Beef Chow Fun (Beef Ho Fun)

By: takestwoeggsPosted: 15/05/2022 Updated: 30/11/2023
Prep 20 minutes
Cook 6 minutes
Tender, juicy, and flavorful beef chow fun is a delicious classic Cantonese dish you can enjoy this week. This easy noodle recipe with marinated beef, fresh rice noodles, bean sprouts, and green onion can be yours in under 30 minutes!
Beef Chow Fun (Beef Ho Fun)

Tender, juicy, and flavorful beef chow fun is a delicious classic Cantonese dish you can enjoy this week. This easy noodle recipe with marinated beef, fresh rice noodles, bean sprouts, and green onion can be yours in under 30 minutes!

Up close of a bowl of beef chow fun on a table.

When I have a busy week, the last thing I want to do is spend a copious amount of time in the kitchen cooking dinner. All I want to do is whip up something quick and delicious, pour myself a glass of wine, and watch Selling Sunset. Since you can make this saucy beef chow fun recipe within 30 minutes, it is the perfect solution for those busy weeks without sacrificing any flavor.

This better-than-takeout beef chow fun recipe is made with marinated flank steak, thick flat rice noodles, bean sprouts, and green onion for the ultimate weeknight meal. Serve this beef chow fun with homemade chili oil or garlic chili oil for an extra kick!

A detail shot of beef chow fun in a serving bowl.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • This is an easy under 30-minute beef chow fun recipe
  • It yields the juiciest, tender, and flavorful beef slices you’ll ever taste.
  • Step-by-step photo instructions with comprehensive tips and tricks for the most delicious beef ho fun.
Up close of a bowl of beef chow fun with chopsticks.

Kitchen Equipment

  • Mixing Bowl: you will need a large mixing bowl to marinate your beef.
  • Wok or large skillet: I highly recommend using a large wok for this beef chow fun recipe. The large surface area allows you to easily toss all the sauces and noodles together.

Ingredients

You can find all of the ingredients for this beef ho fun recipe at your local Chinese or Asian grocery market or online.

Marinade and Sauce

  • Beef: you can choose almost any type of steak for this recipe. I recommend flank or skirt steak for a more cost-effective choice that has enough fat marbled throughout.
  • Baking Soda: baking soda is the secret ingredient in tenderizing beef. The process is called velveting which results in a tender and juicy beef.
  • Cornstarch: is important in tenderizing the meat, making your beef more flavorful, and protecting it from overheating.
  • Light Soy Sauce: Light soy sauce is thinner and lighter in color and adds a gentle saltiness to the dish. I recommend using Lee Kum Kee’s Premium light soy sauce.
  • Dark Soy Sauce: Dark soy sauce has more intensity in flavor, more saltiness, and is much darker than regular soy sauce. Also, dark soy sauce has a sweeter flavor due to it being aged longer with molasses. I recommend using Lee Kum Kee’s dark soy sauce.
  • Oyster Sauce: is a mixture of caramelized oyster juices, salt, sugar, and soy sauce. It adds an extra umami flavoring to the dish. I used Lee Kum Kee’s oyster sauce.
  • Shaoxing Wine: is a traditional rice cooking wine that adds a vinegary and caramel-like flavor. You can buy Shaoxing wine online or at your local Asian grocery market.
  • White Pepper: to season the beef. You can substitute white pepper for black pepper.
  • Sugar: brings a little sweetness into the sauce and marinade that softens the saltiness from the soy sauces.
The sauces to make a beef chow fun marinade.

Stir-Fry

  • Flat Rice Noodles: you can either choose fresh or dry rice noodles. If you have access to an Asian grocery store that carries fresh rice noodles I highly recommend using it for a more tender and delicious taste. It could be labeled as ho fun, he fun or huo fun.
  • Yellow Onion is one of the main aromatics of the dish.
  • Garlic: adds a fragrant garlic flavor to the beef ho fun.
  • Green Onion: cut the green onion into large 1-inch pieces.
  • Bean Sprouts: make sure to wash and thoroughly dry the bean sprouts before stir-frying.
  • Sesame Oil: sesame oil adds a subtle touch of nuttiness to the end of the dish. Make sure to turn the heat off before adding the sesame oil to prevent the flavor from burning off.
All the ingredients to make beef chow fun in glass bowls.

Substitutions and Additions

  • Gluten-free beef chow fun: to make this recipe gluten-free simply swap tamari for black soy sauce and light soy sauce and dry sherry for the Shaoxing wine
  • Protein: you can always exchange the beef for chicken, pork, or tofu.
  • Vegetables: you can always add lightly blanched vegetables for a more balanced meal such as broccolini, broccoli, bok choy, kale, or gai lan (Chinese broccoli).

How to Make Beef Chow Fun

This beef chow fun recipe is a quick and delicious under 30-minute meal prep solution for those busy weeknights.

  1. Marinate your beef. In a small mixing bowl, mix the baking soda cornstarch, Shaoxing cooking wine, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, dark soy sauce, white pepper, water and sugar and mix until combined. Slice your beef into 1/4 or 1/8 inch slices across the grain and marinate the beef for about 30 min-1 hour. Set aside.
Marinating sliced beef for beef chow fun.
  1. Prepare the noodles. Separate the fresh noodles by hand so they are not sticking together. If the noodles are stiff and are not separating easily, you can steam them or blanch them in boiling water for about 30 seconds to loosen. Drain and rinse with cold water immediately. If you are using dried rice noodles, follow the instructions on the packaging.
  1. Chow fun sauce. In a small bowl, mix together the dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, oyster sauce and water. Set aside.
The beef chow fun sauce mixed and ready in a small glass bowl.
  1. Cook the beef. In a wok or large skillet, heat on high heat until hot. Then add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to coat the wok for about 30 seconds. Add the beef and sear about 30 seconds on each side or until golden brown. The meat will be slightly pink on the inside since it will be cooked again. Remove from the wok and set aside.
Cooking the marinated sliced beef in a large wok on the stove.
  1. Saute aromatics. Clean your wok before using. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil on medium high heat and cook the sliced yellow onion and garlic until fragrant and lightly browned about 1 minute.
Caramelizing the onions and garlic in a large wok.
  1. Saute noodles. Then, add 1 tablespoon of oil and the rice noodles and gently saute for about 30 seconds until browned. If the noodles begin to stick add 1 tablespoon of water.
Tossing the ribbon noodles with the caramelized aromatics.
  1. Add the sauce and vegetables. Add the chow fun sauce and gently toss the noodles until the noodles are well coated. Then add the green onion, and bean sprouts and toss until combined.
Adding the vegetables to the flavored noodles
  1. Add the beef. Lastly, add the beef and sesame oil and toss until combined about 30 seconds. Serve and enjoy!
Adding the beef and sesame oil for the final mix of beef chow fun.

Tips for the Best Beef Chow Fun

  • Lightly freeze the beef for 30 minutes before slicing. This allows the beef to slightly firm up allowing the knife to cleanly slice through the beef.
  • Marinate the beef for at least 30 minutes-1 hour. The time allows all the sauces to absorb into the meat and the baking soda to tenderize the meat. The longer you marinate the beef, the more tender it will be.
  • Have all your ingredients ready before you begin cooking. Prepping all the ingredients next to you near the stove makes the cooking process seamless.
  • Make sure the wok or large skillet is hot before adding ingredients. This will ensure quick searing and better flavor.
  • Fresh rice noodles: if you are using fresh rice noodles and they are sticking together, you can steam them or blanch them in boiling water for 30 seconds to loosen and then rinse with cold water.
  • Gently toss the noodles. This will prevent the noodles from breaking apart into tiny little pieces. Some breakage will be inevitable if you are using fresh noodles.

Storage Instructions

You can store the beef chow fun in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The noodles may firm up in the refrigerator. To reheat, sprinkle a few drops of water on top of the beef chow fun and cover with a wet paper towel before microwaving for a steaming effect.

Frequently Asked Q’s and A’s

What is beef chow fun?

Beef chow fun is a staple Cantonese dish. It is known as gon chow ngau huo in Cantonese. It is made with stir-frying marinated beef, wide rice noodles, and bean sprouts.

An important factor in making beef ho fun is wok hei. This means the stir-fry cooking must be done over high heat and the stirring must be stirred quickly but tenderly. Moreover, it also means having just the right amount of oil for the noodles to not stick together but not too much to ruin the taste of the dish.

What kind of beef should I use?

The most commonly used beef for beef ho fun is flank steak. You can also use any other cut of steak such as beef skirt, sirloin, or tenderloin.

What kind of rice noodles should I use for beef chow fun?

Traditionally, beef chow fun uses flat wide rice noodles. They are normally found in the refrigerated section of the Chinese grocery store. They are also referred to as hor fun, he fen, huo fun or ho fun.

Can I make chow fun with other proteins?

Yes! You can always make beef ho fun your own by substituting the beef for pork, chicken, shrimp, or tofu.

Did you make this Beef Chow Fun Recipe?

If you made this dish and loved it, please leave a review and comment below. We would greatly appreciate it!

Share your dish with us on Instagram, and tag us @takestwoeggs—we’d love to see and share your delicious creation!

Hungry for more? Follow us on Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Pinterest, and Facebook for more tasty creations and updates 🍜

Recipe

Up close of a bowl of beef chow fun on a table.

Beef Chow Fun (Beef Ho Fun)

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Tender, juicy, and flavorful beef chow fun is a delicious classic Cantonese dish you can enjoy this week. This easy noodle recipe with marinated beef, fresh rice noodles, bean sprouts, and green onion can be yours in under 30 minutes!
Servings: 2 servings
Print Recipe

Ingredients

Beef Marinade

  • 8-10 oz flank steak skirt, sirloin or tenderloin, sliced 1/4 inch slices
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • ½ tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Shaoxing cooking wine
  • ½ teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar

Chow Fun Sauce

Stir Fry

  • ½ yellow onion sliced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 lb fresh flat rice noodles or dry noodles
  • 3 stalks green onion chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup bean sprouts washed and dried
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil

Instructions

  • Marinate your beef. In a small mixing bowl, mix the baking soda cornstarch, Shaoxing cooking wine, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, dark soy sauce, white pepper, water and sugar and mix until combined. Slice your beef into 1/4 or 1/8 inch slices across the grain and marinate the beef for about 30 min-1 hour. Set aside.
  • Prepare the noodles. Separate the fresh noodles by hand so they are not sticking together. If the noodles are stiff and are not separating easily, you can steam them or blanch them in boiling water for about 30 seconds to loosen. Drain and rinse with cold water immediately. If you are using dried rice noodles, follow the instructions on the packaging.
  • Chow fun sauce. In a small bowl, mix together the dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, oyster sauce and water. Set aside.
  • Cook the beef. In a wok or large skillet, heat on high heat until hot. Then add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to coat the wok for about 30 seconds. Add the beef and sear about 30 seconds on each side or until golden brown. The meat will be slightly pink on the inside since it will be cooked again. Remove from the wok and set aside.
  • Saute aromatics. Clean your wok before using. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil on medium high heat and cook the sliced yellow onion and garlic until fragrant and lightly browned about 1 minute.
  • Saute noodles. Then, add 1 tablespoon of oil and the rice noodles and gently saute for about 30 seconds until browned. If the noodles begin to stick add 1 tablespoon of water.
  • Add the sauce and vegetables. Add the chow fun sauce and gently toss the noodles until the noodles are well coated. Then add the green onion, and bean sprouts and toss until combined.
  • Add the beef. Lastly, add the beef and sesame oil and toss until combined about 30 seconds. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • Lightly freeze the beef for 30 minutes before slicing. This allows the beef to slightly firm up allowing the knife to cleanly slice through the beef.
  • Marinate the beef for at least 30 minutes-1 hour. The time allows all the sauces to absorb into the meat and the baking soda to tenderize the meat. The longer you marinate the beef, the more tender it will be.
  • Have all your ingredients ready before you begin cooking. Having all the ingredients prepped and ready next to you near the stove makes the cooking process seamless.
  • Make sure the wok or large skillet is hot before adding ingredients. This will ensure quick searing and better flavor.
  • Fresh rice noodles: if you are using fresh rice noodles and they are sticking together, you can steam them or blanch them in boiling water for 30 seconds to loosen and then rinse with cold water.
  • Gently toss the noodles. This will prevent the noodles from breaking apart into tiny little pieces. Some breakage will be inevitable if you are using fresh noodles.

Nutrition:

Serving: 2g | Calories: 252kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 2016mg | Potassium: 572mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 12IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 3mg

Rate & Review What did you think of this recipe?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating