Tricia’s Slow Cooker Cube Steak – $5 Dinner Challenge

by Tricia H on June 6, 2011

Seven pile out of the family van. All with hungry tummies. Four more family members are arriving in ten minutes.

It’s Sunday after church. But as I come in the door, a wonderful smell greets me. Thank you slow cooker for doing all the work!

It’s easy to feed a crowd on a budget with cube steak. Plus, those meat and potato types really love this meal! A perfect man-pleaser for Father’s Day. Or easy to make when you don’t want to turn on the oven or grill.

Just three ingredients:

  • cube steak – amount you need
  • cream of mushroom soup (large, family-sized can or two small cans) or Erin’s Homemade White Sauce
  • ½ packet dry, french onion soup mix (too salty with a full packet)

Directions: Spoon about half of cream of mushroom soup in the bottom of the slow cooker. Place cube steak in. Sprinkle with french onion soup mix and remainder of cream of mushroom soup.

Timing tips: If I pull the cube steak from the freezer, I start cooking this the night before. I turn it on low around 10 or 11 pm and it cooks for about 12-14 hours. (Sometimes setting the slow cooker to turn to the warm setting the last hour). If thawed, I put all the ingredients in the slow cooker no later than 7 a.m. and let it cook on high until lunch.

So it stretches for the masses, I add:

Adaptations: Sure, I adjust the timing and serve this for supper. A glorious weeknight treat! Not feeding a crowd? We buy the large portion at the wholesale club. But if you have less to cook just use one regular-sized can of cream of mushroom soup and a ¼ packet of French onion soup mix.

You don’t have to spend big bucks taking the family out. More easy slow cooker meals in Fast Food for Slow Sundays or Month Long Slow Cooker Celebration.

Slow Cooker Cube Steak is a recipe adaptation my mother shared in that family red and white checked cookbook she gave me when I was a new bride. She says that her mother, Mamaw, used to make cube steak, “but she never put soup on it. Just fried the daylights out of it. You could make shoes out of it.”

How about you? Do you make it a habit to invite folks over for a meal?


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{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

angie June 6, 2011 at 7:50 pm

never made this in slow cooker but this is one of our favorite recipes taught to me many years ago by my mother in law


Kristia@Family Balance Sheet June 6, 2011 at 8:21 pm

I posted a slow cooker recipe also, but with chicken thighs and drumsticks that needed to get used up.

Thanks for the link-up.


Dana @ Budget Dietitian June 9, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Perfect! I need to use up some chicken drumsticks! :)


Kim A. June 6, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I still haven’t tried this! Do you buy your cube steak at Sam’s, too? I have never made anything with it!


Tricia H June 6, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Angie – it is a wonderful recipe to pass down and share! Kristia – that’s smart :) Kim – I do get my cube steak at Sam’s but you can get smaller portions for really cheap at your local grocery. Cube steak is another cheaper piece of meat that does so very well in the slow cooker. Let me know when you try it and how you like it!


Micha @ Cookin' Mimi June 7, 2011 at 12:24 am

Cube steaks and gravy are a favorite here. I normally cook mine like this recipe because I don’t have the best frying luck.


Alea June 7, 2011 at 3:20 am

This sounds delicious! I sure appreciate the slow cooker’s ability to tenderize inexpensive cuts of meat. Tasty sides to “stretch it for the masses” too.


Debbi Does Dinner Healthy June 7, 2011 at 6:09 am

Hi, sorry I didn’t link up a meal this time but I have a delicious garlic bread that I hope you like! I buy garlic in bulk so it’s not that expensive. Thanks for all the awesome meal ideas!


Marishannon June 7, 2011 at 7:40 am

I’ve never tried cube steak in the crockpot – I am going to have to do this!


Emily June 7, 2011 at 11:01 am

I’m assuming that cooking time on this is essentially 5 hours on high. This based on the “no later than 7am and cook on high till lunch”


Tricia H August 28, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Yes Emily! Thanks. Hope you enjoyed it.


Jessica June 7, 2011 at 3:10 pm

Oh my I will have to try this I totally botched the last cube steak I made and couldn’t find a recipe I liked. Thank you Thank you!


Angie W. June 8, 2011 at 1:28 pm

Looking for som 5$ dinners and found this one! Woot! I think this would work great for next Sunday. Thanks Tricia!


Paula B June 9, 2011 at 3:32 am

Wow grate minds think alike this one my fav winter dishes, altho mine is little diff i add one smll tin of mush soup,one smll tin of tomato soup the french onion soup mix, and a heaped spoon of garlic and it is to die for XXX thank you for sharing this version will give it a try


Genevieve W August 28, 2011 at 11:29 am

Disappointed, after spending almost $5 just for the cubed steak, its been in the crock pot for less than 3 hours and they are like bricks, made the recipe exactly as directed :(


Tricia H August 28, 2011 at 8:58 pm

Genevieve! I’m so sorry it didn’t turn out well. It’s the first I’ve heard! I usually let mine cook at least 5 hours. It does get more tender as it cooks. But sometimes it can be the cut of the meat.


Keely October 2, 2013 at 8:42 pm

I use, 1 can cream of mushroom soup, 1 soup can of water, and 1 packet liptons onion soup mix, per 2-3 lbs of cubed steak. I dredge mine is flour salt and pepper first and brown on each side. Then layer the steaks and soup mixture in crock pot. On low for 4-6 hrs. They are very tender!


Michelle September 11, 2011 at 6:37 pm

So you can cook it on high for 5 hours- how long if you cook it on low (and it’s thawed)? Thank you for a new recipe that i plan to try this week for my family :)


Tricia H September 11, 2011 at 7:28 pm

Michelle – It just seems to be best cooked longer. Thawed, on low, I’d still say anywhere from 6-8 hrs though you might be able to get away with 4-6 depending on how much you are cooking. For my size family, on a week day, I’d put it on at lunch time for it to be ready for supper. The slow cooking on low way is best. Hope that helps!


Kim September 12, 2011 at 8:21 am

Sounds great, but my family dont like cream of mushrrom or the thought of mushrooms…What can I use instead??


Tricia H September 12, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Kim – I’ve used cream of chicken in a pinch and it turns out just as well. I think any ‘cream of’ variety would still do well.


Michelle September 18, 2011 at 8:03 pm

I made this for my family earlier this week and it was so good! My mom was staying a few nights with us and she kept raving about how i’ve become such a great cook and it was so quick,easy and afforable! Thank you so much! My kids have already been asking me when i’ll make it again!


kathy October 23, 2011 at 9:18 pm

My husband doesn’t like cream of mushroom…could you substitute cream of chicken?


Tricia October 23, 2011 at 9:42 pm

Yes! Kathy – I’ve done that before a couple of times when I went to the pantry and that’s all I found. I’ve also used cream of celery. It all turns out yummy.


Christine October 27, 2011 at 12:05 pm

Can you post step-by-step instructions, Im learning to cook with a crockpot and I think I completely messed this up because there are not enough directions. Im hoping it turns out ok and if it doesnt Ill tell my husband to eat it anyway since it was his idea. Thanks


Tricia October 27, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Christine – sorry for the confusion. This was written to time it for Sunday lunch for a large crowd. Here is a redo for about 4 servings:

cube steak – enough for 2-4 people
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 packet dry onion soup mix (the whole packet will make it too salty)

Directions: Spoon about half of cream of mushroom soup in the bottom of the slow cooker. Place cube steak in. Sprinkle with french onion soup mix and remainder of cream of mushroom soup.

If thawed, cook in slow cooker, on low for 6-8 hours. It is best the longer it is cooked. You can put it in the slow cooker frozen then cook it for 8-10 hours.

That’s my experience, over and over, for the best tasting cube steak! :)


Christine October 27, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Does the soup need to be made or just take it out of the can? You dont get that direction. They way I did it ended up tasting fine, my husband had 2 helpings of everything and over ate. I am fairly new to cooking and I guess I need it spelled out, lol.


Danielle S. December 6, 2011 at 9:24 am

Christine, I am wondering the same thing with the soup :/ I just did everything as directed a few minutes ago- I’m hoping the directions meant “straight from the can”. If not, oops! It would be greatly appreciated if there was some clarification :-)


Tricia December 6, 2011 at 10:10 am

Yes, straight from the can is great – and easy! I linked to Erin’s homemade white sauce for those with allergies or who wanted to make that portion from scratch. Thanks ladies.


Tracy March 5, 2012 at 10:28 am

Hey there,
Just found the website and recipe today. Just got everything into the slow cooker. I am excited! I just made my first white sauce. It came out perfect. My husband and son are not crazy about mushrooms. I also caramelized some onions to go in. Can’t wait until dinner tonight. I will let you know how it goes!


Tricia March 5, 2012 at 2:31 pm

Tracy – I am all about tweaking a recipe to make it work best for my family. Sounds like your variation is just right. This is an all-time favorite of ours. Enjoy!


Tracy March 10, 2012 at 10:53 am

You can tell I have had a busy week, I”m just now getting back to let ya’ll know how the cube steak went. Absolutely DELICIOUS!!!!!!!!! The pot was empty when dinner was over, and I ashamed to say, here are only 3 of us!!!!!!


Tricia March 10, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Awesome Tracy! I LOVE to hear it. No shame in enjoying it all :)


Angie W. March 10, 2012 at 2:15 pm

One of my Faves for Sure!


sarah April 17, 2012 at 9:08 pm

I also cook cube steak in the crockpot with homemade canned salsa…I can my salsa by just cutting up tomatoes, peppers,onions, garlic…whatever you want in a big stock pot and just let it cook down…then i just can it in quart jars…then you can open a jar and eat it with chips, you can add tomatoe past to thicken it up for other sauces for spaghetie, or over chicken or steak and bake away….I always made baked steak in the oven, but am gonna try this receipe in the crock pot…sounds very yummy and like you said, nice when you come home from church or work and food is almost ready….cook on!!!


Sara Sorensen August 19, 2012 at 9:57 pm

In order to avoid all the salt in recipes calling for dry onion soup mix,
I use Mrs. Dash. Seems to add the same type of flavoring without the salt.


Kendra November 29, 2012 at 6:11 pm

Looks awesome!


Kristina May 8, 2013 at 8:48 am

Delicious! Used beefy mushroom and golden mushroom soups, with 8 cube steaks…unfortunately they are 5 dollars a pound here. Still totally worth it. The gravy is delicious! Served over mashed potatoes


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Jessie August 28, 2013 at 1:05 pm

Hi there! I would love to use this recipe this evening for dinner and post what I’ve made on my own blog. Would you mind if I posted your recipe as long as I give you credit throughout the post?


Lauren January 16, 2014 at 11:50 am

Just put this together for tonight’s dinner! Since my son is dairy-free, I found a great recipe online to substitute the cream of mush soup with: unsweetened reg almond milk/EB buttery spread/real diced mushrooms/salt, pepp, onion powder. Then I threw some real mushrooms over the cubed steak and added the onion soup mix. Smells heavenly! I’m from NY but live in the South so this is a southern staple my hubby grew up with…let’s just hope I do it justice! LOL!! Like a previous reviewer, I bought cubed steak at Walmart and mine was $10.66. I guess that’s alright because this meal will feed 4 of us. I’ll add wide egg noodles and a vegg for a side. Thanks for posting!!


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Meg Lee December 14, 2014 at 11:06 am

SO WISH I had read the comments before making this myself. I made a smaller batch (only 4 steaks), but decided to turn it on low at 10pm – by 7am it is already falling apart and yummilicious! Just wishing I had decided to wait until the morning to make it because now I’m afraid of over cooking it so I’ve taken it out and put it in the fridge for later. Also, the yummy smell was a HUGE distraction while trying to sleep last night.

For those that had asked for their non-mushroom lovers – I used a can of cream of celery and a can of cream of chicken with herbs. After I took the meat out I seasoned the sauce with pepper, garlic and oregano too. YUM!

Thanks for the share, just wish the timing had been better spelled out in the actual article. Ohwell. Next time I’ll know! And there will DEFINITELY be a next time!


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