With about 20 minutes of effort, you can have this garlicky beef and broccoli stir fry sizzling on the stove and ready to eat.
I am always amazed at how easy it is to recreate our favorite restaurant dishes at home. Not to mention how great it is to be able to scale those dishes to feed our crew of hungry boys.
I’ll never forget the first time one of my kids asked the waiter for seconds at a restaurant. Hearing his little voice so politely say, “More, please.” had Sean and me nearly choking with laughter. It takes even more food to fill their bellies now, so finding ways to make the dishes we love more affordable was a requirement.
Learning how to make beef and broccoli was at the top of my copycat recipes to-do list for a while and luckily there were a whole lot of places I was able to check out for ideas. This recipe is all over the internet. This version of beef broccoli is gently adapted from America’s Test Kitchen and Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.
If you love spicy heat, add some extra red chile flakes. Want a slightly sweeter version? Add a little more brown sugar. This recipe is easy to tweak to suit your tastes. So, customize it according to your heart or stomach’s desire.
With the sound of sizzling steak and the aroma of ginger and garlic wafting through the house, my kitchen is full of people before I can even turn around. I don’t even have to ask anyone to set the table.
The table magically sets itself when I make this green bean steak stir fry as well. I am sensing a theme here, smells and sizzling meats draw them to me.
Steak and Broccoli Stir Fry
I have learned to make friends with the guy or gal at the butcher counter. First, they are a wealth of knowledge. And bonus, if they aren’t too busy, they will often slice my steak up for me – saving me time at home.
If you do need to slice the steak yourself, pop it in the freezer for 30-45 minutes before slicing. It will firm it up ever so slightly, allowing you to get thin, even strips, with a sharp knife.
Toss the steak strips into a zip-top bag with the soy sauce and cornstarch. Roll the closed bag around a bit to coat the steak with the mixture. Let the meat rest for an hour or so in the refrigerator before cooking.
When you’re ready to cook the stir fry, work quickly while frying the strips of steak in hot oil. I always use a large skillet, like this one, and work in batches. Fry each batch for just a minute or two before transferring it to a plate. Repeat until all the beef is cooked.
When you finish cooking the beef, go ahead and briefly steam the broccoli in the same skillet. Once it has steamed for a few minutes, push it to the edges of your skillet and pour in the sauce.
Stir to coat the broccoli and simmer for a few minutes to allow the sauce to thicken. Add the beef back to the skillet and saute for a minute to reheat if needed.
I often serve this just as it is, but you can also top rice or noodles with the stir fry. And let’s face it when feeding a crowd; rice stretches the meal a good bit further.
If steak isn’t on the weekly grocery list, try making a similar stir-fry with ground beef and broccoli. It’s budget-friendly and insanely easy.
Beef Broccoli Recipe
To make this recipe, you will need the following ingredients:
- flank or sirloin steak
- low-sodium soy sauce
- coconut or olive oil
- fresh broccoli
- fresh garlic
- fresh ginger
- olive oil
- oyster sauce
- rice wine vinegar
- balsamic vinegar
- brown sugar
Beef and Broccoli Sauce
The sauce really defines the stir fry, doesn’t it? There are many variations of stir-fry sauces, you can even buy them in a jar at the store. However, I have found that my pantry at home usually has everything I need.
A splash of balsamic vinegar gives this sauce a little something extra. Balsamic balances the meat with a tiny bit of sweetness and provides a hint of acidity that broccoli needs.
Whisk together the oyster sauce, rice wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, garlic, ginger, and brown sugar in a small bowl or glass measuring cup.
When you add it to the pan, make sure to coat all of the beef and broccoli. Simmer for a few more minutes and allow it to thicken.
It is easy to fall in love with meals you can make in one skillet on the stovetop. I am all in for loads of flavor and minimal cleanup! That’s the perfect dinner combo.
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Beef Broccoli Stir Fry
- 1½ pounds flank, skirt, or sirloin steak
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons light flavored olive oil
- 1½ pounds fresh broccoli cut into bite size pieces
- ⅓ cup water
- ¼ cup oyster sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger minced
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar optional
- Slice the beef, against the grain, into very thin ⅛" strips. Place the meat in a medium size bowl or in a large zipclose bag, sprinkle with cornstarch, and add the soy sauce. Stir or seal the bag and press to coat. Let the meat rest in the refrigerator for at least 10 minutes or up to 1 hour. Stir together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
- Heat about 2 teaspoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is rippling hot, add about half of the beef strips. Spread across the skillet and cook without stirring for 1 minute. Stir or toss with tongs and spread across the skillet again. Cook 1 more minute.
- Be careful not to overcook the meat, it should be just barely cooked through and still very tender. Carefully transfer the meat to a plate next to the stove. Drain any extra liquid and add another 2 teaspoons of oil to the hot skillet. Repeat the above steps with the remaining meat. Transfer the last of the cooked meat and any pan juices to the plate.
- Add the last 2 teaspoons of oil to the hot skillet and add the broccoli. Toss to coat, then add the water and cover with a lid. Reduce the heat to medium and let the broccoli steam for 2 minutes.
- Uncover and push the broccoli to the sides of the skillet. Pour the sauce into the center of the skillet and let it begin to heat for about a minute, until it is fragrant. Stir to coat the broccoli and simmer for a couple of minutes.
- Add the meat back to the skillet and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring and tossing occasionally, for about 1-2 minutes, until the sauce has thickened and is evenly coating all the meat and vegetables. Serve by itself or over rice.