5 Must-Try Asian Beef Recipes

Across Asia's vast gastronomic landscape, beef plays a starring role in cuisines from every region. From quick stir-fries to slow-cooked stews, there’s certainly an Asian beef recipe to satisfy you and your loved ones’ cravings. 

Curious to find out how you can incorporate beef in your next culinary feat?

Here are 5 mouth-watering options to try:

Mongolian Beef

This restaurant favourite is surprisingly easy to make at home. Thinly sliced beef is marinated in a savoury sauce and then stir-fried with scallions, creating a silky, velvety and delightful dish. Ready in under 30 minutes, Mongolian Beef is perfect for a weeknight meal.

Photo & Recipe Source

What You’ll Need

Stir Fry

  • 680g flank steak
  • ½ onion
  • 5 green onions
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1.5 Tbsp chopped ginger
  • 4 dried red chilies
  • 4 Tbsp oil, divided



How to Prepare

Stir Fry Method

  1. Thinly slice beef at an angle, about ⅛ of an inch. Mix with marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add in beef strips and mix well.
  2. Chop onions and green onions, separating white and green portions of green onions. Finely chop ginger and garlic. Cut dried red chilies into strips.
  3. Mix first four sauce ingredients. Separately, mix water and corn starch until well blended.
  4. Heat 2 Tbsp oil in wok over medium high heat. Add meat strips and sear, about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove and spread on a plate.
  5. Heat remaining oil to pan and add onion and white portion of green onions. Stir and cook until slightly softened.
  6. Add ginger, garlic and red chili strips, stir. Add mixture of soy sauce, wine, brown sugar and ½ cup water.
  7. Combine remaining 2 Tbsp water with corn starch mixture. Add to sauce and stir well. Let simmer until sauce begins to thicken.
  8. Stir in meat and green portions of green onions.
  9. Serve hot with your favourite rice.

    Korean Beef Bulgogi

    Crafted from a combination of two words in Korean: Bul (Fire) and Gogi (Meat), this dish is a staple of Korean cuisine with thinly sliced ribeye is bathed in a marinade made with soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, and ginger. 

    Bulgogi can be grilled, pan-fried, or stir-fried, making it a versatile crowd-pleaser. Serve it with rice, kimchi, lettuce wraps, or your favourite vegetables.

    Photo & Recipe Source

    What you’ll need

    Bulgogi Marinade

    Beef Bulgogi

    • 680g rib eye (or any tender prime beef cut like tenderloin), thinly sliced to 1/8th inch thickness
    • 3 Tbsp oil, divided
    • 1 onion, thinly sliced

    How to prepare

    1. Mix all of the marinade ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until well combined.
    2. Pour the marinade over the thinly sliced beef and mix well (use hands to rub the marinade all over the meat). Cover the bowl with cling wrap and marinate the meat for at least 4 hours in the fridge. You can marinate the beef overnight if time allows.
    3. Heat a large cast iron pan or skillet over high heat. Add 2 Tbsp oil and swirl to coat. Add marinated beef in a single layer (cook in batches if you have a smaller pan). Cook undisturbed for 2-3 minutes. Toss and cook for another 3-4 minutes, tossing occasionally, till beef is cooked to your desired doneness with a slight caramelization. Remove from heat.
    4. You can serve this bulgogi right away on a serving plate, or you can serve it on a bed of caramelized sliced onions. Heat remaining 1 Tbsp oil on very high heat and cook sliced onions, undisturbed for 3-4 minutes. Stir and cook them till they start getting brown and caramelized. Place bulgogi atop the onions and garnish with sesame seeds and scallions.
    5. Serve with warm rice or in lettuce cups along with some kimchi.

    Thai Basil Beef

    Imagine a super quick stir fry that you can have on the table in about 20 minutes. Simply bursting with flavour, this dish is fondly known as pad kra pao among Thai locals. Made with Asian seasonings like soy, oyster and fish sauce, along with some heat from bird’s eye chilis and the distinct taste of Thai basil, this dish is best served over steaming hot rice with a crispy sunny side-up egg.

    Photo & Recipe Source

    What you’ll need

    • 10-12 cloves garlic
    • 7-8 Thai bird's eye chilies
    • 2 Tbsp cooking oil
    • 1 red capsicum, sliced
    • 1½ pounds lean ground beef
    • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
    • 2 Tbsp oyster sauce
    • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
    • 2 tsp dark soy sauce
    • 1 tsp white sugar
    • 1½ cups Thai basil

    How to prepare

    1. Crush chili and peeled garlic into a paste.
    2. Heat oil in wok over high heat. Add chili-garlic paste and stir for 20 seconds.
    3. Add capsicum and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
    4. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up with a spoon, until beef is browned.
    5. Add sugar and sauces, stir until well mixed.
    6. Fold in basil. Remove from heat immediately, so the basil doesn't overcook.
    7. Serve over fresh white rice, top with fried eggs and garnish with additional Thai basil.

    Beef Rendang

    Originating from Indonesia and made popular locally in Malaysia, rendang is a rich and tender coconut beef stew known for its intense flavours that pack a punch. The core of beef rendang is the spice paste, as well as boneless beef short ribs, coconut milk, chillis and more.

    Photo & Recipe Source

    What you’ll need

    • 680g boneless beef short ribs, cut into cubes
    • 5 tablespoons cooking oil
    • 1 stick cinnamon, about 2-inch length
    • cloves
    • star anise
    • cardamom pods
    • 1 lemongrass, cut into 4-inch length and pounded
    • 1 cup thick coconut milk (coconut cream)
    • 1 cup water
    • 2 teaspoons tamarind pulp, soaked in some warm water for the juice and discard the seeds
    • 6 kaffir lime leaves, very finely sliced
    • 6 tablespoons kerisik (toasted coconut)
    • 1 tablespoon palm sugar to taste
    • salt to taste

    Spice Paste

    • 5 shallots
    • 1 inch galangal
    • 3 lemongrass (white part only)
    • 5 cloves garlic
    • 1 inch ginger
    • 10-12 dried chilies, soaked in warm water and seeded

    How to prepare

    1. Chop the spice paste ingredients and then blend in a food processor until fine.
    2. Heat the oil in a stew pot, add the spice paste, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and cardamom and stir-fry until aromatic. Add the beef and the pounded lemongrass and stir for 1 minute. Add the coconut milk, tamarind juice, water, and simmer on medium heat, stirring frequently until the meat is almost cooked.
    3. Add the kaffir lime leaves, kerisik (toasted coconut), sugar, or palm sugar, stirring to blend well with the meat.
    4. Lower the heat to low, cover the lid, and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is really tender and the gravy has dried up. Add more salt and sugar to taste. Serve immediately with steamed rice and save some for storage.

    Chinese Beef and Broccoli

    A classic takeout dish, Chinese Beef and Broccoli features juicy beef florets and broccoli florets are stir-fried in a fragrant sauce made with oyster sauce, soy sauce, and ginger. This dish is quick, delicious and perfect for a healthy weeknight meal.

    Photo & Recipe Source

    What you’ll need

    Beef Marinade

    Stir Fry Sauce

    Stir Fry

    • 3 Tbsp cooking oil, divided
    • 1 Tbsp ginger, finely chopped
    • 1 Tbsp garlic, finely chopped
    • 1 pound broccoli florets

    How to prepare

    1. Thinly slice beef at an angle, about ⅛ of an inch. Mix with marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add in beef strips and mix well.
    2. Combine all sauce ingredients in a bowl.
    3. Heat about 1 Tbsp oil in wok or large skillet over medium high heat. Add the broccoli and stir fry for a minute. Add about 1/2 inch water, cover. Cook till it is still crisp, but just starting to soften up, about 3-4 minutes. Remove to a plate.
    4. Add 2 tbsp oil into wok. Add beef and stir fry until browned.
    5. Add ginger and garlic, cook for 1 minute.
    6. Toss in sauce and broccoli. Cook for a minute, then serve with freshly steamed rice. Garnish with sesame seeds and red chili flakes.


    These are just a few of the many delicious Asian beef recipes waiting to be explored in your kitchen. With a vast variety of styles and cooking techniques, there's sure to be an Asian beef dish that will become your new family favourite.

    So will one or ALL these recipes be on your next dinner menu? Be sure to tag Asian Pantry when you upload your Asian beef photos and videos on Facebook & Instagram.

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