Plans for dinner tonight? Try a super flavorful, restaurant style dish that takes just 20 minutes to make. This Thai Basil Beef features lean ground beef sautéed with fresh veggies covered in a sticky and delicious sweet chili sauce.
Table of Contents
About this Dish
Save some money and skip takeout when you can make your favorite restaurant meal right at home. This Thai Basil Beef will remind you of that dish you like to grab at the Thai restaurant down the street.
Thai food uses copious amounts of basil and this dish is no exception. Ground beef with sautéed veggies in a sweet chili sauce with plenty of fresh basil mixed throughout.
It’s sweet, it’s spicy, it’s salty, it’s flavorful, and it takes just 20 minutes to make. It’s everything you want in a delicious weeknight meal the whole family will love. Serve over a bed of jasmine rice, cauliflower rice, in lettuce wraps, over udon or rice noodles. Whatever you choose, you’re going to love this Thai Basil Beef dish!
- Lean Ground Beef - I used 96% lean. Down to 92% lean will work, but any lower will result in excessive grease in your pan.
- Veggies - We’ll use bell peppers, sweet onion, and carrots. These will get soft when cooked down with the grease from the beef.
- Basil - The star ingredient! Helpful tip: Lay your basil leaves on top of one another. Then roll them tightly into a small log. Slice the log and you’ll get thin strips quickly and easily.
Homemade Sauce Ingredients
- Sweet Chili Sauce - The base of our sauce that we’ll jazz up with a few other ingredients.
- Fresh Lime Juice - Citrus livens up our sauce.
- Soy Sauce - Brings an appropriate amount of saltiness to the dish.
- Sriracha - To emphasize the chili flavor. You can add more if you like a high spicy level.
- Optional: Add a tablespoon of fish sauce or oyster sauce for extra flavor.
See the recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
How to Make This Thai Basil Beef Recipe
1. Heat a large skillet to medium heat (if you're using a low fat percentage meat, add a splash of sesame oil to the pan, otherwise you can skip it). Add ground beef, sliced onion, sliced red bell pepper, and diced carrots to the skillet.
2. While the beef cooks, make the Thai sauce. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients: sweet chili sauce, juiced lime, soy sauce, honey and sriracha. Once the meat looks close to fully cooked, pour the sauce over the skillet. Fold together.
3. Top the skillet with fresh basil and stir. Add desired amount of red pepper flakes and green onions for garnish.
4. Serve over a bed of coconut rice, in lettuce wraps, with steamed broccoli, or over udon noodles. Enjoy!
I love this Thai Basil Ground Beef for meal prep. It’s so easy to pair with rice and broccoli. I make it in a big batch and then store it in an airtight container. Best in the refrigerator for 3-5 days.
Gluten Free? Use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
Dairy Free? Check! You’re already there.
Vegetarian? Swap the meat for crumbled tofu or tempeh. Speaking of meat, you don’t have to stick to ground beef. Try chicken, turkey, or steak tips instead of ground meat.
Traditionally in this dish, Thai Holy Basil is used, which almost has a slightly cinnamon/licorice flavor. Asian grocery stores will have it. If you have one near you and can get your hands on it, by all means use it! However, regular basil (Italian basil) will work just fine and provide plenty of flavor.
I served over rice with steamed broccoli. If you have extra sauce, pour that on the broccoli too! You could also serve in lettuce wraps, over udon or rice noodles, or as stuffing to dumplings. A fried egg is delicious on top, too!
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Thai Basil Beef
- Cutting Board
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Meat spatula
- 1 lbs ground beef, 92-96% lean
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- ½ red bell pepper
- 1 small white onion
- ½ cup diced carrots
- 8-10 stalks fresh basil, Holy Basil or Regular Italian Basil
For the sauce:
- ¼ cup sweet chili sauce
- 1 lime, juice
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp sriracha
- white rice
- steamed broccoli
- Prep the vegetables first. Finely slice the onion into rings and the bell pepper into long strips. Use a vegetable chopper to dice the carrots (note: you can also use pre shredded carrots if you wish). Julianne the basil so it’s in thin, long pieces.
- Heat a skillet to medium heat. Add ground beef, onion, red pepper, and carrots to the skillet.
- While the beef cooks, make the Thai sauce. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients: sweet chili sauce, juiced lime, soy sauce, honey and sriracha.
- Once the meat looks close to fully cooked, pour the sauce over the skillet. Fold together.
- Top the skillet with fresh basil and stir. Add desired amount of red pepper flakes and green onion for garnish.
- Serve over a bed of rice, in lettuce wraps, with steamed broccoli, or over udon noodles. Enjoy!
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If you're using MyFitnessPal, search 'A Paige Of Positivity' and find THAI BASIL BEEF calories and nutrition facts. Disclaimer: for most accurate macronutrients and caloric breakdown, it is recommended that you input each ingredient into your MyFitnessPal food diary.
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