Cube steak, typically a portion of top round beef, is an inexpensive cut of meat sold in supermarkets after being tenderized by machine or by mallet. Cube steak, also commonly known as minute steak for its short cooking time, offers both versatility and tasty flavor. While this cut of meat comes packaged already tenderized, tenderizing it more helps bring out more flavor and softness in a meal. With a couple of commonly used kitchen and pantry items, tenderizing cube steak is a quick and easy process.
Score the steak with a very sharp knife. Score the steak across the top and underside of the meat very lightly. The cuts should be just enough to soften the topmost layer of the meat, but not damage the shape of the meat. Slice across the top of the steak in every possible direction, breaking up the meat as much as possible.
Tenderize the cube steak with a mallet. Tenderizing mallets are typically wooden or metal, and the heads of the mallets have many points on the ends of them. Cover your steak in a plastic bag or plastic wrap, and pound it thoroughly, until the entire steak is covered with marks from the mallet. This may be difficult to see, as most cube steaks are tenderized in this fashion at the supermarket before they are packaged for sale.
Use a granulated tenderizer. Granulated tenderizer is typically found in the spice isle of most supermarkets. Apply it liberally by sprinkling it across the entire surface and underside of the cube steak. Let the cube steak rest according to the directions listed on your container of tenderizer.
Marinate the cube steak in baking soda. Estimating 1 teaspoon per pound of meat, cover the meat in baking soda, working into the meat with your hands. Allow the meat to rest for at least 15 minutes, and wash the baking soda off before you cook the meat.