If you are like my husband, you would die for some Chinese take-out every Sunday night! However, wouldn’t be nicer to just prepare some crispy and spicy Hunan beef at home in only 30 minutes? This quick and easy Hunan Beef recipe is an authentic Chinese stir-fry dish that’s better than takeout itself! Loaded with fresh veggies and a spicy flavor, it’s always a hubby’s favorite.
Therefore, get ready, my Loves, to learn how to prepare one of the most popular Chinese dishes with an authentic ingredient list and easy video instructions!
What Is the Difference between Szechuan Beef and Hunan Beef?
Before we get started, here is one of the most departed detail about this recipe: the actual difference between the Hunan beef and the Szechuan one. Szechuan beef is sweeter and has while Hunan is not as sweet and is more hot and spicy. Hunan’s flavor is considered plainer and contains more vegetables.
Chinese Hunan Beef is a healthy, popular Chinese-American dish made with tender pieces of beef stir-fried with lots of veggies and tossed in sweet and spicy sauce. The original dish is from the Hunan province of China and is traditionally spicy and loaded with hot chili peppers.
On the other hand, the Szechuan Beef may include Szechuan peppercorn, which is milder when compared to the spiciness of chili peppers. Also, Szechuan peppercorn creates a tingly numbness in the mouth, which aids when combined with hot spices.
How to Make the Best Hunan Beef at Home
Trust me: if you give this dish a try, you’ll have a real taste of China right in your kitchen! The instructions are simple, but here I strongly recommend you follow them, not to improvise too much! You’ll see what I’m talking about in the recipe below. Regarding the fact that we cook with the heat really high, everything should be prepared and in place, as the time is limited.
Succulent beef paired perfectly with the heat of chili peppers is the main characteristic of this authentic version of Hunan beef. So, be prepared to serve a Chinese dish that bursts with wonderful flavors and it’s also very quick to cook.
Well, here is the ingredient list for this Hunan Beef recipe. As we try to achieve an authentic result of the classic recipe, I strongly advise you to closely follow the ingredient list below. The secret to achieving authentic Chinese flavor stays in the products you use when preparing the Hunan beef. So, if you respect the list, you should rock this Chinese recipe in no time!
- 1 pound flank steak (sliced 1/4-inch thick);
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce;
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil;
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar;
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger (sliced);
- 1 red Holland pepper (deseeded and sliced);
- 1 small green bell pepper (deseeded and sliced);
- 1 small red bell pepper (deseeded and sliced);
- 2 scallions (sliced);
- 1 small red onion (sliced);
- 1/2 cup sweet corn (canned);
- salt and black pepper (to taste);
- 1 teaspoon garlic (minced).
Hunan Beef Step-by-Step Recipe
Now, that you found out what you need for this authentic Chinese recipe, is time to learn how to prepare the Hunan Beef. I have to warn you: even though the cooking time is really short, I strongly advise you to respect the steps, instructions, and tips. This is a recipe you can easily ruin as the heat is really high and you have to move really fast.
However, if you follow the below steps you shouldn’t worry about the final result. Just be sure to have all the ingredients already washed, deseeded, and sliced, so you won’t be forced to do that during the cooking process.
- Firstly, heat your wok over high heat until smoking. Spread the oil around the wok.
- Be sure the wok and oil are hot and add the beef slices. Cook the beef slices until crispy.
- Drain the crispy beef by moving it up to the side of the wok. The oil will drain to the bottom and you can then transfer the beef to a plate.
- After frying the beef, just leave about 2 tablespoons of the oil in the wok, and remove any excess. Now, add the sliced red onion and the ginger. Cook them on high heat for 2 minutes.
- Then, add the minced garlic and cook for 1 extra minute.
- Add the green and red pepper sticks and stir-fry for 5 minutes.
- Next, add the canned sweet corn and the sliced Holland peppers.
- Next, add the fried beef and pour over the soy sauce. Maintain the highest heat possible and stir-fry everything together for 30 seconds.
- Finally, season with salt and pepper to taste.
Easy Video Recipe for Authentic Hunan Beef Recipe
I also prepared a video for this Hunan beef recipe as I find it the best way to learn how to prepare it. The steps are important to be respected if you want to achieve an authentic final result. So, a video tutorial is your most suitable helper. Just watch the steps and instructions here and you’ll convince yourself that this is one of the best Chinese beef you’ll ever make at home!
Enjoy your Authentic Meal!
Finally, I want to strongly advise my readers to eat take-out dishes as rarely as possible. I know that our time is more and more limited and this sounds like a fine and even more affordable alternative to home cooking. However, the effects may sometimes be unfortunate. One of them is the Chinese Restaurant Syndrome (CRS). CRS refers to when people experience symptoms such as sweating and headaches after eating in Chinese restaurants. Doctors now call this the MSG effect, an additive used in restaurants and pre-packaged foods. Therefore, please find some time to cook for yourself at home. The future YOU will most probably be thanking you!
Last but not least, don’t forget that your input on everything I write about is extremely valuable. It really helps me know what you think about my work and how you would improve my recipes, ideas, and advice. So, keep on asking any questions in the comments section. I will make sure to respond as soon as possible! Furthermore, feel free to share your experience with this authentic Hunan beef recipe and all your advice on it. I am always super excited to hear from my beloved readers!
In addition, if you are interested in more Chinese recipes that you can make at home, here are three of my personal favorites: