Salisbury steak is such a classic comfort food recipe that’s easy to make. It features tender and delicious ground beef patties that are pan-fried, then simmered in a rich and savoury mushroom and onion gravy. Paired with a side, like creamy mashed potatoes, this old-fashioned Salisbury steak recipe is a super satisfying meal.
If you haven’t tried Salisbury steak before, chances are you’ve heard of this popular comfort food recipe. Salisbury steak was created in the late 1800’s by James H. Salisbury. Even though the recipe name has the word “steak” in it, it’s not actually made with steak, it’s made with a more budget-friendly ingredient: ground beef.
My earliest recollection of Salisbury steak was much later than its invention, and it was in the form of those popular tv dinners. Remember those?
I remember being a kid and having tv dinners on occasion while visiting my grandparents. Whenever I’d be having a sleepover, Nan would warm one up for me, and I remember enjoying it while parked in front of the tv watching cartons. Everything was divided into sections: the meat, the vegetables and even a little dessert. Oh, the memories! I haven’t had a tv dinner in ages, and I feel like trying one again just for nostalgia.
Salisbury steak is the kind of comfort food recipe that always surprises me when I eat it, especially the homemade version. Why? Well, because it’s made with super simple, everyday ingredients. There’s nothing fancy or over the top. But the end result is so freaking good! Basically, the finished dish is greater than the sum of its parts, ya know?
How To Make Salisbury Steak
Here is an overview of how to make Salisbury steak (full details are in the recipe card below):
Make the ground beef patties and pan fry
- Add the ground beef patty ingredients to a bowl and mix until well combined.
- Form the ground beef mixture into patties.
- Heat some olive oil in a frying pan and pan fry the patties.
- Flip the patties to cook on the other side, then remove them from the pan. The patties are not cooked at this point, we’re just trying to get a little colour on the outside. They’ll finish cooking in the gravy.
Make the gravy
- Cook some mushrooms and onion in a frying pan (use the same pan that you cooked the patties in).
- Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, then season with salt and black pepper.
- Add butter to the mushrooms and cook until melted.
- Stir in flour and cook for a couple of minutes to cook out the flour taste. The flour will coat the mushrooms and it will look pasty.
- Slowly stir beef broth into the mixture.
- Stir in thyme, Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Bring the gravy to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
Combine the mushroom gravy and patties
- Tuck the patties into the gravy, spooning some over top. Simmer until the patties are fully cooked through.
- Season with parsley. There ya have it, easy Salisbury steak ready to be devoured!
Sides To Serve With Salisbury Steak
Some delicious side ideas to serve with Salisbury steak are:
- Mashed potatoes (my favourite option)
- Homemade rolls
- Garlicky green beans
- Buttery peas and/or corn
- Roasted root vegetables
- Steamed broccoli or cauliflower
- French fries
- Crispy potato wedges
Leftovers and Reheating
Properly store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 to 4 days. Reheat before enjoying.
Salisbury steak reheats beautifully! Gently reheat leftovers in a frying pan over medium-low heat until the internal temperature of the patties reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Tip: If you need to thin out the gravy as you are reheating it, stir in a little beef broth until you reach the consistency you like best.
- As you are cooking the ground beef steaks in the gravy, if the gravy thickens or reduces too much, you can always add in a little more beef broth to thin it out.
- As a fresh herb component in the gravy, I used thyme. You can substitute with rosemary instead (or use a combination of the two).
- Salisbury steak is traditionally made with ground beef. If you want to mix things up, you can substitute with ground bison or ground turkey. Ground turkey, in particular, won’t give you quite the same flavour profile, but it will still taste delicious.
More Easy Ground Beef Recipes
If you try this recipe for Salisbury steak, be sure to leave a comment below!
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- ½ cup finely chopped onion
- ⅓ cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 large egg
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, if necessary
- ½ pound cremini or white button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups reduced sodium beef broth
- 1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme leaves, or freshly chopped rosemary leaves (or a combination of the two)
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- Freshly chopped parsley, garnish to taste
- Combine ground beef, onion, panko bread crumbs, egg, garlic, ketchup, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and black pepper in a large bowl and mix until everything is well-combined.
- Form the ground beef mixture into four oval-shaped patties, each about ¾-inch thick and about 3.5 inches wide and 5 inches long.Note: The patties will naturally shrink up as they cook and that's okay.
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Place the ground beef patties in the frying pan (leaving space around each one) and cook them for 2 minutes, then flip the patties and cook them on the other side for another 2 minutes. You just want to get some colour on the exterior of the patties, they are not cooked through yet. Transfer the patties to a plate while you start to prepare the gravy.
- If necessary, add the olive oil to the frying pan and heat over medium heat.Note: You may not need to add any more cooking oil to the frying pan. There will likely be oil leftover from pan frying the meat patties. If there is an excess amount of oil after pan frying the patties (way more than 1 tablespoon), you can remove some of it, leaving some to cook the mushrooms and onions. If, however, there is no oil left after pan frying the patties, then add some before cooking the mushrooms and onions.
- Add the mushrooms and onion. Cook for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion has softened and the mushrooms have lost some of their moisture and are little golden brown in colour. Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds or so until it's nice and fragrant. Season with a pinch each of salt and black pepper.
- Add the butter to the pan. Once melted, sprinkle over the flour. Stir everything together until there is no visible signs of white flour remaining. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, just to cook out the flour taste. Slowly stir in the beef broth, then stir in the thyme, Dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat (to about medium-low heat) to maintain a simmer.
Combine the Salisbury Steaks and Gravy
- Add the patties back to the frying pan (along with any juices that have accumulated on the plate), submerging them in the gravy and spooning some over top of each. Cook for 10 minutes or until the patties are fully cooked through (they are brown throughout, no longer pink and they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit in the centre of the patties when checked with an instant-read meat thermometer). Not: If necessary (your gravy thickens to much), add more beef broth and warm through.
- Season to taste, if necessary, with salt and black pepper. Sprinkle over freshly chopped parsley. Serve and enjoy!
A note on times provided: appliances vary, any prep and/or cook times provided are estimates only.
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