This very flavorful stir-fry is made with sliced top sirloin steak, bell peppers, and snow peas. It's the ultimate weeknight dinner because it's ready in less than 30 minutes, and leftovers keep well for several days in the fridge.
I love making this quick and easy stir-fry. Steak strips, onions, and bell peppers are quickly cooked, then flavored with a simple Chinese-style sauce. Sesame oil and sesame seeds finish the dish, rounding out the flavors and enhancing the presentation. This dish is pretty, flavorful, and quick.
It's also one of those dishes where the leftovers are really good! So sometimes I double the recipe and use a wok or a huge 14-inch skillet to cook everything. I can then enjoy the leftovers for several days.
Here's an overview of what you'll need to make this easy steak stir-fry. The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below.
For the sauce: Soy sauce (or a gluten-free alternative), rice vinegar, honey (real or sugar-free), and cornstarch. I almost always use light soy sauce in my recipes. The traditional sauce is extremely salty.
Avocado oil: This neutral-tasting oil has a high smoke point, making it very suitable for cooking.
Sliced top sirloin steak: You can splurge and use tenderloin instead - sirloin can be a little tough - but I usually opt for sirloin. It's delicious and much more affordable than tenderloin, and top sirloin is actually fairly tender.
Vegetables: Onions, bell peppers, and snow peas. It's fun to use peppers in different colors. It makes this dish very pretty!
Garlic and ginger: Mince them yourself or use the stuff that comes in a jar. I don't recommend using the powdered versions in this recipe.
To finish the dish: Sesame oil and sesame seeds. You don't actually cook them, you just top the cooked dish with them.
Like all stir-fry recipes, this one is very easy. Scroll down to the recipe card for the detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
Prepare the sauce. Mix the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set them aside.
Cook the beef. Next, cook the beef strips in the oil. Remove to a platter. Try not to overcook the beef - as mentioned above, sirloin can become tough pretty easily.
Cook the vegetables. In the same skillet, cook the vegetables. Again, try not to overcook them. Stir-fry veggies should be tender-crisp.
Add the sauce. Leave the vegetables in the skillet and add the sauce and the cooked beef.
Finish cooking. Cook until the sauce thickens. Keep this step brief to avoid overcooking the meat and the vegetables.
Garnish. Off heat, drizzle the dish with sesame oil, and garnish it with sesame seeds.
Expert tip: prep your ingredients
Once you have everything prepped, the cooking itself is a matter of minutes. So you should definitely prep everything in advance! Slice the vegetables, mix the sauce - because once you start cooking, you won't have time for any prep work.
Frequently asked questions
The best way to tenderize meat is with a marinade that contains vinegar. But if you use top sirloin strips and make sure you don't overcook them, in my experience the beef comes out tender enough. So I don't bother with marinating it.
But if you wish, you can place the beef in a resealable bag, add a mixture of oil and vinegar (try 2 tablespoons of each), and refrigerate it overnight.
Yes! Ideally, you should use a fairly lean cut - you don't want big chunks of fat. So ribeye, for example, is not suitable. On the other hand, while filet mignon would be excellent, it's a very expensive cut that should be enjoyed whole.
I like to use top sirloin because it's lean, very flavorful, and not too tough. You could also use flank steak or skirt steak, but those are tough cuts and should be marinated.
In this recipe, I use a simple sauce made of soy sauce, rice vinegar, and honey. The dish itself is flavored with garlic, ginger, and sesame oil.
The combination of these ingredients creates a classic Chinese-style sauce, which is easy to make and very flavorful.
As mentioned above, the leftovers of this dish are very good. You can keep them in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 3-4 days. Reheat them gently, covered, in the microwave on 50% power.
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Easy 30-Minute Steak Stir-Fry
- 4 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce (or a gluten-free alternative)
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 teaspoon organic cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil divided
- 1.5 lb. top sirloin steak cut into thin strips
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- 2 medium bell peppers cut into thin strips
- 1 cup snow peas
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- In a small bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients. Set aside.
- In a large deep skillet or a wok, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef and stir-fry for 2 minutes, just until no longer raw. Remove the beef to a plate using a slotted spoon.
- To the same skillet, add the remaining oil, then add the onions and bell peppers and stir-fry until just tender, about 4 minutes.
- Add the garlic, ginger, and snow peas. Cook, stirring, 1 minute. Lower the heat to medium if the pan gets too hot at this point.
- Mix the sauce again and add it to the skillet, then add back the beef. Cook, stirring, until everything is well coated and the sauce slightly thickens, 1 more minute.
- Transfer the stir-fry to a serving platter. Drizzle with sesame oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
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But if you wish, you can place the beef in a resealable bag, add a mixture of oil and vinegar (try 2 tablespoons of each), and refrigerate it overnight. Like all stir fry recipes, the part that takes the longest when making this one is prepping the vegetables. Once you have everything prepped, the cooking itself is a matter of minutes. So you should definitely prep everything in advance! Slice the vegetables, mix the sauce - because once you start cooking, you won't have time for any prep work.