Slow-Cooker Smothered Steak
Smothered steak sounds perfect for the slow cooker—but not if the meat is flavorless and the gravy washed out.
Why This Recipe Works
The slow cooker was made for recipes like this––or so we thought. The steaks and onions let out so much liquid that, when combined with the stock or wine called for in most recipes, they left us with a watered-down sauce and washed-out meat flavor. We found that adding no extra liquid turned out a more flavorful, concentrated sauce and better-cooked meat. Browning the meat and onions before putting them in the slow cooker was messy and time-consuming. Dusting the meat with cornstarch helped it brown in the steamy environment of the slow cooker, and macerating and microwaving the onions drew out some of their liquid and deepened their flavor.