Not too long after I became gluten-free, PF Chang’s introduced their gluten-free menu and I was ecstatic. I didn’t have many restaurant choices at the time and I missed Chinese food that was safe. Each and every time I ate at PF Chang’s, I ordered the beef and broccoli. I love it but it did not really love me back. After every visit, I had what I named “the PF Chang Pain,” a pain in my stomach that lasted for a few hours. I knew that I was being glutened but at that time in my gluten-free journey, I somehow was able to ignore it, but not for long. I stopped eating there because I valued my body more than my taste buds. I did not have beef and broccoli again for nearly ten years.
When I set out to make my own beef and broccoli, I was scared to use a wok so I didn’t. I used a large frying pan instead and that seemed to work out well. I tried many recipes and began the process of taking what I learned from each version and creating my own recipe, keeping what I liked, and discarding what I did not care for in the original recipe.
After making my version several times using the frying pan, I decided I was ready for a wok. My mom got me a Lodge cast iron wok for Christmas one year and I was excited to try it. It worked better than the frying pan but was very heavy and did not seem to get as hot as it needed to be. Then, I took the plunge and bought a hand-hammered, carbon-steel, round-bottom wok from Amazon. Because of the round bottom, I also needed to buy a wok ring to be able to set the wok flat on my gas stove. Now, I had a wok set up very similar to what restaurants cook with, minus the insanely hot flame though.
I love using the work for this dish and may never go back to the frying pan for stir fry dishes.
My beef and broccoli recipe is packed with flavor and once you’ve made it a couple of times, easy to make. And, it makes great leftover meals, especially topped with a fried egg!
A couple of notes about the wok:
- If you choose to use a wok and you just purchased it (here is the one I use) you MUST season it first. Your wok will come with instructions for seasoning and for care. It is similar, but a bit different, than seasoning a cast iron pan.
- Also, the wok I use has a round bottom and you will need a wok ring to use with your gas stove. If you don’t have a gas stove, get a flat-bottomed wok.
Information about Sherry Wine:
- Technically, Shaoxing Wine should be used in this recipe. However, I have not found a gluten-free version of Shaoxing Wine so I use Sherry Wine instead.
- Sherry Wine IS NOT the same as Sherry Vinegar. You can buy Sherry Wine at the liquor store and Taylor is the brand I use. Or, you can get Sherry Cooking Wine at the grocery store or Amazon.
- Taylor Sherry Wine: https://www.totalwine.com/wine/dessert-fortified-wine/sherry/taylor-sherry-dry/p/1581750
- Kedem Sherry Cooking Wine: https://amzn.to/3qyr5hg
My memories of the PF Chang beef and broccoli have faded considerably, but I really feel that my version is much more flavorful than theirs. And, I don’t have pain when I eat my version. Knowing your ingredients is critical when you are gluten-free.
discover. cook. enjoy.
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Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
- 1 lb flank steak, or flat iron steak
- 3 tbsp tamari sauce, gluten-free
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 6 green onions, white bottoms only, remove roots
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 tbsp sherry wine, wine NOT vinegar, I just Taylor, more info in notes below
- 1 tbsp light brown sugar
- 1 tsp ginger, fresh, minced
- 1 tbsp hoisin sauce, gluten-free
- 1 tsp chili sauce, gluten free
For the Stir Fry
- 8 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp ginger, fresh, minced
- 3.5 cups broccoli florets, fresh, cut evenly
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 tbsp sunflower oil
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 3 green onions, sliced
- sesame seeds
Marinate the Beef
- Measure out the marinade ingredients into prep bowls, slice the green onions ends.
- Spread out your steak on a cutting board and trim fat and silver skin. Slice the flank steak across the grain into 1/8" slices then cut into 2" pieces. Add beef to a gallon-sized storage bag. Add the cornstarch and and massage the meat to distribute the corn starch. Add the rest of the ingredients. Remove excess air from the bag, seal, and masage the bag to distribute the ingredients well. Refrigerate 4 hours.
Mise en Place
- After the meat has marinated for 3.5 hours, remove from the bag of meat from the fridge, empty it into a bowl, remove the garlic and green onions, and let the meat come to room temperature.
- Now you can start the mise en place for the rest of the dish. Measure all the ingredients for the sauce into prep bowls. Set aside. Mince the garlic and ginger for the stir fry and place into prep bowls. Cut the broccoli into flowerets, measure the water, set aside.
Make the Sauce
- For the sauce, add all sauce ingredients to a bowl and mix well. Set aside
Start the Stir Fry
- NOTE: I love to use a wok for stir frying. If you don't have a wok, there is a link in the equipment section for the one I use. If you don't want to use a wok, a large frying pan or skillet will work too. If you do use a wok, and it is new, see information the notes section below about seasoning it before you cook with it.
- Heat about a tablespoon of sunflower oil over high heat in a large wok until very hot and smoking.
- Because residential stoves do not heat the wok to a high enough temperature, you will need to work on two to three batches so you to don't overload the wok and the food cooks well. Add the first half of beef to the wok in an even layer. Let the beef cook for about a minute or so. The bottom should be browned. Then stir for about 30 seconds to a minute. DO NOT OVERCOOK. The beef will cook more in the sauce. Remove from beef from the wok and transfer to a plate or bowl. Repeat until all beef is browned.
- Add 1 tablespoon sesame oil to the empty wok until very hot and smoking. Add the Broccoli to the pan and cook for about 30 seconds while stirring the broccoli. Add the water, cover and let the Broccoli steam about 2-3 minutes or until tender.
- Remove the lid and push the broccoli to the sides of the wok to give yourself enough room to for the garlic and ginger. Add a bit more sesame oil, then the garlic and ginger to the work and mash with a spoon until fragrant. Then stir into the broccoli.
- Add the beef back to the skillet or wok and stir to combine. Whisk the sauce and add to the wok and stir to combine. Let simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Garnish and Serve
- You can serve directly from the wok, buffet style or transfer to to a serving dish. With either choice, garnish with green onions and sesame seeds. Serve alone or over white or brown rice. Enjoy!