Chicken fried steak is classic comfort food. The crispy, golden steak is the perfect family recipe served with gravy and mashed potatoes.
My mom was not an avid cook. She preferred spending time reading or playing video games with my brothers (she was the COOLEST mom). But every now and then she would venture into the kitchen a little earlier than normal and I was always delighted because that only meant one thing. Chicken fried steak. I loved the crispy, crunchy golden steak served with creamy gravy and a healthy mound of buttery mashed potatoes. To this day this is the meal that reminds me of my mom more than any other and lucky for me, my kids love it just as much as I do so the tradition is being continued.
What is chicken fried steak?
Chicken fried steak or Country fried steak, as it is also known, is a thin piece of beef coated in breading and fried until golden and crisp.
How to make chicken fried steak?
Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/320°F and place a wire rack over a sheet pan. Start by preparing the breading station. In a large bowl or dish with sides whisk together flour, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika (optional), dried mixed herbs (Herbs de Provence or Italian seasoning can be used) and black pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs. I prefer using thin-cut sirloin that I thin out myself with a meat mallet but you can buy tenderized or cube steak from most supermarkets. If making your own, place thin-cut steak on a chopping board and flatten with a meat mallet. You can also place the steak in between two sheets of parchment paper and use a rolling pin to flatten it.
Pre-heat 1-2cm (half inch) of oil in a deep frying pan or skillet. Coat the steaks first in the seasoned flour, then in the egg mixture and finally in the seasoned flour again, pressing down to make sure the steak is well coated. Working in batches, carefully lower the steaks into the hot oil. Fry for 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown and crisp. Remove from the oil and place on the wire rack set over a sheet pan and keep warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining steaks until they are all cooked.
How to make easy gravy
To make the gravy, pour off the oil and wipe out most of the flour in the pan. Return the pan to the heat and add a knob of butter. Add flour and whisk to form a roux then pour in chicken stock. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice. You can add other herbs and spices of your choice as well. Allow to simmer for 5-6 minutes until the sauce is cooked. Serve the steak with gravy, mashed potatoes and vegetables of your choice.
How to keep breading on steak or chicken
Coating the meat first in flour then in egg and then finally in flour again is the key to keeping breading from falling off the meat you are frying. The flour acts as something for the eggs to grip onto and will ensure good coverage.
What to serve with chicken fried steak
- Garlic parmesan mashed potatoes
- Maple butter mashed sweet potatoes
- Crispy salt and pepper smashed potatoes
- Easy creamy mushroom sauce
Chicken fried steak
- 4 thin-cut steaks or tenderized/cube steak
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 eggs beaten
For the gravy
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp flour
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 2 tbsp cream
- salt and pepper to taste
- lemon juice to taste
- Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/320°F. Heat a large frying pan/skillet and add 1-2cm (half inch) of oil.
- Place the eggs and the flour in two separate bowls or dishes big enough to bread the steak. Add the spices to the flour and mix well.
- Place the steak first in the flour, then dredge in egg and then again in flour, pressing down to ensure good coverage.
- Fry for 4-5 minutes per side until crisp and golden.
- Remove from the pan and place on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Place in the oven to keep warm while you continue cooking the remaining steaks.
- To make the gravy, pour off the excess oil and wipe out most of the flour with paper towels.
- Place the pan back over the heat and add the butter. Once melted, whisk in the flour and then the chicken stock, a little at a time until the sauce is the desired consistency. Allow to simmer and thicken for a few minutes then season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
- Serve the chicken fried steak with the gravy, mashed potatoes and vegetables of your choice.