Salisbury steak is of interest to anyone following a low-carb diet – at least historically, if not as a regular part of the diet. Created by Dr. James Salisbury, the dish was originally intended as a cure for the terrible diarrhea soldiers suffered during the American Civil War. Salisbury believed we should limit carbohydrates and fats, and eat a diet composed mainly of meat. He recommended eating his creation, which he prescribed for treatment of tuberculosis, diabetes, goiter, and other conditions, three times a day!
Salisbury steak was essentially a cake or burger made from ground round, broiled slowly and seasoned with butter, salt and pepper. Salisbury also allowed for flavouring with Worcestershire sauce, mustard, horseradish, or lemon juice.
Most recipes today include onion and mushroom as essential components, though these were not in the original burger. Salisbury recommended a bit of celery instead, “used as a relish.” The celery in my recipe is a nod to the good doctor.
Salisbury Steak Recipe
1-1/2 to 2 lb lean or extra lean ground beef
1 packet onion soup mix
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup milk
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1-2 tbsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp dry mustard
flour for dredging (optional)
oil for browning
1 cup beef broth
1 can sliced mushroom, with liquid
2 tsp dried minced onion
1-2 stalks celery, chopped (optional)
salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce to taste
Mix the ground beef with the onion soup and bread crumbs. Add the egg, milk, and seasonings. Form into patties. If desired, dredge each patty in flour before browning.
I like to make a double batch of both the patties and the gravy when I cook Salisbury steaks. We eat half right away, and I freeze the second half for later use. If you choose to do this, just brown the patties that you’ll be storing and cook partially only. This allows them to be reheated without becoming dry. Store burgers and gravy together or separately, either in labelled freezer bags or foil/glass baking pans.
When you want to use your freezer meal, defrost in the fridge over night. Heat through in a 350ºF oven for about 30 minutes, or cook on low for about 4 hours in a crockpot. Ground beef is safe to eat when the internal temperature reaches 160ºF.
This Salisbury steak recipe is quick and easy, and it’s a good way to stretch ground beef now that it’s gotten so expensive in some places. Add some steamed broccoli or lightly sauteed snap peas, or serve with a salad that contains some dark green, leafy vegetables in order to boost the vitamin content of the meal.
Featured Image Credit: Salisbury steak was once a health food by Hajime Nakano/Flickr; CC BY 2.0
Note: I originally published this recipe on Bubblews in April 2014