TV & Movies

The Pioneer Woman’s Steak Sandwich Recipe Is Going Viral On TikTok

Hungry viewers have... thoughts.

Ree Drummond on 'The Pioneer Woman.' Photo via Food Network
Tom Gilbert/Food Network

If Ina Garten’s domain is the luxurious enclave of East Hampton, Ree Drummond’s is the expansive plains of Oklahoma. Here, The Pioneer Woman prepares hearty, feel-good meals for her family on the ranch — which often look delicious enough to make you want to trade in your city life and become an actual cowgirl.

However, one of Drummond’s recipes is going viral on TikTok for a surprising reason. TikTok user @cliff_secord recently shared footage from a 2017 episode of Food Network’s The Pioneer Woman called “Driving Fence Posts,” where Drummond prepares a meal for her husband, Ladd, and their kids as they repair fences on their sprawling property. The sack lunch includes mini pecan pies, veggies and dip, and a strip steak sandwich she calls “the steak sandwich to end all steak sandwiches.”

The TikToker, though, sees the dish a little differently — calling it the “worst steak sandwich ever,” adding in the caption that it’s a “total failure.” So, what’s the problem? For starters, as @cliff_secord politely points out, the onion slices Drummond uses are quite thick. “She scorches them, they get the sear marks, but they’re still basically a raw onion when she’s done.” Several commenters concurred, with one describing the dish as “an onion sammich with steak topping.” Another couldn’t help but laugh that “everything was overcooked except the onions.”

Later in the video — which has racked up more than 1 million views and 130,000 likes — the narrator wonders why Drummond places whole steaks on the baguettes. “I don’t know if you’ve tried to eat a steak without a knife and a fork, but it’s really tough unless you have razor-sharp teeth.”

One commenter worried that “the roof of [their] mouth would be torn right off” if they tried the sandwich. The steak is also a bit too big for the vessel of the baguette, which seemingly makes it hard for Ladd and the kids to bite into. “They are out there working hard and then bam more work for lunch,” one commenter joked. (All is not lost, though: Ladd does remark in the show that the meat’s “pretty tender.” So, he’s a fan!)

It’s unclear if Drummond has seen the review, but she is active on TikTok — she’s even been inspired by the app’s own Emily Mariko. But if the Food Network personality does stumble upon the video, you can likely expect her to be a good sport about it. After all, she’s owned up to kitchen blunders before. According to Showbiz Cheat Sheet, Drummond once revealed in The Pioneer Woman magazine that she regretted a recipe from the show, a chicken-strip pizza, “because the finished product was not what [she] had imagined it would be.” What went wrong?

“The vision I had was of big, beautiful pieces of homemade fried chicken and thick-cut pickles with a drizzle of honey,” Drummond continued. “But because of the timing of the episode, I wound up using frozen chicken strips — and they had not won any chicken-strip beauty pageants. Then, we threw coleslaw into the mix and it was just a sea of confusion. I wish I could undo (and unsee!) it.”