Panda Express Beijing Beef

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Deliciously tender beef, a sweet and slightly spicy sauce, crunchy peppers, sounds good? Now where did we put our chopsticks? Panda Express Beijing Beef has always been a firm favorite, especially in our house. Today we are going to look at how to make Panda Express Beijing Beef and give you a few handy hints to make sure you get the perfect result every time.

Panda Express Beijing Beef in a pan

How To Make Copycat Panda Express Beijing Beef

Do you want flavor or do you want simple? Hopefully you said flavor? You’ll notice with this recipe that there is a fairly long list of ingredients, but trust us, it will be worth it. After all Beijing was not built in a day.

The dish features heavily with a couple of sauces, namely oyster sauce, hoisin sauce and soy sauce. If you are watching your waistline then by all means these can be switched out for lower sodium or lower sugar versions.

You aren’t going to need too much kitchen equipment. A few bowls and a large frying pan or wok is all it should take to have you on the way to your favorite takeaway in a matter of minutes.

To make Panda Express Beijing Beef:

  1. Prepare Beef: Thinly slice 1 lb of London Broil or Skirt steak. Marinate in a mixture of corn starch, salt, and whisked egg whites for at least 25 minutes.
  2. Make Sauce: Combine chicken broth, oyster sauce, rice wine vinegar, garlic, chili powder, sweet chili sauce, ketchup, red chili, and apple cider vinegar in a bowl.
  3. Fry Beef: Heat cooking oil in a wok, coat the marinated beef in additional corn starch, and fry in batches until golden brown and crispy. Drain on kitchen paper.
  4. Cook Vegetables: In the same wok, sauté diced green bell pepper, sliced onion, and celery stalks until just tender.
  5. Combine and Serve: Add the sauce to the vegetables in the wok, bring to a boil, then simmer until thickened. Add the fried beef, stir to combine, and serve hot over cooked rice.

For the Beef:

  1. London Broil or Skirt Steak: Sliced thinly, this beef is the main protein of the dish, providing a tender and flavorful base.
  2. Corn Starch: Used to coat the beef, it helps to create a crispy texture when fried.
  3. Eggs (yolks removed): The egg whites are used in the marinade to help the corn starch adhere to the beef and contribute to the crispiness.
  4. Cooking Oil: Used for frying the beef, ensuring it becomes golden brown and crispy.

For the Vegetables:

  1. Green Bell Pepper: Adds crunch and a fresh, slightly sweet flavor.
  2. Medium White Onion: Provides a mild, aromatic flavor.
  3. Celery Stalks: Contribute a subtle, earthy taste and additional crunch.

For the Sauce:

  1. Chicken Broth: Forms the base of the sauce, adding depth and richness.
  2. Oyster Sauce: Offers a unique, savory flavor.
  3. Rice Wine Vinegar: Adds acidity, balancing the flavors in the sauce.
  4. Fresh Garlic: Enhances the sauce with its pungent, aromatic flavor.
  5. Chili Powder, Freshly Ground Black Pepper: These spices add heat and complexity to the sauce.
  6. Sweet Chili Sauce: Provides a balance of sweetness and spice.
  7. Apple Cider Vinegar: Adds a tangy flavor to the sauce.

Additional Ingredients:

  1. Sugar: Sweetens the sauce.
  2. Ketchup: Adds a tangy tomato flavor.
  3. Red Chili: Offers additional heat and spice.

Panda Express Beijing Beef

4 from 7 votes
Recipe by Laura Ritterman Course: MainCuisine: ChineseDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Cooking time

20

minutes
Calories

375

kcal

Enjoy this copycat Panda Express Beijing Beef recipe in the comfort of your home. Made in under 40 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb 1 London Broil or Skirt steak

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 corn starch divided in two

  • 1 generous pinch of salt

  • 3 eggs whisked (yolks removed)

  • 8 oz 8 cooking oil

  • 1 tablespoon 1 crushed garlic

  • 1 finely sliced medium white onion

  • 1 red pepper thickly diced

  • For the Panda Express Beijing Beef Sauce
  • 4 oz 4 water

  • 2 oz 2 sugar

  • 6 teaspoons 6 ketchup

  • ¼ cup Hoisin sauce

  • 3 teaspoons 3 dark soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon 1 oyster sauce

  • 2 tablespoons 2 sweet chili sauce

  • 1 red chili finely sliced

  • 4 teaspoons 4 apple cider vinegar

Directions

  • Take your steak and slice it finely, no thicker than ¼ of an inch. Add this to a medium bowl along with 2 teaspoons of corn starch, salt, and the eggs. Mix well and let stand for at least 25 minutes
  • In a separate bowl add the water, sugar, ketchup, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce, chili sauce, chopped chili and vinegar
  • In another bowl add the remaining corn starch. Remove the beef from its marinade and then toss and shake in the dry corn starch until it is evenly coated
  • Heat the oil in a wok over a high heat. Once the oil is hot, add your beef strips in batches and fry until they are golden brown and crispy. Remove and place leave to drain on kitchen paper. Once the beef is cooked discard the hot oil, leaving two tablespoons behind.
  • Add the onions and bell pepper and cook until just cooked. Then add the garlic and stir for around 30 seconds.
  • Add the sauce mixture to the pan and fry for around 4 minutes or until it begins to thicken.
  • Add the beef to the sauce, stir around the pan until combined with the ingredients. Serve and enjoy.

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Tips and Tricks

  1. Thinly Slicing the Beef: The key to getting that perfect texture in Beijing Beef is slicing the beef thinly. I’ve found that partially freezing the beef for about 30 minutes makes it easier to slice thinly and evenly. This ensures quick and even cooking, giving you tender pieces of beef that are not chewy.
  2. Marinating for Flavor: Allowing the beef to marinate in the cornstarch and egg mixture is crucial. This step not only helps the coating stick to the beef but also tenderizes it. I usually let it marinate for at least 25 minutes, which significantly enhances the flavor and texture of the beef.
  3. Crispy Frying Technique: Getting the oil temperature right (around 350°F) is essential for a crispy outer layer. Fry the beef in small batches to avoid lowering the oil’s temperature. This ensures each piece is evenly cooked and has that desirable crispy texture.
  4. Balancing the Sauce: The sauce is the heart of this dish. Combining the right proportions of oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and sweet chili sauce creates a harmonious blend of flavors. I always taste and adjust the seasoning as needed, ensuring the sauce complements the beef perfectly.
  5. Vegetable Crunch: Adding the vegetables at the right time is important to maintain their crunch. I sauté the bell peppers, onions, and celery just until they’re tender but still have a bit of bite. This adds a lovely texture contrast to the dish and keeps the vegetables vibrant and flavorful.

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Is this dish spicy?

Panda Express Beijing Beef is a little bit spicy. If you are feeling slightly more timid then you can omit the chili element completely. Alternatively, if you actively enjoy a little bit of heat but don’t have any fresh chili then don’t worry. A pinch of dried chili flakes will work just as well. Or, you can use half a teaspoon of chili powder, or maybe even a touch of cayenne pepper if you are in a real fix.

Conclusion

Chinese food in the comfort of your own home? Yes please. Our homemade Panda Express Beijing Beef recipe is guaranteed to be a sure-fire hit. The key to making this recipe lies in the beef. It has to be super thin to ensure quick cooking, and whatever you do make sure you allow the corn starch time to do its work! If you’ve tried this recipe and loved it why not let me know in the comments below. I enjoy hearing about others enjoying my recipes.

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