Braised Beef Noodle Soup 紅燒牛肉麵

One of my favourite Chinese dishes. Brings back some childhood memories: when my mom used to work for a clinic in Taipei and next to the clinic was a beef noodle shop. I could still picture that shop in my mind. We went there for lunch on weekends (because she had to work weekends) after we picked her up from work.

My mom has her own way of cooking braised beef noodle soup. The recipe here is more like the noodle soup that you’d get from a restaurant – a lot more spices. Our family enjoys both.

Recipe adapted and translated from: 紅燒牛肉麵

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours


  • Beef shin or brisket (牛腱/牛腩) – 1 kg (cut in pieces, like for stew, or you can just get pre-cut stew beef but they aren’t as good)
  • Green onions – 2 bunches – cut in half
  • Ginger – 3 slices
  • Garlic – 3 cloves (whole)
  • Red chili pepper – 1 – cut a slit in the middle
  • Large tomato – 1
  • Onion – 1/2 (whole)
  • Large carrot – 1 – cut into four
  • Five spice powder – about 4 tbsp
  • Water/beef broth – 1000 mL


  • Chili bean sauce (辣豆瓣醬) – 1 tbsp
  • Hot pepper sauce – 1/2 tsp
  • Low-sodium soy sauce – 1/2 cup
  • Rice wine – 1-1/2 tbsp
  • Rock sugar (冰糖) – 1/2 tbsp
  • Star anise – 2

You can add these to bring out more flavour just before serving:

  • Green onion – chopped
  • White vinegar
  • Cilantro

  1. Put the cut up beef in a pot, add water, bring to boil. Strain the beef, set aside.
  2. Put the tomato in water, bring to boil, strain it. Peel the tomato then cut into four big pieces.
  3. In a skillet or wok, over high heat, fry the green onion, ginger, garlic, and red chili pepper. Add the ingredients in Seasonings.
  4. Put the mixture in a bowl lined with cheese cloth, wrap with and tie the cheese cloth. Like this.
  5. In the same wok, fry the half onion and carrot for a couple of minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients, including the cheese cloth ball from the previous step. Bring the mixture to boil and simmer for 2.5 hours.
  6. Cooking the noodles separately. Pour the braised beef mixture over the noodles and serve.

Serves: 6

Pretty easy recipe. I was under the impression that it was more difficult/more work, but it wasn’t.

Easy way to create some “hometown flavour” (家鄉味).


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