Classic Beef Stir Fry Recipe

You know how people will claim something is a "complete meal," when they mean "a few different ingredients combined?" Well this time, there's no playing around with the wording: this classic beef stir fry, courtesy of chef and recipe developer Jennine Bryant, is indeed a complete meal, as in complete with protein, veggies, and starch. Even the biggest of appetites will find satisfaction in this meal — as will the pickiest of taste buds!

It's also a completely easy meal that takes only about five minutes of prep and less than 15 minutes of cooking, so it's the ideal dinner when you need to get food on the table in a snap. "The only thing to watch out for is overcooking the food," Bryant says. "It's so easily done; it's amazing how quickly vegetables can go from deliciously stir fried and crunchy, to soggy and soft all the way through. So make sure to add everything back into the pan when the vegetables are really just starting to soften!" Best of all, it's a versatile dish — you can serve this beef stir fry over noodles, with rice, in lettuce cups, and you can use all sorts of different veggies, too. And hey, want to add some hot sauce? Well, by all means, do it.

Gather your ingredients for beef stir fry

It takes a number of ingredients to make this meal, but don't worry, it really doesn't take much time or effort. So gather a pound of sirloin or rump steak, soy sauce, water, garlic powder, ground ginger, brown sugar, honey, cornstarch, chili pepper flakes, sesame seed oil, some carrots, broccoli, and red bell peppers (sliced thinly), sliced water chestnuts, sliced spring onions, some sesame seeds, and some cooked rice noodles for serving.

Prep and cook the beef and mix the sauce

First, thinly slice the steak and then set it to one side. Then, in a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, the water, the garlic powder, the ground ginger, the brown sugar, the honey, the cornstarch, and the red pepper flakes and then set this sauce aside.

Now, in a large pan or wok, heat up ½ tablespoon of sesame seed oil and then add the sliced beef and fry for three to four minutes, until it is browned all over. Then remove the beef from the pan, reserving any juices, and set these to one side.

Stir fry the veggies

In the same pan you used to cook the beef, add the remaining ½ tablespoon of sesame seed oil and the chopped carrots, broccoli, and red pepper. Cook these on a medium-high heat for three to four minutes, or until the vegetables are beginning to soften and brown.

Bring the stir fry together

Now, add the sliced water chestnuts and return the beef and the beef juices to the frying pan with the veggies. Pour over the prepared stir fry sauce and mix everything together, then allow the beef stir fry to cook for another two to three minutes before topping the dish with sliced spring onions and sesame seeds. Then serve it with rice noodles — and hot sauce if you'd like — and enjoy!

Want a few ideas to spice things up? "It can be nice served with an extra helping of soy sauce and a sprinkling of chili flakes," Bryant suggests. "Or, if you are feeling braver and like the heat, some slices of hot red chili pepper on the top. Fresh coriander would be lovely too. And ginger beer tastes amazing as a drink along with this, it fits so perfectly!"

Classic Beef Stir Fry Recipe
5 from 30 ratings
If you need to make a quick but nourishing meal, this classic beef stir fry is the perfect option.
Prep Time
5
minutes
Cook Time
12
minutes
Servings
4
Servings
beef stir fry in pan
Total time: 17 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 pound sirloin or rump steak
  • 2 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • pinch of chili pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seed oil, divided
  • 4 cups of mixed carrots, broccoli, red peppers, sliced thinly
  • 1 cup sliced water chestnuts
  • 2 tablespoons spring onions, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 cups rice noodles, cooked, for serving
Directions
  1. Thinly slice the steak and then set to one side.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, the water, the garlic powder, the ground ginger, the brown sugar, the honey, the cornstarch, and the red pepper flakes, and then set aside.
  3. In a large pan or wok, heat up ½ tablespoon of sesame seed oil, then add the sliced beef and fry for 3 to 4 minutes, until it is browned all over.
  4. Remove the beef (with the juices) from the pan and set to one side.
  5. In the same pan, add the remaining ½ tablespoon of sesame seed oil and the chopped carrots, broccoli, and red pepper, and cook this on a medium-high heat for 3 to 4 minutes, until the vegetables are beginning to soften and color.
  6. Add the water chestnuts and return the beef and juices to the frying pan, then pour over the prepared sauce and mix everything together.
  7. Allow the beef stir fry to cook for another 2 to 3 minutes, stirring several times, before topping with sliced spring onions and sesame seeds. Serve with cooked rice noodles. 

Nutrition
Calories per Serving 470
Total Fat 18.9 g
Saturated Fat 5.9 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 85.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 46.2 g
Dietary Fiber 4.2 g
Total Sugars 14.2 g
Sodium 637.5 mg
Protein 27.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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