I have seriously been trying to perfect beef & broccoli for YEARS.
I always set out imagining a luscious stir-fry with tender pieces of beef & broccoli coated with a perfectly thickened flavorful sauce.
Reality? Not quite.
It seems like either the beef is tough or bland, the broccoli is overcooked, or the sauce is too weak and thin.
So FINALLY, I have created the BEST beef & broccoli recipe. For real.
Here are the secrets to success:
- Buy the right cut of meat. Since stir fries cook quickly, you have to use a tender cut of meat. No, cheap stew meat will not work here! You’ll end up with tough chewy pieces of meat that no one will enjoy. My personal faves are flank steak & skirt steak. They are thin cuts of steak that cook quickly and are deliciously tender when sliced across the grain.
- Marinate that meat. Alright, so now you’ve selected a tender piece of meat, but you still have to make sure it’s loaded with flavor. Enter, marinade! The secret to getting delicious umami-packed meat flavor is dry sherry and soy sauce. Together, these two ingredients impart a deep savory flavor. Sesame oil adds a nice kick of asian flavor, garlic adds an extra bite, and sugar and cornstarch coat the meat and help it caramelize in the pan. Just let the meat sit at room temp for at least 30 minutes and you’re good to go.
- Cook the broccoli with both heat and steam. The best part about stir frying is the high-heat sear you get on the veggies. But, you also have to make sure your broccoli gets tender. Direct heat from the pan will give it a nice sear, but isn’t enough to cook it all the way through. There are two solutions to this problem. You can par-cook your broccoli in a steamer before adding it to the stir fry, or you can add it raw, cook over high heat to sear, then briefly add the lid to steam in the pan until crisp-tender. I prefer the latter method, because why dirty an extra pan??
- Perfect your sauce. So many beef and broccoli sauces are just weak. They aren’t bold enough to stand up to the beef and veggies, and end up wet and bland at the bottom of the pan. To make the most flavorful sauce, I use a base of jarred oyster sauce. It has a salty & rich punch that you just can’t get anywhere else. It’s also nice and thick, so you don’t have to add a ton of cornstarch to thicken your sauce in the pan. Add a little sherry, soy sauce, sesame oil, beef broth, sugar, cornstarch, and ground black pepper & you’ve got a lip-smackingly perfect stir fry sauce.
Now that you have the secrets… go rock it in the kitchen!
Best Ever Beef and Broccoli
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
- 2 cups short grain brown rice
- 8 cups water
- 1 1/2 lb skirt steak, excess fat trimmed, and cut against the grain into strips about 3 inches long and 1/3rd inch thick.
- 6 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 cup dry sherry, divided
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cornstarch, divided
- 6 cloves garlic, minced, divided
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 cup peanut oil, divided
- 2 heads of broccoli, cut into bite-sized florets, stems peeled and cut into thin slices
- 3 tablespoons beef, chicken, or vegetable broth
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1 large scallion, thinly sliced
Place the rice in a rice cooker or saucepan & cook according to the package directions. Set aside when done cooking.
While the rice is cooking, marinade the meat. Place the strips of beef in a large bowl and add 1/4 cup soy sauce, 2 tablespoons dry sherry, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, 4 cloves minced garlic, and 2 teaspoons sugar. Toss the beef with the marinade until evenly mixed and well-coated. Set aside to marinade for 30 minutes at room temperature.
When the meat is done marinating, add 3 tablespoons peanut oil to a large nonstick skillet or wok and warm over high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add half of the meat strips (letting any excess marinade drip off before adding to the pan). Move them around in the pan until evenly spaced, then let cook for a few minutes without stirring to let the beef brown nicely. Stir the beef, then continue to cook for another few minutes until it gets browned and a little caramelized. When the beef is done, use a slotted spoon to remove the beef to a plate. Wipe out the skillet, add 3 more tablespoons of oil, and repeat the process with the second batch of meat. Discard any extra marinade.
Next, make the stir-fry sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk together 6 tablespoons dry sherry, 3 tablespoons broth, 3 tablespoons oyster sauce, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper. Set aside for later.
When the second batch of meat is done cooking, wipe out the skillet again, and add 2 more tablespoons of peanut oil. Warm over high heat until shimmering, then add the broccoli florets and stems. Stir-fry, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes until the broccoli pieces starts to have some sear marks on them. Cover the pan with a lid for 1-2 minutes to let the broccoli steam. Remove the lid when the broccoli is crisp tender.
Next, add the garlic, ginger, and scallion to the pan. Cooking, stirring often, for about 1 minute until fragrant.
Add the beef & any juices from the plate back to the pan with the broccoli. Stir to combine. Add the stir-fry sauce, toss to combine, and cook for 1 or 2 minutes more until thickened slightly to a sauce that coats the beef and broccoli well.
Serve over the cooked brown rice & enjoy!
If you’re ever pressed for time on a weeknight, stir fries have your back.
I love how quickly they come together.
Just put some rice in an automatic rice cooker before you head to work so it’s ready when you get home, then quickly sauté some veggies and protein and serve it over said rice.
The variations are endless.
I recently picked up some awesome gras fed ground beef in the frozen section at Trader Joes, and decided to use it in in a quick stir fry.
Combined with some blistered green beans, golden mushrooms, and savory homemade stir fry sauce, it was BOMB.
The most important part about stir frying is cooking everything separately on super high heat, then combining with the sauce at the very end.
This keeps everything crisp and delicious, instead of soggy and mushy.
It gives you perfectly golden mushrooms and deliciously blistered crisp-tender green beans.
Test out your stir fry skills w. this newest recipe. And let me know what your favorite stir fry combination is in the comments below!
Blistered Green Bean Stir-Fry with Grass Fed Beef and Mushrooms
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time50 mins
For the sauce:
- 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 1/4 cup black bean garlic sauce
- 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
For the stir fry:
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 1 lb white button mushrooms, sliced or quartered
- 1 lb green beans, stems removed & cut in half crosswise
- 1 lb 85% lean grass-fed organic ground sirloin beef
- 1 bunch green onion, sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups uncooked short grain brown rice
Place the rice in a rice cooker with 4 cups water, or cook on the stove according to package instructions. Cook the rice while you prepare the rest of the meal. Start cooking the stir fry when there is roughly 20 minutes left on the rice. (You can also cook the rice ahead of time & reheat before serving.)
In a small bowl, whisk together the sauce ingredients and set aside.
Add the peanut oil to a large nonstick skillet or wok & warm over high heat until shimmering.
Add the mushrooms to the pan & cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 5-10 minutes, depending on the heat of your stove. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and set aside on a plate.
Without adding anymore oil to the pan, add the green beans and let cook on high heat, stirring occasionally, until blistered in spots, roughly 3-5 minutes. Remove the green beans from the pan and set aside on a plate.
Add the beef to the pan, using a spatula to break up into small pieces while cooking. Stir fry until nicely browned, 3-5 minutes.
Add the green onion and garlic to the pan and cook for another 1 or 2 minutes until fragrant.
Add the sauce to the pan and stir to coat. Then add the mushrooms and green beans and stir to coat. Cook for a minute or so to warm everything thoroughly, and serve over the cooked short grain brown rice. Top with extra sriracha if you like things spicy!
Mmmm I love this salad.
It’s so decadent & awesome & makes you feel fancy.
Steak just always does that to me.
But fancy doesn’t always mean difficult!
In fact, this recipe doesn’t take any special culinary skills. Just chop a bunch of veggies & lay them out in pretty bowls, broil some ribeye steaks, hardboil some eggs, shake together some salad dressing ingredients, & make yourself a salad!
How gorgeous are these proteins?
This is the type of salad that’s fun to eat out of a gigantic bowl.
Just plop everything you desire in your bowl, drizzle with dressing, and toss to coat. By using a gigantic bowl, you don’t have to worry about everything falling out over the sides. Winning!
I love how everyone can make their own salad exactly how they like it. This sure solves picky-eater problems!
I serve this salad with creamy homemade blue cheese dressing.
But if you want to get even MORE fancy, you could totally put out a variety of dressings that satisfy the whole family.
I try to eat giant salads for dinner at least once a week.
It’s a fabulous way to clean out the fridge & use up scraps of extra veggies, beans, nuts & seeds, dried fruit, and proteins.
Plus, it’s an easy and delicious way to eat a bunch of veggies.
I’ve included some of my favorite salad vegetables in this recipe, but feel free to get creative & add your own beloved salad mix-ins.
Here’s the spread, in all its glory:
Blue Cheese Steak Salad
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
- 2 hearts of romaine lettuce, roughly chopped
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 red onion, halved, and thinly sliced
- 1 bunch of radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 orange bell pepper, halved, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 4 stalks of celery, thinly sliced
- 1 bunch of scallions, sliced
- 1 cucumber, halved and thinly sliced
- 2 large boneless ribeye steaks, roughly 1.25-1.5 lbs
- kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
- 6 large eggs
- optional: croutons
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise watch oil type, if corn or soy sensitive
- 1/2 cup greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons finely minced parsley
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese mounded
Place all of the prepped vegetables in small bowls & set aside so each person can prepare their own salads later.
Bring a saucepan of water to a boil & reduce the heat so the water is barely simmering. Use a large spoon to carefully add the eggs to the pot, and let simmer for 1 minute. Turn off the heat, place the lid on the pot, and let rest for 10-12 minutes undisturbed. Remove the eggs from the pot and rinse under cool water. Place in the fridge to further cool.
Preheat the broiler on high. Season the steaks liberally on both sides with kosher salt and ground black pepper. Place the steaks in the broiler and broil on high for 5 minutes on the first side, and 3 minutes on the second side for medium doneness. (Note: the temperature of oven broilers can vary significantly! This cook time was accurate for my old stove with a broiler section on the bottom of the oven).
Remove the steak to a plate, tent with foil, and let rest for at least 5 minutes.
Place all of the dressing ingredients in a mason jar. Screw the lid on tightly and shake with all your might! (If you don’t have a mason jar, just whisk the ingredients in a bowl). Add a splash of water if you want your dressing to be a little thinner.
Remove the hardboiled eggs from the fridge, peel, and slice crosswise.
Slice the steak against the grain into thin slices and set aside.
Have each person grab a bowl and create their own salad from all of the wonderful fixings. Top with homemade blue cheese dressing and enjoy!