how to stir fry broccoli in a wok with beef

This quick and easy stir fry recipe combines beef with broccoli in a wok. It's a great way to get your vegetables in for the day, especially if you're feeling bored of salads.

Takeout Restaurants Near Me

How to stir fry broccoli in a wok with beef

Beef and Broccoli is one of the most popular dishes on Chinese restaurant menus. It also happens to be one of our family’s favorite takeout dishes.

When my parents owned a Chinese takeout restaurant years ago, we had to crank out beef and broccoli orders every single day, so I’ve had plenty of practice making this dish, and making it taste great.

Reading: how to stir fry broccoli in a wok with beef

I hope that caught your attention!

There are many beef and broccoli recipes on the Internet, with variations made in slow cookers, in Instant Pots, and on sheet pans. Our recipe, however, will show you exactly how to easily achieve restaurant results at home.

This recipe was originally published in September 2014; It has been re-tested, re-photographed, and re-published!

How Do Chinese Restaurants Make Beef and Broccoli?

If you have a local Chinese takeout joint with an open kitchen, pay attention to the wok station while you’re waiting at the counter for your food. You’ll see that the beef, broccoli, and sauce are cooked separately and combined at the end.

Here are the basic steps to making an authentic beef broccoli stir-fry:

  • Tenderize & marinate the beef
  • Blanch the broccoli & sear the beef
  • Cook the sauce & stir-fry everything together

This simple method yields tender beef, still crisp, healthy broccoli, and a rich sauce, combined into a restaurant-style dish that you can make at home!

Beef and Broccoli Recipe,

How Do They Make the Beef So Tender?

A little secret to tenderizing the beef is hydrating the meat with a bit of water and adding a small amount of baking soda. You need a good 30 minutes for the beef to sit and tenderize.

After tenderizing the meat, marinating it in some oil, oyster sauce, and cornstarch gives the beef that extra soft and velvety texture you find in Chinese restaurant versions. For more detailed information on preparing beef for stir fry just like restaurants do it, see our post on How to Prepare Beef for Stir Fry.

What Kind of Soy Sauce Should I Use?

Many readers ask us what kind of soy sauce we buy. The answer is: use any good quality brewed soy sauce, like Kikkoman, Pearl River Bridge or Lee Kum Kee brands. We have used Pearl River Bridge for years.

For this recipe, you’ll need both light/regular soy sauce and dark soy sauce. A good dark soy sauce adds flavor and provides that rich dark color to your beef and broccoli.

Read more: how to stir fry a lot of vegetables | Family Cuisine

Just as important as the soy sauce is the oyster sauce, which is full of umami goodness and key to producing an authentic restaurant flavor.

Read more about light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and oyster sauce on the Chinese Sauces page of our Ingredients Glossary.

How Is the Sauce Thickened?

A mixture of cornstarch and water is the thickening agent for any good beef and broccoli dish. Our beef and broccoli recipe has plenty of sauce to soak into your steamed rice.

Be sure to add this mixture right at the end, and simmer the sauce for at least 20 seconds after adding it. This ensures that you cook the cornstarch mixture thoroughly and that the sauce has enough time to thicken.

Ok, now that we’ve gone through all the restaurant secrets you need to know, it’s time to show you how this easy beef and broccoli comes together. On to the recipe!

Beef and Broccoli Recipe: Instructions

In a bowl, add the sliced beef, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, and 3 tablespoons water (if you don’t want your beef tenderized too much, omit the baking soda). Massage the beef with your hands until all the liquid is absorbed. Mix in 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch, 2 teaspoons oil, and 1 teaspoon oyster sauce, and set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes.

Marinating sliced beef,

Make the sauce mixture by mixing together the chicken stock, sugar, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and white pepper. Set aside.

Beef and broccoli sauce mixture,

Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and blanch your broccoli for 30 to 60 seconds (depending on whether you like your broccoli crunchy or a little soft). Drain and set aside.

Heat your wok over high heat until smoking. Add 2 tablespoons oil and sear the beef on both sides until browned (this should only take 2-3 minutes). Turn off the heat, remove the beef from the wok, and set aside.

Stir-frying sliced beef,

Set the wok over medium heat and add another tablespoon of oil to the along with the garlic and ginger (if using). Stir the garlic and ginger for 5 seconds and then pour the Shaoxing wine around the perimeter of the wok.

Read more: how to store leftover fried green tomatoes | Family Cuisine

Next, add in the sauce mixture you made earlier. Stir the sauce around the sides of the wok to deglaze it (all those nice bits from stir-frying the beef should be absorbed into the sauce). Bring the sauce to a simmer. Stir the cornstarch and water slurry to ensure it’s well combined, and drizzle the mixture into sauce while stirring constantly. Allow it to simmer and thicken for 20 seconds.

For more detailed information on the many ways to use cornstarch to get authentic results at home with our recipes, see our post on How to Use Cornstarch in Chinese Cooking.

Thickening sauce with cornstarch,

Toss in the seared beef (along with any juices)…

Adding beef to wok,

And the blanched broccoli.

Adding beef and broccoli to wok,

Mix everything together over medium heat until the sauce coats the beef and broccoli. If the sauce seems thin, turn up the heat and reduce it further, or add a bit more cornstarch slurry. If the sauce is too thick, add a splash of chicken stock or water.

Stir-frying beef and broccoli,

Serve with plenty of steamed rice!

Beef and Broccoli,

For more takeout dishes, check out our other restaurant-style Chinese Takeout recipes.

Bowl of Beef Broccoli,

If you like this recipe, try our Beef and Chinese Broccoli stir fry. If you prefer chicken, try our recipe for Chicken and broccoli with brown sauce.

Read more: Dondakaya fry recipe | Tindora fry | Ivy gourd stir fry

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