Black Bean Sauce Vegan Recipe

Black Bean Sauce Vegan Recipe

We were not always vegan. This journey began for us in 2017, and there will always be dishes that we used to eat that will cause us to pause occasionally and say “That was tasty, I miss that”, which is fine. It’s alright to say that. One classic example of this for us was Chinese takeaway and a couple of specific menu items in particular. And to be honest, it’s not the flavour of the protein from those Friday night orders we miss, it would normally be the oriental spices, rich sauces and fried veggies that would conjure the most nostalgic thoughts. 

One Chinese takeaway order above most that we craved now and again was a hot plate of beef in black bean sauce. But the best bit was the juicy green peppers, sauteed onions and the whole medley of warming spices. All infused with fermented black beans and all mixed up in a thick sauce that coats everything. Simply mouthwatering. 

Spring onions, green peppers, onions, ginger, black beans and spices on a chopping board.

So we’ve made our own. One online order of fermented black beans later and we were in the kitchen. We admit that typically we try and keep our recipes as lean on the ingredients as possible, we focus on affordable and simple to cook. The beans are inexpensive, you just have to wait 24 hours for them to arrive at your door. All the other ingredients you can pick up at your regular store. 

We’re also pretty sure there is no easier way to make a plant-based beef in black bean sauce dish than this. So bring Friday night takeouts into your kitchen and give our simple recipe a try. We promise you it tastes like the real deal. This brought tears to our eyes when this flavor loaded oriental inspired dish hit the plate. It’s delicious, and even a load of fun to make, it’s a noisy kitchen with plenty of sizzling veggies and rich aromas floating through the air. You can easily scale this up for a family, get a bigger frying pan or wok and double the ingredients. We’ve listed what you need for an eat-in dinner for two.

We have created another couple of Friday night in, vegan fast food recipes for you to check out. If you feel like chicken tonight try our vegan buttermilk fried chicken. Or if you are feeling like venturing south of the border and fancy some Mexican-inspired cuisine then maybe our vegan chicken enchiladas are right for takeaway night.

Vegan Beef in Black Bean Sauce Ingredients

3 Tbsp fermented black beans

2 green peppers (diced into 1” squares)

2 Tbsp fresh ginger (finely diced)

3/4 yellow onion (coarsely diced)

3 Tbsp sesame seed oil 

200g vegan stir fry beef

2 Tbsp yellow onion (finely chopped)

2 Tbsp minced garlic

1 tsp sugar (recommend brown)

1/2 cup vegetable broth

1/2 tsp rice vinegar

1 Tbsp soy sauce

2 spring onions (finely chopped)

1/2 tsp chili powder (substitute with cayenne or paprika)

1 1/2 tsp cornflour (in 1 Tbsp water)

Spring onions, green peppers, onions, ginger, black beans and spices on a chopping board.

How to Make Vegan Beef in Black Bean Sauce

The first step to making your very own delicious, Chinese-inspired, “beef” in black bean sauce is to chop up half of the fermented black beans into little pieces. Keep the other 1 1/2 Tbsp whole.

Next, take both of the green peppers, split them in half and de-seed them. Great life hack by the way, if you grip the base of the stalk and push down into the pepper you can easily separate the cluster of seeds from the pepper. You can simply pull them back out by the stalk and you’ll have a de-seeded pepper with a whole in the top and a few loose seeds rattling around inside. With all the seeds gone cut the peppers into 1-inch squares.

Take a small piece of ginger, peel it and finely dice it until you have enough to fill 2 tablespoons. 

Peel a single yellow onion and quarter it. Finely dice the first quarter, you want to have 2 tablespoons full to fry with the ginger so you can set it aside with the ginger you just minced, but don’t mix them. With the remaining 3 quarters of onion, cut them in half, across their width, not their length, so that you have what we would describe as onion petals. 

Finally, you can finish your food prep by finely dicing 2 fresh spring onions. Removing the white bulb-shaped base and tougher green leafy sections first. 

Taking 200 g of your chosen plant-based beef strips, stir fry them in a frying pan with 1 tablespoon of sesame seed (substitute with stir fry or vegetable oil) according to the cooking instructions provided. Once the “beef” is cooked remove it from the pan and set it aside.

Add another tablespoon of oil to the same pan you fried the “beef” strips in. Over medium-high heat fry the green peppers and onion petals until they are soft. Stir frequently so they cook evenly and avoid any browning. Then remove them from the heat.

In a separate medium to small frying pan, we are going to make the black bean sauce. Add a single tablespoon of oil, and over a medium heat fry the finely diced onion with 2 tablespoons of minced garlic. Stir occasionally until it’s softened, which should only take around a couple of minutes. 

After frying the onion and garlic, add the chopped and whole black beans, and fry these three ingredients together for another minute, stirring them into each other as they cook. 

When that minute is up, tip into the pan 1 teaspoon of brown sugar, the diced ginger, a 1/2 cup of vegetable broth, 1/2 a teaspoon of rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of soya sauce, 2 finely chopped spring onions, and 1/2 a teaspoon of chilli powder. Boil this medley down until around half the liquid remains.

Stir into the black bean sauce 1 1/2 tsp cornflour pre-mixed with 1 tablespoon of water. Continue to stir until the sauce thickens, then remove it from the heat. 

It is finally time to bring everything together. Into the larger frying pan, which still contains the pepper and onion, add the plant-based beef, and all of the black bean sauce. Set the pan over a low heat and gently stir everything together. Turning over all the onion, peppers and “beef” until everything is coated in your rich vegan black bean sauce.

Bowl of Chinese-inspired vegan beef in black bean sauce, served hot and ready to eat with chopsticks.

Vegan Beef in Black Bean Sauce

Add something new to your vegan favourites with our Chinese-inspired black bean sauce recipe. A flavor-packed oriental plant-based dish that's easy to prepare!
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 34 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 3 Tbsp fermented black beans
  • 2 green peppers diced into 1” squares
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh ginger finely diced
  • 3/4 yellow onion coarsely diced
  • 3 Tbsp sesame seed oil
  • 200 g vegan stir fry beef
  • 2 Tbsp yellow onion finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp sugar recommend brown
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 spring onions finely sliced
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder substitute with cayenne or paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp cornflour in 1 Tbsp water

Instructions
 

  • Chop half of the fermented black beans into small pieces, leaving the other 1 1/2 tablespoons whole.
  • Split and de-seed both green peppers, then cut them into 1-inch squares.
  • Peel and finely dice 2 tablespoons of ginger.
  • Quarter a yellow onion, finely dice one quarter, and cut the remaining three quarters into onion petals.
  • Finely slice into rings 2 fresh spring onions, discarding the white bulb-shaped base and tough green leafy sections.
  • Stir-fry 200g of plant-based beef strips in 1 tablespoon of sesame seed (or vegetable oil) until cooked, then set aside.
  • Add 1 more tablespoon of oil to the pan and stir-fry green peppers and onion petals until soft, avoiding browning. Remove from heat.
  • In a separate pan, make the black bean sauce: fry finely diced onion and 2 tablespoons of minced garlic until softened.
  • Add chopped and whole black beans and stir-fry for one minute.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of brown sugar, diced ginger, 1/2 cup of vegetable broth, 1/2 teaspoon of rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 2 finely chopped spring onions, and 1/2 teaspoon of chili powder. Boil until the liquid reduces by half.
  • Stir in a mixture of 1 1/2 teaspoons of cornflour with 1 tablespoon of water to thicken the sauce. Remove from heat.
  • Combine the pepper and onion with the plant-based beef and black bean sauce in the same pan. Stir over low heat until everything is coated in the sauce.
Keyword black beans, garlic, ginger, green peppers, onion, plant-based beef
Black Bean Sauce Vegan Recipe Nutrition Label

Can I use regular black beans instead of fermented black beans?

Not really, fermented black beans have quite a unique flavor essential to the dish. If you don’t have them, you can order them online and have them delivered next day.

Is there a substitute for ginger if I don’t have it on hand?

You can use ground ginger as a substitute, but fresh ginger provides the best flavor.

What side dishes go well with vegan beef in black bean sauce?

Common side dishes include steamed rice, noodles, or stir-fried vegetables. You can also serve it with some spring rolls or a side salad.

How can I adjust the spiciness level to my preference?

You can increase or decrease the amount of chili powder in the sauce to make it spicier or milder, depending on your taste.


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