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Chinese Beef and Broccoli (One Pan Take-Out)


Chinese Beef and Broccoli is a classic dish that has found its way into the hearts of many people around the world. It’s a delicious, savory meal that combines tender beef with crisp broccoli in a flavorful sauce. The best part? You can make this take-out favorite in the comfort of your own home using just one pan. This guide will walk you through everything you need to know to create a delicious Chinese Beef and Broccoli dish, from selecting the right ingredients to mastering the cooking technique.

Why Make Chinese Beef and Broccoli at Home?


One of the main benefits of making Chinese Beef and Broccoli at home is that it can be much cheaper than ordering take-out. Restaurants often charge a premium for this dish, but when you make it yourself, you can save a significant amount of money. Plus, you can control the quality of the ingredients, ensuring that you’re using fresh and healthy items.

Healthier Option

When you cook at home, you have complete control over what goes into your meal. This means you can avoid the excessive oil, sodium, and sugar that are often found in restaurant versions. You can also adjust the recipe to suit your dietary needs, such as using low-sodium soy sauce or adding more vegetables for extra nutrients.


Making Chinese Beef and Broccoli at home allows you to customize the dish to your liking. You can choose the type of beef you prefer, adjust the amount of broccoli, and even experiment with different sauces and spices. This flexibility means you can create a dish that perfectly suits your taste.



The type of beef you choose is crucial for this dish. Tender cuts like flank steak, sirloin, or ribeye work best. These cuts are flavorful and become very tender when cooked correctly. Make sure to slice the beef thinly against the grain to ensure it cooks evenly and remains tender.

Chinese Beef and Broccoli (One Pan Take-Out)


Fresh broccoli is the star vegetable in this dish. Look for bright green heads with tight florets. If fresh broccoli is not available, you can also use frozen broccoli, but be sure to thaw and drain it well before cooking.

Sauce Ingredients

The sauce is what gives Chinese Beef and Broccoli its distinctive flavor. Here are the key ingredients you’ll need:

  • Soy sauce: Adds salty, umami flavor.
  • Oyster sauce: Provides a rich, savory taste.
  • Hoisin sauce: Adds sweetness and depth.
  • Cornstarch: Helps thicken the sauce.
  • Garlic and ginger: For aromatic, spicy notes.
  • Beef broth or water: To create the sauce base.

Additional Ingredients

  • Cooking oil: For stir-frying the beef and broccoli.
  • Sesame oil: For added flavor.
  • Green onions: For garnish.
  • Rice or noodles: To serve with the dish.


Marinating the Beef

Marinating the beef is an important step that adds flavor and tenderness. Here’s a simple marinade recipe:

  1. In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce, 1 teaspoon of cornstarch, and a pinch of black pepper.
  2. Add the thinly sliced beef to the bowl and mix well to coat each piece.
  3. Let the beef marinate for at least 15 minutes. If you have more time, marinating for up to an hour will enhance the flavor even more.
Chinese Beef and Broccoli (One Pan Take-Out)

Preparing the Broccoli

  1. Cut the broccoli into bite-sized florets.
  2. If using fresh broccoli, blanch it in boiling water for 2 minutes, then transfer to an ice bath to stop the cooking process. This keeps the broccoli bright green and crisp.
  3. If using frozen broccoli, ensure it is fully thawed and drained.

Cooking Instructions

Step 1: Stir-fry the Beef

  1. Heat a tablespoon of cooking oil in a large pan or wok over medium-high heat.
  2. Once the oil is hot, add the marinated beef in a single layer. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the beef is browned but not fully cooked through.
  3. Remove the beef from the pan and set it aside.

Step 2: Cook the Broccoli

  1. In the same pan, add another tablespoon of cooking oil if needed.
  2. Add the broccoli florets and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes, until they are tender-crisp.
  3. If the pan seems dry, add a splash of water or beef broth to help the broccoli cook evenly.

Step 3: Combine and Sauce

  1. Return the beef to the pan with the broccoli.
  2. Add minced garlic and ginger, and stir-fry for about 1 minute, until fragrant.
  3. Pour the sauce mixture (soy sauce, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, beef broth) into the pan. Stir well to combine.
  4. Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes, until it thickens slightly and coats the beef and broccoli.

Step 4: Finish and Serve

  1. Drizzle a little sesame oil over the dish for added flavor.
  2. Garnish with sliced green onions.
  3. Serve the Chinese Beef and Broccoli hot, over steamed rice or noodles.

Tips and Tricks

Slicing the Beef

For the best texture, slice the beef thinly against the grain. This helps to break down the muscle fibers, making the beef more tender. Partially freezing the beef for about 30 minutes before slicing can make this task easier.

Adjusting the Sauce

The sauce can be adjusted to suit your taste. If you prefer a sweeter flavor, add a bit more hoisin sauce or a teaspoon of sugar. For more umami, increase the amount of soy sauce or add a dash of fish sauce.

Cooking Quickly

Stir-frying is a quick cooking method, so have all your ingredients prepared and ready to go before you start cooking. This ensures that everything cooks evenly and nothing gets overcooked.

Adding Vegetables

While broccoli is the traditional vegetable used in this dish, you can easily add other vegetables to make it more colorful and nutritious. Bell peppers, snap peas, carrots, and mushrooms all work well.

Chinese Beef and Broccoli (One Pan Take-Out)

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Overcrowding the Pan

When stir-frying, it’s important not to overcrowd the pan. If the pan is too full, the ingredients will steam instead of sear, resulting in a less flavorful dish. Cook the beef in batches if necessary to ensure it browns properly.

Overcooking the Broccoli

Broccoli should be tender-crisp, not mushy. Be careful not to overcook it during the stir-frying process. Blanching the broccoli before adding it to the pan can help achieve the perfect texture.

Not Thickening the Sauce

The cornstarch in the sauce helps to thicken it, creating a glossy coating that clings to the beef and broccoli. Make sure to let the sauce simmer for a few minutes to activate the cornstarch. If the sauce is too thin, you can add a bit more cornstarch mixed with water to thicken it further.


Spicy Beef and Broccoli

If you like a bit of heat, you can add some spice to this dish. Sliced chili peppers or a teaspoon of chili garlic sauce can be added to the stir-fry. Adjust the amount according to your heat preference.

Gluten-Free Option

For a gluten-free version, use tamari or a gluten-free soy sauce. Ensure that all other sauces and ingredients are also gluten-free. This way, you can enjoy the same delicious flavors without any gluten.

Vegetarian Version

For a vegetarian take on this dish, you can substitute the beef with tofu or a plant-based meat alternative. Firm tofu works best as it holds up well during stir-frying. Marinate and cook the tofu the same way you would the beef.

Serving Suggestions


Chinese Beef and Broccoli is traditionally served with steamed white rice. Jasmine rice is a great choice as its fragrance complements the dish well. For a healthier option, you can use brown rice or even cauliflower rice.


Another great option is to serve the dish over noodles. Lo mein or rice noodles work particularly well. Cook the noodles according to the package instructions and toss them with a bit of sesame oil before serving.


To make a complete meal, consider serving Chinese Beef and Broccoli with some side dishes. Spring rolls, egg rolls, or dumplings make great appetizers. A simple cucumber salad or a bowl of hot and sour soup can also complement the meal nicely.


Making Chinese Beef and Broccoli at home is a rewarding experience that allows you to enjoy a delicious, restaurant-quality meal without the need for take-out. With just a few simple ingredients and one pan, you can create a dish that is both flavorful and nutritious. Whether you’re cooking for yourself or for a family, this recipe is sure to become a favorite in your household. So, grab your wok and get ready to make some delicious Chinese Beef and Broccoli!

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