20 Minute Thai Basil Beef

Thai Basil Beef
Basil is one of my favourite herbs and it's always nice to be able to enjoy a lot of it in a recipe like this super tasty, quick and easy 20 minute Thai basil beef! This recipe it super simple! You pretty much just cook the beef, shallots, garlic and peppers before seasoning with the perfect balance of salty fish sauce, sweet palm sugar, spicy chilies and sour limes before adding all of that fresh basil! All said and done this recipe takes less time to make than it takes to cook the rice so you have a complete meal in 20 minutes! I generally make this with just the bell peppers as the veggies but I sometimes add things like broccoli, peas, etc for even more goodness! Serve this on coconut lemongrass jasmine rice to complete the flavour extravaganza of this 20 minute Thai basil beef!

Thai Basil Beef

Thai Basil Beef
Top with crispy fried shallots and roasted peanuts for even more flavour and more depths of texture!

Thai Basil Beef

Thai Basil Beef

Thai Basil Beef
Thai Basil Beef

Thai Basil Beef

Prep Time: 5 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes Servings: 4

A quick, easy and tasty Thai style beef with plenty of fresh basil!

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 birds eye chilies, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce (or soy sauce or tamari)
  • 1 tablespoon palm sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 1 lime, juice and zest
  • 1 cup basil (preferably Thai basil)
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  1. Cook the ground beef and shallots in a large pan over medium-high heat until the meat is cooked, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the red pepper, garlic and chilies and cook until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add the fish sauce, sugar, lime and basil and cook until the basil just starts to wilt, about a minute. (Taste test and adjust to make sure that the balance of salty, sweet and sour is just the way you like it!)
  4. Enjoy garnished with green onions!

Option: Replace the birds eye chilies with other chilies like habanero, cayenne, jalapeno, etc.(or even red pepper flakes of srirachi chili sauce).
Option: Replace the ground beef with thinly sliced steak.
Option: Garnish with 1/4 cup chopped peanuts and/or crispy fried shallots!
Tip: Serve on jasmine rice cooked in coconut milk with lemon grass! (1 cup jasmine rice, 14oz can coconut milk, 1 tablespoon chopped lemongrass simmered on low for ~20 minutes) Start cooking the rice just before the beef and it will be done just on time!
Nutrition Facts: Calories 260, Fat 11.7g (Saturated 4.6g, Trans 0), Cholesterol 55mg, Sodium 563mg, Carbs 12.9g (Fiber 1.8g, Sugars 5.1g), Protein 25.8g
Nutrition by: Nutritional facts powered by Edamam


Heather Christo said...

WOW! now I know what I am making for dinner tonight!

Ken said...

Me too!

Jenny said...

Love love love this!!

Marla Meridith said...

This recipe looks great!

Maria said...

I LOVE Thai basil!

Pat said...

I made this last night and it was excellent. My Midwest taste buds knew to add a bit less bird eye chili pepper though.

Kevin Lynch said...

Pat: I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Laura said...

When cooking the beef and onions at the beginning, is it the green onions or the shallots? I can't wait to try this.

Kevin Lynch said...

Laura: You add the shallots with the beef! I updated the recipe! Thanks and enjoy!

Anna said...

What's the fat content on the beef you used? I used extra-lean and, while the result was delicious, it wasn't all glisten-y and saucy-looking like your photo! I'm assuming yours looks like that because of higher fat content in the beef, or...?

Kevin Lynch said...

Anna: I use lean ground beef. The 'glisten' could be from the fat content of the beef or the lighting that I use to photograph with (my windows don't let in a lot of sunlight...) I have noticed that the light being at just the right angle will make things look a bit glossier in the photos.

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