Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Recipe of the Week: Quick Beef Stir Fry

One of my go-to healthy dinners is Stir-Fry.  I have all kinds of variations, but this has got to be the tastiest version.  How do I know its the tastiest, empirically?  Because my family calls it "spaghetti good" and leaves nare a morsel behind.  When I get that official stamp of approval, I know I've hit the jackpot.

Some notes on how to make this one a family favorite:

First, make sure you get a good quality, thin-sliced steak.  The type I use varies depending on what the local Croftburn Market has on hand, but this time I used eye of round.  Slice the meat into thin strips.  This is crucial.  Cut the meat too thick and you end up with tough, chewy worms.  Blech.  Make sure you slice against the grain.

Funny story:  when my daughter was three-years-old, she asked what the meat was.  Being the smart-alecky mom that I am, I said "worms from the garden."  She smiled and said, "Cool.  I've never had worms."  To this day she swears she believed me and every time I make this dish she re-tells the story.

Second, balance the savory, spicy, and sweet.  Too sweet and its not as good. Too salty and forget about it.  Half your master piece will be left for the dog.  Frankly, she won't eat it if it's too salty, either, as she shouldn't.  For a little sweetness, I prefer Agave nectar.  It doesn't mess with the flavor and I prefer Agave nectar over table sugar.

Last, vary the vegetables to get a good balance as well.  To keep it easy and quick, I use bags of frozen, pre-sliced veggies like a trio of bell pepper strips with onion, green beans, a can of bamboo shoots, and whatever I have a half-bag of:  green beans, broccoli florets...you get the idea.  I sometimes add a handful of frozen corn kernels just for the sweet factor.

If you are vegetarian, substitute the beef for tempeh.  I prefer tempeh for its nutty flavor and texture.  This is mostly a gluten-free dish, as well.  Leave out the Worcestershire sauce, and its totally gluten free.


1 lb. thin sliced steak, cut into strips
2 tablespoons gluten-free baking flour
1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash Steak Seasoning
2-3 tablespoons peanut oil (avoid canola as it smokes at high temps)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 bag frozen bell pepper strips with onion
1/2 bag frozen green beans
1 can bamboo shoots, drained
1/2 cup frozen corn kernels
1-2 tablespoons Bragg's Liquid Aminos (soy alternative)
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (optional)
1 tablespoon Agave nectar
1/2 cup of raw almonds, chopped
4-6 servings rice (your choice: brown, jasmine, etc.)


Start the rice.  While it cooks, heat a wok or large skillet over high heat.  Slice the meat into thin strips and toss in the flour and steak seasoning.  Heat the oil over high heat and add meat, stirring constantly to keep from burning.  When the meat is still pink in the center, add the veggies.  Because they're frozen, a lot of liquid will form.  This is fine, just keep stirring.

Next, add the Bragg's Liquid Aminos, chili garlic sauce, and Agave nectar. Stir, stir, stir.  It is a stir-fry, after all.  When the sauce thickens and all ingredients are hot, turn off the heat and serve immediately with rice and almonds as a topper.

Super yum!

What is your favorite stir-fry recipe?  Share a link!  Tried mine? Let me know how it turned out.  Did you make any changes?  Let me know. I'm always looking for new ideas.  Check out other recipes on my Pinterest boards.  I have them categorized by Breakfast, Dinner, Side Dishes, Fun Foods, and my Perfectly Balanced Meals, for those looking for well-balanced nutrition in a quick meal.

As always, feel free to share and adjust to your taste and dietary needs.

Love and light and all that jazz.


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