Last night I made dinner, and it was an absolute failure. It happens to the best of us. After we realized that we couldn’t choke down that disaster, we needed something else easy and fast to make.
That is when we decided to have creamed chipped beef over toast. We keep the Stouffer’s kind in the freezer for fast comfort food. We had it over pieces of toast and a leftover flaky biscuit. I prefer toast, but it was a good use of remaining biscuits from breakfast the day before. We figured, okay, we love this stuff, so how hard can it be to make our own?
Cream chipped beef is generally a salty meal, a comfort food that is high in carbs and calories, with just a touch of protein. We’ve found that the dried beef traditionally used in this recipe is becoming harder to come by so you can also use torn pieces of roast beef lunchmeat.
What is creamed chipped beef?
It is a 100-year-old recipe that consists of cut up pieces of dried beef and creamy white gravy, ladled over toast. The gravy is a simple sauce that is made out of butter, white flour, milk, salt, and pepper, sometimes called a bechamel sauce. Creamed chipped beef is generally served over white toast, biscuits, potatoes, or rice. Traditionally, creamed chipped beef was a staple for American troops in World War II and beyond—the dried beef used in the recipe was shelf-stable for long periods, it often used powdered milk, and this S.O.S (shit on a shingle) could literally “feed an army,” keeping soldiers full until their next meal.
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What kind of meat is in creamed chipped beef?
Cream chipped beef is traditionally made using dried beef—beef that is ground, formed into strips, and air-dried. You can also tear up pieces of deli roast beef lunchmeat—it’s easier to find in a U.S. neighborhood grocery. Some recipes have called for ground beef or hamburger, but this does change the essential flavor and smooth texture a bit.
How to eat creamed chipped beef
Most people eat cream chipped beef spooned over slices of sliced, toasted white bread. You can also pour it over biscuits or even hashbrowns. Creamed chipped beef as dinner has often been served with a side of English peas; as a breakfast, served with a side of fried or scrambled eggs. For those on a gluten-free diet, try it on cooked rice or a baked potato.
Creamed chipped beef is a classic meal of dried beef cooked in a roux of flour, butter, milk, salt, and pepper. It is generally served over toast.
- 8 oz dried beef or roast beef deli lunchmeat (see notes)
- 2 T butter
- 2 T all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ c milk
- Pepper to taste (if using roast beef lunchmeat, you may need to add a ¼ t of salt to taste)
- 4 slices of white bread, toasted
- Rinse the dried beef in cold water and pat it dry. (Skip this step if using deli lunchmeat.)
- Roughly chop the beef into bite-size pieces. Set aside.
- Add the butter to a skillet over medium-high heat. Allow to fully melt.
- Add the dried beef to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Stir often, until the edges curl slightly. Turn the heat down to medium
- In a separate bowl, whisk the flour with the milk until combined.
- Pour the flour/milk mixture into the hot pan while whisking continuously.
- Simmer until the roux thickens, about five minutes.
- Serve hot over toast and add pepper to taste.
Storage tips: Keep leftover cream chip beef in an airtight container for up to four days chilled in the refrigerator.
Reheating tips: Reheat in a glass or porcelain container in the microwave, covered, starting at 30 seconds on high for ½ cup of leftover gravy.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American