International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Chicken-Fried Steak

Plate of chicken-fried steak

(American Midwest breaded steak cutlet)

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Average: 4 (4 votes)

Chicken-fried steak, or country-fried steak, is an old farm recipe designed for cheaper, tougher cuts of beef, primarily round, Swiss or cube steak. It is particularly popular in Texas, where it originates. But it is found north into the upper Midwest and east into the old South. A popular truck-stop menu item, chicken-fried steak is most often served with mashed potatoes and a simple vegetable, often green beans.

4 servings


  • Beef round or cube steak, cut 1/2-inch thick -- 4 (8-ounce) pieces
  • Salt and pepper -- to season
  • Flour -- 1 1/2 cups
  • Salt and pepper -- to season
  • Eggs -- 2
  • Oil -- for frying
  • Milk -- 3/4 cup
  • Water -- 3/4 cup


  1. Place a piece of steak between 2 pieces of plastic wrap and use a meat mallet to pound it out to about 1/4-inch thick. Repeat with the rest of the steaks. Cut the steaks in two if they are too big for one portion. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
  2. Place the flour in large bowl and season well with salt and pepper. Add the eggs to another large bowl and beat well.
  3. Place a cutlet in the flour and dredge to coat both sides, shaking off any excess flour. Dip the floured cutlet in the egg and then return it to the flour to coat it a second time. Set the floured cutlet on a large plate or platter and repeat with the remaining cutlets.
  4. Heat about 1/2 inch of oil in a large cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven until it is shimmering, about 370ºF on a deep-fry thermometer. Fry the steaks in batches for about 3 or 4 minutes on each side, or until well browned. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate in a warm oven.
  5. Cream Gravy: Remove all but about 1/4 cup of the oil, keeping the browned bits of flour. Stir in about 1/4 cup of the remaining seasoned flour and cook over medium heat for 2 or 3 minutes. Whisk in the milk and water, whisking well to remove any lumps. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and and simmer until lightly thickened, about 5 to 8 minutes.
  6. Adjust the seasoning of the gravy with salt and black pepper and serve over the warm chicken-fried steaks.

Chicken-Fried Steak Variations

  • Add some garlic powder and onion powder to the flour if you like. A little cayenne can spice it up a bit.
  • Bread crumbs or cracker crumbs are sometimes used for the second dredging after the steaks are dipped in egg.
  • Some recipes call for the fried steaks to be returned to the simmering gravy and cooked for another 10 to 15 minutes.
  • The gravy should not be too thick. Add a little more milk or water to thin out if necessary.
  • Traditional fats used to fry the steaks are butter, lard and shortening. But vegetable oils work very nicely.


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