Chicken Fried Steak

4 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Chicken Fried Steak is made with a seasoned buttermilk crust topped with an easy, perfect milk gravy ready in less than 45 minutes!

Everyone loves easy Breakfast recipes including Eggs Benedict, French Toast and Cinnamon Rolls, and you’ll love this Chicken Fried Steak as you starting preparing for all the holiday family breakfasts and brunches!

Chicken Fried Steak on plate with eggs and hash browns


Chicken Fried Steak is one of many breakfast recipes on the site that is perfect for a special holiday brunch and is easy enough to impress all your soon to be house guests.

Plus this is the ultimate in comfort food for breakfast.

And no there’s no chicken in the dish. It’s meant to mimic the idea of the coating of fried chicken. There’s actually a new trend going around for chicken fried chicken too where chicken thighs are pounded thin and cooked in the same way.


When served for breakfast it’s classically served with Hash Browns and over easy eggs. When served for dinner it’s classically served with Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans, Ears of Corn or Coleslaw.

Chicken Fried Steak is the fifth most popular order in diners for breakfast (pancakes are the most popular) and now you’re going to make them at home to save a ton of money.

Chicken Fried Steak Collage of prep steps


The classic cut of beef in chicken fried steak is cube steak. The cube steak is pounded thin to tenderize the beef because the cut is tougher than most steaks.

The idea behind the use of the cube steak is that people making chicken fried steak used less expensive cuts of beef.

You can of course use a more classic steak cut of beef, or even ribeyes over the holidays if you buy a standing rib roast for Prime Rib (around Christmas the rib roasts are 5.99 a pound which is about what you’d pay for cube steak).

Chicken Fried Steak with eggs and hash browns


Using the leftover fat from the cooking of the steak you just have to mix with flour, salt, pepper and garlic powder before adding in the milk slowly.

The trick to making a great gravy is taking the time to whisk in the milk to the hot oil slowly. Add it in in the slowest stream you can while continuing to whisk the mixture. Don’t add too much milk at once so you can maintain the mixture without breaking it.

Garlic powder is used in the recipe so that it is a creamy gravy without bits of garlic to bite into, but with all the garlic flavor. You can also add in onion powder if you’d like (½ teaspoon) but the recipe doesn’t need it.

If you want to make the gravy even richer, you could make a cream gravy by using half milk and half heavy cream. You can also use half and half, but the use of milk in this recipe is going to make it delicious enough that you won’t miss the cream.

Chicken Fried Steak Collage of gravy steps


Chicken Fried Steak is pan-fried in a heavy skillet (cast iron would be great) on medium-high heat rather than making it deep-fried as it is done in most diners.

After you dredge the steak in the flour mixture for the final time its best to let it rest for up to 10 minutes to allow the breading to adhere. I let it rest on a cookie sheet or a wire rack. Once you cook the steak do not put it on a towel-lined plate, this will cause the bottom of the steak to steam.

Steam is the enemy of a crispy crust, put the steak on a wire-rack to allow it to sit and wait while you finish making the gravy. The steak will be perfectly hot inside while the outside stays crisp.


The recipes are functionally mostly the same, but the main difference is that country fried steak is topped with a brown gravy while chicken fried steak is covered with a white cream gravy made with milk.

If you need to keep the steaks warm before guests arrive or people are ready to eat, keep them on the wire rack over a cookie sheet in your oven at 200 degrees for up to 20 minutes. The gravy will thicken a bit as it sits so if you are waiting to serve the food just add a touch more milk and whisk it together right before serving.


  • Serve: You shouldn’t leave cooked meat at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
  • Store: Let the fried steak cool down, then seal it in an airtight container to store in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat on a wire rack over a cookie sheet in a 400 degree oven to keep it crispy.
  • Freeze: You can freeze Chicken Fried Steak, wrapped individually, for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator and follow the instructions above to reheat.

Chicken Fried Steak on plate with eggs and hash browns

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Chicken Fried Steak

Chicken Fried Steak is made with a seasoned buttermilk crust topped with an easy, perfect milk gravy ready in less than 45 minutes!
Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dinner
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder



  • 4 cube steaks , 8 ounces each, pounded thinly to ½ inch
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce , or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 cups flour


  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk


  • Season the steaks with the salt and pepper and pat the steaks dry with a paper towel.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the egg, baking powder, baking soda, hot sauce and buttermilk.
  • In a second bowl add the flour.
  • Put the steaks in the flour mixture, then into the egg mixture, then back into the flour and let it sit on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
  • Add 2 cups canola oil to a large skillet and heat to 325 degrees and fry the steaks for 4-5 minutes on each side before removing to a cooling rack.
  • Drain most of the fat but leave ¼ cup of it and keep the heat on medium.
  • Add ¼ cup of flour, kosher salt, black pepper and garlic powder to the pan and whisk well, cooking the flour for 30 seconds before pouring in the milk very slowly while whisking the milk until its combined before adding more until the whole mixture is even and thickened, about 6-8 minutes.



Calories: 878kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 49g | Saturated Fat: 32g | Cholesterol: 142mg | Sodium: 1794mg | Potassium: 1023mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 610IU | Vitamin C: 2.4mg | Calcium: 502mg | Iron: 5.1mg

Chicken Fried Steak Collage

Photos used in a previous version of this post.

Chicken Fried Steak on plate with eggs and hash browns

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. Could I use a thinly pounded out chicken breast for a steak substitute? I am unable to eat beef 🙁 Would I need to add anything else when making gravy for flavor?

  2. This was by far the most tender and flavorful cubed steak I have ever eaten. I need to look no longer for the “perfect chicken fried steak”. This is it!

  3. Thank you for sharing this, we used our left over prime rib from Christmas dinner and made this. Absolutely amazing. Might even like this better!!! Yummy

  4. I had given up making fried tenderized steak due to issues with batter not adhering….Not with this recipe! My family raved over this meal and the steaks were tender with crispy crust. I kept the steak separate from the gravy but sometimes I want to place the fried steaks in gravy and simmer a bit. Will this recipe work for a more “country “ fried steak and gravy or will the batter get mushy as it cooks in gravy?
    Thank you for another family favorite recipe from your site.

    1. It would absolutely get mushy in the gravy, I know what you mean about wanting to simmer it though, if it wouldn’t get mushy that would be delicious.

  5. Yum. I love chicken fried steak and this was a great version. I served it with mashed potatoes and a creamy corn side dish. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Fabulous recipe and so yummy! Glad I found your blog Sabrina! When I made mine I do use some seasoning in the flour such as cajun spice. I realise it’s a deviation but it works for us. By the way…. do you fry in a cast iron skillet or some other kind? Just curious. Thanks again!

  7. I made this recipe exactly like it said and the only complaint I have is I would decrease the hot sauce in half but I used tobasco and maybe that was wrong. I have an a wimpy mouth and I couldn’t finish the steak because It kept getting hotter and hotter. But besides my wimpy mouth, this was the best chicken fried steak I’ve ever made. I love how it Stayed crispy until the last bite. The flavors in the gravy and the steak were amazing. Thank you for sharing.

  8. There’s also a meat press “Fast Cutlet Maker V2”. It flattens the meat and create a cube pattern on it. It’s popular among germany people.

  9. This gravy recipe must be incorrect. It calls for 2 cups of oil which should probably be 1/4 cup of oil as it calls for 1/4 cup of flour and gravies are usually made with a 1 to 1 ratio of butter (or oil) to flour.

    1. You’ll use 2 cups of oil to fry the steaks. Once done, you’ll drain all but 1/4 cup of the oil to use to make the gravy (step 6). Hope this clears up any confusion.

      1. I’ve always thought of cube steak as being extremely tough. Is there anything I can do to make sure the steak is really tender? I’ve heard some sites say that you can make this with other types of steak. Is that true? If so, any you would recommend? I really want to make this for my us for dinner one night, but I want to make sure it’s tender. Help??? ?

        1. You can always use a different cut of meat. I have a section in my post where I talk about cube steak and what meats to substitute. Hope this helps. Let me know how you like it!

  10. Oooh I love chicken fried steak, but have never made fried steak at home. This was sooo with a baked potato. Thanks for the recipe!