Black Pepper Beef with Green Beans

Kitchen Tested
  • Yield 4 servings
  • Prep 5 mins
  • Cook 13 mins

Just a few ingredients lend beef and beans an Asian flavor.

Beef with Green Beans
Mark Boughton

"A Cantonese favorite that uses freshly ground black pepper for spiciness, this dish is not so much hot and spicy as deeply flavorful. Use more or less pepper to suit your taste," Helen Chen says.


1 pound green beans, ends snapped off and strings removed
3/4 pound flank steak, trimmed
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce or soy sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 teaspoon sugar
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
3 tablespoons canola oil
1/4 cup water
2 slices unpeeled fresh ginger
1 medium onion, sliced


  1. 1. Snap green beans into halves or thirds to make pieces about 2 1/2 inches long. 
  2. 2. Slice steak with the grain into 2-inch-wide strips. Then slice the strips across the grain into 1/8-inch-thick slices. 
  3. 3. Whisk together soy sauce, cornstarch, wine, sugar and black pepper in a medium bowl. Add beef and mix well. 
  4. 4. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or stir-fry pan over high heat until oil is hot but not smoking. Test by dipping a spatula in the beef mixture and then into the oil; it should sizzle. Add green beans and stir about 1 minute. Add water and reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook until tender-crisp, 6 to 9 minutes. Transfer beans and liquid to a shallow dish. 
  5. 5. Add remaining oil to pan and increase heat to high. Add ginger and stir until oil is hot and ginger sizzles. Add onion and stir constantly 1 minute. Stir beef mixture and add to pan. Cook, stirring, until beef is no longer pink, about 2 minutes.
  6. 6. Return beans and liquid to pan and stir until mixed well and heated thoroughly, about 30 seconds. Discard ginger.

Recipe adapted with permission from Easy Chinese Stir-Fries, by Helen Chen (Wiley, 2009).



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 254 other followers