An easy recipe for very flavorful Chinese beef stir fry, the ultimate weeknight dinner because it’s ready so fast.
I love making this quick and easy stir-fry. Beef, onions and bell peppers are quickly cooked, then flavored with a simple soy sauce marinade.
Sesame oil and sesame seeds finish the dish, rounding out the flavors and enhancing the presentation.
This is a quick recipe!
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.
The ingredients you’ll need
Here’s an overview of what you’ll need to make this recipe. The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below:
For the sauce: Soy sauce (or a gluten-free alternative), rice vinegar, honey, 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 sirloin: 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.
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.
How to make beef stir fry
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.
How to make the beef tender
The best way to tenderize meat is with a marinade that contains vinegar. But if you use 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.
What sauce to use?
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 Chines-style sauce, which is easy to make and very flavorful.
How to serve beef stir fry?
What to do with leftovers?
You can keep the leftovers 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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Beef Stir Fry
- 4 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce ((or use a gluten-free alternative and add salt as needed)
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey, or a low carb alternative
- 1 teaspoon organic cornstarch (or a paleo alternative)
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil, divided
- 1.5 lb. 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 garlic
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- In a small bowl, mix together the sauce ingredients. Set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef and stir fry 2 minutes, just until no longer raw. Remove 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 heat to medium if the pan gets too hot at this point.
- Mix the sauce again, then add it. Add back the beef. Stir fry until everything is well coated and the sauce slightly thickens, 1 more minute.
- Transfer the beef stir fry to a serving platter or bowl. Drizzle with sesame oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.