Beef and Broccoli

Beef and Broccoli is easy, fast, and full of flavor. You can make your own takeout dinner and have it on the table in 30 minutes!

This dinner is simple and delicious, and let’s face it…simply delicious! I love the flavors and how easy this one pan wonder is to make. For more takeout classics made at home, try Mongolian Beef Stir Fry, Better Than Takeout Sesame Chicken, or Szechuan Beef

Beef and broccoli on a white plate

Ready in 30 minutes!

Beef and broccoli is one of the most popular dishes for our family. It is a classic Chinese-American dish that I am particularly obsessed with. It always accompanies our order from our fave local take out spot. 

This classic Chinese beef and broccoli recipe is quick and easy to make homemade, and tastes even better than the restaurant version! It satisfies my craving for Chinese takeout but with less oil and sugar than what you’ll find at most restaurants.

I love beef and broccoli for all the aforementioned reasons and because it is fairly economical when it comes to beef. I like to use flank steak but you could also use flat.  It is an easy, 1-pan, 30-minute meal loaded with fresh broccoli, tender beef, and the best stir fry sauce.

Cut beef strips for beef and broccoli recipe

Ingredient Tips

What cut of beef? Use flank steak cut against the grain! This will give the best texture and feel for the dish. If you can’t get a hold of flank steak you want a tender cut of beef that is easy to chew, such as top sirloin steak, top round steak, or tri-tip steak.

If you have some frozen steak make sure to defrost it completely before cutting it and cooking it up. This is a dish that you can buy extra for and use some of it later.

To make sure your beef is tender you need to cut it across the grain with a sharp knife and cook it in a hot pan quickly so the juices don’t escape from the meat. Another tip is to not overcrowd the pan because it will not cook correctly(steam more than sear).

Fresh or frozen broccoli? Ideally you should be using fresh broccoli—two small heads should give you enough florets. If all you have is frozen broccoli, that will work. Since the broccoli is blanched before being frozen you won’t have to cook it for as long. Even if you cook it for a shorter amount of time you may still get slightly mushy broccoli.

Beef and broccoli stir fry sauce in a glass measuring cup

How to Make Beef and Broccoli

COAT. Toss sliced beef in cornstarch, set aside

COMBINE. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper, and red pepper or chili paste (if desired).  Set aside.

BROWN. Place a large skillet  over medium heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil. Once oil is hot, add the beef and cook until browned on all sides, remove from the pan and transfer to a plate.

SAUTE. Add the remaining oil to the pan. Add onion and saute for 1 minute.

COOK. Add broccoli and cook for 3 minutes. Return beef to the pan. Add sauce and cook for 2-3 minutes or until  the beef is coated in a thick, sticky sauce and the broccoli is fully coated.

What is beef and broccoli sauce made of? The typical sauce is made out of soy sauce, brown sugar, orange zest/juice, garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes etc. It is a sweet, salty, and spicy sauce that is a perfect balance of all of them!

SERVE. Serve immediately

Chinese beef and broccoli cooking in a skillet

Variations, Serving, & Storing

Instant pot: Slice your beef and sauté it in the instant pot with a little bit of oil, just until its browned. Then remove the beef and add in your sauce ingredients and whisk them together. Then add your beef back in and turn the instant pot to high pressure and cook for 12 minutes. Use a quick pressure release when it is done.

While the meat and sauce is cooking you can cook the broccoli in the microwave. Put it in a dish with some water and microwave it for 3-4 minutes or until it is tender. Then you can add a cornstarch slurry to the instant pot, add in your broccoli and you’re done!

Crockpot: In the slow cooker, add your beef and sauce ingredients. Cook it on low for 3.5-4 hours or until the steak is tender. Then you are going to take a couple of tablespoons of the broth from the crockpot and add in some cornstarch. Pour this mixture back into the crockpot along with the broccoli and cook it for about 20 more minutes.

Additions: Add more vegetables to your stir fry like carrots, bell peppers, or mushrooms.

What to serve with? This is a great dish because it goes well with just about anything! 

Storing/Reheating: This dish will keep for about 4 days when stored in the fridge. Easily reheat the dish in the microwave in one minute bursting with stirring in between. 

Beef and broccoli stir fry on a white plate with a spoon

For more Asian dishes, try:

Beef and Broccoli Recipe

Beef and Broccoli is easy, fast, and full of flavor. You can make your own takeout dinner and have it on the table in 30 minutes!
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 203kcal
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 lb flank steak - cut into thin strips
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar - packed
  • 5 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1 tsp ginger - freshly grated
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp kosher sea salt
  • dash red pepper
  • 1/4 tsp chili paste
  • 2 tbsp canola oil - or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion - divided, thinly sliced
  • 2 small heads broccoli - cut into florets

Instructions

  • Toss sliced beef in cornstarch, set aside
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper, and red pepper or chili paste (if desired). Set aside.
  • Place a large skillet over medium heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil. Once oil is hot, add the beef and cook until browned on all sides, remove from the pan and transfer to a plate.
  • Add the remaining oil to the pan. Add onion and saute for 1 minute. Add broccoli and cook for 3 minutes. Return beef to the pan. Add sauce and cook for 2-3 minutes or until the beef is coated in a thick, sticky sauce and the broccoli is fully coated.
  • Serve immediately

Nutrition

Serving: 6g | Calories: 203kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 45mg | Sodium: 1220mg | Potassium: 330mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 2mg