Friday Recipe, Father’s Day Edition: Boys’ Night Beef Chow Fun!

June 17, 2011 | Written By:


Here at HSC, our favorite recipes are ones that are healthy and a big hit with the kid crowd! Today we're featuring a fun, easy, veggie-filled recipe that got two thumbs up on a recent father-son boy's night. Happy Father's Day!

by Mark Bishop, Vice President of Policy and Communcations

Here’s the situation: one recent night, I got home at 6:04. My wife was on a business trip. My son Henry was getting home in 20 minutes. We had limited ingredients in the fridge and needed something quick, tasty, and fun.

Here’s what I spotted in the fridge: leftover steak (from dinner at my in-laws), a few carrots and a cucumber. I pulled together a few staples that I try to always have on hand: onions, whole grain pasta, garlic, soy sauce and rice wine vinegar.

With the materials at hand, dinner became a quick and easy version of beef chow fun.


  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 medium carrots, shredded
  • ½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar
  • ½ pound sliced beef
  • 1 tsp flour mixed in to a tbsp of water
  • Pinch of red pepper
  • Touch of powdered ginger
  • ½ pound whole grain pasta

The process:

  1. First things first, slice your onions, dice your garlic, shred your carrots, and boil a pot of water.
  2. Add pasta to water and prepare according to package.
  3. Brown your garlic and onions. Add soy sauce, sugar, vinegar and red pepper, then mix. Bring to a light boil.
  4. Add the flour/water mix and stir to keep it from getting lumpy. You can also replace the brown sugar with honey or orange juice or can just use less if you prefer.
  5. Add beef and mix. Let it begin to cook. Add carrots and mix again.
  6. Add a little powdered ginger. If you want to get creative, add some nuts, some other veggies, maybe some chestnuts, or even some peanut butter. Experiment! This is improv cooking.
  7. When the pasta is ready, add to the beef and veggies and mix well.

The end result is sweet, tangy and a real kid pleaser. It has veggies, whole grains and protein without much oil. And a little meat really goes a long way in terms of flavor here.  I was able to finish the prep and cooking in 21 minutes and had dinner ready to go. Henry gave me the double thumbs up on the meal!


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