Sweet-and-Sour Beef Recipe
Sweet-and-Sour Beef Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Sweet-and-Sour Beef Recipe

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This healthful stir-fry recipe is a family favorite. I've used a variety of meats and apples and sometimes replace the green onion with yellow onion. No matter what tweaks I make, it always tastes great. —Brittany McCloud, Kenyon, MN
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
MAKES:4 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
MAKES: 4 servings


  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 pound beef top sirloin steak, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 large green pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 large sweet red pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 medium tart apples, chopped
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions, divided
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • Hot cooked rice, optional

Nutritional Facts

1-1/2 cups (calculated without rice): 389 calories, 8g fat (2g saturated fat), 46mg cholesterol, 663mg sodium, 53g carbohydrate (46g sugars, 4g fiber), 25g protein


  1. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and water until smooth. Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. In a large nonstick skillet or wok coated with cooking spray, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat. Add beef; stir-fry 2-3 minutes or until no longer pink. Remove from pan.
  2. In same skillet, stir-fry peppers and apples in remaining oil for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup green onions; stir-fry 1-3 minutes longer or until peppers are crisp-tender. Remove from pan.
  3. Add brown sugar and vinegar to skillet; bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Stir cornstarch mixture and add to pan. Return to a boil; cook and stir 1-2 minutes or until thickened. Return beef and pepper mixture to pan; heat through. If desired, serve with rice. Sprinkle with remaining green onion. Yield: 4 servings.
Originally published as Sweet-and-Sour Beef in Light & Tasty August/September 2007, p26

Full-Bodied Red Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied red wine such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Syrah.

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Reviewed Oct. 28, 2015

"This was delicious. A big hit with family."

Reviewed Sep. 29, 2015

"Very good."

Reviewed Jan. 31, 2014

"Loved this recipe. I also added one can of water chestnuts and 1 can of mini corn cobs for more variety. The apples provide a pleasant sweetness as well."

Reviewed Jan. 12, 2010

"I have 3 very picky boys, who all absolutely love this dish! It's become one of our family staples!"

Reviewed Jan. 2, 2010

"I have made this recipe with steak, with chicken, with shrimp and with a combination of shrimp and chicken all came out tasting delicious. This one is a staple at my house!"

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