Chili Lime Cube Steak Recipe

4.8 from 13 votes
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Chili Lime Cube Steaks pack in a ton of spicy, sweet, and zesty flavors for a fast and flexible family meal. Only a few simple ingredients and ready in less than 10 minutes. Serve these pan-seared cubed steaks with your favorite sides for a quick and easy dinner recipe for busy weeknights.

Love this dish? Try Chili Honey Lime Shrimp if you are in the mood for seafood or Sriracha Lime Slow Cooker Turkey Tenderloin if you want poultry.

Cube steaks with a chili sauce in a cast iron pan with lime slices

Cube Steak Recipes

Cube steak, also known as a cubed steak or swiss steak, gets its name from the marking made by tenderizing cuts of lean beef with a meat tenderizer. This can be done with either a tenderizing mallet or an electric tenderizer or “swissing machine”.

This produces a thin cut of meat that is less tough than the original steak and cooks quickly. The traditional methods for cooking cube steak also are intended to keep it from being too tough or dry.

Cook it quickly, such as chicken fried steak. Or cook it low and slow, simmering for a long time in a sauce. Also, you can just top it with a creamy gravy.

Is Cube Steak healthy?

It is exactly those types of recipes that give cube steak a reputation for being unhealthy. But it is traditionally made from cubing a lean cut of beef such as top sirloin or top round.

Therefore, a 4 ounce serving of cube steak typically has only about 160 calories and 6 grams of fat. But is is packed with about 25 grams of protein and plenty of iron.

And when it is cooked without breading or flour-thickened sauces and gravies, it can be part of a well-balanced meal. It is also gluten free, and can be added to low carb meals.

Tongs laying in a cast iron pan with chili lime cube steaks

The Original Recipes

For a healthy alternative, I’ve been making Cube Steaks with Worcestershire Sauce for years. A quick sear in a cast iron skillet and a splash of Worcestershire sauce infuses a rich and savory flavor without the greasiness of oil from frying or a heavy sauce.

Another fast family favorite of readers and my family are Chili Lime Steak Bites. Similar to the cube steak recipe, these morsels of beef are cooked quickly before adding a simple sweet-heat sauce of chili paste, honey and lime.

This recipe use the technique of the pan-seared cube steaks with the chili lime sauce of the steak bites. Combine both into one recipe that is a healthier way to enjoy this lean and budget-friendly cut of beef.

Cubed Steaks with a red sauce and lime slices in a Cast iron pan

Cube Steaks with Chili Lime Sauce

Tender and lean beef cubed steaks are pan-seared in a skillet then glazed with a simple honey lime sauce. The key is a super hot pan and a few pantry ingredients.

What you need


  • Limes – zest the limes first before juicing them.
  • Chili paste – the tubes of chili paste you can find in the produce section near the herbs, like from the brand Gourmet Gardens.
  • Honey
  • Cube steaks
  • Spices – salt, pepper, and garlic powder
  • Olive oil
  • Garnish – additional lime slices, cilantro, and sliced scallions, if desired


  • Microplane zester – easily zest the limes and avoid getting any of the bitter white pith.
  • Handheld juicer – you can just squeeze the limes, but I like this because it gets out tons of juice without a lot of work or mess.
  • 10-inch cast iron skillet – you can use any heavy-bottomed skillet, but cast iron can get very hot which gives a nice sear to the steaks.
  • Tongs – for flipping the cubed steak.

How to make it – scroll to the recipe card for the full set of instructions

  1. Stir the lime juice and zest, chili paste, and honey together, and set aside.
  2. Season the cube steaks with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  3. Preheat the skillet over high heat and add olive oil.
  4. Sear the steaks on each side.
  5. Pour the chili-lime sauce over the steaks and flip to coat.
  6. Serve immediately with additional lime slices, chopped cilantro, and/or sliced scallions, if desired.
Chili Lime Cube Steaks served on a brown plate with mixed veggies

Make it a Meal: What to Serve with Cube Steaks?

Rice Bowls

Satisfying Salad

Fast Weeknight Meal

Summery Dinner

Cube Steaks with a chili sauce served on a brown plate with roasted potatoes and mixed veggies
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More cheap dinner ideas with beef

Cast iron pan with four cube steaks with a red-colored chili sauce and lime slices
4.8 from 13 votes

Chili Lime Cube Steaks

Simple seasones and pan-seared cube steaks are cooked in a skillet then covered with a sweet, spicy, and savory chili-lime sauce. A fast family meal bursting with flavor.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes


  • 2 limes, zested and juiced
  • 2 Tablespoons chili paste (recommended: Gourmet Garden)
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1-1 1/4 lbs. cube steaks (4 steaks about 4-5 oz. each)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Additional lime slices, cilantro, and sliced scallions for garnish, if desired


  • In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice and zest, chili paste, and honey. Set aside.
  • Season the cube steaks with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Heat a 10-inch cast iron skillet over high heat. Add the olive oil and swirl to coat the pan.
  • Carefully place steaks in the pan. Depending on the size of your pan and steak, you may need to do this in two batches. Sear for about 3-4 minutes, or until browned, then flip over and sear the other side for another 3-4 minutes.
  • If you seared the steaks in batches, return all steaks to the pan and pour the chili-lime sauce over the steaks. Let reduce and thicken for a minute or two, turning the steaks to coat them completely in the sauce.
  • Remove from the pan and serve immediately. Garnish with additional lime slices, chopped cilantro, and/or sliced scallions, if desired.
Nutrition Facts
Chili Lime Cube Steaks
Amount Per Serving (1 cube steak with sauce)
Calories 326 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 7g35%
Cholesterol 102mg34%
Sodium 378mg16%
Potassium 522mg15%
Carbohydrates 8g3%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 30g60%
Vitamin A 16IU0%
Vitamin C 6mg7%
Calcium 33mg3%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Disclaimers: Please discuss your individual dietary needs (i.e. gluten free) with a physician. Even when not specified, be sure to verify all ingredients are gluten free, if needed, by reading labels on all packaging and/or confirming with the manufacturer this varies by brand and can change at any time. Nutrition information shown is an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.


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