How to Cook Thin Bottom Round Steak in Oven or Crock Pot

By Jerrica Mah

Bottom round steak is a lean, economical cut that can be tender and juicy if cooked properly. It’s a great option for families on a budget that can take the time to cook it right.

If you’re cooking a thin cut, you’ll need to take extra care not to overcook it. It all comes down to slowly cooking and removing it at the ideal internal temperature.

I will walk you through the best way to cook a thin bottom round steak in the oven or crock pot. Feel free to jump to a topic by clicking one of the following links, but I recommend scrolling through to ensure the best results.

Bottom Round Steak vs. Roast vs. Top Round

cow diagram showing round cut on back leg

It’s important to understand the difference between bottom round steak and roast. Otherwise, you will overcook it. Bottom round steak is cut from bottom round roast, meaning it’s a smaller piece of the same cut. So, DON’T USE a round roast recipe to cook round steak without adjusting the cooking time.

Both bottom round and top round are cuts from the hind legs of a cow. Bottom round comes from the outside of the leg, and top round from the inside. Both require low and slow cooking methods for tender results. Top round tends to be thicker and larger than bottom round and thus requires longer cooking time.

Pros & Cons of Bottom Round Steak

Bottom round steak is more affordable than most steaks and is nice and lean. As such, however, it is a relatively tough cut and is easy to overcook. So, you must know how to prepare and cook the meat properly to avoid chewy, dry steak.

Typical Uses in Recipes

Bottom round steak is most often used as cube steak in stew, stroganoff, chunky chili, and other recipes that call for meat chunks. If using it in a stew, I recommend jumping over to How Long to Boil Stew Meat to Make It Tender or Crockpot Recipe for Cubed Steak With Gravy (& Without)

It is also commonly used in braised recipes, such as Swiss steak or steak and gravy.

However, you can cook bottom round steak whole in the oven with excellent results. After all, that’s what this article is about!

How to Pick a Good Bottom Round Steak

1 bottom round steak per two people

As with any steak, look for bright pink or red coloring and even marbling. However, remember that bottom round steak is a lean cut and thus has minimal marbling. It’s also a good idea to check the “packaged date” on the packaging to select the freshest cut.

How Much Bottom Round Steak Per Person?

Bottom round steak is usually nicely trimmed and packaged as 12-16 oz steaks. One steak is typically enough for two people if accompanied by good side dishes. If cubed for stew or the like, one steak can serve up to three people.

How to Cook Thin Bottom Round Steak in Oven or Slow Cooker

oven and crock pot

You do NOT want to cook bottom round steak on high heat. You’ll never get a tender steak if you do. It’s best to cook it low and slow in the oven or a crock pot.

The cooking process is the same for an oven or crock pot. The only big difference is you set the slow cooker on low heat instead of at a specific oven temperature.

So, you can use the following information for both oven and slow cookers!

How Do You Tenderize Bottom Round Steak?

meat mallet and marinade

You can tenderize bottom round roast using a meat tenderizer and/or an acidic marinade. Simply place the meat between pieces of plastic wrap or in an open Ziploc bag and pound it with a meat mallet several times. Then, marinate the meat in a sealed bag or container for 2 to 8 hours.

Your favorite steak marinade will work, though it’s best to use a marinade with some acid for this cut of meat. Vinegar, tomato juice, and citrus juice are common steak marinade acids.

I recommend using the Best Steak Marinade in Existence, which has a whopping 4.6 stars with 4,500 reviews on Allrecipes. Simply combine the following ingredients…

Ingredients for Best Steak Marinade in Existence

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ⅓ cup soy sauce
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 ½ tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 ½ tablespoons dried parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried minced garlic (Optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce (Optional)

Best Oven Temperature for Bottom Round Steak

oven set too 200 F and crock pot on low

Cook bottom round steaks on low in a crock pot or at 200 degrees F in an oven. This is the best oven temp for max tenderness. But you can go to 225 degrees F to cook it a little faster without too noticeable a difference.

Remember, low and slow is best. So, give yourself plenty of time to cook this cut of steak. Otherwise, you’ll be sorely disappointed with a chewy, tough steak.

How Long to Cook Bottom Round Steaks?

6 hour timer on oven and crock pot

Bottom round steak takes about 6 hours in a crockpot on low or oven set to 200 degrees F. You can cook multiple steaks at a time in this same timeframe in the same crockpot or baking dish. Let the steaks come to room temperature before cooking them for best timing.

How Do You Know When Bottom Round Steak Is Done?

doneness chart for bottom round steak

You should rely on internal temperature (not cook time) to determine when your bottom round steak is done. Use an instant-read thermometer to hone your cooking time and pull it out when the temperature reaches your preferred doneness, as follows:

  • Rare: 120 degrees F
  • Medium-Rare: 130 degrees F
  • Medium: 140 degrees F
  • Medium-Well: 150 degrees F
  • Well-Done: 160 degrees F

5 Easy Bottom Round Steak Recipes

recipe book

Now that you know all the basics for cooking bottom round steak in the oven, here are some delicious recipes. You can use these easy recipes for great results every time.

Let’s start with a simple yet great recipe for the oven, and then I’ll link to a variety of recipes that yield a delicious steak in different ways.

Easy Round Steak Recipe

This simple recipe works in a crockpot, dutch oven, roasting pan, or even a deep casserole dish covered in aluminum foil.

  1. Marinade steaks in the Best Steak Marinade in Existence for 2-8 hours
  2. Remove steaks from fridge 30 minutes before cooking to allow them to come up to room temperature
  3. Preheat crockpot on low or oven to 200 degrees F
  4. Remove steaks from marinade and pat dry with a paper towel
  5. Optional: season with black pepper, onion powder, and kosher salt
  6. Sautee onion slices in pan with butter until translucent and place into crockpot or baking dish
  7. Brown steaks on all sides and place into crockpot or baking dish
  8. Add 2-1/2 cups of vegetable stock or beef broth
  9. Cook in crockpot or oven for approximately 6 hours, checking the internal temp starting at the 5 hour mark. Remove the steaks from the heat when they reach your desired doneness. (See doneness temperature chart above.)
  10. Serve with your favorite gravy recipe and sides.

Pro Tip: use the stock from the crockpot or baking dish to make a gravy.

More Recipes to Try:

How to Store Leftover Round Steak

steak in airtight container in fridge for 3 days

An easy way to store leftover round steak is in a sealed container in the fridge. It’s important to follow the USDA’s 2-hour rule by putting it in the fridge within 2 hours of cooking. If stored properly, cooked steak will last 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

To prolong its shelf life, you can freeze leftover steak in an airtight container for up to 3 months. After 3 months, its quality will wane, but according to the USDA, frozen food is good indefinitely.

Bottom Round Steak Nutrition Facts

Here are the nutrition facts and daily values for thin beef bottom round steak according to Nutritionix:

  • Serving Size: 6 oz (168 g)
  • Calories: 255
  • Total Fat: 10.5 g (13%)
  • Saturated Fat: 3.8 g (19%)
  • Cholesterol: 105 mg (35%)
  • Sodium: 105 mg (5%)
  • Total Carbohydrates: 0 g
  • Protein: 36 g
  • Iron: 4.1 mg (23%)

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