Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

5 from 24 votes

Beef and broccoli stir fry is a popular Asian recipe served over white rice. It's easy to make and so much better than take out!

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Who needs takeout when you can make this easy Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry at home? Thinly sliced beef and tender-crisp broccoli are cooked in a gingery soy-based sauce to create a light and flavorful weeknight dinner. Just add white rice or your favorite cooked grain to make a meal out of this beef and broccoli stir fry!

Two large bowls for the beef and broccoli stir fry

Table of Contents

  1. Recipe At a Glance
  2. Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
  3. Popular Substitutions & Additions
  4. How to Make Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
  5. Tips for Making the Best Healthy Beef and Broccoli Recipe
  6. What to Serve With Beef and Broccoli
  7. How to Store & Reheat Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
  8. Frequently Asked Questions
  9. More Asian Cuisine Recipes:
  10. Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe

This healthy beef and broccoli recipe is the kind of dinner you’ll find yourself making again and again. It’s quick to make, fresh and vibrant, with a sticky sauce that’s mostly savory, with just enough sweetness and heat to make things interesting.

If you have a weakness for lightened-up takeout remakes, you’re going to love this beef and broccoli recipe. It’s inspired by the beef and broccoli you can order at your favorite Chinese restaurant, but the sauce is lighter, relying on far less oil and sugar for flavor.

Recipe At a Glance

Cuisine Inspiration: Chinese
Primary Cooking Method: Stovetop
Dietary Info: Low Calorie, Gluten-Free (with tamari)
Key Flavor: Savory and umami
Skill Level: Easy

Summary

  • Takeout Flavor at Home: While your kids might want you to order takeout every night, as parents, we know better! This beef and broccoli recipe is every bit as delicious as the restaurant version, but it’s budget-friendly and healthier.
  • Ideal for a Weeknight: Like most stir fry recipes, this is one that comes together with minimal cooking time. Just 15 minutes on the stovetop, and dinner’s done!
  • Tender-Crisp Broccoli: If your broccoli always ends up either soggy and over-cooked or practically raw when you make a stir fry, I share my trick for getting that perfect tender-crisp texture in this recipe below. Just like at your favorite Chinese restaurant!
  • Kid-Friendly: The thinly cut beef and sticky sauce make this beef and broccoli recipe popular with kids and adults. Dial back the heat if you need to—you can serve red pepper flakes at the table so everyone can add as much as they like.

Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

Collage to make the sauce for beef and broccoli stir fry
  • Flank Steak: The most popular cut for stir fry and what most Chinese restaurants use. 
  • Soy Sauce: Use tamari for gluten-free beef and broccoli or low-sodium soy sauce if you’re watching your salt intake.
  • Oyster Sauce: Oyster sauce adds just a touch of sweetness to the sauce in this stir fry.
  • Rice Wine Vinegar: Be sure to use unseasoned rice vinegar; the seasoned variety has added sugar.
  • Sesame Oil: Toasted sesame oil will add another layer of flavor to the sauce.
  • Cornstarch: To thicken the sauce so it sticks to the broccoli and beef.
  • Avocado Oil: Avocado oil is an excellent choice for high-heat cooking, but you can substitute another oil with a high smoke point.
  • Broccoli Florets: Save yourself some time and buy a bag of pre-cut florets or save yourself some money and cut them yourself!
  • Salt and Black Pepper: For seasoning.
  • Garlic and Ginger: Two essentials for stir-fried beef and broccoli.
  • Red Pepper Flakes: Feel free to use more or less.
  • Cooked Rice or Noodles: For serving.
  • Skip the Oyster Sauce: If you have a shellfish allergy, you may be able to find vegetarian oyster sauce at your local natural foods store or purchase it online. Hoisin sauce also works as a substitute.
  • Add Red Peppers: Red bell peppers pair well with both broccoli and beef. Cut thin strips and cook them in the pan for about 2 minutes after adding the ginger and garlic, but before adding the broccoli.
  • Season With Chili Crisp: Chili crisp is a delicious condiment that pairs crispy chili flakes with fried onion and garlic in oil. Instead of adding red pepper flakes, garnish each bowl of this healthy beef and broccoli stir fry with a sprinkle of chili crisp.
  • Serve Over Quinoa: To pack in some extra protein, skip the rice and serve your beef and broccoli over quinoa. (Here’s How to Cook Quinoa if you haven’t tried it before!)

How to Make Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

Blanching the broccoli adds an extra step to this beef and broccoli stir fry, but it’s so worth it. You can prepare the broccoli the day before; make extra and serve half with Tahini Sauce for dinner right away, then reserve the rest for this stir fry.

Make the sauce and par-cook the broccoli

  1. Add the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and cornstarch to a bowl.
  2. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add the broccoli to a pot of boiling water.
  4. Drain the broccoli and rinse with cold water.
Collage showing how to make broccoli rice

How to stir fry beef and broccoli

  1. Cook the beef in a single layer in a wok with a bit of oil, salt, and pepper.
  2. Flip and cook the other side until browned. Transfer the cooked beef to a plate.
  3. Add the remaining oil to the pan with the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant.
  4. Add the broccoli to the pan and cook until it’s tender-crisp.
  5. Return the beef to the pan.
  6. Pour in the sauce and cook until it thickens.
Collage showing how to stir fry beef to make beef and broccoli

Tips for Making the Best Healthy Beef and Broccoli Recipe

  1. Cut the broccoli into evenly-sized pieces. This will ensure that it’s all cooked through at the same time and to the same texture. My rule of thumb is that the pieces should fit easily on a fork.
  2. Freeze the flank steak before slicing. Because flank steak is so thin and tender, it can be tricky to slice. If you place it in the freezer even for half an hour before slicing, it makes the beef firm so you can slice more easily. When slicing, it’s best to cut against the grain.
  3. Heat the pan really well before adding the beef. Overcooking meat can lead to tough and chewy bites. To avoid that, make sure the pan you’re using is really hot before adding the beef. That way the flank steak will cook quickly without overcooking the meat on a lower temperature longer.
  4. Do not crowd the beef in the pan. When you add too much beef at once to the pan, it might lead to the beef steaming. We want to sear the steak and not steam it. So make sure to use a large pan or wok. You can also work in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the pan.
Large bowl of beef and broccoli rice stir fry

What to Serve With Beef and Broccoli

How to Store & Reheat Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

Store any leftover beef and broccoli stir fry in an airtight container. Reheat in the microwave for 1-minute intervals until hot or in a skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat with a splash of water or beef broth.

How Long Will Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry Last in the Fridge?

Leftover beef and broccoli will last about 3 to 4 days in the fridge.

Can I Freeze Beef and Broccoli?

This is a dish best enjoyed right away, but if you do need to freeze leftovers, store them in an airtight container or freezer bag for 2 to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use another cut of beef in this recipe?

While flank steak is the traditional choice, skirt steak or sirloin can also be used to make beef and broccoli stir fry.

How do I keep the beef from getting tough?

The beef needs only very minimal cooking in this recipe. Browning it quickly at high heat, and then taking the pan off the heat as soon as the sauce thickens at the end of the recipe, will help the beef stay tender and juicy.

Can I use ground ginger instead of fresh?

I don’t recommend using ground ginger. The flavor is quite different, without the heat and sharpness of fresh.

Close up shot of a large bowl of beef and broccoli rice with chopsticks on the side

For a weeknight dinner that’s almost as easy as takeout, but much healthier, you can’t do better than this beef and broccoli stir fry recipe! It has all the flavors you love from the original, in a lightened-up version without all the oil and sugar.

More Asian Cuisine Recipes:

If you try this feel good Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry recipe or any other recipe on Feel Good Foodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! It helps others who are thinking of making the recipe. We would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots, share it on Instagram so we can repost on Stories!

This beef and broccoli recipe was originally published on March 4, 2019 and has recently been updated to a more traditional style recipe with broccoli florets instead of using broccoli rice. New photos and step by step collages have been added to help make this recipe easier.

Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

Beef and broccoli stir fry is a popular Asian recipe served over white rice. It's easy to make and so much better than take out!
5 from 24 votes
Servings 4 servings
Course Entree
Calories 269
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Video

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound flank steak thinly sliced against the grain
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil divided
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1- inch piece of fresh ginger minced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes adjust to taste
  • Cooked rice or noodles for serving

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, mix together the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, oyster sauce, sesame oil, and cornstarch. Stir until the cornstarch is fully dissolved. Set the sauce aside.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the broccoli florets and cook for about 2-3 minutes, or until they turn bright green and become slightly tender. Be careful not to overcook. Drain the broccoli and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or a large skillet over high heat. Add the beef, season with salt and pepper, and spread them out in a single layer. Sear for 1-2 minutes per side, or until the beef is browned. Remove the beef from the pan and set it aside.
  • In the same pan, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of avocado oil. Add the minced garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Stir-fry for about 30 seconds or until fragrant.
  • Add the blanched broccoli back into the pan and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender-crisp.
  • Return the seared beef to the pan with the vegetables. Pour the sauce over the beef and broccoli. Stir-fry for an additional 1-2 minutes, or until the sauce thickens and coats the ingredients evenly.
  • Serve over steamed rice or noodles. Garnish with sesame seeds or sliced green onions, if desired.

Notes

The nutrition label does not include rice and is only for the beef and broccoli.
Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 3-4 days in the fridge.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However if you have any questions about substitutes, feel free to post in the comments.
Serving Size: One serving is ¼ of the ingredients.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl, Calories: 269kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 28g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 68mg, Sodium: 1286mg, Potassium: 652mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 464IU, Vitamin C: 61mg, Calcium: 66mg, Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American, Asian
Course: Entree

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. Could we sub apple cider vinegar for the red wine vinegar? If so, would it be an equal amount? Also, would ginger powder work instead of fresh? If so, how much would you suggest? Thanks in advance!

    1. Ok so I went ahead to make the recipe as is, but used reduced sodium soy sauce. For some strange reason the broccoli heavily absorbed the sauce and it was very salty. Any suggestions as to what I did wrong?

  2. Yuma. I Love the way you simplify these recipes. Looks great and I’m about to make this dish tomorrow. I have several other versions but they are a bit more involved and complicated. I love your simplified version and looking forward to make it. Keep them coming, more Chinese inspired dishes.🙃
    Many thanks from another Lebanese born man.

  3. Hi Yumna,

    I was wondering if I want to keep the broccoli in smaller pieces and not riced, is there any different or additional steps I need to do? Thank you in advance!

    1. You can follow the recipe as is, but you may need to cook the broccoli for a slightly longer time to make sure it’s cooked through.

  4. SOOOO Yummy!!! Made this in hopes of having a low-carb but still filling dinner and it did not disappoint! I loved eating the broccoli in this form 🙂 I did not have sesame seeds or green onion on hand, but it was still delicious and I can’t wait to make it again!
    Thank you, Yumna!!!

  5. Needed a quick recipe for beef and broccoli (with noodles) and this one came up and as usual, EASY AND YUMMY!! My picky 8yr old devoured it!! Also took all of 45 minutes from finding the recipe until devouring it all!! MUST TRY!!

  6. I only saw the video on Instagram. We used the grater on the broccoli. Everything was very good! The hard thing was finding this recipie to pin it, took me 1 1/2 hrs. from “link in bio”.

    1. Oh no, I’m so sorry you had a hard time finding the recipe through instagram! I wish there was a better way to search on Instagram. Please feel free to DM me in the future and I can send you a link. Also, the search bar on my site is amazing and can really help you find anything you’re looking for. I’m so happy you liked the recipe though. Thank you!!

  7. So delicious! We used chicken as we try not to eat too much beef. The sauce tasted like it was made in a restaurant.

  8. Though not a broccoli fan, was tempted to try your recipe. Made it, enjoyed it, and will give you thumbs up.