What’s Cooking?! Low-fat, salt-free stir-fry

Stir-FryLooking for another way to add vegetables and increase the fiber in your dinner meal? Try a stir-fry! Now generally, any dish with the word “fry” in it means that it has been cooked in oil and tend to be high in fat, calories, and salt; but, with some minor adjustments, I still managed to make a flavorful meal that is heart healthy and won’t run the blood sugars off the charts. Here is what I made, but since it’s a stir-fry, you can really add anything you want!

1 sweet onion–sliced
2 cups mushrooms–sliced
2 cloves garlic–minced
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tbl red pepper flakes–divided
1 lb flank steak (or another lean cut)–sliced
10 oz frozen spinach
1 cup fat-free, no sodium beef broth
1 tbl corn starch
2 tbl lime juice

1. Spray pan/wok with cooking spray and turn stove on high
2. Add onion, mushroom, garlic, red wine vinegar, and 1 tbl red pepper flakes
3. Cook until browned, remove from pan, and hold in a large bowl
4. Spray pan with cooking spray again, season steak with remaining 1 tbl of red pepper flakes, and place in the hot pan
5. Cook until browned, remove from pan, and hold in the bowl with the onion and mushroom
6. Add spinach to the pan and cook until hot
7. With the spinach in the pan, add beef broth to deglaze, scraping all browned pieces off the bottom of the pan
8. Add corn starch and allow to thicken for about 2 minutes
9. Add onion, mushroom and steak mixture to the pan to coat and heat through
10.Add lime juice

Traditionally, stir-fry is served over rice; but, rice isn’t a favorite in our house. So, we used whole wheat spaghetti noodles instead. If you do like rice, use brown rice to reduce the blood sugar spike thanks to fiber.

Soy sauce is the base of most stir-fry dishes, but is very high in salt. Vinegar adds flavor without the salt, and helps tenderize meat by breaking down proteins, which is great when using low-fat cuts. Vinegar comes in a variety of flavors too. I like red wine vinegar for steak and have read that rice wine vinegar is a good match for vegetable stir-fry, and balsamic vinegar goes well in a chicken stir-fry.

Using vinegar and broth as the cooking liquid is a great way to eliminate almost all of the fat from these dishes, and using dried peppers adds the flavor that may be lost when salt is taken away. This is an easy one-pot wonder that is ready much faster than some dinners thanks to the high heat! What are your favorite flavors? Give them a try, and let me know what you think!


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