This delicious Pepper Steak recipe is a classic Chinese American dish that you can easily make at home in just 30 minutes or less.

Pepper Steak is such a quick and easy recipe. Anytime you need a fast meal, this recipe is a great option. It’s made with juicy beef strips, cooked in a sticky sauce with sweet bell peppers and is great served over rice, pasta or with just a simple salad on the side.

Easy Pepper Steak in a navy blue bowl

Our Favorite Pepper Steak

When you have a thousand things to juggle in the evening, a complicated dinner is out of the books. This easy Pepper Steak is ready in less than 30 minutes, minimal dishes to clean and a warm, delicious dinner on the table. If you have time to marinate the beef in advance, even better!

Easy Pepper Steak being cooked in a pot

How to Make Pepper Steak

If you’ve wondered how do you make beef pepper steak, we cook it on the stove in one pan! This is a stir-fried dish made with sliced beef top round steak and sliced bell peppers. It is cooked in a pepper steak sauce usually thickened with cornstarch.

What do you need to make this beef stir fry

  • Beef – Pepper Steak is usually made with top round beef steak that you need to cut into strips against the grain.
  • Bell Peppers – the recipe is usually made with green peppers, you can also use red, yellow or orange.
  • Sauce – to have the most flavorful and delicious sauce, use freshly minced garlic and ginger. As well, you will need soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, Mirin and honey or sugar to add some sweetness.
  • Red Pepper Flakes – add more or less, depends how spicy you like your food.
  • Cornstarch – cornstarch and water is added to the sauce to thicken it.
  • Green onions and sesame seeds – great for garnishing the dish before serving.

Overhead shot of Pepper Steak in a black pot

What cut is Pepper Steak stir fry?

The recipe can be make with flank steak, sirloin, or top round steak. If you slice it in the same direction as the grain, the meat will come out tough. While if you slice it against the grain, you shorten the muscle fibers, which results in tenderizing the meat.

Ingredients to have on hand when making Pepper Steak Stir-fry:

  • Light Soy Sauce – if you are sensitive to salt, as regular soy sauce can make the dish too salty.
  • Mirin – is a Japanese sweet rice wine, if you don’t have it on hand you can make a similar version by combining 2 tablespoons of sugar with 1/2 cup of white wine (like vermouth or dry sherry) to replace 1/2 cup of mirin.
  • Cornstarch – it is widely available in supermarkets. If you are looking for a replacement, tapioca or arrowroot powder are good alternatives.

More Quick Stir Fry ideas

plated Easy Pepper Steak with sesame seeds
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Easy Pepper Steak

This delicious one-pan Pepper Steak recipe is an Asian-inspired dish that can be made at home in no time!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 servings



  • 1 pound top round beef sliced into strips against the grain
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper cored and sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper or red bell pepper, cored and sliced


  • ¾ cup water
  • ¼ cup honey or cane sugar
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Mirin
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger minced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch


  • green onions sliced
  • sesame seeds


  • Add all the marinade ingredients (except cornstarch) to a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
  • Add the beef strips to a freezer bag and pour the marinade over it. Refrigerate for up to 24 hours. When ready to cook, remove beef from marinade, add liquid to a bowl and whisk in cornstarch.
  • Heat a cast iron skillet or wok over high heat and add oil.
  • Once the oil is hot, add the sliced onion and peppers and stir-fry for about 5 minutes, or until tender. Transfer to a plate when finished.
  • Add beef to the skillet and distribute evenly, cook for about 1 minute unmoved, to get a nice sear on it. Stir the beef and continue cooking until done, just 2-3 more minutes.
  • Reduce heat to medium and add the onion and peppers back to the skillet. Stir the marinade and add it to the skillet.
  • Stir to combine all the ingredients and cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the sauce has thickened. Stir often.
  • Remove from heat and garnish with sliced green onion and sesame seeds if desired.



Beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 145°F. 
Store leftover stir fry in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days. 
Nutritional information does not include optional ingredients or garnish.
5 from 24 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 398 | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 88mg | Sodium: 878mg | Potassium: 480mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 1080IU | Vitamin C: 65.1mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 3.6mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Beef, Dinner, Entree, Main Course
Cuisine American, Asian Fusion, Chinese

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About the author

Catalina thinks that time in the kitchen should be fun, and we should spend less time cooking and more time eating! As a successful business woman with a busy career on Wall Street, she creates fool-proof recipes for busy weeknights. Catalina will inspire you to experiment with flavors, try new ingredients, use your slow cooker and pressure cooker and create easy meals with less effort and more flavor. You can visit her blog Sweet & Savory Meals for delicious dinner and dessert recipes that are husband and toddler approved!
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Recipe Rating


  1. Loved this! So tasty. Took your advice and marinated the meat for a few hours. Served over short grain brown rice. Thank You!
    Dorita5 stars

  2. Delicious! Husband and I both liked it. Served with fried rice. Will definitely make this again! As always, thanks for another great recipe.5 stars

  3. this is a tasty recipe.we didnt have mirin on hand but yes had vermouth so we followed the recipe and made it.we marinaded the steak for a few hours.the meat wasnt too tender and the sauce didnt thicken well but very flavorful.thanks.5 stars

  4. This is delicious! It tastes like authentic Chinese food, much unlike most other Pepper steak recipes I’ve tried. My husband loved it! Definitely a new staple! :) Thank you for sharing!5 stars

  5. I found this recipe after looking at a few different pepper steak recipes online. I happen to have Mirin, having bought it for a different recipe, so wanted to try this out. This turned out great, & tasted like pepper steak in a restaurant!

    I didn’t have fresh ginger but looked up online that you can use 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger. I also only had 1/2 tablespoon of minced garlic but the flavor was still really good.

    Thanks for the tip to marinate the steak pieces; I did so in the morning, & think it made the steak tender. Definitely a keeper recipe!5 stars

  6. This is definitely a keeper. My husband loved this as did I. I did leave out the red pepper flakes as I’m a wimp with spicy hot. I served it over steamed rice. Very quick and easy to make. My husband called out from the living room while I was cooking “ Wow! What ever you’re cooking smells great!” Would recommend this recipe to all!! 5 stars

  7. This was outstanding, full of flavor, and the meat was very tender. I served it over “Herbs de Provence” (sp.?) rice. Putting the meat into the freezer for about an hour, helps to make it easier to slice very thinly. This recipe is now in my dinner rotation, since it was a WINNER with my family.5 stars

  8. The inspiration for trying your recipe was flat iron steak I had in the freezer, begging for a grill which is packed up until April. The only other changes I made was using rice vinegar for mirin, adding sliced celery and chili garlic sauce for red pepper flakes. Served with organic brown rice. So very good!!5 stars

  9. My family loves how delicious this is. So much so that we turned it into a freezer staple! Love having this prepped and ready in the freezer for a quick and delicious stir fry option!5 stars