Basic Beef Stir-Fry

This is a good basic recipe for marinating and stir-frying beef that you can adapt according to your tastes and the ingredients you have on hand.

Serves: 2Hands-on: 20 minutesTotal: 1 hour 20 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 2


  • 2 tsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ lb. beef, cut into thin strips
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. oil for stir-frying
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 Tbsp. Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • ½ tsp. sugar
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1 cup shredded Napa cabbage
  • ½ cup julienned carrots
  • ¼ cup bean sprouts


  • In a medium bowl, add soy sauce, cornstarch, and baking soda, in that order. Use your hands to mix in cornstarch and baking soda. Add beef and marinate for 30 minutes. Add vegetable oil. Marinate for another 30 minutes.
  • Add 1 tablespoon oil to a preheated wok or medium skillet. When oil is hot, add garlic and stir-fry briefly until aromatic. Add beef, laying it flat on the wok. Let the meat cook for a minute, turn over and brown on the other side, and then begin stir-frying. When it is nearly cooked through, add the rice wine and sugar. When the meat is cooked, remove from wok and drain on paper towels.
  • Add remaining tablespoon oil to now-empty skillet. Add broccoli, cabbage and carrots and stir fry until cabbage is wilted and broccoli is just tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in beef and bean sprouts and serve immediately.