Crispy Chilli Beef is the perfect homemade Chinese food recipe that your whole family will love! It’s an easy fried beef dish with a sweet Asian sauce that pairs perfectly with lots of veggies!
I’m not a huge fan of eating an actual steak and might have one every 3 or 4 years if that. But crispy pieces of beef strips covered in a Chinese sauce are right up my alley!
It’s so much easier to cook correctly as opposed to a whole steak, so you don’t need to worry about messing it up and wasting money either. Plus, I just enjoy it more when each individual piece is coated in the chilli sauce and already in a bite-size portion for me!
Tips to Make Crispy Chilli Beef
Steak: I use a NY Strip Steak for this recipe, but you could also use a flank steak or whatever else you have on-hand. You’ll be cutting the steak into 1/4″ strips. This is often easier to do when it’s frozen. I just pull it out of the freezer, cut it into strips and then it thaws very quickly too. If you have a fresh steak, just go ahead and cut it up into strips without worrying about anything I just said.
Cornstarch: This is what is going to give your steak that nice, crispy coating when you fry it. It also helps the sauce stick to the steak in the final step. You really can’t skip this ingredient!
Chinese 5 Spice Powder: I always, always, always buy this pre-made. 5 Spice Powder is made up of anise, cloves, peppercorn, cinnamon sticks and fennel seeds. I never keep those ingredients on-hand, so pre-made is easier for me. Here is a great recipe for a homemade version of 5 Spice Powder.
Veggies: I normally use a red pepper and green onions when I make this, but don’t feel like you have to follow my lead! You can use other peppers, sweet onions, mushrooms, broccoli… whatever your preference is!
Asian Chilli Sauce: I’ve tested a number of different ingredients for this sauce and my favorite combo is sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, rice wine vinegar and chili paste. You can play around with different variations if you like, but I would try this recipe as is for the first time because it’s been a favorite with everyone who’s tasted it!
How do you Cook Crispy Chinese Beef? The traditional way is obviously in a wok. You would add lots of oil and basically fry them until crispy. The wok allows all of the oil to sit in a “bowl” in the bottom of the pan so the pieces are mostly covered as you add them. I just use my cast iron skillet. I try not to use quite as much oil as a traditional Chinese recipe would call for and just spread them out in a single layer in the bottom of the pan.
What do you Serve Crispy Chilli Beef with?? We love it over rice noodles. They take just minutes to make and aren’t as heavy as regular noodles or rice. But feel free to use rice, pad thai noodles, veggies or whatever else you can come up with!
If you’re looking for more Asian inspired dishes, these are some of our favorites:
- Easy Chinese Green Beans: a delicious side dish that pairs perfectly with any protein!
- Buffalo Chicken Egg Rolls: okay, so not really Asian at all in any sense of the word, but they are eggrolls and they are one of our favorite recipes so I’m including them!
- Sesame Orange Chicken: this is my daughter’s favorite Chinese dish that we make at home! It’s always a hit!
Crispy Chilli Beef
- 1.5 lbs Steak
- 3 Tbsp Cornstarch
- 2 tsp Chinese 5 Spice Powder
- Vegetable oil
- 1 Red Bell Pepper thinly sliced
- 4 Green Onions whites only, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
Sweet Chilli Sauce
- 1/2 cup Sweet Chili sauce
- 2 Tbsp. Soy sauce
- 1/2 Tbsp. Sesame Oil
- 2 Tbsp. Honey
- 2 Tbsp. Rice Wine Vinegar
- Green Onions chopped
- Sesame Seeds
- In medium bowl, combine cornstarch and Chinese 5 Spice Powder. Stir till well combined.
- Slice steak into 1/4 inch strips. Place in bowl with cornstarch mixture and toss to coat evenly.
- In a wok or skillet, add oil to cover the bottom of the pan. The oil should be about 1/4" high in the pan so it comes about halfway up the beef strips. Heat the oil to medium high heat.
- Add beef strips to hot oil and cook until golden and crispy, about 1-2 minutes per side. Once cooked, remove the beef and let rest on a paper towel.
- Remove all but 1 tablespoon of the oil. Return the pan to the burner and add red pepper strips, green onions strips and garlic to the remaining oil. Stir fry for about 3 minutes or until tender.
- In a bowl, mix sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey and rice wine vinegar. Stir well. Add sauce to pan with veggies and cook for 2 minutes. Add beef back in and toss to coat. Cook an additional 2 minutes until it is heated through.
- Serve immediately over your favorite side dish: rice noodles, jasmine rice or your favorite veggies. Garnish with green onions and sesame seeds if desired.