Country-Fried “Steaks” with Chipotle Gravy

I’ve been looking for something more to do with hamburger and I think I’ve found it.  Supposedly, this recipe only takes about 28 minutes (it’s from the Pampered Chef 29 Minutes to Dinner Vol. 2), but it did take me a little longer to do.  Granted, a lot of that had to do with me doing a few other things at the same time and not following the directions exactly.

For one thing, I didn’t use a skillet.  I don’t have one that will fit 4 burgers and you can easily make more than that (I had 4 burgers and 2 micro burgers for Ian).  Instead, I used my electric griddle, which still worked fine, but I didn’t get what I needed for the gravy.

So I did have to make my own gravy at the end, but I still used all the ingredients I was suppose to (I just didn’t have any leavings from the skillet).  The gravy still came out good, so it’s not essential to use the leavings.  I do have to say, though, I think I found a great tool to use when making gravy.  It’s the mini-whipper.  It made stirring the gravy so much easier than using a regular whisk.  When I first got the mini-whipper, I really didn’t think I would use it (I mainly got it for my kit), but after tonight, I’ll be using it a lot more.

The other thing I like about this recipe is the use of the flour and buttermilk before using the crackers as coating – it made cooking the meat so much easier.  I didn’t have the crumbs falling off on the griddle or sticking to anything but my fingers.  It was great.  Normally, when I use breadcrumbs (or anything), some of the coating comes off when I use a spatula to flip the burgers/chicken and that didn’t happen this time.  I’ll be using this technicque again for sure.

Not only will I use that technique, but I think you could easily mix this recipe up.  Instead of using chipotle pepper, try a spicier pepper or a milder one.  I did mix one thing up – I used whole wheat saltines instead of the regular ones.  This added more fiber to the recipe and it still tasted great.

Honestly, I like this recipe.  It wasn’t too spicy for me; the meat was still juicy inside; and I think I can play with it.  That’s a home run for me.  So if you’re looking for something different to do with hamburger, try this one.

1 tbsp + 1 tsp chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, divided
1 lb 80% lean ground beef
1-1/2 cups finely crushed saltine crackers (about 37 or one tube)
1-1/2 cups buttermilk
1 egg
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 tbsp vegetable oil
3/4 cup beef broth


  1. Finely chop chipotle pepper using food chopper.  In batter bowl, combine 1 tsp of the chipotle pepper, beef, 1/2 cup of the crackers, 1/4 cup of the buttermilk, egg, salt, and black pepper; mix well.  Shape beef mixture into four irregular-shaped patties, about 1/2 inch thick.  Place flour in first coating tray.  Pour 3/4 cup of the buttermilk in second tray and place remaining 1 cup of the cracker crumbs in third tray.  Lightly dredge each patty in flour, shaking off excess; dip into buttermilk and then into crackers, pressing gently to secure crumbs to patty.
  2. Add oil to skillet; heat over medium heat 1-3 minutes or until shimmering.  Place patties in skillet; cook 4-6 minutes on each side or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F and patties are no longer pink in center.  Remove patties from skillet to paper towel-lined plate (do not wipe out skillet).
  3. Add 2 tbsp of the flour from coating tray to skillet; whisk using flat whisk until smooth.  Gradually add broth and remaining 1 tbsp chipotle pepper, whisking until smooth. Cook 1-3 minutes or until gravy comes to a boil, whisking constantly.  Whisk in remaining 1/2 cup buttermilk.  Cook 1-3 minutes or until thickened, whisking constantly.  Serve gravy over steaks

Yield: 4 servings

Nutritional Info: calories 630; total fat 39g; saturated fat 11g; cholesterol 135mg; carbohydrate 30g; protein 29g; sodium 1010mg; fiber 2g
Exchanges: 2 starch; 1/2 milk; 3 medium-fat meat; 4-1/2 fat (2-1/2 carb)

February 13, 2009 · jackie · 25 Comments
Posted in: Meat

25 Responses

  1. morgajel - February 15, 2009

    The pan wasn’t the cause for lack of drippings; it was the fact that we had the low-fat sirloin burger.

    The recipe also allows a lot of latitude for play- lots of variables you can tweak.

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