The BEST Steak Pizzaiola Recipe [EVER]

What is Steak Pizzaiola?

Are you looking for a simple, delicious meal to spice up your evening? Consider our steak pizzaiola recipe for a finger-licking delicacy! When preparing steak pizzaiola, you will need pan-fried beef, stewed tomato herb sauce, and aromatics like ginger and garlic.

While weekdays can be a little crazy, weekends are for unwinding and having a good time, weekend or weeknight, a great meal like the steak pizzaiola will spice up and lighten everyone’s evening!

So, what is steak pizzaiola? Steak pizzaiola, sometimes called carne alla pizzaiola, is an ancient Italian recipe prepared using thinly cut pan-fried steaks braised in tomato sauce. The sauce used in steak pizzaiola is thick, rich, and is super easy to prepare!

Steak pizzaiola would be incomplete without pizzaiola sauce. What is pizzaiola sauce? This sauce is a special sauce prepared using tomatoes, garlic, virgin olive oil, oregano, and other seasonings. If you are yet to try the pizzaiola sauce, be ready for a flavor bomb in your mouth! 

The low-class Italians discovered the steak pizzaiola recipe due to the harsh post-war conditions they experienced in the 1940s, forcing them to take advantage of what they had. 

Steak pizzaiola, otherwise known as Carne alla pizzaiola, was prepared using leftover pizza sauce loaded with aromatics alongside pieces of meat. The name steak pizzaiola translates to “meat, pizza style.”

carne alla pizzaiola

Authentic Steak Pizzaiola Ingredients

In the good old days, Italians prepared steak pizzaiola based on what was available. 

The steak pizzaiola is a perfect example of culinary scraps; whatever is in your fridge can be blended to come up with this inexpensive, delicious meal. 

The most authentic steak pizzaiola must have these ingredients:


Steak is the most vital ingredient when preparing the steak alla pizzaiola. The good thing about preparing the pizzaiola steak recipe is that you can use skirt steak, beef tenderloin, hanger steak, ribs, loin, flap steak, or any other steak, depending on your preference or availability.

Depending on the preparation method, the steak could be cut in large chunks or thinly sliced and bound using a mallet until well flattened. 

Yellow Onion

Yellow onions are the best round-up onions for cooking; they add a strong, mellow flavor to all meals. When preparing steak pizzaiola, you can mince or cut the onions into small fine pieces. The yellow onion will act as the base when preparing this meal.

Olive Oil

Italy is amongst the leading countries that produce quality extra-virgin olive oil; for this reason, Italians only use olive oil to prepare their meals, nothing else. So be sure to have some fresh and fragrant olive oil before you start cooking!


Traditionally Italians used to fry an entire garlic clove when preparing the steak pizzaiola, however, mincing the garlic ensures the flavor spreads well in the broth. As always, the more, the better!

White Wine

White wine would add a great flavor to your steak pizzaiola! Got none? No problem! You can substitute it with a splash of balsamic vinegar (regular or white) or red wine. Chicken or Beef broth would also add a nice savory flavor to your steak pizzaiola.


The best tomatoes to use when preparing this meal are fresh vine-ripe or Roma tomatoes. If these two are out of season, you can use San Marzano tomatoes, be sure to peel them first. San Marzano tomatoes are known for their sweetness, low acidity, and perfectly balanced flavor. 


Oregano is a must-have ingredient when preparing steak pizzaiola. Depending on your preference, you can use dry and fresh oregano. Add it when stewing tomatoes. 

Tomato Paste

Besides thickening the broth, Tomato sauce will effortlessly add a rich tangy flavor to your steak pizzaiola.

Besides the above ingredients, you may also consider adding black or green olives to your broth. Olives are salty and delicious; they will add some magic to your pizzaiola. You may also consider having some fresh basil for serving!

How to Concasse a Tomato

Concasse tomatoes are finely chopped tomatoes with no skin and seeds. Concasse tomatoes are better than regular tomatoes sliced on a chopping board; this is why most Italians use them in their recipes. 

Tomato seeds and skin are not only bitter, but they can also be an unpleasant sight to behold: Removing them before cooking enhances the appearance, flavor, and experience of the food you’re preparing.

The first thing to do when preparing concasse tomatoes is to make an x on the bottom of the tomato. Ensure you only cut the skin and not the flesh; this makes it simpler to pull out the skin after the next stage.

Submerge the tomatoes in hot boiling water for a short time. Depending on how ripe tomatoes are, they should last between one to three minutes. You should notice the peels pulling away. 

Once the tomatoes cool down, peel the skin off using a paring knife, then quarter and seed them out. If your tomatoes are white and pitty on the inside, use a knife to cut out the insides of the tomato, leaving the outer flesh only. If the tomatoes are beautifully red, scoop out the seeds using your fingers, leaving only the tomato flesh. 

The next and final stage is to chop the tomatoes. You can dice the concise tomato differently depending on the meal you are preparing; for example, you should cut the tomatoes in large pieces when making a meal like marinara sauce. When preparing steak pizzaiola, you will chop the tomatoes into small, fine pieces.

How to Make Italian Beef Pizzaiola in a Crock-Pot

Steak pizzaiola is a quick and effortless meal to prepare. If you have had a long day and need a quick fix, you can prepare this meal on a typical fast cooker, and you will have it ready in minutes! However, it would be a great idea to prepare some slowly on a steak pizzaiola crock-pot if you have all the time. 

When using a slow cooker to prepare steak in tomato sauce, use large chunks of meat or small round roasted pieces; these will quickly break down over time. Simmering the meat over low heat allows it to tenderize thoroughly, absorbing all the flavors from the cause. 

Using the saute function of your slow cooker, brown the large seasoned pieces of beef. Alternatively, you can brown the pieces on a pan.

The next step is adding some white wine, vinegar, or red wine and adding all other ingredients except for salt, pepper, and fresh oregano. If you have opted to use dry oregano, add it to the broth at this stage.

Allow the meal to cook slowly: seven to eight hours on slow heat or four to five hours on high heat. When fully cooked, add salt, pepper, and the fresh chopped oregano or basil. 

A few hours on the slow cooker and your steak alla pizzaiola is ready, without a fuss! Thanks to the extended cook time, slow-cooked steak pizzaiola makes succulent, sumptuous meat sauce!

Carne alla Pizzaiola and fresh salad

Our Top Tips for Making Steak Pizzaiola

Steak pizzaiola is one of the adored Italian dishes with steak. Here are some tips to lead you in preparing the best steak pizzaiola ever!

How to Reheat

If you have some leftover steak alla pizzaiola, you will need to warm it before enjoying it. To reheat, place the steak and sauce in a pan, cover and cook for eight to ten minutes under low heat until it is heated well. It might take longer if you are reheating from a frozen state.


Steak pizzaiola can be stored in the fridge in a plastic tin for three to four days or frozen for up to three months. As with any other meal, allow your pizzaiola to cool down before refrigerating. When freezing, be sure to use an airtight, freezer-safe container and label it with the freezing date.

Pizzaiola Sauce

The sauce used in the steak pizzaiola recipe is one of the essential ingredients! Although others prefer tomato paste, the sauce used to make pizza is the best for this meal due to its simple ingredients. When preparing steak alla pizzaiola, simple tomato sauce will give you the best results. 


Many Italians prefer using beef steak to prepare steak in tomato sauce. However, any other steak is acceptable! Traditionally Italians also used rabbit and poultry to prepare this meal. Be sure to pound your steak well before pan-searing it.

What to Serve With Steak Pizzaiola

Although you can deliciously enjoy steak pizzaiola on its own, it will make a great accompaniment served up alongside spaghetti, creamy polenta, foil pack potatoes, or instant pot French bread.

The Best Steak Pizzaiola Recipe Ever

There are many ways to prepare steak alla pizzaiola; while some feature slowly braised tough cuts of steak, others use quickly pan-fried tenderloin medallions. Here’s the best steak pizzaiola recipe to guide you in preparing this positively delicious meal! 

Steak Pizzaiola Recipe

Time: 35 minutes

Serving size: 4 servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Nutritional Facts

Calories                   318 calories   

Saturated fat            0.11 ounce (3 grams)

Cholesterol              51 milligrams

Sodium                    668 milligrams

Carbohydrates         0.57 ounce (16 grams)

Dietary fiber             0.14 ounce (4 grams)

Protein                     1.23 ounce (35 grams)

Equipment Needed

  • Chopping board
  • Knife
  • Skillet pan
  • Mallet


  • 17.6 pounds (0.5 kilograms) boneless steak (about 1 inch (2.54 centimeter) thick), cut in half widthwise
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 large bell peppers (1 red, 2 yellow), sliced
  • 115-ounce (4.03 grams) can crushed tomatoes
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 4 jarred pepperoncini, drained and well sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine


Step 1

Season the steak by rubbing each side using ¼ teaspoon of salt. Pour the olive oil into a sauté pan and Pan-fry the thin cuts of steak for two minutes until they turn golden brown on both sides, then transfer to a plate.

Step 2

Caramelize the onions over medium heat until browned using the same pan. Add the bell pepper slices and garlic and cook for four minutes until they are well softened.

Step 3

Add the crushed tomatoes, pepperoncini, red pepper flakes, dry oregano, and salt. Add ¾ cup of white wine, vinegar, or water. Stir to mix up and simmer for ten minutes. Nestle the steak to the top of the tomato sauce and simmer for another seven to ten minutes.

Step 4

Move the steak to a chopping block and let it rest for around five minutes; cover the pizzaiola sauce and allow it to continue simmering for four minutes until it thickens. Cut the steak against the grain, divide among the plates, and add the sauce and fresh parsley. Serve with Spaghetti, focaccia, or creamy polenta.

Italian pizzaiola sauce


Steak pizzaiola is, without doubt, the most loved steak in tomato sauce Italian dishes. The meal is easy to prepare, takes less time, and requires minimal ingredients. A well-cooked steak pizzaiola dish should have perfectly cooked tender steak and a rich flavor-packed pizzaiola sauce.

Steak pizzaiola is the perfect way to cook steak in tomato sauce without boring varieties. If you haven’t tried this meal yet, be sure to try out our best steak pizzaiola recipe above for an authentic and delicious outcome! 

Let us know how it turns out! We hope you like it!

Buon appetito!