Looking for a quick and easy dinner recipe that you can try tonight? If you’ve got 15-20 minutes and a few basic ingredients, you’re all set to make this delicious stir fry!
Choosing Your Beef
The most expensive and most crucial part of any meal is the meat, so pick yours wisely for this quick and easy dinner recipe! There are several cuts of beef that are good for stir fry, and the one you pick will depend on your budget, tastes, and available time.
If you’ve got some money to spare, then tenderloin or fillet is your best bet for super tasty and tender stir fry beef. The tenderloin is a muscle which is very lean, but that the cow almost never uses, so it is extremely tender. However, it is very expensive and lacks the rich flavor of cuts with more fat and connective tissue.
If you’re lower on money or looking for a cut that’s a little chewier with a richer flavor, go for sirloin. Sirloin has an excellent balance of tenderness and taste, and at 7-10 dollars per pound, it’s about half the price of tenderloin.
Whatever but you decide to use for this quick and easy stir fry recipe, get 1.5 – 2 pounds (for serving 4 people).
Of course beef alone can’t make a great stir fry! Here are a few other ingredients which will kick the flavor into high gear.
canola or other neutral-flavored oil (not olive oil!)
2 green bell peppers
8 oz. shitake or white mushrooms
1/2 large onion
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
2 tablespoons cornstarch
Prepping the Ingredients
Cooking the actual stir fry only takes 3-4 minutes, but you need another 5-10 to prep all of the ingredients. First, cut your beef into thin strips, slicing perpendicular to the grain. The “grain” is the direction the muscle fibers in the meat run, and as long as you slice against them, your pieces will be ultra-tender.
Then, slice the onions, peppers, and mushrooms into very thin pieces. The idea is for them to cook quick and get a nice coating of soy sauce without becoming too wilted or soggy.
Quickly Cooking the Perfect Stir Fry
Alright, assemble all of your ingredients close to you because this cooking process is fast! Start by heating a wok or non-stick skillet with about 2 tablespoons of canola oil and a few drops of sesame oil on high heat. When the oil is piping hot and just starting to smoke, add the beef strips and a pinch of salt.
Once the beef strips are about halfway done, add the onions and peppers. Once they are also halfway done, add the mushrooms. Allow everything to cook, stirring frequently, until the beef is just about cooked through.
Once you’re at this stage, add the soy sauce and five spice, stirring everything together to make sure it’s all coated. If you want, add more sauce, as well as some black pepper, to intensify the flavor. To finish the sauce off, add the cornstarch, and turn the heat down to low. Stir everything around until the starch has slightly thickened the sauce and allowed it to stick to the meat and veggies. You’re all done with this quick and easy dinner recipe!