Chinese Stir-Fried Beef With Onions

Chinese beef and onion stirfry

Gentl and Hyers / Getty Images

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 2 to 4 servings

This Chinese stir-fried beef with onions gets its distinctive flavor from two types of onions—yellow onions and green onions—for a satisfying dish.

This easy recipe comes together quickly in a wok for a hearty weeknight family dish that also is perfect for your snootiest guests.


  • For the Beef:
  • 3/4 to 1 pound flank or top sirloin steak (cut into 1/2 inch wide strips)
  • For the Marinade:
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 1/8 teaspoon sesame oil
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • For the Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • For the Vegetables:
  • Oil for stir frying
  • 1 piece sliced ginger
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 2 medium chopped onions
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons water (to make a gravy, if desired)
  • 2 green onions (scallions, spring onion, sliced diagonally)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Cut beef against the grain.

  3. In a large bowl, combine the light soy sauce, rice wine or dry sherry, sesame oil, black pepper, and cornstarch. Add the beef, coating completely, and marinate at room temperature for about 15 minutes.

  4. In a small bowl, combine the dark soy sauce, sugar, and dry sherry. Set aside.

  5. Heat wok and add 2 tablespoons oil, allowing it to drizzle down the sides.

  6. When the oil is ready, add ginger and garlic. stir-fry briefly and add onions. Stir-fry until onions are tender but not overcooked.

  7. Remove the vegetables from the wok and set aside.

  8. Add additional oil to the wok if necessary. Add the beef, stir-frying until it changes color.

  9. Add the water at this point to make a gravy.

  10. Return the vegetables to the wok and mix well.

  11. Add the sauce.

  12. Stir in the green onion. Stir-fry briefly to blend all the flavors.

  13. Serve hot with rice.