Beef with Basil Stir Fry Recipe

Thai spicy basil beef

How to Make Thai Spicy Beef with Holy Basil

This is a classic and very popular lunch time dish, served over rice at small eateries throughout the kingdom, often with a crispy fried egg nestling on top. You may easily substitute pork, chicken or prawns in place of beef.

It is essential to use the correct type of basil. You need Thai purple or green  holy basil - not sweet basil, nor Italian basil.

Classically, this is a spicy dish. If you prefer more bland food, do feel free to reduce the number of chilies used.

Spicy Beef Fried with Basil - Ingredients

250g minced beef
1.5 tbs oil
8 garlic cloves, sliced
10 bird eye chilies, sliced
0.5 cup chicken stock (or water)
25g holy basil leaves

For the sauce:
3tbs oyster sauce
2 tbs fish sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp sweet soy sauce
1 tsp rice flour or corn flour, mixed with 2 tbs water


  • Slice garlic thinly and fry in oil till golden
  • Add beef and chilies and brown
  • Add sauce ingredients. Stir briefly.
  • Add stock and bring back to boil.
  • Add holy basil leaves and stir for 40 seconds until slightly thicker - or add water to thin.
  • Serve over rice, preferably with a fried egg with a soft, melting yolk - the way most Thais will eat it.


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