Crispy Chilli Beef

The secrets to crispy chilli beef are twofold;

Firstly, it is important to cut the beef up into small relatively fine strips, cutting with the grain rather than across it. Secondly, the beef must be cooked (deep fried) until there is almost no moisture left i.e. it goes crispy. The first time you do this you will probably think you are ruining the meat but have faith…

It’s a pretty easy dish to make at home provided you have a deep wok or a deep fat fryer and it’s much much better than the take-away version.


  • 500g sandwich steak (as its easier to cut into strips)
  • cornflour (to toss the beef in before frying)
  • 1 carrot, julienne
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 5 spring onions, finely sliced
  • quarter of an onion, finely sliced
  • 4 small red chillies finely sliced (this will be quite hot)


  • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce


  1. Fill a wok with 3 cups of vegetable or sunflower oil and heat until just before smoking – 180c is good.
  2. Cover the beef in cornflour and deep fry for around 5-7 minutes or until almost all the moisture is gone (not all or there will be nothing left to taste) – remove to a plate with kitchen roll.
  3. Remove most of the fat from the wok leaving a tablespoon.
  4. Flash fry the carrots, onion, spring onions (1 min), then the garlic & chilli (30 seconds more).
  5. Toss the beef back in and add the sauce ingredients along with a splash of water
  6. Cook for about 3 minutes until the sauce thickens up.

This is actually really good cold too.

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