Chicken Fried Steak Recipe {+VIDEO}

This chicken fried steak is the ultimate comfort food! It is best served hot and crispy with a creamy coat of rich gravy.

Chicken fried steak is a hearty Southern classic that will both fill your tummy and warm your soul. This dish is a stick-to-your-ribs kind of affair. Try pairing this southern bell with Creamed Corn, The BEST Mashed Potatoes, or Pasta Bake.

Chicken fried steak served on a white plate with gravy and green beans.

Made with Beef

But where’s the chicken?

This chicken fried steak is prepped and fried just like our famous Fried Chicken resulting in the name chicken fried steak, yet there is no chicken to be found! It is actually tenderized steak coated with breadcrumbs and pan-fried to perfection, then topped with creamy gravy.

The best steak to use is actually less expensive cuts such as cube steak, chuck, round steak, or even flank steak. If the steak has not been pre-tenderized you’ll want to be sure to do so yourself. 

This super crispy chicken fried steak is extremely hard to resist. A juicy, tender cut of beef, coated in a salty, crispy exterior is just a recipe for mouth-watering ecstasy. This is surely a family-friendly comfort food dinner recipe that will soon be a favorite!

Process for coating chicken fried steak with breading.

How to Make Chicken Fried Steak

This country fried steak is a southern classic that is easy to make at home!

PREP. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne. In another shallow dish, whisk together the egg and water.

DREDGE. Dredge each steak in the flour mixture, dip in the egg mixture, then dredge again in the flour mixture.

FRY. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add two of the steaks to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes until crisp and golden brown, then flip and cook an additional 3-4 minutes until cooked through and golden.

Remove the steaks to a serving plate and cover them with foil to keep them warm. Add the remaining olive oil and butter to the skillet, and cook the remaining two steaks until golden.

GRAVY. Cover with foil while preparing the gravy. To make the gravy, add the butter to the skillet with the browned bits from the steaks. Add the flour and whisk to form a paste. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until golden.

Gradually pour in the chicken broth, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Add the milk, salt, and black pepper, and cook until bubbling and thickened.

SERVE. To serve, spoon gravy over the steaks.

Frying chicken fried steaks in a pan of oil.

Frying Tips

Here are a few frying tips to keep in mind in making this best chicken fried steak recipe:

Frying. Place them on a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil and allow the juices in the steak to disburse evenly. 

  • No need to deep fry. Use a cast iron skillet or another heavy-bottomed skillet then add about a cup of oil to fry in. 
  • Use oil with a high smoking point such as vegetable oil, canola oil, or even olive oil suitable for high-heat cooking.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan and don’t flip more than once. Wait until the first side is golden and crisp before flipping. 
Frying chicken fried steaks in a pan of oil.

Ingredient Tips

Steak tips. Since this is made with beef this chicken fried steak can be a little pink in the center. Be sure the entire steak has been evenly coated. Keep the steak warm in the oven while you make the gravy. 

Gravy. Do not clean the pan between cooking the steak and the gravy. If there is a lot of excess oil you can drain it, but leave the delicious brown bits in the pan drippings as it creates the best taste for the gravy.

For a thicker gravy make a cornstarch slurry. Mix 1 tablespoon of cold water with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch in a separate bowl. Once smooth, add it to the gravy and simmer. 

Add heat. Some people love when their fried steak is made with spice. You can easily add heat to the recipe by using cayenne pepper, red chili flakes, or Tabasco sauce.

Not just for dinner. This chicken fried steak is also served for breakfast. Simply pair it with eggs and hash browns and you’ve got yourself a delicious Southern breakfast. 

Gravy cooking in a pan on the stove.

Serving + Storing Tips

Serving suggestions. The options are endless, but here are some of our go-to’s:

STORE leftover country fried steak in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. 

To reheat. You can reheat this chicken fried steak recipe in the microwave. Reheat it without drying it out or having a soggy coating in the oven:

  • Allow the chicken fried steak to come to room temperature for 30-40 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  • Place a wire rack on a baking sheet and put the steak on the wire rack.
  • Heat for about 10 minutes or an internal temp of 120°F.
  • For a crispier finish, broil it. Watch carefully as broiling can quickly go from crisp to burnt. 
Close up of chicken fried steak covered with gravy.

Recipe FAQ

How do I keep the breading from falling off my chicken fried steak?

The egg mixture will help the flour mixture stick to the steak. For extra caution, once the steak has been coated you can chill them in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

How do I tenderize the steak for chicken fried steak?

Place a piece of steak between two pieces of plastic wrap then use a meat mallet or rolling pin to pound it. Start in the middle of the steak and pound outward, then repeat for the other side.

How do I thicken gravy for chicken fried steak?

You can reduce the amount of broth you add to the gravy to thicken it. If you have already combined all the ingredients and still want a thicker gravy, you can add a cornstarch slurry. (directions above)

What’s the difference between chicken fried steak and country fried steak?

These two are very similar, but the difference is the gravy. Chicken fried steak has a white, pepper-y gravy and country fried steak has a brown gravy.

For More Steak Dishes, Try:

  • In a shallow dish, whisk together the flour, salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne. In another shallow dish, whisk together the egg and water. Dredge each steak in the flour mixture, then dip in the egg mixture, then dredge again in the flour mixture.

  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add two of the steaks to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes until crisp and golden brown, then flip and cook an additional 3-4 minutes until cooked through and golden. Remove the steaks to a serving plate and cover them with foil to keep them warm. Add the remaining olive oil and butter to the skillet, and cook the remaining two steaks until golden. Cover with foil while preparing the gravy.
  • To make the gravy, add the butter to the skillet with the browned bits from the steaks. Add the flour and whisk to form a paste. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until golden. Gradually pour in the chicken broth, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Add the milk, salt, and pepper, and cook until bubbling and thickened. To serve, spoon gravy over the steaks.

Serving: 1g, Calories: 682kcal, Carbohydrates: 34g, Protein: 43g, Fat: 41g, Saturated Fat: 17g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 17g, Trans Fat: 0.5g, Cholesterol: 203mg, Sodium: 2013mg, Potassium: 752mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 688IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 137mg, Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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