Thai Steak and Green Bean Stir Fry


Fresh green beans, ginger, and garlic are quickly sauteed with tender strips of beef before being tossed in a light savory sauce to create this easy Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry.

I’m all for quick and easy dinners most nights and this one absolutely qualifies.

Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry

Unlike most stir-fries, this wholly savory steak stir-fry with green beans has no sweet and sour or sweet and spicy component. It is simply savory and delicious without any added sugars.

My husband Sean really loves this easy dinner. The rest of us enjoy the steak stir fry as well, but this is one of his personal favorites. It will keep well in the refrigerator for a few days, so he often takes the leftovers to work for his lunches.

Stir-Fried Beef and Green Beans

  1. In a very large skillet, warm the oil over medium-high heat. Add the steak and cook, tossing or stirring constantly just until browned, about 4 minutes. Remove the cooked steak to a plate.
  2. Add the green beans, ginger, and garlic to the juices left in the skillet. Toss to combine, add water, and cover with lid.
  3. Continue cooking over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Uncover and continue tossing the steak and green beans in the skillet constantly until the green beans are crisp-tender, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Return the beef and any juices to the skillet along with the fish sauce and basil. Toss quickly to coat and cook about a minute.
  5. Sprinkle with more basil, if desired and serve immediately, by itself or over rice.
Steak and Green Bean Stir Fry

What is Fish Sauce?

Fish sauce is a Thai and Vietnamese sauce used as a flavoring or condiment, prepared from fermented anchovies and salt.

A splash of fish sauce adds a unique savory flavor to this dish. Fish sauce is frequently used in both Thai and Vietnamese foods. If you are unsure of the fish sauce or unable to find it, soy sauce can be substituted.

I switch back and forth and make this recipe with fish sauce or with soy sauce, as my kids actually prefer the soy sauce version.

Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry

How To Stir Fry

  • Start with a wok or a large deep skillet to stir-fry. I’ve tried classic woks, countless skillets, and frying pans over the years. I now use this everyday pan to stir-fry and I absolutely love it.
  • I typically use tongs or a fish spatula for stir-frying. You can use any sturdy wooden or metal spatula, but fish spatulas really are the ultimate turner, stirrer, stir-fry tool.
  • Cut similar ingredients roughly the same size. Smaller pieces will cook faster, so making sure things are similar will keep things cooking evenly.
  • If you’re cooking more than a pound of meat, you’ll want to split it up and cook small batches. Small batch cooking helps brown and seal the meat and keep it tender.
  • Adding too much meat will reduce the temperature of the pan, produce more liquid, and cause the meat to stew instead of sear. Cooking too much meat at a time can result in tough meat that hasn’t absorbed much flavor.
  • Take care not to overcook the meat, as the residual heat will continue to cook the meat as it rests and then it will cook a bit further when it’s returned to the hot skillet at the end of the cooking process.
  • After the meat has cooked, add the firmer vegetables to the skillet first and then add softer vegetables as the firmer vegetables begin to soften.
  • When the vegetables have softened, return the meat to the pan.
  • Stir, heat everything once more, and serve.
Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry

More Stir Fry Recipes

If you’re craving more delicious stir-fry dinners to get dinner on the table fast, check out Sriracha Honey Cashew Chicken, Spicy Pork with Asian Greens, or Korean Jap Chae. (Jap Chae is the glass noodle stir fry that I love.)

Hibachi Style Garlic Steak and Shrimp by She Wears Many Hats sounds incredible, as does this Orange Teriyaki Beef with Noodles by Taste and Tell.

If you’re looking for a guaranteed kid and adult-pleasing meal, this Chicken and Bacon Stir Fry has been a family favorite for years now.

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Servings: 4 servings

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  • In a very large skillet, warm the oil over medium-high heat. Add the steak and cook, tossing or stirring constantly just until browned, about 4 minutes. Remove the cooked steak to a plate. 

  • Add the green beans, ginger, and garlic to the juices left in the skillet. Toss to combine, add water, and cover with lid. Continue cooking over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Uncover and continue tossing the green beans in the skillet constantly until the green beans are crisp-tender, about 5-7 minutes.

  • Return the beef and any juices to the skillet along with the fish sauce and basil. Toss quickly to coat and cook about a minute. Sprinkle with more basil, if desired and serve immediately, by itself or over rice. Enjoy!

Calories: 230kcal · Carbohydrates: 10g · Protein: 27g · Fat: 9g · Saturated Fat: 3g · Cholesterol: 71mg · Sodium: 789mg · Potassium: 638mg · Fiber: 3g · Sugar: 4g · Vitamin A: 940IU · Vitamin C: 15.6mg · Calcium: 63mg · Iron: 3.4mg

{originally published 1/9/14 – recipe notes and photos updated 5/10/22}

Green Bean Stir Fry with Beef



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