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Skip the Chinese takeout! This Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry is a healthy and easy dinner recipe that’s ready in about 20 minutes!

Overhead shot of half skillet of Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry

Nothing tastes better than a big bowl full of Mongolian Beef Stir Fry that’s loaded with fresh vegetables and coated in a thick, sweet and savory sauce. The kid-friendly recipe satisfies and nourishes with minimal effort on your part!

Is Beef Stir Fry healthy?

This is a healthy meal because it’s loaded with fresh vegetables! You also get a large amount of satisfying protein from the beef. One fourth of the recipe, which is a very large serving, has about 315 calories.

Asparagus and beef stir fry served over bowl of rice

How to make Beef Stir Fry Tender:

There’s nothing worse than tough, dry steak in your stir fry! In order to keep the meat tender, it’s important to:

  1. Pick the right kind of beef (more on that below);
  2. Slice the beef correctly (more on that below, too); and
  3. Don’t overcook the beef.

Which beef for stir fry?

The higher the quality of beef, the more tender the meat will be. Here are a few cuts of beef that work well in stir fry:

  • Flank steak
  • Top round steak
  • Sirloin steak
  • Skirt steak
Sliced steak on a cutting board

How to cut beef for stir fry:

Because this steak can be tough, it’s important to cut the meat across the grain in very thin strips. A really sharp knife makes this easy, and you can also freeze the meat for 30-60 minutes, just to get it firm enough to slice very thinly.

How to make Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry:

Since the recipe comes together in just minutes, it’s important to prepare all of your ingredients in advance and have them ready to go into the skillet as soon as you need them.

First, let’s make the beef stir fry sauce. You’ll need just a few basic ingredients:

  • soy sauce
  • cold water
  • cornstarch
  • ginger
  • garlic
  • brown sugar

Whisk everything together and set the sauce to the side.

Stir fry marinade in a glass measuring cup

Next, stir fry the asparagus in a hot skillet for about 2 minutes, or until crisp-tender.

Chopped fresh asparagus in cast iron skillet

Then add the red bell pepper and onion, cooking and stirring for about 2 more minutes.

Asparagus bell peppers and onion in a cast iron skillet

Remove the vegetables from the skillet and set them on a plate. Next, add the meat to the pan and cook in a single layer for about 1 minute. Flip the meat, cook for another 30 seconds, and then remove the beef to the plate with the vegetables.

Stir fry beef in a cast iron skillet

I like to wipe out the skillet and drain any grease before adding the sauce to the pan. Bring the sauce to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and whisk until the sauce thickens. This will only take about 1-2 minutes.

If the sauce gets too thick, no problem — just keep adding water until it reaches the desired consistency!

Stir fry sauce in a cast iron skillet

Once the sauce is just how you like it, add the beef and vegetables back to the skillet and toss to coat.

Front shot of wooden spoon in a skillet with beef and vegetable stir fry

You can serve the stir fry over noodles, with rice, with cauliflower rice, or just eat it on its own!

Close overhead shot of asparagus and beef stir fry

How long can you keep leftovers in the refrigerator?

The leftovers will last in the refrigerator for about 3-4 days.

Can you freeze this Stir Fry?

Stored in an airtight container, the leftovers will keep in the freezer for 3-4 months. It’s important to note, though, that the texture of the vegetables will be slightly mushy or soft after thawing (so do this at your own risk)!

How to reheat the Stir Fry:

If you have leftovers stored in individual portions in the refrigerator, you can easily reheat the stir fry in the microwave in about 1 minute.

To reheat a larger quantity of the leftover stir-fry, I suggest placing it all in a skillet and warming over low heat on the stovetop until it reaches your desired temperature.

Vegetables and beef stir fry in blue and white bowl with chop sticks

What to serve with Beef Stir Fry:

We love to serve this healthy Chinese beef stir fry with noodles or rice. If you’d like to offer another dish on the side, these options go well with the meal:

Cook’s Tips and Recipe Variations:

  • Don’t have access to fresh asparagus? Use 1 lb. of frozen cut asparagus instead! There’s no need to thaw the asparagus before it goes into the skillet. Just add about 1 minute to the cooking time.
  • Substitute with your favorite vegetables! For instance, swap out the asparagus and replace it with 1 lb. of fresh broccoli florets or use 1 lb. of frozen mixed stir-fry vegetables.
  • Prepare a ground beef stir fry by swapping out the steak and replacing it with ground beef.
  • This recipe comes together very quickly, so it’s important to have all of your ingredients prepped and ready to go into the skillet before you start cooking anything.
Blue Willow Bowl with Beef Stir Fry served over rice

Other easy stir fry recipes that you might enjoy:

Overhead shot of half skillet of Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry

Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 314.5 kcal
Skip the Chinese takeout! This Asparagus and Beef Stir Fry is a healthy and easy dinner recipe that’s ready in about 20 minutes!

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup less sodium soy sauce
  • ½ cup cold water plus additional as needed
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh ginger (or about ¼ teaspoon dried ginger)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (or about ½ teaspoon garlic powder)
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 lb. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 lb. beef top round steak or flank steak, trimmed and sliced thin against the grain
  • For serving: rice (or cauliflower rice); noodles; sliced green onions

Instructions

  • Prepare the Sauce: In a bowl whisk together soy sauce, cold water, cornstarch, ginger, garlic, and brown sugar until completely combined. Set aside.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the asparagus and stir-fry for about 2 minutes (or until crisp-tender). Add the red bell pepper and onion. Stir-fry for about 2 more minutes, or until crisp-tender. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  • Add meat to the skillet in a single layer (still over high heat) and cook for about 1 minute – do not stir or move the meat while it is browning. Flip the meat, cook on the other side for about 30 more seconds, and then remove to the plate with the vegetables. Drain the fat from the skillet.
  • Pour the sauce into the skillet and bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer while whisking until the sauce thickens (about 1-2 minutes). If the sauce gets too thick, just add additional water until it reaches desired consistency. Return beef and vegetables to the skillet and stir to coat with the sauce. Serve with rice and garnish with sliced green onions, if desired.

Notes

Cook’s Tips and Recipe Variations:
  • Don’t have access to fresh asparagus? Use 1 lb. of frozen cut asparagus instead! There’s no need to thaw the asparagus before it goes into the skillet. Just add about 1 minute to the cooking time.
  • Substitute with your favorite vegetables! For instance, swap out the asparagus and replace it with 1 lb. of fresh broccoli florets or use 1 lb. of frozen mixed stir-fry vegetables.
  • Prepare a ground beef stir fry by swapping out the steak and replacing it with ground beef.
  • This recipe comes together very quickly, so it’s important to have all of your ingredients prepped and ready to go into the skillet before you start cooking anything.
How long can you keep Beef Stir Fry in the refrigerator?
The leftovers will last in the refrigerator for about 3-4 days.
Can you freeze Beef Stir Fry?
Stored in an airtight container, the leftovers will keep in the freezer for 3-4 months. It’s important to note, though, that the texture of the vegetables will be slightly mushy or soft after thawing (so do this at your own risk)!
How to reheat Beef Stir Fry:
If you have leftovers stored in individual portions in the refrigerator, you can easily reheat the stir fry in the microwave in about 1 minute.
To reheat a larger quantity of the leftover stir-fry, I suggest placing it all in a skillet and warming over low heat on the stovetop until it reaches your desired temperature.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/4 of the recipeCalories: 314.5kcalCarbohydrates: 31.8gProtein: 31gFat: 3.9gSaturated Fat: 0.1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 46mgSodium: 1159mgPotassium: 423.5mgFiber: 3.1gSugar: 17g
Keyword: beef stir fry, Chinese beef stir fry, flank steak recipe
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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