Chilli Beef with Noodles – Under 400 Calories Recipe

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Last night for dinner, I made a stir fried beef and noodle dish which comes in at around 350 calories per serving!

If you read my blog regularly, you will know that I’ve cooked Chinese food before. The noticeable difference between those recipes and this recipe is the fat. Other than the natural fat in the beef (I chose the leanest I could find) and a spritz of one-calorie oil spray, this dish is low in fat…but not low in flavour! I have to be honest, and say that I didn’t notice much of a difference in taste – the trick is stopping the meat from sticking to the wok as the spray-oil does dry up quickly. To combat that, I splash in some water when the pan dries out, and sort of steam-stir-fry.

As always, Chinese food is all about the preparation – even when it is low in fat!

To make this dish you will need Szechuan peppercorns which you can buy in Asian grocery stores. They give a spice to this dish like nothing else – fragrant and numbing on the tongue! So strange! If, however, you can’t find them, then just use regular black peppercorns.

You will also need some vegetables, beef, egg noodles, garlic, chilli, ginger and Chinese flavourings in the form of hoisin and soy sauce.

Finely slice the fresh red chilli.

Peel a 2.5cm chunk of fresh ginger and cut into matchsticks.

Crush a couple of garlic cloves.

Cut two large spring onions on the diagonal.

Slice a carrot into matchsticks.

And cut the red and yellow bell pepper into thin strips.

To garnish the dish, finely slice some spring onion.

And finely shred some red chilli.

You will need the juice of one lime – roll the lime between your counter surface and the palm of your hand to maximise the amount of juice that comes out of it!

I bought my beef ready sliced – the leanest I could find on the supermarket shelf. If you are buying steak, trim the visible fat and slice into thin strips.

Scatter the crushed peppercorns over the beef and press into the meat.

Place egg noodles into boiling water and cook according to the instructions on the packet. Drain and keep warm.

Heat up your wok first, then spray with some one-calorie oil spray and add the strips of beef. Stir fry for about a minute until browned – adding a splash of water if needed to prevent from sticking to the wok.

Then add all your prepared vegetables, ginger and garlic and stir fry for a few more minutes.

The lime juice goes in, along with soy and hoisin sauce, and continue stir-frying.

The noodles then get added to the wok, and everything is stirred together until well combined and warmed through.

Divide the mixture between two serving dishes and sprinkle with the sliced spring onions and red chilli.

This came out even better than expected! Really tasty and filling – exactly what you want from a diet dish! The Szechuan peppercorns can be a bit over powering, so I would say go easy on those if you haven’t used them before – you could get away really without using them at all. Definitely worth a try – even if you are not watching the calories!

Chilli Beef with Noodles

Serves 2 – 350 calories per serving

  • 60g egg noodles (dried weight)
  • ½ tbsp Szechuan peppercorns (or black peppercorns)
  • 250g lean rump or sirloin steak, all visible fat removed, thinly sliced
  • one-calorie oil spray
  • 1 fresh red chilli, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2.5cm fresh root ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 2 spring onions, sliced diagonally
  • 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 red pepper, de-seeded and cut into strips
  • 1 yellow pepper, de-seeded and cut into strips
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp hoisin sauce
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 shredded spring onion to garnish
  • 1 shredded red chilli to garnish


  1. Cook the egg noodles according to the instructions on the packet. Drain and keep warm.
  2. Crush the peppercorns in a pestle and mortar, then sprinkle over the strips of beef and press them into the meat.
  3. Lightly spray a hot wok with the oil spray and stir-fry the steak strips briskly for 1 minute until browned. Add a drop of water if necessary to prevent from sticking.
  4. Add the chilli, garlic, ginger, spring onions, carrot and peppers and stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in the soy sauce, hoisin sauce and lime juice and continue stir-frying for 2 minutes.
  6. Place the noodles into the wok, and mix everything together until warmed through.
  7. Divide the mixture between two serving dishes and scatter over the shredded spring onion and red chilli.

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