Frying Up Fun: 7 Flavorful Vegetable Stir Fry Recipes

Give your vegetables a pop of flavor by stir frying them. This quick cooking technique will have your veggie dish ready before you know it. For the best results, Cooking Light says to use vegetables with a high water content, cut into thin, bite-sized pieces. Oils with a high heat, such as canola oil, will be your best bets when it comes to cooking, and it is important to pay attention as your veggies sizzle in your skillet. Take on one of these 7 stir fry recipes for a speedy dinner dish tonight.

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

1. Broccoli and Kale Stir Fry

A bright green, antioxidant-packed side dish is waiting for you when you make Food & Wine‘s broccoli and kale stir fry. Slivered almonds slip in a little crunch, and freshly grated cheese will melt throughout the dish, which serves 4.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium shallots, peeled and sliced
  • 1¼ pounds broccoli crowns, stems peeled and heads cut into quarters
  • ½ pound kale, de-stemmed and roughly chopped
  • Zest of 1 medium lemon
  • Juice of ½ medium lemon, about 1 tablespoon
  • 2 ounces freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano, about ½ cup
  • ¼ cup sliced toasted almonds
  • Kosher or sea salt, to taste
  • Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

Directions: Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the oil then add the sliced shallots. Cook shallots until soft and lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Stir in the broccoli and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the kale, and continue cooking until the broccoli is tender, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the lemon zest, lemon juice, cheese, and almonds. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve warm.

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

2. Stir Fried Vegetable Sandwich

There is plenty of spice in Saveur’s sandwiched stir fried vegetables. Peruvian rocoto chiles lend their heat via rocoto paste, which may be with in the international aisle of your grocery store, or at a speciality store. The sandwiches, called asaltado vegetariano at chef Gastón Acurio’s chain of shops in Peru, are great for dinner or lunch.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup rocoto paste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
  • 1 ají amarillo or banana pepper, stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
  • 6 white button mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 1
  • 1 inch piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 ripe tomato, cored, seeded, and thinly sliced Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 slices Monterey Jack cheese
  • 2 (6-inch) rectangular ciabatta buns, split and toasted
  • 1 cup arugula
  • ¼ cup cilantro leaves

Directions: Whisk together mayonnaise, rocoto, and lime juice in a small bowl; set aside. Heat oil in a 14-inch wok or skillet over high heat. Add onion, bell pepper, and ají amarillo; cook, stirring constantly, until soft and blistered at edges, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Place mushrooms in wok and cook, stirring constantly, until browned, 2–3 minutes. Add garlic and ginger; cook for 1–2 minutes. Add soy sauce and vinegar, cook for 30 seconds, and transfer to bowl with onions and peppers. Add tomatoes to bowl, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.

Place 2 slices of cheese on the bottom half of each bun, and top with half the vegetable mixture. Pour rocoto sauce over vegetables, and top with arugula and cilantro. Cover with top buns.

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

3. Mushroom Stir Fry With Onions and Tomatoes

Fine Cooking took inspiration from India in this mushroom stir fry. Using fenugreek won’t make the dish too bitter, thanks to the sweet caramelized onions — however, you don’t have to add it if it is not an ingredient you commonly use. It yields about 6 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • ¼ cup dried fenugreek leaves or ½ cup finely chopped fresh fenugreek (optional)
  • 2 small whole dried red chiles (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 pounds cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, cleaned, stems trimmed, and sliced ¼-inch thick (8 cups)
  • 2 medium red onions, peeled, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise into half-moons (3 cups)
  • 2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped (about 2½ cups)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt; more to taste
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Directions: Heat the canola oil with the fenugreek leaves and chiles (if using), cumin seeds, coriander, ground cumin, and turmeric in a large wok, Dutch oven, or 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the cumin is browned and the chiles darken, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes, mix them into the spices, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated and the vegetables look evenly browned, softened, and dry, 15 to 20 minutes. There will be a lot of liquid in the beginning — just keep cooking, stirring more frequently as the vegetables become drier.

Add the garam masala, cayenne (if using), and salt, and cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the cilantro and lemon juice, taste for seasoning, and serve.

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

4. Vegetable-Noodle Stir Fry

Skip the takeout boxes by making your own veggie noodle stir fry with this recipe from Rachel Ray. Using whole grain noodles, it is a slightly healthier take on what you’d order at the local restaurant too. To make it a full meal, add tofu, chicken, or beef. It serves 4.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound whole grain spaghetti or linguine pasta
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 baby bok choy, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 small bunch scallions, chopped into 3-inch lengths
  • ½ cup shredded carrots
  • A handful of snow peas, thinly sliced on an angle
  • 1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup tamari or other soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons black bean sauce
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce or sambal olek sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey or sugar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

Directions: Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the pasta, and cook until al dente. Drain. While the pasta is working, in a large skillet or wok, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, 1 turn of the pan, over high heat. Add the eggs and scramble until firm. Transfer to a plate. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, 2 turns of the pan, and heat until smoking. Add the bok choy, bell pepper, scallions, carrots, and snow peas and stir fry for 2 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and stir fry for 1 minute more.

In a small bowl, stir together the tamari, black bean sauce, lime juice, hot sauce, honey, and sesame oil. Toss the pasta with the sauce and vegetables. Top with the egg.

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

5. Szechwan Eggplant Stir Fry

To keep Tyler Florence’s Food Network recipe vegetarian, substitute out the chicken broth for vegetable broth, or another suitable vegetarian option. It will make enough to serve 4.

Ingredients:

  • 5 Asian eggplants, about 2 pounds
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts, sliced on a diagonal
  • 1 -inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 fresh red chile, sliced
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • Thai holy basil and fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

Directions: Cut the eggplants in ½ lengthwise and then slice crosswise into wedges, no more than 1-inch wide. Heat a wok or large skillet over medium-high flame and add the oils; tilt the pan to coat all sides. When you see a slight smoke, add a layer of eggplant, stir-fry until seared and sticky, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the eggplant to a side platter and cook the remaining eggplant in same manner, adding more oil if needed.

After all the eggplant is out of the pan, add the green onions, ginger, garlic, and chile; stir-fry for a minute until fragrant. Add the broth. In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and cornstarch until the sugar and cornstarch are dissolved. Pour the soy sauce mixture into the wok and cook another minute, until the sauce has thickened. Put the eggplant back in the pan, tossing quickly, until the sauce is absorbed. Garnish with sesame seeds, Thai basil, and cilantro and serve.

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

6. Ginger Veggie Stir Fry

Vegetables will never be boring when you’re making the ginger flavored stir fry from AllRecipes.com. Use the spice combinations below, but add in the vegetables of your choosing. It yields 6 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1½ cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger root, divided
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 small head broccoli, cut into florets
  • ½ cup snow peas
  • ¾ cup julienned carrots
  • ½ cup halved green beans
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2½ tablespoons water
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • ½ tablespoon salt

Directions: In a large bowl, blend cornstarch, garlic, 1 teaspoon ginger, and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil until cornstarch is dissolved. Mix in broccoli, snow peas, carrots, and green beans, tossing to lightly coat.

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat. Cook vegetables in oil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Stir in soy sauce and water. Mix in onion, salt, and remaining 1 teaspoon ginger. Cook until vegetables are tender but still crisp.

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

7. Hot and Sour Carrots 

Black bean-garlic sauce may not be an ingredient familiar to your kitchen, and Eating Well explains it is commonly used in Chinese cooking, and can be found Asian markets and international aisles of the grocery store. The salty, strongly flavored sauce is made from fermented black soybeans, garlic, and rice wine; the sauce will keep in your fridge for a year, and the recipe yields 4 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon black bean-garlic sauce
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 pound carrots (5-6 medium), cut lengthwise into 3-by-¼-inch sticks
  • 1 medium white onion, thinly sliced

Directions: Combine vinegar and black bean-garlic sauce in a small bowl. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add carrots, onion, and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are beginning to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the sauce and cook, stirring, until the vinegar has evaporated, 30 seconds to 1 minute.

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