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Air Fryer Cube Steak Recipe

This air fryer cube steak recipe marinated tastes so good! Tender in the middle with a bit of crisp on the edges, it’s the best dinner ever packed with protein. Not frozen cube steak but fresh pieces we love with teriyaki sauce makes a great quick meal.

air fryer cube steak

If you’re looking for an inexpensive but super flavorful meal, give this air fryer cubed steak a whirl! Packed with protein and served over rice it is a low fat meal your whole family will love. Just one more air fryer recipe for beginners on the blog. (affiliate links present)

Cube Steak in Air Fryer

In the beginning of our Ninja Foodi recipe creations we made air fryer steak wrapped with bacon. Man was that good!! I came across this tenderized beef at the store and it was so cheap I couldn’t pass it up. Tried it a few different ways and this was our favorite with teriyaki sauce!

Since then we figured out how to cook frozen steak in air fryer and the list goes on from there. Every time we make something new and it turns out great we just have to share so follow along…

If you love easy air fryer recipes too, here are some resources to start with:

cosori review

Air Fryer Cube Steak No Flour

You don’t need to add anything to the outsides of these. Cook with just some seasonings or if you follow our lead you should marinate them in your favorite sauce first. Another lightly breaded Pork Cube Steak is good. Sauce will add moisture and tons of flavor though so it’s fork tender when done.

Cube Steak in Ninja Air Fryer

It doesn’t matter what brand you use either. If you do have a Foodi this is specific to the air crisp button with the lid that is attached. With that one you could pressure cook cube steak too to compare the two since it has that function as well.

What kind of meat is cube steak?

Top round or top sirloin is what’s usually used. The name is because of the deep indentations in the meat. That is made with a meat tenderizer. I buy it already done but you could do it yourself.

Is there another name for cube steak?

In the Southern states you might hear it called bucket steak. This name may have come about because they’re sold in cardboard buckets, who knows.

This is what ours looks like. Not really typical when buying it in the store, but we buy meat in bulk every year from a local farm. Needless to say we make a lot of easy beef recipes because 1/2 of a cow lasts a while….

cube steak

How do you tenderize cube steak with mallets?

I actually don’t do this myself. I’ve never not seen this for sale at the store. BUT if you really do want to try this yourself just use the pointy side of your tenderizer. Place meat under a piece of plastic wrap and pound!

How do you cook cube steak?

First of all I think a marinade is a must with this cut. You could use our steak dry rub instead but thick liquid with tons of flavor will really permeate the protein and make it even more tender.

That was gravy based, good, but higher in calories. Same goes for our slow cooker cube steak. If you have all day that one gets raving reviews also.

cube steak recipe

Cube Steak Air Fryer

When I think of a sauce to add to any meat, I automatically think teriyaki!! Maybe it is because I grew up in Hawaii, but it’s the best sauce ever if you ask me.

I followed the same concept when making this air fryer teriyaki chicken dish. It it now one of our favorite meals served with Ninja Foodi rice.

This is what you’ll need to get started:

  1. Cube steak already tenderized were used, 4 of them to serve all of us.
  2. I have used this bottle of teriyaki sauce. You could make a homemade version, follow the one in our spicy teriyaki chicken recipe.
    1. If you buy another brand just make sure it is thick, not thin like soy sauce.

If you need to “beat” your steak yourself, use this meat tenderizer. Want it right now without soaking? Just sprinkle salt and pepper over both sides, spritz with olive oil spray and air fry using our timing below.

cube steak in air fryer

Will soaking cube steak in milk make it tender?

Yes it will. I prefer something with intense flavors though. Either way you’ll want to let it sit for at least 1 hour, I prefer closer to 3 hours. Pour in a bowl submerged, cover the top and into the fridge it goes.

Milk in a shallow bowl works pretty well if you are making air fryer chicken fried steak though. This one is different because you’re using a seasoned flour mixture, a bit of breading and such so the flavors will come from elsewhere. Country fried steak is pretty amazing, I’d try that one next too.

marinated cube steak

Once they’re nicely soaked you’re ready to get them cooked. Now this is super fast I tell you. I mean cook time does vary a bit. The differences are whether you like your beef totally dead without any pink, or more rare.

I am kinda’ in between. It will stay more tender if you leave some pink in the center. You can see how “well done” ours was in 5 minutes in the picture at the top of this post. 6 minutes would make it closer to medium well.

Thickness of your pieces will change the timing a bit too. You can see the size of ours below. Two fit at a time so we did two rounds. You want your pieces to rest for a good 5 minutes so that worked out well anyway.

air fryer cubed steak

Slicing right away will make the juices flow out, you don’t want that. Be patient so it turns out perfect for every bite.

  1. Put cube steak pieces and marinade in a bowl.
  2. Cover and refrigerate for two to four hours.
  3. If you’re using our dry rub instead, in a bowl whisk ingredients and pat on to both sides.
  4. Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees F for 5 minutes.
  5. Put two pieces in at a time allowing excess sauce to drain back into the bowl before placing them into basket. Cook as many as can fit into the air fryer basket without overlapping.
  6. Close drawer of your favorite air fryer and cook at 380 F for 5 minutes. This will keep the middle a bit pink. If you do not want any pink 6 minutes might be better for you.
  7. Remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

And there you have it!! We served air fryer vegetables on the side and diced this into bite size pieces over brown rice.

cube steak air fryer

A lot of times I cook things at 400 degrees, this is a bit lower. I think that is important to cook it a bit lower, for slightly longer so it stays super moist inside.

I know you’re going to love this but you may be thinking of other meals to make already so let me share another.

We’re going to stick with beef, since we still are getting through our cow from last year. I had a bunch of steaks to use up and came up with these killer air fryer steak bites!

steak bites

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air fryer cube steak
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5 from 5 votes

Air Fryer Cube Steak

This air fryer cube steak recipe marinated tastes so good! Tender in the middle with a bit of crisp on the edges, it's the best dinner ever.
Course Entree, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword air fryer, cube steak, marinated, ninja foodi, teriyaki
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 40kcal
Author The Typical Mom




  • If you have regular steaks you want to make cubed, put in between two pieces of parchment paper and pound with meat tenderizer on both sides to tenderize.
  • Put cube steak pieces and marinade in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 2-4 hours.
  • Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees F for 5 minutes.
  • Put 2 pcs. in (allowing excess sauce to drain back into the bowl) or as many as can fit into the basket without overlapping.
  • Close drawer and cook at 380 F for 5 minutes. This will keep the middle a bit pink. If you do not want any pink 6 minutes might be better for you.
  • Remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.


Nutrition Facts
Air Fryer Cube Steak
Amount Per Serving (2 oz)
Calories 40 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Cholesterol 1mg0%
Sodium 1631mg71%
Potassium 99mg3%
Carbohydrates 7g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 3g6%
Calcium 11mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Rating

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Friday 20th of August 2021

This is a quick, easy and delicious dish for a beginner air fryer like me!


Friday 20th of August 2021

I had no idea the air fryer could get the steak this moist, so good!

The Typical Mom

Sunday 22nd of August 2021

So good right

Valerie Johnson Cardwell

Tuesday 8th of June 2021

Does this work the same in an oven with air fry setting?

The Typical Mom

Tuesday 8th of June 2021

I haven't tried but it should work the same in all models.


Wednesday 12th of May 2021

This is a great family meal for a busy night. My family ate every bite and asked when I was making it again!

The Typical Mom

Saturday 15th of May 2021

Oh good


Wednesday 12th of May 2021

This was so good. I will definitely make it again!

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