Panda Express-Inspired Crispy Beijing Beef

This crispy beef recipe mimics Panda Express' crispy Beijing beef: crunchy strips of meat in a sweet and sour (and slightly spicy) sauce.
4 servings
Prep Time
15 Mins
Active Time
15 Mins

This is probably an exaggeration, but crispy beef is a feat of engineering—thin strips of beef that remain crispy even while smothered in sauce. But we've figured out the science behind this Chinese takeout staple. The good news is, it's actually very simple. Now anyone can whip up Crispy Beijing Beef in just 30 minutes at home.

Crispy Beef

  • 200g beef, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 ½ cup rice flour
  • neutral oil, for frying


  • ⅓ cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Sriracha
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp chili flakes
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • ½ tbsp cornstarch
  • ⅓ cup water
  • red food coloring, optional
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, thinly sliced

In a large bowl, add the beef, salt, ½ cup rice flour, and egg whites.


Mix together until a paste begins to form around the beef.


Take each piece of beef and coat in the remaining rice flour. Spread the beef out onto a tray and let sit for 10 mins.


To make the sauce: In a pot or wok over medium heat, add sugar, vinegar, sriracha, garlic powder, chili flakes, and soy sauce. Stir until well combined.


In a bowl, whisk together cornstarch and water to make a slurry.


Add slurry to the pot with the rest of the ingredients. Add food coloring, if using.


Bring sauce to a boil and cook until thickened, about 5–8 mins. Set aside.


Preheat oil to 370F in a pot for frying. Fry the beef until golden and crispy, about 5–8 mins.


Remove from heat and drain on a paper towel.


Place pan with sauce back on medium heat. Add the sliced red bell pepper and mix until just heated through.


Add in the crispy beef and toss quickly until well coated.


Transfer to a platter and serve immediately.

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