Delicious Cracker Barrel Country Fried Steak Recipe

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Published: 03/04/2024 | Updated: 03/25/2024

Transforming your kitchen into a Cracker Barrel haven, our copycat recipe for Country Fried Steak encapsulates the golden, crispy exterior and succulent interior that fans adore. This Southern gem, a testament to traditional comfort food, promises a dining experience reminiscent of Cracker Barrel’s cozy ambiance, right at home.

cracker barrel country fried steak recipe

Ideal for both casual family meals and festive occasions, it serves as a culinary bridge to the cherished Cracker Barrel Old Country Store vibe. Accompanied by classic sides or savored solo, this dish epitomizes the timeless allure of Southern cuisine, inviting everyone to partake in its enduring charm.

What You’ll Need

  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons saltine crackers, crushed
  • 4 cube steaks (round steak or sirloin)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 fresh eggs
  • 1½ cups milk
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • For the cream gravy:
  • 2 tablespoons pan drippings
  • 1½ cups milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Organizing the ingredients in the order they’ll be used ensures a smooth cooking process. Start with the breading components, then the meat and seasonings, followed by the wet mixture ingredients, and finally the elements for the creamy sawmill gravy.

Preparing the Dish

  1. Begin by setting up your breading station. In a shallow dish, combine the flour, cayenne pepper, crushed saltine crackers, and 1 teaspoon black pepper.
  2. Season both sides of the cube steaks with salt and black pepper.
  3. In a separate shallow bowl, whisk the fresh eggs and 1½ cups of milk to create the egg mixture.
  4. Dredge each steak in the flour mixture, dip into the egg mixture, then back into the flour mixture to coat the steaks thoroughly. Place the breaded steaks on a wire rack to rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Preheat your oven to a warm setting. Heat the oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  6. Carefully place the steaks into the hot oil and fry the steaks for 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and crispy. Once cooked, place the steaks on a baking sheet in the preheated oven to keep warm.
  7. For the gravy, leave about 2 tablespoons of leftover oil with pan drippings in the skillet. Whisk in 2 tablespoons of flour, cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then slowly add 1½ cups milk. Whisk constantly until the gravy thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Remove the steaks from the oven, and pour the creamy sawmill gravy over the steaks before serving. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Ensure the steaks are at room temperature before breading to promote even cooking. Monitor the oil temperature to maintain a consistent medium heat for frying. The resting stage after breading is crucial for the coating to adhere properly, so allow the coated steaks for those crucial 10 minutes.

Optional Variants

  • For a gluten-free version, use almond flour and gluten-free crackers for breading.
  • Swap out cube steaks for chicken pieces or pork chops for a different take on the recipe.

These variants offer a way to personalize the recipe to dietary preferences or simply to experiment with new flavors. Always adjust cooking times accordingly when substituting different meats.

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 650 per serving
  • Protein: 35g
  • Carbohydrates: 48g
  • Fats: 35g
  • Sodium: 720mg
  • Serving Size: 1 steak with gravy

Providing the nutritional information per serving size helps individuals track their dietary intake and make informed decisions about portion sizes.

Factors to Consider

  • Always tenderize the steaks with a meat tenderizer to ensure they cook to a tender consistency.
  • Use a cast iron skillet for even heat distribution when frying the steaks.
  • Pair with traditional country sides like mashed potatoes or green beans for a complete meal.

Considering these factors can greatly enhance the final result, delivering a dish that’s as close to the restaurant recipes as possible. The choice of sides can also complement the richness of the dish.

Kitchen Tools You’ll Require

  • Cast iron skillet or heavy frying pan
  • Wire rack and baking sheet
  • Shallow dishes for breading
  • Whisk
  • Meat tenderizer

Having the right tools at hand, such as a whisk for the gravy and a meat tenderizer for the steaks, will simplify the cooking process. If a wire rack isn’t available, a plate lined with paper towels can be used to rest the breaded steaks.

Prep Time

Preparation Time: 20 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes (includes resting time for breaded steaks)

Final Touches

  • Present the steaks on a warm plate and pour the gravy over the top just before serving.
  • Serve with a side of creamy mashed potatoes and garnish with parsley for a pop of color.

The presentation can enhance the overall dining experience. A well-set table with country charm can mimic the ambiance of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store.

What to do With Leftovers

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • To reheat country-fried steak, preheat the oven to 350°F and place on a baking tray for 10 to 15 minutes until heated through.

Recipe Notes

  • A copycat Cracker Barrel Country Fried Steak can be just as satisfying as the original when using quality ingredients and following the steps closely.
  • For those who prefer a different protein, breaded steaks can be substituted with crispy chicken or pork chops, adjusting the cooking time as needed.

Does Cracker Barrel Have Country Fried Steak?

Yes, Cracker Barrel does offer country-fried steak on their menu. This dish, Cracker Barrel Country Fried Steak, is popular among diners looking for hearty, comfort food. It’s typically served with creamy gravy, making it a staple of Cracker Barrel’s Southern-style offerings.

 This iconic fried steak is a testament to traditional Southern cooking, often accompanied by country sides and buttermilk biscuits for a complete meal.

How do you make Copycat Cracker Barrel Country-Fried Steak?

To make a copycat Cracker Barrel Country-Fried Steak, use a meat tenderizer to tenderize your choice of round steak or sirloin steak. Next, coat the steaks in flour, dip them into an egg mixture, then back into the flour mixed with cracker crumbs for that extra crunch.

 Fry the steaks in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes per side. Serve with creamy sawmill gravy to replicate the authentic Cracker Barrel experience at home.

Can I Cook Country Fried Steak in the Air Fryer?

You can cook country-fried steak in the air fryer, offering a less oily alternative to the traditional frying method. To do so, prepare your steak as you would for frying, coating it in the flour and egg mixture.

Preheat your air fryer and cook the breaded steaks for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they are crispy and cooked. This method makes it easy to enjoy a less greasy version of the beloved dinner recipe.

Can I Use a Different Type of Meat for Country Fried Steak?

You can use different cuts of meat for country-fried steak beyond the traditional round steak or sirloin steak. While these are commonly used, other cuts, such as cube steak or hamburger steak, can be utilized.

The key is ensuring the meat is properly tenderized to achieve that tender, cooked steak texture synonymous with a good country-fried steak. Experimenting with different types of meat can add variety to this classic dish.

Cube Steak Is Notoriously Tough – Should I Tenderize it?

Tenderizing cube steak is highly recommended due to its notoriously tough texture. A meat tenderizer helps break down the muscle fibers, making the steak more tender and easier to eat once cooked.

This step is crucial when preparing country-fried steak to ensure the breaded and fried steak remains juicy and tender beneath its crispy coating. Tenderizing not only improves the texture but also enhances the overall eating experience of the dish.

Delicious Cracker Barrel Country Fried Steak Recipe: Try It Today!

Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Dinner/Lunch, Other Recipes, Quick & Easy, side dishes
Keyword: cracker barrel country fried steak recipe
Author: Natalie

Equipment

  • Cast iron skillet or heavy frying pan
  • Wire rack and baking sheet
  • Shallow dishes for breading
  • Whisk
  • Meat tenderizer

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons saltine crackers, crushed
  • 4 cube steaks (round steak or sirloin)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 fresh eggs
  • 1½ cups milk
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • For the cream gravy:
  • 2 tablespoons pan drippings
  • 1½ cups milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Begin by setting up your breading station. In a shallow dish, combine the flour, cayenne pepper, crushed saltine crackers, and 1 teaspoon black pepper.
  • Season both sides of the cube steaks with salt and black pepper.
  • In a separate shallow bowl, whisk the fresh eggs and 1½ cups of milk to create the egg mixture.
  • Dredge each steak in the flour mixture, dip into the egg mixture, then back into the flour mixture to coat the steaks thoroughly. Place the breaded steaks on a wire rack to rest for 10 minutes.
  • Preheat your oven to a warm setting. Heat the oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  • Carefully place the steaks into the hot oil and fry the steaks for 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and crispy. Once cooked, place the steaks on a baking sheet in the preheated oven to keep warm.
  • For the gravy, leave about 2 tablespoons of leftover oil with pan drippings in the skillet. Whisk in 2 tablespoons of flour, cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then slowly add 1½ cups milk. Whisk constantly until the gravy thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Remove the steaks from the oven, and pour the creamy sawmill gravy over the steaks before serving. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Notes

  • A copycat Cracker Barrel Country Fried Steak can be just as satisfying as the original when using quality ingredients and following the steps closely.
  • For those who prefer a different protein, breaded steaks can be substituted with crispy chicken or pork chops, adjusting the cooking time as needed.

More Cracker Barrel Copycat Recipes

Cracker Barrel Sunday Homestyle Chicken Recipe
Cracker Barrel Mac and Cheese Recipe
Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken Recipe
Cracker Barrel Chicken and Rice Recipe
Cracker Barrel Hamburger Steak Recipe

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