Poor Man’s (Salisbury) Steak on the Big Green Egg

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Poor Man's Steak, or Salisbury Steak, is a satisfying homestyle meal, common in many Amish communities. I grew up eating this dish, so it takes me back to memories of Sunday dinner at my mom's house with sides of cooked corn and mashed potatoes.

The recipe is much like meatloaf. It is usually cut into squares, floured and browned in a pan, and then covered with a gravy and baked until done in the oven. I was inspired to take this traditional dish to a new level by cooking it entirely in the Big Green Egg to give it a wood-fired flavor.

If you are bored with your outdoor cooking or need some new inspiration, give this recipe a try. Your guests will love it!

Need barbecue supplies? Visit us at 140 W Main Street in New Holland, PA (store hours at the bottom of this page) for rubs, sauces, thermometers, gloves, gadgets, charcoal, pellets, and everything else you need to cook outdoors. You can also browse hundreds of products in our online catalog.

Prepare the Meat

The first step in this recipe is to mix the meat mixture (recipe at the bottom of this page). Press the meat into a cookie sheet, then cover and refrigerate it for several hours or overnight.

The mixture

Pressed into a pan

Ready for cooling

Fire the Grill

For this recipe, I’m using my XLarge Big Green Egg fired with Nature-Glo lump charcoal and a target temperature of 350 degrees F. I'm cooking the meat over direct heat, then switching to indirect heat to finish cooking it.

The Big Green Egg makes it easy to do this, but you can use any grill, as long as you have direct heat for grilling the patties and indirect heat for finishing the dish in a pan.

Nature-Glo lump charcoal is cheaper than some brands and lights quickly, making it a favorite among our customers.

My favorite method of lighting the Egg is with 1-3 waxed fire starters. I used tumbleweed starters for this cook because that's what I had on hand, but they are more messy than the fire starter squares you can pick up in our store.

Follow these steps to fire the Big Green Egg for direct heat:

  1. 1
    Fully open the top and bottom vents and remove the convEGGtor. Close the screen vent in the bottom to keep embers from dropping out.
  2. 2
    Fill the firebox ring (or Kick Ash Basket if you are using one) with lump charcoal. Nestle 2 fire starters into the charcoal, and light them with a lighter.
  3. 3
    Leave the lid and bottom vent open for 10 minutes, then add the cooking grate, and close the lid (with the top vent fully open).
  4. 4
    Once the temperature approaches your target temperature (within 5–10 degrees), close both the top and bottom vents to roughly 1” open. Watch the thermometer to determine whether it's going up or down and make vent adjustments as needed to dial it in to 350 degrees. To raise the temperature, give the fire slightly more air; to lower the temperature, give it less air.

Refilling the XLarge Big Green Egg with Nature-Glo charcoal

Smokeware's 3-in-1 tool is a must-have for cooking with ceramic grills. It's perfect for removing ashes, carrying grates, and cleaning grates. It also works great for scraping grease in other types of smokers.

Lighting the fire starters

Giving it some time to light the charcoal

Lid and bottom vent open while the charcoal lights

The cooking grate replaced

Top vent adjusted

Bottom grate adjusted

The Big Green Egg is an excellent choice for both grilling and smoking, as well as baking desserts and casseroles with a wood-fired flavor. It is charcoal-fired, but fuel-efficient and easy to use and maintain. On top of that, the lifetime warranty covers cracks and more.

Cooking Phase 1

Slice the meat into squares and grill them over direct heat until the outside is browned. You'll finish cooking the meat in phase 2 of the cook.

Grilling the first side of the patties

Close-up of the meat grilling

Grilling the patties

Grilling the second side

A hand-held instant read thermometer is essential for cooking outdoors. We carry a full line of high quality thermometers from Thermoworks.

Cooking Phase 2

Arrange the meat in a shallow pan, such as a cookie sheet and pour the white sauce over it. We use a gluten-free homemade white sauce, but if you'd prefer, you can use store-bought mushroom soup.

Set the pan into the smoker and cook it at 350 degrees F until the internal temperature of the meat reaches at least 160 degrees F and the sauce turns brown.

Ready for the sauce

Adding the sauce

Replacing the convEGGtor for indirect heat

Replacing the grate

Baking the meat

Getting close

Time to eat!

Side view of the steak

You must try this delightful meal soon. The smoke flavor from cooking this dish on the grill complements it perfectly, and the creamy sauce makes it more comforting than your favorite meatloaf.

Need barbecue supplies? Visit us at 140 W Main Street in New Holland, PA (store hours at the bottom of this page) for rubs, sauces, thermometers, gloves, gadgets, charcoal, pellets, and everything else you need to cook outdoors. You can also browse hundreds of products in our online catalog.

Poor Man's (Salisbury) Steak

Ingredients
  

Meat

  • 3 pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 onion chopped

White Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • 2 tablespoons mushrooms chopped fine
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1-1/2 cups milk
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

White Sauce

  • Sautee the mushrooms in the butter.
  • Whisk in the flour.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients.
  • Heat over medium heat until thickened (approximately 5 minutes), stirring to keep it from burning.

Meat

  • Combine all of the meat mixture ingredients.
  • Press the meat onto a cookie sheet.
  • Refrigerate the meat for several hours or overnight.
  • Cut the meat into squares and brown both sides over direct heat on a grill.
  • Lay the "patties" into a cookie sheet or pan and pour the sauce over it.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour or until the internal temperature of the meat exceeds 160 degrees F and the sauce turns brown.
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