Beef Chow Fun recipe is a stir fry succulent beef and flat rice noodles with homemade sauce. This rice noodle dish is so simple that you can create it at home without any special ingredients. Perfect weeknight dinner ready in 20 minutes!
Origin of Beef Chow Fun
Chow Fun is a Cantonese dish that originated from Guangzhou China. It’s become one of the most common dishes in Chinese restaurants and takeout across the world.
Fun facts about Chinese noodles :
You must have heard and familiar with different Chinese noodle dishes such as Chow Mein, Lo Mein, Chow Fun, etc. And it's a little confusing to pick them rightly by names if you are not very familiar with the Chinese names. Basically, for you to easily remember, Chow Mein or Lo Mein is the wheat/egg noodles (round and yellowish in colour mostly).
While Chow Fun, Mei Fun, Chow Hor Fun, Hor Fun, Chow Mei Fun are all different names for the same rice noodles. Flat and sometimes cut shortly, cooked in either dry or gravy. In general, if you see ‘fun’ in a noodle dish name, it is rice noodles included!
Ingredients you need to make Beef Chow Fun:
Starting from the noodles, you can use either fresh or dry rice noodles for this recipe. Traditionally Cantonese people use fresh hor fun noodles for this dish, which are made from rice flour, water, salt, and cooking oil. Dry flat noodles are available in most supermarket Asian aisle and Asian groceries. For fresh ones, you can find them as “hor fun noodles” at the Chinese/Oriental grocery store.
My simple tips: If you use fresh noodles, you can rinse them with hot water or blanch in warm water for 1-2 minutes until the noodles separate before cooking. If you use the dry noodles, follow the instructions on the package and make sure you don’t over boil them since they still need to be fried in the wok later.
And for the protein, beef is most commonly used with the hor fun noodles. I recommend to use tender steak cut such as rump, sirloin, tenderloin or rib eye. If you are not a beef/red meat fan, you don’t have to worry since I have prepared “Chicken Chow Fun ” recipe for you!
For vegetarian option, you can use fried tofu and vegetarian oyster sauce in the sauce mix will do great. And last but not least, seafood hor fun is another good choice for a beef substitute. I will share with you how to make delicious seafood hor fun in gravy soon so stay tuned!
The fun part comes with selecting the vegetables! Bean sprouts, garlic chives and spring onions are essential for this dish but you can add any stir fry vegetables of your choice. In addition to bean sprouts and spring onions, I have chosen a few for you which would go along with the beef chow fun. You can use bok choy, napa cabbage, sweet cabbage, thinly sliced carrot, baby corn or broccoli. But don’t limit yourself there, let your creativity work and try different styles with the vegetables of your choice.
For the frying sauce, oyster sauce, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, rice vinegar ,sesame oil, sugar and water are mixed together to make it taste sweet and savoury same time. It looks like a loads of sauce ingredients but trust me, this homemade sauce mix is better than any store bought stir fry sauce you have ever tried!
Traditionally Chinese stir fry dishes are prepared on high heat wok to sear the meat but we can make it happen with the equipment we already have in our kitchen. I used large non-stick wok in this recipe. You can use any of your favourite wok, skillet or frying pan, just make sure to cook it on high-heat.
Cooking Process :
Cut the steak into thin slices, against the grain. Marinate the beef slices with light soy sauce, sugar, baking soda, corn starch, white pepper powder and Shaoxing Chinese cooking wine. Set aside and marinate for 10-15 minutes. This marinating method is called velveting in Oriental cooking, it keeps the beef tender and juicy.
Cut the spring onions into 1" pieces. Finely chop the garlic and ginger. (You can use Chinese chives instead of spring onions.)
In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients from the stir fry sauce list. Set aside.
Prepare the rice noodle by separating the strands. Fresh rice noodle is used in this recipe however you can substitute with dried rice noodle. After noodle is boiled by packet instruction, rinse the noodles in cold water, toss with a bit of oil to prevent sticking the strands.
Heat the pan into medium heat stir fry the chopped garlic for few seconds, then follow with the chopped ginger and continue stir for a few seconds.
Add the marinated beef, flatten and spread the beef in the pan. Let it sear the beef for 2 mins until the beef colour changed, turn side cook for another 1 to 2 minutes and stir well.
Place the noodles back in wok and follow with the sauce mix, stir fry for 1 minute on high heat.
Add the bean sprouts and continue stir fry for 1 min. Be careful not to overcook the beansprout.
Follow with the spring onions and stir well until all the ingredients are evenly combine. Turn off heat and transfer to a serving plate. Delicious beef chow fun is ready to serve. Enjoy!
Watch how to make beef chow fun recipe video
To create a full Chinese dinner you can pair this dish with :
- Hot and Sour Soup or Chicken Corn Soup
- Crispy Salt and Chilli Chicken or Crispy Deep Fried Dumplings
- Crispy Orange Chicken or Sweet and Sour Prawn Balls
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Beef Chow Fun
- 250 g Beef Steak (Rump/Sirloin or any tender steak)
- 250 g Flat rice noodle/ chow fun/ hor fun noodles wide/10mm (fresh or boiled)
- 2 tbsp Vegetable oil
- 100 g Bean sprouts
- 5-6 Spring onions/chinese chives
- 2 slices Ginger
- 3 cloves Garlic
- 1 tsp Light soy sauce
- ¼ tsp Baking soda
- 1 tsp Shaoxing cooking wine/rice vinegar
- 1 tsp Potato/Corn flour (starch)
- ¼ tsp White pepper
- ½ tsp Sugar
- 3 tbsp Oyster sauce
- 2 tbsp Light soy sauce
- 2 tsp Dark soy sauce
- 1 tbsp Rice Vinegar
- 2 tsp Sesame oil
- 1 tsp Sugar
- 3 tbsp Water
- Cut the beef steak into thin slices. Mix well with the ingredients in the beef marinate list. Set aside and marinate for 10-15 mins.
- Cut the spring onions into 1" pieces. Finely chop the garlic and ginger.
- In a small bowl mix all the ingredients in the sauce list. Set aside.
- Prepare the rice noodle by separating the strands.
- Heat the pan into medium heat and add the chopped garlic and stir for a few seconds then add the chopped ginger and stir for a few seconds.
- Add the marinated beef, flatten and spread the beef in the pan. Let it cook the beef for 2 mins till the beef gets a nice colour and turn side and stir well.
- Add the noodles and follow with the sauce mix. Stir fry with high heat for 1-2 min until all the ingredients and sauce combine.
- Add the bean sprouts and continue stir fry for 1 min.
- Add the cut spring onions, mix well.
- Turn off heat and transfer to a serving plate.
- Delicious beef chow fun is ready! Enjoy!
- Shaoxing Chinese cooking wine substitutes are dry sherry, rice wine or mirin Japanese cooking wine. If you do not consume wine in your cooking, you can use rice vinegar instead.
- For fresh rice noodles, you can loosen it by blanching in the hot boiling water for 1-2 mins, drain and rinse with cold water. Then strain the water out and mix with a teaspoon of sesame/vegetable oil.
- If you use dry rice noodles, you can boil the noodle according to packet instructions. Drain the noodles, rinse in cold water, strain the water out. Mix with a teaspoon of sesame/vegetable oil. ( You can use about 110 g of dry flat noodles for this recipe. )
- You can use Chinese chives instead of spring onions.
- If you like spicy, you can add half teaspoon of chilli oil in the sauce mixture.