What Is Chicken Fried Steak?

what is chicken fried steak

Chicken fried steak is a simple dish of thickly-sliced beef coated in seasoned flour, then fried.

It was created as a way to use less expensive cuts of meat that are tough but flavorful.

When most people think about chicken fried steak, they imagine crispy breading with tender chunks of beef inside.

But it’s not that simple. Chicken fried steak recipes vary greatly.

This article will explore: What is chicken fried steak? How do you make it? and, Where does it come from?

Let’s find out!

What Exactly Is Chicken Fried Steak?

Chicken fried steak is made of cube steaks or other inexpensive cuts of beef that are breaded and fried.

Originally, chicken fried steak was created to use up less-desirable beef trimmings after a butcher had cut steaks from the rib, loin, and chuck areas.

Today, most restaurants pass off cube steaks, tenderized round steaks, or any other cheap cut of meat as chicken fried steak.

It’s a dish that’s still beloved by many, but it’s also one of the most misunderstood foods in America.

Why? Well…

Chicken fried steak isn’t really fried chicken. It’s beef-or rather, a way to use less-expensive cuts of beef that are prepared and then served like fried chicken.

It’s not just any old beef that is breaded then fried, though. The main ingredient in any chicken fried steak is tenderized cube steak or some other cut of meat with a lot of marbling.

How Is Chicken Fried Steak Best Cooked?

The best chicken fried steak is cooked in a cast-iron skillet until the edges are crispy and brown, while the middle remains tender.

You can also prepare chicken fried steak in a deep fryer, but be sure to use oil with a high smoke point so it doesn’t get too dark or burn on the outside before the meat is cooked through.

To cook chicken fried steak, you can use these cooking methods:

  • Pan-frying using a cast-iron skillet
  • Deep frying on the stove
  • Deep frying in an electric deep fryer
  • Grilling
  • Pan-broiling (Grilling, but at lower temperatures)

The first step is to slice the meat into breading-sized portions.

After this, you coat the slices of meat in seasoned flour.

You can use any seasoning blend you like, but most people choose salt and pepper or seasoned salt (a blend of salt with herbs and spices added).

After that, heat some shortening or oil in a skillet over medium heat.

Once the oil is heated, slide the coated meat into the pan.

Lightly brown each side of the meat in the oil, cooking it for about 5 minutes on each side or until both sides are nice and crispy.

If you’re cooking your chicken fried steak too quickly over too high heat you run the risk of burning the outside before the inside is fully cooked through.

If this happens, make sure to tent the steak with a piece of foil and let it rest after cooking for several minutes before serving.

How Is Chicken Fried Steak Best Prepared?

Preparing Chicken fried steak is easy providing you have the right ingredients and instructions.

Most people use some sort of cube steak, but you can also use any other cut of meat with a lot of marbling-this will produce the best results.

Cube steaks need to be tenderized before cooking, so this is usually done with a tool called a meat mallet or beating it with the bottom of a frying pan.

After tenderizing, you can marinate cube steak in buttermilk for several hours so the meat becomes extra tender and flavorful.

Ensure that you mix together all the spices and seasonings you plan to use before breading or marinating your meat so everything is ready to go.

How Is Chicken Fried Steak Best Served?

When it comes to serving Chicken fried steak, I like to go traditional and get a side of creamy mashed potatoes, green beans, and some cornbread.

Sides such as these complement chicken fried steak perfectly-the creaminess of the potatoes cut through the rich flavor of the meat while the touch of sweetness in the green beans adds another dimension to your meal.

You can also serve your chicken fried steak with simple vegetable sides, rice, or some biscuits.

If you have some gravy on hand-which is optional-pour it over your chicken fried steak right before serving so the meat soaks up all the flavor of the sauce while remaining crispy on the outside.

Like most dishes it can be served with a variety of sauces or seasonings, so explore all your options before you decide on what to serve with your chicken fried steak.

How Expensive Is Chicken Fried Steak?

The price of Chicken fried steak is going to depend on how much tenderized steak you buy, but affordable cuts of beef that are tenderized tend to be less expensive than pricier cuts.

For the most part, this dish will cost about $10 to $20 per serving.

Making it an affordable option that is also incredibly tasty.

If you shop online for the ingredients or find a good sale you can lower the price even more.

Where Is Chicken Fried Steak Commonly Found?

Chicken fried steak is a Southern staple. The first chicken fried steak was created in Texas.

Many Southern states make a similar variation of chicken fried steak, but it is most common in the South-Central region of the United States.

That being said you can also find Chicken fried steak in California, Colorado, and New Mexico.

Due to its popularity in the South, you can often find it at diners or restaurants that cater to a primarily Southerner clientele.

If you’re lucky enough to live in a state where chicken fried steak is known as a local specialty you’ll likely be able to find it on menus even in local cafes.

You can also make chicken fried steak at home if you follow the right recipe.

What Is The Nutritional Value Of Chicken Fried Steak?

Finding out the nutritional value of food is important, especially if you’re watching your diet or have certain dietary restrictions.

Chicken fried steak is a dish you can enjoy without guilt, making it an excellent treat choice when you want to indulge in something savory and delicious.

This dish is a low-carb, low-fat food that provides a good source of protein.

Another way to enjoy the taste of Chicken Fried Steak without sacrificing your waistline is by making healthier substitutions for the sides you serve with it.

For example, instead of serving your chicken fried steak with creamy mashed potatoes try baking cubes of butternut squash or sweet potatoes and then pureeing them into a puree.

This will lower the carb count of your plate while still providing that rich comfort food flavor you crave.

Below is the nutritional value for one serving of Chicken fried steak (448g):

  • Calories = 801
  • Fat = 13g
  • Saturated fat = 1.4g
  • Carbohydrates = 48g
  • Sugars = 3.1g
  • Protein = 55g

As you can see, chicken fried steak is a tasty way to enjoy something hearty without destroying your diet.

However, you should be mindful of the high amount of calories in this dish, as it is easy to overindulge in calories if you eat too much.

If you’re struggling with portion control, try using a smaller plate and taking smaller bites of this filling food.

Finally, keep an eye on how many carbs and sugars you’re consuming as these two nutritional elements can add up quickly and lead to health problems if you’re not careful.

Other Considerations

It’s important to keep in mind that like any food there are some health risks associated with chicken fried steak.

One of the most important issues to consider is that this dish can be high in sodium-especially if you’re not careful about how much salt you use while cooking it.

Besides making sure your meat isn’t too salty, make sure all of your vegetables are fresh and not canned.

Another thing to keep in mind is that this dish can be high in cholesterol and fat.

However, there are ways you can make this dish healthier-like using a leaner cut of beef or replacing the milk with buttermilk instead.

Finally, it’s important to mention that some people may be sensitive or allergic to eggs.

This is because eggs can contain salmonella, which isn’t harmful to most people but can be dangerous if you happen to have an immune system disorder or are older than 65.

If you’re at risk for these types of health problems, it’s important that you avoid chicken fried steak altogether.

It might take a few tries to find the perfect recipe, but with a little experimentation and careful attention to health risks you can enjoy all of the flavors of Chicken fried steak without destroying your waistline.


In conclusion, Chicken fried steak is a popular option for people who are looking to satisfy their cravings for comfort food without sacrificing their waistline.

However, if you’re not careful about how you prepare this dish it can quickly become unhealthy and wreak havoc on your dieting efforts.

It’s always best to be mindful of the ingredients you choose when making this dish so that you can enjoy a hearty helping of delicious, meaty heaven without worrying about health risks.

If you’re looking for a tasty dish that’s perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner or a special occasion, then chicken fried steak is a great option that will provide your family with a savory-and delicious dinner all in one plate.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post and I hope you’ve learned something new today about Chicken fried steak.

Feel free to share it with other steak lovers that may be interested in this dish.

Other Popular Posts