Black Pepper Beef with Green Beans

Beef with Green Beans
Mark Boughton
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 13 mins

"A Cantonese favorite that uses freshly ground black pepper for spiciness, this dish is not so much hot and spicy as deeply flavorful. Use more or less pepper to suit your taste," Helen Chen says.


1pound green beans, ends snapped off and strings removed
3/4pound flank steak, trimmed
2tablespoons dark soy sauce or soy sauce
1tablespoon cornstarch
1tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1teaspoon sugar
2teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
3tablespoons canola oil
1/4cup water
2slices unpeeled fresh ginger
1medium onion, sliced


  1. 1. Snap green beans into halves or thirds to make pieces about 2 1/2 inches long. 
  2. 2. Slice steak with the grain into 2-inch-wide strips. Then slice the strips across the grain into 1/8-inch-thick slices. 
  3. 3. Whisk together soy sauce, cornstarch, wine, sugar and black pepper in a medium bowl. Add beef and mix well. 
  4. 4. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or stir-fry pan over high heat until oil is hot but not smoking. Test by dipping a spatula in the beef mixture and then into the oil; it should sizzle. Add green beans and stir about 1 minute. Add water and reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook until tender-crisp, 6 to 9 minutes. Transfer beans and liquid to a shallow dish. 
  5. 5. Add remaining oil to pan and increase heat to high. Add ginger and stir until oil is hot and ginger sizzles. Add onion and stir constantly 1 minute. Stir beef mixture and add to pan. Cook, stirring, until beef is no longer pink, about 2 minutes.
  6. 6. Return beans and liquid to pan and stir until mixed well and heated thoroughly, about 30 seconds. Discard ginger.

Recipe adapted with permission from Easy Chinese Stir-Fries, by Helen Chen (Wiley, 2009).

Nutritional Info *per serving

  • Calories 280
  • Glycemic Load 1
  • Fat 16g
  • Saturated Fat 3g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat 3.5g
  • Monounsaturated Fat 9g
  • Cholesterol 35mg
  • Sodium 500mg
  • Potassium 280mg
  • Carbohydrate 15g
  • Fiber 4g
  • Sugars 6g
  • Protein 21g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Vitamin A 15%
  • Vitamin C 25%
  • Calcium 6%
  • Iron 15%