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Quick Szechuan Beef Stir Fry

The zing of Szechuan pepper and heat of chilli combine in this delicious 20 minute stir-fried Szechuan beef with cauliflower recipe.

Portrait image of a steaming hot Szechuan beef stir fry with noodles and cauliflower served in an Asian style bowl decorated with a red flower

Spicy Szechuan Beef.

It may be something of an understatement to say that I am fond of a bit of spice in my food.

This super quick stir fry beef recipe combines Szechuan pepper and chilli flakes. It will have you dumping those takeaway menus and saving a few pennies.

Szechuan pepper is the ingredient of note in Dan Dan Noodles and Kung Pao Chicken, I also make a wonderful Szechuan prawn recipe.

It is not actually pepper at all but it is a seed and is not spicy pungent like pepper or hot like chilli.

Flavourwise, it has an almost citrus edge and it fizzes and has a mild numbing effect in the mouth.

It is almost like grown up popping candy and makes me clap my hands like a fool!

Portrait overhead image of Szechuan beef stir fry with noodles and cauliflower

Cooking Hints and Tips.

You may be surprised to know that the main secret to stir-frying food has nothing at all to do with the cooking.

It is all in the preparation, this recipe uses lots of ingredients but the cooking time is just 10 minutes.

There is no time to measure things out as you are cooking.

So make sure you prepare and measure out all of your ingredients before you get started!

Once your prep is done there is one more mistake to avoid.

Heat! You need more of it, most people stir fry at too low a temperature.

This means that ingredients boil rather than fry, so turn up that heat a little more.

Portrait close up image of Szechuan beef stir fry with noodles and cauliflower

Ingredient Advice.

You should ensure that you are using dark soy sauce and not light soy sauce as they are not interchangeable.

Secondly, you need to add fish sauce to taste. Just have a quick taste of the sauce after you have added the initial amount and add more if required.

This recipe only uses a little beef as the flavour goes a long way. You could use something like flank, but you should cut it as finely as you can.

When you are slicing the beef it is important to slice it across the grain rather than with the grain.

This means cutting it at an angle perpendicular to the muscle fibres. For sirloin steak, this means cutting slices across the shortest side!

You could use either flank or skirt steak for this recipe, although I would marinade those for an hour before cooking.

Square image of a steaming hot Szechuan beef stir fry with noodles and cauliflower served in two Asian style bowls decorated with a red flower
Yield: 2 Servings

Szechuan Beef with Cauliflower Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

A wonderfully simple noodle based beef stir fry dish with hints of Szechuan pepper and chilli and all ready in less than 20 minutes. 


For the Marinade

  • 1 Tbsp Grated Ginger
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 2 Tsp Cornflour
  • 1 Tsp Dried Chilli Flakes
  • 1 Tsp Szechuan Pepper
  • 1 Tsp Light Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Tsp Sugar

For the Stir Fry

  • 200 g (7 oz) Sirloin Steak
  • 1 Tsp Sesame Seeds
  • 1 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 1 Banana Shallot
  • 200 g (3 Cups) Cauliflower
  • 75 g (3/4 Cup) Egg Noodles
  • 50ml (3 Tbsp + 1 Tsp) Mirin
  • 1 Tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Tbsp Fish Sauce (or to taste)
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Seseame Seeds


  1. Cook your noodles as per the instructions on the packet and then refresh in cold water.
  2. Peel and grate the ginger.
  3. Mash the garlic.
  4. Grind the Szechuan pepper in a pestle and mortar or spice grinder.
  5. Mix these together with the remaining ingredients for the marinade.
  6. Slice the beef into 3-4mm thick ribbons across the grain.
  7. Cut the cauliflower into small 1cm florets.
  8. Peel the shallot, cut it in half lengthways and then slice into 2mm thick half-moon shapes.
  9. Heat a dry wok over a high heat and toast the sesame seeds for 60 seconds, then remove.
  10. Add the oil to the hot wok and add in the banana shallot and stir fry for 30 seconds.
  11. Add the cauliflower and stir fry for 2 minutes.
  12. Then in goes the beef with the marinade and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.
  13. Finally add the drained noodles, mirin, dark soy and fish sauce and cook for a final minute.
  14. Remove from the heat, stir through the sesame oil and serve with a coating of sesame seeds.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 672Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 26gCholesterol: 103mgSodium: 1064mgCarbohydrates: 49gFiber: 6gSugar: 24gProtein: 34g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

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Brian Jones

Sunday 22nd of April 2018

lol, enjoy!


Saturday 21st of April 2018

I love cooking Asian style stir fry recipes with any meat, the marinade looks delicious and the meat must be so tender! Love all the flavors in this recipe and can't wait to try it!

Brian Jones

Sunday 22nd of April 2018

Thanks Patty.

Arjhon Canoy

Saturday 21st of April 2018

Just by looking at the pictures is mouthwatering. can't wait to try this. My family loves beef dishes. Thanks for this recipe.

Brian Jones

Sunday 22nd of April 2018

Thank you.


Monday 11th of April 2016

I love your pictures! This looks amazingly tasty! Will be trying it really soon :)

Brian Jones

Monday 11th of April 2016

Thank you Natalia, please let me know how you get on, I love hearing from people that cook my recipes :)

Brian Jones

Wednesday 27th of January 2016

Haha, I guess it is another ingredient I need to find the US name for :D It is a half way house between a regular shallot and an onion, looks like a long thin onion typically about the same length (top to tail) as a regular onion but only 2.5-3.5 cm in diameter.