevent the steak from sticking to the pan. Season the meat to your preference, or as called for by the recipe you choose to follow. Salt and pepper are the most frequently used options.
Place the cube steak in the skillet. If you're cooking more than one, it's important to make sure they are not stacked or crowded in the pan to ensure even cooking.
For a medium steak, cook uncovered for two minutes on each side. To cook well-done, cook for another minute on each side. The Department of Health and Human Services says steaks need to be cooked until they reach a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit.
Though breading is added in many recipes, it is possible to have cube steak with no breading. Rather than coating the cube steak in flour, egg and bread crumbs prior to cooking, you just season the meat and cook it.
Read more: How to Cook Steak on a Baking Sheet
Cube Steak in Your Diet
As beef is a red meat, the American Heart Association recommends monitoring your intake due to the amount of saturated fat red meat contains. Saturated fat is known to raise your cholesterol and can worsen heart disease. The good news is, cube steak is generally made with lean cuts of beef, and you can drain fat off after cooking.
According to the USDA FoodData Central, a 3-ounce portion of cubed steak contains 196 calories, 28 grams of protein and 9 grams of fat, even when the fat has been trimmed prior to cooking. This does not include the calories or fat associated with breading and frying cube steak as in a chicken fried steak recipe.
Though a cube steak every once in a while will not hurt you, it is better to choose lean proteins like chicken and fish or those that come from plant sources.
- Purdue University: "Know Your Beef"
- Department of Health and Human Services: "Safe Minimum Cooking Temperatures Charts"
- American Heart Association: "Meat, Poultry, and Fish: Picking Healthy Proteins"
- U.S. Department of Agriculture FoodData Central: Beef, Round, Bottom Round, Steak, Separable Lean and Fat, Trimmed to 0" Fat, Choice, Cooked, Braised"