Fire up the woks. We’re here to make stir-frying exciting again. After all, when you need to make a quick, flavorful meal, whether that’s for
weeknight dinner or cooking family-style for a crowd, you can always fall back on stir-frying as a go-to technique. Sure, you can’t go wrong with classics like beef and broccoli (we’ve got a fantastic recipe for it that uses a dark, intense sauce made with soy sauce, ginger, and rice wine), but if you want to switch things up, we’ve got you covered.
Chinese cuisine often feature a variety of vegetable stir-fries. Eggplant is particularly delicious, as are Asian greens like bok choy and Chinese broccoli. For something less common in the U.S., track down loofah, a slender, green gourd with tender flesh. Try it cooked with a little garlic or edamame and chicken stock. Stir-frying isn’t just a Chinese technique, however: it’s used throughout Indian cuisine as well, offering quick and easy vegetarian options. Bhindi masala is a north Indian okra stir-fry flavored with tomato, onion, chiles, and tons of garlic. In the southern state of Kerala you’ll find a stir-fry made of papaya and coconut and spiced with cumin, turmeric, and black mustard seeds.
From Chinese classics to Filipino noodles and Korean pork belly, here are our best stir-fry recipes to try today.
This simple stir-fry is flavored with soy sauce, ginger, and rice wine.
jeyuk bokkeum stir fried pork
Any Chinese noodle—rice, wheat, flat, thin, or broad—can be used in this simple stir-fry from author Francis Lam; it’s one of his favorite breakfast dishes.
Get the recipe for Stir-Fried Breakfast Noodles »
Get the recipe for Bitter Melon and Tofu Stir-Fry with Pork Belly and Eggs (Goya Champuru) »
“Eating this dish makes me feel like I’m at home. It’s my mom’s specialty, and I remember helping her prep this as a child. It is served at every party [my family throws] and is eaten on its own for
merianda, the Filipino equivalent of British Tea.” – Leah Cohen of Pig & Khao Get the recipe for Philippine Noodle Stir-Fry (Pancit Bihon) »
Get the recipe for Maitake Mushrooms with Red Chiles and Cilantro »
This spin on a popular Sichuan stir-fry—with bacon, ginger, and garlic; garnished with sliced chestnuts—swaps traditional cauliflower for Brussels sprouts.
Get the recipe for Wok-Fried Brussels Sprouts and Bacon with Crispy Chestnuts »
Bacon adds smoky dimension to this stir-fry, a quick late-night snack from chef Tadashi Ono. It’s easily adapted to whatever leftovers you have in your fridge—roasted pork or chicken, egg, seafood, or just about any kind of vegetables.
Get the recipe for Bacon and Shrimp Fried Rice
Head-on shrimp, quickly stir-fried with garlic, are sweet, spicy and succulent. Serve over rice for an easy weeknight dinner.
Get the recipe for Wok-Fried Shrimp with Garlic »
When writer VK Sreelesh visits his in-laws’ house in the south Indian state of Kerala, papaya thoran is almost always on the table. Thoran is usually a dried dish that is mixed and eaten with rice; its ingredients can range from cabbage to beans to carrots to beets. For this papaya version, minced green papaya is first steamed and then mixed with robust coconut and chile paste, and spiced with cumin seeds, garlic, and turmeric.
Get the recipe for Keralan-Style Stir-Fried Green Papaya (Papaya Thoran) »
Spicy Yuba Stir-Fry with Edamame
The silken noodles in this northern Chinese stir-fry are a perfect foil for crunchy fresh vegetables; a little ground pork gives the dish a savory depth.
In this dish, a mix of egg white and cornstarch coats the chicken and, after a quick blanching in a little oil in the wok, preserves its succulence—a technique called velveting.
Get the recipe for Jirou Chao Qincai (Stir-Fried Chicken with Celery) »
Shanghai Stir-Fried Rice Cakes (Chao Nian Gao)
This recipe employs a “reverse” stir-fry technique, in which the vegetables are cooked before the meat. It tends to be forgiving for a novice stir-fryer, since vegetables release water as they cook and won’t stick the way that meat will if the wok isn’t quite hot enough.
Get the recipe for Cong Bao Rou Si (Stir-Fried Pork with Leeks) »
Duan Jan Pin, a cook in northwest Yunnan, makes this stir-fry with
song rong mushrooms, but firm cremini are a fine substitute.
Back to Season of Plenty: Yunnan’s Foraged Mushrooms »
The name for this Sichuanese dish means “ants climbing a tree” because of the way the ground pork clings to the strands of glass noodles.
Stir-Fried Celtuce Tops with Wild Mushrooms
Steaming eggplant, as opposed to deep-frying it, lightens this fragrant stir-fry adapted from a recipe in Grace Young and Alan Richardson’s
The Breath of a Wok (Simon & Schuster, 2004). Get the recipe for Chinese Spicy Garlic Eggplant (Yu Xiang Qie Zi) »
North Indian Okra Stir-Fry (Bhindi Masala)
Kung Pao Chicken
Any Chinese noodle—rice, wheat, flat, thin, or broad—can be used in this simple breakfast stir-fry from author Francis Lam.
Asian Greens with Garlic Sauce
Bok choy undergoes a pleasing transformation when stir-fried: the crunchy white stem develops a caramelized flavor, and the leaves wilt slightly, acquiring a mild sweetness.
Traditionally prepared with a whole duck, this updated stir-fry lends duck breasts a gentle, caramelized smokiness.
With ingredients like dill, chiles de árbol, and anchovies, this dish is far from authentic Shanghainese, but it’s totally delicious.
Get the recipe for Red-Cooked Eggplant (Hongshao Qiezi) »
This easy stir-fry can be catered to your taste, or whatever is in your pantry and fridge.