This dish starts with a less expensive, tough cut of meat that is transformed into something juicy and delicious. It’s then topped with an umami-packed gravy made from mushrooms and onions.
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Round steak is the perfect cut of meat to cook low and slow to get that tender bite. It goes perfectly with a side of mashed potatoes or some freshly made noodles.
Top Round Steak Recipe
Top round steak is a less popular, and therefore less common, cut of meat that tends to be overshadowed by ground beef or filet mignon.
This recipe makes it easy by adding in a mushroom and gravy sauce and uses the low and slow method of cooking. Once it’s done you’ll slice it up very thin and pile it high for everyone to be impressed.
Round steak is usually a tougher cut of beef, so it can benefit from being cooked in liquid or slow-cooked. The meat comes from the top round (or rump) area of the cow and is often used for roasts, cubed steak, and Swiss steak. You’ll see this section cut up into eye of round, top round, or bottom round, and all three can either have the bone in or bone out. This recipe is best with the beef round tip.
Should you tenderize the steak?
When the meat is tougher, it’s common to tenderize the steak with a hammer or mallet before cooking. This can help break down some of its tough fibers, which will create a better texture and taste. You don’t want to overdo it though as the meat might become too mushy if hit too hard.
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe. You’ll also get clear instructions to follow below.
- Extra virgin olive oil: helps the meat brown when cooked
- Boneless beef round steak: top round steak is ideal for this recipe
- Grass-fed Butter: used when sauteing the mushrooms and onions
- Mushrooms, onion and garlic: helps create the gravy and add flavor
- Beef broth: a low sodium version of beef broth helps you control the amount of salt and flavor that you end up using
- Worcestershire sauce: adds that umami kick
- Rosemary and thyme: balances out the savory flavors of the steak
- Lipton onion soup mix: the seasoning from the packet is a quick way to get lots of flavor without having to add your own spices
- Cornstarch: helps thicken up the gravy at the end
How to Cook Round Steak Tender
Slow cooking your round steak is going to be the preferred way to cook it as the meat becomes very tender and has a delicious flavor that is sure to please the whole family.
- Use a meat mallet to tenderize the meat and smush it to 1/4 inch thickness.
- Brown the steaks on a pan with some olive oil before slow cooking to seal in the juicy flavor.
- Sauté your garlic, onions, and mushrooms in a little butter sauce.
- Add both your beef broth and your Worchester sauce.
- Return your steaks to your frying pan and use the onion soup seasoning packet to cover the steaks. Stick your fresh herbs into the sauce.
- Cover your steaks and bake them in the oven around 300F anywhere between 2 1/2 and 3 hours.
- Remove your steaks from the frying pan and throw away the herb stems.
- Add your cornstarch to the gravy to thicken it or some beef broth to thin the gravy.
- Taste the gravy and season it further with salt and pepper.
- Thinly slice your steak making sure to go against the grain, cover everything with the gravy and serve with mashed potatoes.
- Mashed Potatoes
- Baked Potatoes
- Cheesy Potato Casserole
- Corn Casserole
- Caesar Salad or House Salad
- Green Beans with Bacon
- Roasted Broccoli
- Roasted Asparagus
- French Baguette or Dinner Rolls
- Buttermilk Biscuits
- Sauteed Spinach
- Creamed Peas
You can store your leftover round steaks with the mushroom gravy in the fridge for up to 4 days as long as you put them in a fridge-safe Ziplock bag or an airtight container. When you are ready to reheat everything you’ll want to do so in a skillet on low heat until everything warms up. You can also use a microwave but you run the risk of drying out your meat faster this way.
Freeze your round steak with the gravy in an airtight container or a bag that is freezer safe. The food should last for up to 3 months if stored properly.
- No Lipton soup mix? If you don’t have the Lipton soup mix it’s no problem. Just use your own seasonings to create something similar or use fresh herbs like thyme, rosemary, parsley or other ingredients like onions, garlic, and salt and pepper. Store bought seasonings that are mixed will work as well.
- Substitute Worcestershire sauce with a soy sauce to still get that umami flavor. You can also use balsamic vinegar if you don’t have anything else.
- More vegetables to your gravy is a great option if you are looking to add in some more healthy ingredients. Carrots and tomatoes work perfectly in this dish.
- If you don’t want to use round steak then a flank steak, skirt steak, blade steak, or London broil will do just fine.
- Slow cook your steak to make it tender or you can use an instant pot to make it easy on yourself. You still want to brown the meat and sauté the vegetables to get more flavor and then transfer everything to your crock pot.
TIPS FOR THE BEST ROUND STEAK RECIPE
- Top round steaks is the most tender part of a round steak and should be used if possible.
- Brown your meat by frying it in a pan before you throw it into the oven or instant pot. It will caramelize the surface and seal in all the juices. The brown bits and dripping will even be good mixed with the gravy.
- Use a cast iron braiser that is a 3.5 quart size.
- Beef Broth that is low sodium will help you control how much salt flavor gets into the dish. Adding your Lipton onion soup dry seasoning packet and the Worcestershire sauce will also help.
- Add extra broth to the pan if it looks like the liquid is cooking off and the meat is only ½ – ⅓ submerged. If you are running low on gravy at the end of cooking just add more beef broth.
- Add cornstarch to the pan very slowly so you can see how thick the gravy gets without adding too much at one time.
- If your meat isn’t tender that means you need to cook it a bit longer so throw it back i the oven so all the tough fibers can get broken down
- Slice your top round steak against the grain in very thin slices. This is the trick to making your meat tender without having to cook it for longer.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the ideal cooking method for tender round steak?
The ideal cooking method for tender round steak is to braise or slow-cook it. This allows the connective tissues to break down over a low heat, ensuring a tender and juicy result. You can achieve this by using a slow cooker, oven, or stovetop.
How can I make round steak tender in a slow cooker?
To make round steak tender in a slow cooker, follow these steps:
- Season the round steak with salt, pepper, and any other desired seasonings.
- Place the steak in the slow cooker, and add liquid such as beef broth or a combination of broth and water.
- Cook on low heat for 6-8 hours or on high heat for 3-4 hours, until the steak is fork-tender.
- Remove from the slow cooker, let it rest for a few minutes, and serve.
What are some top recipes for oven-baked round steak?
Top recipes for oven-baked round steak often involve braising. Consider these options:
- Swiss steak: Coat round steak with a mixture of flour and seasonings, then brown in a skillet. Transfer to a baking dish, cover with a tomato-based sauce, and bake at 350°F for 1.5-2 hours.
- Baked round steak with vegetables: Brown the steak, place it in a baking dish, and add sautéed onions, peppers, and mushrooms. Add beef broth, cover, and bake at 325°F for 1.5-2 hours.
How do I prepare round steak on a stovetop?
To prepare round steak on a stovetop, you can use the following method:
- Cut the steak into serving-sized pieces if necessary.
- Season the steak with salt, pepper, and any additional desired seasonings.
- Heat oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat.
- Brown the steak on all sides, then remove it from the pan.
- Add liquid (broth, water, or a mixture) to the pan, then return the steak to the pan.
- Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat to low.
- Cover the pan and let it simmer for 1.5-2 hours or until the steak is tender.
What are the best techniques for grilling round steak?
Grilling round steak can be tricky, but here are some tips:
- Marinate the steak for 4-6 hours or overnight to tenderize the meat and add flavor.
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat and oil the grates.
- Grill the steak for 5-7 minutes per side, depending on thickness, for an even cook.
- Let the steak rest for a few minutes before slicing against the grain to keep it tender.
Which method works best for round steak and gravy in the oven?
The best method for round steak and gravy in the oven is to sear the steak first, then braise it with a liquid base for the gravy. Here’s a simple process:
- Season the round steak and dredge it in flour.
- Brown the steak in a skillet on the stovetop, then transfer it to a baking dish.
- Add onions, garlic, and any other desired ingredients to the skillet, along with beef broth as a base for the gravy.
- Pour the gravy mixture over the steak in the baking dish, cover it with foil, and bake at 325°F for 1.5-2 hours or until tender.
Smothered Round Steak
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon grass fed butter
- 2 ½ cups beef broth low sodium preferred
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon dry onion soup mix
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
- 1 onion sliced
- 1 minced garlic clove
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 lbs. boneless beef top round steak
- Himalayan salt and pepper to taste
- Make sure your oven is preheating to 300F
- Using a meat mallet, tenderize the meat until a thickness of 1/2 inch is reached
- Pour a tablespoon of olive oil into a pan and turn to medium-high heat. Add the steak to the pan and brown all sides for about 5 minutes on each side.
- Reduce the overall heat of your pan to medium and then add in your butter and let it melt fully. Then, stir in your mushrooms and your onions and cook both until they begin to get soft after about 5 minutes. Next, add your garlic and a little salt and let it cook till fragrant or about 30 seconds to a minute. Add in your beef broth and your Worcestershire sauce making sure to scrap up any of the browned bits stuck at the bottom of the pan.
- Next, return your steaks and any further juices to the pan while adding in your dry Lipton onion soup packet of seasoning. Go ahead and also stick your thyme and rosemary into the gravy.
- Cover the entire pan and cook for another 2 1/2 - 3 hours or until your meat is very tender. You want to keep an eye on the steaks and check once or twice throughout the process. You want to make sure at least half of your steak is submerged in liquid for the cooking process. Add more broth if needed. Return the steaks for cooking if they are not tender enough.
- When you are done remove the steaks and wrap in foil and let rest. Throw away your fresh herbs.
- If you need to thicken up your gravy you can add some cornstarch making sure to only add a little at a time. mix thoroughly so that everything is even. If you need more gravy then you will want to add some more beef broth to the gravy. You'll need to taste and season everything with salt and pepper when you are done.
- Slice your steaks very thinly and make sure it is against the grain. Take a spoon and pour some of the gravy or each steak when ready to serve. Make a side of mashed potatoes, salad, or noodles to go with the dish and garnish with fresh herbs.
Brown your meat by frying it in a pan before you throw it into the oven or instant pot. It will caramelize the surface and seal in all the juices. The brown bits and dripping will even be good mixed with the gravy.
Use a cast iron braiser that is a 3.5 quart size.
Beef Broth that is low sodium will help you control how much salt flavor gets into the dish. Adding your Lipton onion soup dry seasoning packet and the Worcestershire sauce will also help.
Add extra broth to the pan if it looks like the liquid is cooking off and the meat is only ½ - ⅓ submerged. If you are running low on gravy at the end of cooking just add more beef broth.
Add cornstarch to the pan very slowly so you can see how thick the gravy gets without adding too much at one time.
If your meat isn't tender that means you need to cook it a bit longer so throw it back i the oven so all the tough fibers can get broken down
Slice your top round steak against the grain in very thin slices. This is the trick to making your meat tender without having to cook it for longer.