Beef in black bean sauce should definitely be on your radar if you are looking for a flavorful Asian-inspired dish. This recipe features thinly-sliced beef in a wonderful black bean sauce that adds a lot of flavor and jazzes up the meat. Pair that with some fresh ginger, garlic, and bell peppers, and you’ve got a well-rounded dish.
Recipe developer Ting Dalton came up with this quick and easy recipe that requires just 10 minutes of prep time and 10 minutes of cook time. It doesn’t get much easier than that, folks! "This is a staple meal in Chinese households — using staple Chinese ingredients — it’s full of flavor and it’s one of our favorites," Dalton raves. "My parents used to make it for me all the time as a kid and I love making it for my family too," she says. Dalton also added that this recipe has been in her family for a while and her grandparents passed it down, and she loves "how you can make a classic Chinese dish at home and it’s so much better than take out."
Gather the ingredients for beef in black bean sauce
The first thing you need to do is grab all of the necessary ingredients to whip up this dish. Pick up some beef steak, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, vegetable oil, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, ginger puree, garlic cloves, freshly grated garlic, and oyster sauce, fermented black beans, and water, then you can get to cooking!
Mix the beef, corn starch, soy sauce, brown sugar, and wine
Let’s get down to business. Grab a large bowl and add the beef strips. As a reminder, should have sliced these thinly ahead of time, making sure to cut against the grain. Dalton shares that you can also sub beef for "chicken or pork" if you wish. Next, add the cornstarch to the beef. "It helps to keep the meat tender and not chewy," Dalton notes. Then, add 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and the Shaoxing wine. "If you can’t find Chinese cooking wine, you can use mirin," Dalton recommends. Mix well to combine and let it sit for 10 minutes so the beef can soak in all the yummy liquid.
Stir-fry the beef
Once your beef finishes soaking in the liquid, grab a large wok or a non-stick pan and place it on your stove. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil and turn the heat high to get the wok nice and hot. Add the beef and marinade to the wok and stir-fry for about 2 minutes. Once finished, remove the meat from the wok and set it to the side until you need it again.
Cook the garlic, ginger, black beans, and bell peppers
Toss the remaining oil into the wok, and then add the garlic and ginger. Stir fry everything for about 20 seconds. "You [can] also add onions to this dish, chop and add at the same time as the garlic and ginger," Dalton shares. Dalton also gives another good suggestion for spice lovers. "If you’d also like a kick add a birds-eye chili to the dish when cooking the garlic and ginger too — this will make a spicy version."
Then, toss in the black bean and bell peppers. "You can get black beans from all good Asian supermarkets. You can’t really substitute it, as it’s an integral flavor to this dish," Dalton shares. Stir fry the ingredients for about 30 to 40 seconds. This is a quick process since you want to ensure the bell peppers keep their shape and crunch.
Add the beef back in
At this point, you can go ahead and add the beef back into the wok. To add more flavor to the dish, pour in the remaining soy sauce and water and give everything a good stir to combine. Lower the heat to medium and let the beef and the veggies simmer for 3 minutes or so, stirring on occasion. Once the sauce thickens, that’s a good indicator that the beef is done cooking.
Serve your beef in black bean sauce and enjoy
Remove the beef from the wok and serve it with rice or over a bed of noodles. Dalton also provides a few additional serving suggestions that you may want to try. "Ho fun white noodles are the best to go with this. You can also make it with egg fried rice," Dalton says. Of course, if you’d prefer to just have the beef and veggies, that’s also fine! As for leftovers, they’ll last for up to three days in the fridge, or up to three months in the freezer.
- 1 pound beef steak, thinly sliced against the grain
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine (or mirin)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon of ginger puree or freshly grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon fermented black beans
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced
- 1 green bell pepper, sliced
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- ½ cup water
- In a large bowl, add the beef strips, 2 teaspoons of corn starch, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 2 teaspoons of sugar, and Shaoxing wine. Mix well and leave for 10 minutes.
- When ready to stir fry the ingredients, get a large wok or deep non-stick pan. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil on a high heat. Add the beef and marinade and quickly stir fry until starting to cook, around 2 minutes.
- Remove the beef and put it to the side.
- Heat the remaining oil in the wok, then add the garlic and ginger and stir fry for 20 seconds. Add the black beans and bell peppers. Stir fry for another 30 to 40 seconds. You want the bell peppers to still retain their shape and crunch.
- Add the beef to the wok, then the oyster sauce, remaining soy sauce, and water. Give everything a good stir.
- Turn the heat to medium and let the dish simmer for 3 minutes, giving it a stir occasionally.
- Once the sauce has thickened slightly, it’s ready to serve.
- Serve this with rice or over noodles.