I used to always make stir fry or Asian dishes with store bought sauces like hoisin, black pepper or Szechuan sauce, but if you check the ingredients you will find that they are usually packed with sugar as well as a long list of additives and preservatives. I quickly learned that all you need is fresh ginger and a few simple ingredients to make an incredibly flavourful stir fry sauce that will ensure you never use store bought sauces again.

So the secret to this sauce is all in the name. Black pepper. Lightly ground on a dish, it’s a great seasoning, but when you increase the amount to a teaspoon and add it into a sauce, it becomes spicy, rich in flavour and so delicious.

Black pepper has an amazing number of health benefits. It helps with the speed of digestion by causing the stomach to secrete more hydrochloric acid, increases metabolism and helps your body break down fat cells. It is also a great source of magnesium, iron, fiber and vitamin K, which the body requires to help with blood clotting and strengthen bones.

OK so back to the recipe. Strips of beef are quickly cooked with chunks of ginger, garlic, thinly sliced onion and a delicious sauce of honey, coconut aminos, chinese 5 spice and black pepper. The result is an easy stir fry that is bursting with salty, sweet, spicy and rich flavour.

I like keeping this dish simple with just the addition of chunks of spring onion, but feel free to toss in mushrooms, asparagus or broccoli for a bit more variety. I recommend serving it with some quickly sautéed cauliflower rice that can be used to soak up any excess sauce.

If you make this recipe let me know in the comment section below, I would love to hear what you think or take a photo and tag me (@everylastbite_) on Instagram, I love seeing your photos!

Black Pepper Beef & Onions

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 8 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Diets Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Nut Free, Paleo, SCD Legal, Whole30



  • 1 tsp Chinese 5 Spice
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos (or tamari)
  • 2 tbsp honey (sub with 2 medjool dates for whole30)
  • 2 tbsp beef stock
  • 1 1/2 tsp freshly crushed black pepper

Stir Fry

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 2 tbsp ginger, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 6 green onions, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 500 grams thinly sliced strips of beef
  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro


  • In a bowl whisk together all of the ingredients for the sauce and set aside. If making it whole30, combine the ingredients along with the dates in a blender and blend until smooth. 
  • Heat the sesame oil in a wok or cast iron skillet on high heat and add in the sliced onion, ginger, garlic and green onions. Cook for about 3 minutes until the onion becomes translucent, stirring constantly to ensure it doesn’t burn. 
  • Add in the beef and cook for 1 to 2 minutes until just seared. Transfer the beef and onion mixture to a plate and set aside.
  • Pour the sauce into the pan and let it simmer for about 4 minutes until it begins to thicken. Once the sauce has become thick return the beef and onion mixture to the pan, toss in the sauce and heat for just 20 seconds or so until everything is warmed through. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving.
Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below and let us know how it was!