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Cube Steak Parmesan

Cube Steak Parmesan - Karista's Kitchen

When I was a kid, a week didn’t go by that cube steak wasn’t served for dinner.  To me, those were the best dinner evenings.  I would pony up to the table salivating; just waiting for Mom to put the finishing touches on the gravy.

My Mom rarely made the traditional chicken fried steak.  You know, the one that everyone thinks of when you say those two words… cube steak.  Nope, she was a typical working Mom and cut prep corners when she could.  Like seasoning the cube steak and then lightly dusting it in flour and then pan searing in a little oil.  When both sides were golden brown, she’d place them on a platter and serve with her pan gravy that was made from beef stock and the pan drippings.

I have to admit, I love a good chicken fried steak and gravy – which is probably one of the most popular recipes for cube steak.   I grew up in the South and I’ve had the pleasure of dining on the most succulent and perfectly prepared chicken fried steak.  But for a busy weeknight, this quick prep cube steak method is perfect.

Every year we purchase a quarter side of beef and with it comes a lot of cube steak.  This is one of those recipes born out of the need to use up all the cube steak in my freezer, while keeping the meal on the lighter side.  It was an instant hit at my house.  So I decided to prepare it for one of my favorite clients who had been asking for cube steak but couldn’t have the heavy chicken fried steak version.  He loved this recipe so much it became a regular on his menu.  I love it when that happens.

Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love!


Cube Steak Parmesan

Serves 4-6

To dress up this dish, I like to serve it over fresh seasonal greens that are tossed with a little good quality olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.  Makes a lovely presentation and makes me feel a little better about using my abundance of cube steak.

For those who would like this dish wheat free, try dusting the seasoned cube steak in a little corn starch, just to crisp it a bit.


1 1/2 – 2lbs cube steak (if the steaks are large I cut them in half)

Salt and Pepper

Dried oregano

All-purpose flour or corn starch for dusting

Oil for pan searing (I like safflower or EVOO)

2 cups of your favorite or homemade tomato sauce

Mozzarella cheese, about 8 slices (part skim or whole milk)

Basil leaves – about 8-10

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Spring greens tossed with salt, pepper, a drizzle of oil and balsamic vinegar


Pre-heat the oven to 400F.

Season the steaks with salt and pepper and a pinch of dried oregano.  Dust the steaks in all-purpose flour or corn starch.

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and add a few tablespoons of oil.  Enough to lightly cover the bottom of the pan.  When the oil is hot but not smoking, brown the cube steak on both sides and then transfer to a baking dish or lined baking sheet.  Repeat until all the cube steak has been browned.   Cube steak is usually very thin so this browning process will most likely cook the steak through. If not, it will finish cooking in the oven.

Place a slice of cheese on each steak and then a basil leaf.  Ladle a little sauce over each steak and top with parmesan cheese.

Place the baking dish or baking sheet in the pre-heated oven until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly, about 10 minutes.

Place your prepared greens on a large platter and then place each of the steaks on the greens.  Serve with extra sauce.  Sometimes I serve this creamy polenta or gnocchi.

*If using a baking dish you can keep the steaks in the baking dish and serve the greens on the side.



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  • Reply
    Alyssa (Everyday Maven)
    March 5, 2014 at 9:04 pm

    Love seeing this preparation for Cube Steak! I think it is tasty and so under-valued.

    • Reply
      March 6, 2014 at 7:19 am

      It was always my two girls favorite cut of beef, besides a roast. And makes such an easy weeknight meal. And easy is the operative word this week. Lol! Hope you’re doing well Alyssa. xo

  • Reply
    Rosemary Mullally
    March 6, 2014 at 3:34 am

    Looks good!

    • Reply
      March 6, 2014 at 7:20 am

      Thank you Rosemary! It was pretty darn tasty, not a speck left on the platter. 🙂

  • Reply
    Virginia Payne
    March 6, 2014 at 10:18 am

    I don’t think this would last long at our house!

    • Reply
      March 6, 2014 at 10:10 pm

      I thought we’d have leftovers… but nothing left! The family literally ate the entire platter. Lol!

  • Reply
    March 6, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Gorgeous writing, recipe and memories Karista. Argh, as an Aussie, I admit that am a little baffled by this entire post! What is ‘chicken fried steak’? And what’s cube steak? Is it like schnitzel (as in, the thin lesser-quality beef that gets pounded until it’s tender?). I’d love to try this, it looks delish xxx

    • Reply
      March 6, 2014 at 10:14 pm

      Thank you Laura! You’re too kind! Ok, well, in the Southern part of the U.S. we take a cut of beef that is really a top sirloin or round steak and put it through a tenderizer. It comes out all bumpy and we call it a cube steak. Canada calls it a minute steak. It is a lesser cut of beef but a great way to make this tougher cut of beef more tender and tasty. It does sound a little like your schnitzel. In the South we like to coat it in a batter and fry it up and ladle gravy over it. Very decadent and rich! Something you might want to savor once a year. This method I use is much less calorie ridden, lighter in taste and texture and nicely prepared with homemade tomato sauce. But still totally delish. 🙂

      • Reply
        March 11, 2014 at 7:04 pm

        Thanks for the explanation Karista, makes a bit more sense now 🙂 So is it ‘chicken fried’ because of the batter (as opposed to actually having chicken in it)? I guess that makes sense! Haha, you learn something new every day!

    • Reply
      March 8, 2014 at 4:21 pm

      I love that you’ve entirely summed up my questions in your comment Laura! I’ve certainly heard of a Philly cheese steak, a steak & cheese sandwich I think? Chicken fried steak is domething I’ve definitely heard about on blogs, but I see from Karistas description & snaps (it’s slightly thicker?) than schnitzels.

      Nonetheless it still looks so tasty and a really lovely meal for mid week suppers. Love the addition of the parmigiana flavours too!

      • Reply
        March 11, 2014 at 8:36 am

        Thanks Alli! The cube steaks can be thin cut or on the thicker side. I personally like them nice and thin, which I think, makes them feel a little more tender after cooking. And they are so great for a quick weeknight meal! Thanks for stopping by friend! 🙂

      • Reply
        March 11, 2014 at 7:06 pm

        Yes I think you’re right Alice. Deliciousness, whatever the name! And I’ve heard about philly cheese steak too. It sounds so delicious… I think we need to introduce more of this food to Aussieland, Ali! xx

  • Reply
    March 7, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    Sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      March 11, 2014 at 8:34 am

      You are so welcome! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  • Reply
    Karen (Back Road Journal)
    March 9, 2014 at 5:25 am

    Having grown up in Texas where chicken fried steak is extremely popular, I always enjoyed cubed steak. I can see why your platter was completely cleaned of the steak parmesan.

    • Reply
      March 11, 2014 at 8:37 am

      That’s right! I always forget you grew up in the South too! 🙂 Yep, cube steak is a staple on the dinner table in the South. I bet you can bake some pretty fabulous biscuits with gravy! Thanks for stopping by Karen.

  • Reply
    March 22, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    I used to LOVE cube steaks. They were just so easy to fry up with some salt and pepper. I’d even eat them for breakfast! It was one of my grandma’s fav’s too and we’d eat them cold with mayo for lunch. What exactly is a cube steak anyway. I guess it’s 100% beef if it comes from your 1/2 a side.

    • Reply
      March 25, 2014 at 4:36 pm

      Wendy I think it’s round steak that’s been through a tenderizer machine at the butcher. Or at least that’s what mine is. 🙂 Love the idea of cold cube steak with mayo!

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