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This Texas Chicken Fried Steak is the ultimate in southern comfort food! Tender seasoned steak, coated with a thick batter and fried until golden. Served with a cream gravy drizzled on top.

Looking for family dinner recipes? You’ll love our Swedish Meatballs, Cream of Mushroom Pork Chops, and Turkey Meatballs in Creamy Gravy.

Plate of chicken fried steak on mashed potatoes topped with white cream gravy.


 

Why We Love this Texas Chicken Fried Steak

Chicken Fried Steak is a culinary gem of the South that transforms cube steaks into a heartwarming feast when served over creamy mashed potatoes. This timeless chicken fried steak recipe is characterized by an expertly seasoned crispy coating, complemented by a creamy gravy that adds the perfect finishing touch.

  • Easy ingredients: Cube steaks are an affordable cut of meat at the market, and the rest of the ingredients are common pantry items.
  • Quick prep: there’s not much time needed to prep for this meal making the majority of time spent directly frying up the steaks.
  • Crispy & Flavorful: thanks to the method of seasoning the meat before breading, ensuring our oil is nice and hot, and spooning the hot oil over the top while cooking, ensures a perfectly crispy breading and flavorful meal.

Ingredients

Ingredients needed to make chicken fried steak laid out on the counter.
  • Cube Steaks: These are pre-tenderized steaks. You can substitute it with another steak, but you must tenderize it before use. 
  • Flour: this recipe was tested with all purpose flour for creating the batter.
  • Black Pepper & Salt: seasoning for the meat and gravy.
  • Onion Powder & Garlic Powder: additional flavorings for the batter.
  • Paprika: adds a hint of warmth to the batter.
  • Buttermilk: helps create a tender and flavorful batter.
  • Milk: used for making the cream gravy
  • Eggs: helps to bind the batter together.
  • Oil: to fry the steaks in, use a mild flavored oil, avocado oil is a great option. Or you can vegetable or canola oil.

Buttermilk Substitute

Measure out the amount needed in milk, remove a teaspoon and replace that with vinegar or lemon juice. Let this sit for a couple minutes and the milk will thicken and sour.

How to Make the Ultimate Texas Chicken Fried Steak

White plate with cube steaks covered in salt and pepper.
  1. Properly season and flavor your cube steak. Sprinkle the steaks with salt and coarse ground black pepper before breading.
Cube steak in a bowl of flour.
  1. Dip the tender cube steaks into a bowl of seasoned flour, coating both sides of the steak. Press the flour with your hands to ensure it’s fully adhered to the steak.
Cube steak with flour and in a bowl of eggs.
  1. Dip the flour coated steak into a bowl of eggs whisked with buttermilk.
Battered cube steak in a bowl of flour.
Cube steak in a bowl of flour.
  1. Dip the steak back into the flour, this method will help ensure a nice thick batter and lots of crispy breading on our fried steaks.
  2. Heat the oil in a skillet or dutch oven to 375 degrees F. Carefully add in the steaks one or two at a time to deep fry depending on how large a skillet you’re using, the steaks need room to cook.
  3. Spoon hot oil on top of the steaks while cooking, this helps the batter stick during cooking and flipping. You’ll notice juices coming out of the steak and pooling on the top of the steaks during cooking, this is when you know you can flip them. Only flip the steaks once to help keep the breading on the steaks.
Chicken fried steaks on a wire rack for cooling.

How to make the Creamy Gravy

The key to making the chicken fried steak gravy is to keep the drippings in the pan from making the chicken fried steak.

Skillet with creamy white gravy and a whisk.
  1. Use 1/4 cup of the drippings left from cooking the steaks.
  2. Whisk in 1/3 cup of flour and add the salt and pepper. 
  3. Cook this flour mixture for 4-5 minutes. 
  4. Whisk in the milk, and bring this to a simmer. As the gravy simmers, it will thicken.
  5. Taste the sauce and add more seasonings as needed. 

What is the Difference Between Chicken Fried and Country Fried Steak?

Although the terms Chicken Fried Steak and Country Fried Steak are sometimes used interchangeably, there is a distinction between them.

Chicken Fried Steak typically has a thicker, crispy coating that reminds some people of fried chicken. It is often served with a creamy, white gravy. On the other hand, Country Fried Steak usually has a lighter breading and is traditionally smothered in a rich brown gravy.

Up close of slice of chicken fried steak with cream gravy on top.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it called chicken fried steak?

The name of this recipe can be confusing. It’s not a chicken recipe, but steak. The name refers to the method of frying the steak in a way similar to chicken.

What cut of meat is chicken fried steak?

The standard option is cube steak, which is pre-tenderized steak. If you cannot get cube steak, you can use round steak, but you must tenderize it before cooking.

Why does the breading fall off my fried steak?

The breading can come off if the oil isn’t hot enough. It’s also possible to knock the breading off during cooking if you’re not careful when flipping, this is why it’s important to spoon some hot oil over the top and wait for the juices to appear before flipping. And limit flipping to one time during cooking.

Storage and Reheating Information

  • Storage: store the steaks and gravy separately in sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheating: place in a skillet, sprayed with cooking spray, over medium heat to reheat and allow the breading to crisp back up. Or you can bake in the oven at 375 degrees F for 15-20 minutes. Reheat the gravy in a saucepan over medium heat while whisking.
  • Freezing: store the steaks and gravy separately. Wrap the steaks in plastic wrap, then in a layer of foil. Or store in a freezer safe container. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat following instructions.

What to Serve with Texas Chicken Fried Steak

Texas Chicken Fried Steak Recipe

5 from 11 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Author: Serene
This Texas chicken fried steak is the ultimate in southern comfort food! Tender seasoned steak, coated with a thick batter and fried until golden. Served with a cream gravy drizzled on top. Simple, basic ingredients is all that is needed to bring this recipe to life in your own kitchen!
Chicken fried steak on a white plate with mashed potatoes and cream gravy on top.

Ingredients  

Chicken Fried Steak

  • 1.5  pounds  cube steak 4 patties
  • teaspoon  coarse salt
  • 1/2  teaspoon  coarse black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • teaspoon  coarse salt
  • teaspoon  coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/2  teaspoon  paprika
  • 1/2  teaspoon  garlic powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  onion powder
  • 3/4  cup  buttermilk
  • large eggs
  • 3/4  cup  vegetable oil

Cream Gravy

  • 1/4  cup  oil and drippings
  • 1/3  cup  all purpose flour
  • cups  milk
  • teaspoon  coarse black pepper
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 200℉. Place a wire rack over a large baking sheet. Set aside.
  • Pour oil into a large skillet, depending on the size of your skillet you may need more or less oil, pour enough to have the oil come up about 1/4 of an inch deep. 
  • Prepare the meat by ensuring it is tenderized, cube steak comes pre-tenderized. Season both sides of the steak with the 1 tsp kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon coarse black pepper. Let the steaks sit for about 10 minutes.
  • Mix the dry ingredients together in a medium size bowl.
  • Mix the buttermilk and eggs together in another bowl. 
  • Dip the cube steaks, one at a time, into the flour first. Press the flour into the steaks. This ensures a nice coating. Then dip into the egg mixture. Let any excess drip off. Then dip the steak back into the flour mixture.
  • Check the heat of the oil by sprinkling some flour in it, the flour should sizzle. This means the oil is hot enough. Carefully place one steak at a time into the hot oil. Don’t crowd the pan, if using a large skillet you can do 2 steaks at a time, if using a small skillet only do one.
  • Cook the steaks in the oil for about 5 minutes. Spoon hot oil over the tops of the steaks while they cook, this helps the batter stay while flipping. You will notice juices coming from the steaks, through the breading on the top, this means they are cooking. Once you see juices, you can flip the steaks over. 
  • Cook the other side of the steaks for another 5 minutes, or until both sides of the steak are golden brown. Remove from the oil and place on the wire rack. Place the baking sheet with the steaks in the oven to keep warm. Continue this until all steaks are cooked. 
  • To prepare the gravy, determine how much grease is left in the pan, we need 1/4 cup. You can always pour the grease into a glass measuring cup to verify that you are using 1/4 cup. Just be sure to use a slotted spoon to scoop out all the bits of steak that came off during the cooking, so this is used in the gravy also.
  • With 1/4 cup of drippings in the skillet, add the flour, salt and pepper. Whisk this together. And let the flour mixture cook over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes. 
  • Carefully stir in the milk to the flour mixture. Whisk until smooth and no lumps remain.
  • Let gravy simmer about 5-8 minutes until it thickens.Taste and add more salt or pepper as needed at this point.
  • Serve steaks warm with gravy over top.

Video

Notes

Nutrition information is ESTIMATED. Amount of oil needed for frying is not included since this amount can vary so much, and there’s no way to know how much oil stays on the dish to impact the nutrition information. 
Storage & Reheating Information
  • Storage: store the steaks and gravy separately in sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheating: place in a skillet, sprayed with cooking spray, over medium heat to reheat and allow the breading to crisp back up. Or you can bake in the oven at 375 degrees F for 15-20 minutes. Reheat the gravy in a saucepan over medium heat while whisking.
  • Freezing: store the steaks and gravy separately. Wrap the steaks in plastic wrap, then in a layer of foil. Or store in a freezer safe container. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Reheat following instructions.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 686kcal | Carbohydrates: 60g | Protein: 54g | Fat: 22g | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 12g

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

Like this? Leave a comment below!

Recipe first published March 27, 2019, updated August 29, 2023 with new images.

Photography by the talented @ModernFarmhouseEats.com


Welcome to my kitchen!

Welcome to the House of Yumm!! My name is Serene. I’m the food photographer, recipe developer, and official taste tester around these parts.

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5 from 11 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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7 Comments

  1. Something about this recipe makes for a very good chicken fried steak. Don’t know what, but thank you so much for this recipe! I love the crispiness of it! Keeper!

  2. This came out very well. I used a very thinly sliced steak and pounded it first. I allowed the coated meat to dry on a rack before frying.

  3. I was looking for a chicken recipe for the whole family and I stumbled on this article. I read and followed the instructions carefully and I made it deliciously! Every member of my family is so happy! Thanks for this!