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Beef Chow Mein

This homemade beef chow mein is even better than takeout!

I’ve been on a mission to recreate my favorite Chinese restaurant dishes at home. This one is a total winner!

Bowl of homemade beef chow mein noodles with flank steak and stir-fried vegetables
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Tender flank steak, colorful veggies, and egg noodles are tossed in a savory, umami-packed sauce.

The best part? It comes together in a flash. I’m talking 30 minutes, tops.

That’s less time than it takes to scroll through Netflix and decide what to watch.

Why You’ll Love This Beef Chow Mein

Once you try this chow mein, you’ll toss out the takeout menu for good!

  • Flavor Explosion: Beef chow mein is a delicious medley of savory, umami-rich flavors. It’ll leave you craving more.
  • Quick and Easy: This dish comes together in just 30 minutes. It’s so perfect for busy weeknights.
  • Budget-Friendly: Making this at home is much more cost-effective than ordering takeout. Plus, you can control the ingredients.
  • Guaranteed to Impress: Whip up this restaurant-style dish to impress your family and friends.

Ingredients

Here’s the list of what you’ll need to make this takeout dupe:

  • Dried Chow Mein Noodles or Thin Egg Noodles: The foundation of this dish. They soak up all the delicious sauce.
  • Flank Steak: This lean, flavorful cut is perfect for stir-fries. Slice it thinly against the grain for the most tender texture.
  • Vegetable Oil: It allows you to stir-fry over high heat without burning.
  • Garlic and Ginger: The aromatic duo provides a distinctive flavor base.
  • Vegetables: Onion, carrots, cabbage, bean sprouts, and green onions add extra texture and nutrition.
  • Soy Sauce, Oyster Sauce, and Dark Soy Sauce: The umami trifecta responsible for the savory flavor and brown color.
  • Shaoxing Wine (or Dry Sherry): It adds depth and aroma to the sauce. The alcohol cooks off, leaving behind its essence.
  • Salt and Sugar: To balance out the flavors in the dish.
  • Low-Sodium Beef Broth: It helps steam the noodles and marries the flavors together.
  • Sesame Oil: It lends a toasty, nutty aroma. A little goes a long way.
  • Cornstarch: The thickening agent gives the sauce a clinging consistency.
A person holding a sauce over a skillet with flank steak and vegetables

How to Make Beef Chow Mein

Don’t be intimidated by this recipe! It’s so easy to make.

  1. Marinate the beef. Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl, add the sliced beef, toss to coat, and let marinate for 10 minutes.
  2. Cook the noodles. Cook the noodles according to package directions until al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
  3. Prepare the sauce. Mix together all sauce ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  4. Cook the beef. Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet. Add the beef in a single layer. Cook without stirring for 1 minute, then stir-fry for another minute until browned. Transfer to a plate.
  5. Stir-fry the vegetables. Add the remaining oil to the wok, and stir-fry the garlic and ginger for 30 seconds. Then, add the onion, carrots, and cabbage. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until crisp-tender.
  6. Combine the ingredients. Add the beef back to the wok with any accumulated juices. Pour in the sauce, and bring to a simmer. Toss in the noodles and bean sprouts. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until well coated and heated through.
  7. Finish and serve. Stir in the green onions, remove from the heat, and serve hot.
Beef chow mein noodles in a black skillet with stir-fried vegetables and beef

Tips For the Best Beef Chow Mein

These tips result in better-than-takeout chow mein:

  • Get a step ahead. Chop all the vegetables and mix the sauce before cooking. This ensures a smooth, efficient stir-frying process.
  • Work some batch bliss. Don’t overcrowd the wok or skillet. Cook the beef and vegetables separately to ensure even cooking.
  • Vary up the veggies. Feel free to swap or add your favorite vegetables. Try broccoli, bok choy, mushrooms, or bell peppers. Aim for a variety of colors and textures.
  • Jazz up the sauce. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning to your liking. Add more soy sauce for saltiness, sugar for sweetness, or chili oil for heat.
  • Have fun with variations. Try different proteins like chicken, shrimp, or tofu. Make it vegetarian by omitting the meat and adding extra veggies. Or use lo mein noodles for a chewier texture.
Beef chow mein noodles with tender flank steak and colorful vegetables in a black skillet

How to Store

If you have leftover chow mein, follow these steps to enjoy it at a later date:

To Store: Allow it to cool completely, then transfer to an air-tight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. The noodles and vegetables may soften slightly over time.

To Freeze: I don’t recommend freezing this dish, as the noodles and vegetables can become mushy. But you can freeze the beef and sauce separately for up to 2-3 months.

To Reheat: Place leftovers in a skillet or wok over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through. You can also use the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds to ensure even heating.

Beef Chow Mein

Course: Main CourseCuisine: Chinese
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

20

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minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes
Calories

507

kcal

Skip takeout and make tasty beef chow mein at home! This savory noodle stir-fry is quick, easy, and brings the Chinese restaurant into your kitchen.

Ingredients

  • 8 oz dried chow mein noodles or thin egg noodles

  • 1 lb flank steak, sliced thinly against the grain

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil, divided

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced

  • 1 onion, sliced

  • 2 carrots, julienned

  • 2 cups shredded cabbage

  • 1 cup bean sprouts

  • 3 green onions, cut into 2-inch pieces

  • Marinade:
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)

  • 1 tsp cornstarch

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • Sauce:
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce

  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce

  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp Shaoxing wine (or dry sherry)

  • 1 tbsp sugar

  • 1/4 cup low-sodium beef broth

  • 1 tsp sesame oil

  • 1 tsp cornstarch

Instructions

  • Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add the sliced beef, toss to coat, and let marinate for 10 minutes.
  • Cook the noodles according to package directions until al dente. Drain, rinse with cold water, and set aside.
  • Mix together all the sauce ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat. Add the beef in a single layer and cook without stirring for 1 minute. Stir- fry for another minute until browned. Transfer to a plate.
  • Add the remaining 1 tbsp oil to the wok. Stir-fry the garlic and ginger for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the onion, carrots and cabbage. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until the vegetables are crisp-tender.
  • Add the beef back to the wok along with any accumulated juices. Pour in the sauce and bring to a simmer. Toss in the noodles and bean sprouts. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until everything is well coated in the sauce and heated through.
  • Stir in the green onions and remove from heat. Serve hot and enjoy!

Notes

  • Slice the beef thinly against the grain for the most tender texture. Marinating it briefly also helps tenderize it.
  • Use fresh garlic and ginger for the most aromatic flavor. They’re essential for that authentic taste.
  • Don’t overcook the vegetables. They should still have some crunch. Add the bean sprouts at the end so they stay crisp.

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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