Treat yourself to the savory flavors of steak pizzaiola. Tender slices of steak cooked in a delicious tomato sauce and topped with Italian herbs and spices.
This recipe is an excellent meal option for anyone who loves steak and Italian-inspired dishes. It features tender and juicy flank steak cooked with aromatic herbs and tomatoes. The combination of savory flavors is a perfect balance that will leave your taste buds craving more.
Also known as carne alla pizzaiola or simply pizzaiola, this classic dish originates from Naples and has been enjoyed for generations. It features tender slices of steak cooked in a tomato-based sauce that is bursting with flavor.
This dish can be served on its own or paired with pasta for a complete meal. Whether you're looking for a hearty dinner option or want to impress guests at your next gathering, this classic Italian dish is sure to please.
To make steak pizzaiola, you'll want to use high-quality ingredients for the best taste. Authentic recipes use San Marzano tomatoes so you may want to look for that variety when choosing a canned tomato.
These are the items used in this recipe:
- sirloin steak
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
- canned crushed tomatoes
- dried basil
- dried whole oregano
- fresh basil
Scroll down to the recipe card for the quantities used.
You'll want to start this steak recipe about an hour before serving time for the best results. This will allow plenty of time for the meat to rest.
Season sirloin steak with salt and black pepper. Allow to rest for 15 to 20 minutes.
Sear both sides of each steak until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add butter, tilt the pan to baste each steak.
Transfer steaks to a plate and let rest.
In the same skillet, sauté onions until translucent. Then sauté garlic until fragrant.
Pour crushed tomatoes into the skillet.
Sprinkle dried basil and dried oregano. Season to taste. Simmer over low heat for 10 to 15 minutes.
Once thickened, add the steaks to sauce and cook for 30 seconds more.
Turn steaks then top with fresh basil. Turn off heat when steaks are warmed, about 30 seconds.
There are many ways to vary a steak pizzaiola recipe. Here are a few ideas.
- Add a pinch of red pepper flakes to give your sauce a subtle kick of heat.
- Try adding tomato paste for a thicker and richer sauce.
- Deglaze the skillet with up to a half cup of white wine before adding the tomatoes for a more authentic taste.
- Choose the right cut of meat. You want a steak that is not only tender but also flavorful enough to stand up to the bold flavors of the pizzaiola sauce. Ribeye and sirloin are two excellent options.
- Season your steak well. Before cooking, season the meat well with salt, pepper, and any other desired seasonings. Consider adding some dried herbs like thyme or rosemary.
- Get a good sear on both sides of the steaks. Cook about 2-3 minutes per side in the skillet over high heat. Make sure the first side is browned before flipping it over
- Use high-quality canned tomatoes that are packed in their own juices.
- Although dried herbs were used in the recipe, fresh oregano and basil are always better than dried.
For each serving, spoon additional pizzaiola sauce over the top of the steak. Then, garnish with fresh herbs like parsley or basil.
Creamy polenta also goes well the tender steak dish. To take things up a notch, consider adding some grated Parmesan cheese to your polenta recipe for an extra layer of flavor.
If you plan on eating the leftovers within a few days, store the steak in the refrigerator. Make sure the container is sealed tightly.
If you plan to keep the steak pizzaiola longer than a few days, you can freeze it. Wrap it in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, or place it into an airtight freezer bag before placing it in the freezer.
Thaw overnight in the refrigerator if frozen before reheating. When ready to eat, reheat in a skillet over medium-high heat until thoroughly warmed.
It's usually served over pasta, like spaghetti or penne, but it can also be served on its own. You could also serve a side salad or roasted vegetables such as zucchini, peppers, or mushrooms.
For those looking for a more tender cut of steak, sirloin or tenderloin are both good choices. For those who prefer a heartier flavor, ribeye steak is an excellent option.
Want a few more tasty beef dinner recipes? Here are a few you may want to try next.
- Stuffed flank steak is an impressive and tasty dish.
- Carne asada in oven is a convenient way to cook this Mexican favorite.
- Braised short ribs are very tender and flavorful.
FOR THE STEAK:
- 2 slices of sirloin steak ½ inch thick, 7 ounces each
- 2 cloves crushed garlic
- 2 tablespoons butter
- kosher salt to taste
- ground black pepper to taste
- 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
FOR THE SAUCE:
- 14 ounces canned crushed tomatoes
- 1 small finely chopped onion ¼ cup
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried whole oregano
- ¼ cup fresh basil chopped, loosely packed
- kosher salt to taste
- ground black pepper to taste
- Season sirloin steak with salt and black pepper. Allow to rest for 15 to 20 minutes before cooking.
- In a heated skillet with oil and garlic, sear steak one at a time. Turn steak after 30 seconds to 1 minute when it’s slightly golden brown.
- Add butter, tilt the pan and start basting the steak. Do this for the second piece of steak. If you’re using a larger skillet, opt to sear both steaks at the same time.
- Transfer steaks to a plate. Let it rest.
- In the same skillet with half of oil-butter removed, sauté onions until translucent.
- Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Avoid garlic from burning.
- Pour crushed tomatoes then sprinkle dried basil and dried oregano. Season to taste. Simmer over low heat for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Once sauce starts to thicken, add the steaks and continue to simmer for 30 seconds. Turn steaks then top with fresh basil. Turn off heat after 30 seconds or once steaks are warmed through.
- Served with some crusty bread or as topping to your favorite pasta.