Simply Healthy Family: Candied Orange Beef and Broccoli with Shitake Sauce


Candied Orange Beef and Broccoli with Shitake Sauce

This recipe is not only simple and super fast to make but totally legit (my teenager would die if I used that term in public...... or is it back in style?).  Frozen dinners and take out have nothing on this Chinese classic. Aside from slicing the meat against the grain (a feat I was always a bit wary of as a not so often meat eater) and chopping a few veggies, there is nothing complicated or time consuming to this dinner making it a perfect weekday meal. Serve on top of whole grain brown rice and the whole family is happy.

Candied Orange Beef and Broccoli with Shitake Sauce

My inspiration for this post comes from a friend of mine who says she doesn't like trying new foods/recipes because she's afraid she won't like them or "will mess them up" and therefor "waste money and time". I can appreciate that to some extent seeing as that I like what little time and money I have as well. We all have different tastes, priorities and ways of thinking when it comes to food or any given thing for that matter.

I happen to be on the adventurous, open minded and even food snobby side of trying and experiencing new foods from all cultures and corners of the World. Buying a bottle of clam juice (or two), a bottle of Black Chinese Vinegar or a basket of Nopales just to see what flavors it brings or benefits it has is not beyond my imagination or budget by any means.

That being said, I understand the hesitation to buy an ingredient listed in a recipe on a blog that you've never even heard of. Try Googling an ingredient that you find in a recipe and see what else comes up,  I've found many of my favorite recipes that way!  Clam juice for instance which is used in this recipe is also critical for flavor in many seafood dishes such as Paella, this White Clam Pasta which is a favorite of ours and also Sopa de Almejas   {Clam Soup, delicious!}.

Chinese Black Vinegar  is much, much different than the traditional store bought balsamic vinegar which is usually "quickly aged" with sugar and much to sweet and overpowering for most dishes. I've had a jar of Chinese Black Vinegar in my fridge for a very long time and turn to it often for stir fry's, fried rice, marinades and dips for egg rolls, Egg Foo Young and fried Chinese eggs.

You won't regret making candied orange peels for this recipe. 
It's a crazy simple way to add that  BAM POW  factor to a simple dish. 

 { P.S. you can dip them in chocolate for dessert. You're welcome. }

The key to getting fork tender beef is cutting it against the grain. Some cuts/types of beef are easier to decipher than others. As you can see here in this flank steak, the grain (the muscle fibers) is running horizontally-side to side so you want to cut the meat the opposite way, up and down. 

To make the Candied Oranges

Using a channel knife, peel the rind off of 1 orange. Heat 1 cup water and 3 cups sugar over medium-high heat until boiling. Turn down heat to low and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Place orange rind in sugar water and let sit for 10-15 minutes. Using a fork, remove from pot and place an a plate. Cover with a tea towel and let sit for at least 24 hours or up to 48 hours.


Use a spoon to simply scrape off the ginger root peel, it's much easier than using a knife and saves much of the ginger root.

Tamari is a gluten free alternative to soy sauce.

Coconut Aminos are a soy free alternative to soy sauce. It is gluten free and a low sodium alternative. They contain a high level of 17 amino acids which may contribute to heart health, digestive health and mood stabilization.

Candied Orange Beef and Broccoli with Shitake Sauce


1 pound flank steak
1-2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 cups broccoli florets, chopped
3-5 large shitake mushrooms, stems removed, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 inch piece fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
1 cup beef broth
Juice of 1 orange
2 tablespoons orange zest
1/4 cup clam juice
1/4 cup Chinese Black Vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
2 tablespoons Coconut Amino Acids (or Tamari)

1 orange rind, peeled with a channel knife
1 cup water
3 cups table sugar

1 cup sliced mini sweet peppers
2 cups cooked Jasmin rice
sliced green onion for garnish
red pepper flakes or Sirachi for heat if you please

First, combine beef broth, orange juice & zest, garlic, ginger, coconut aminos, Chinese black vinegar and clam juice in a bowl and whisk together. Thinly slice the flank steak across the grain, toss in the mixture to coat. Let sit while you cook the rice and prepare other ingredients.

In a rice steamer or pot, steam the broccoli for 3-4 minutes. Do not over cook. Remove from heat and drain. Cover and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat a large Wok over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon coconut oil and coat the Wok by turning it. Working in batches and using tongs carefully add the strips of marinated beef to the pan one or two at a time. Do NOT over crowd the pan. Let them cook 3 minutes then turn and cook 2-3 minutes more. Do not over cook. Remove the strips of beef to a plate and cover with another plate. Continue with the rest of the beef until done. You will need to drain the juices out of the wok in between batches, wipe clean with a paper towel and add more coconut oil.

Add all of the cooked beef to the wok along with the Shitake mushrooms, broccoli and  peppers. Cook just 1-2 minutes until heated through. Remove from heat and serve with rice and garnishes. 



  1. Hi Gwen love that you added candied oranges to this recipe, I bet that is does add a big punch of flavor. I'll have to pick up some Chinese black vinegar. Have a great week-end!

  2. This is a fantastic recipe. The candied orange is a fun addition to the beef and broccoli.

  3. I ADORE candied orange peel, so I made a beeline for this recipe!

  4. Sounds like a delicious dish! I have a few friends that are like yours...afraid to try something new, etc. Not me! I like to experiment on all my friends.

  5. Mmmm! Sounds fantastic - can't wait to give this one a try!

  6. What a great idea to use candied orange for beef, I will need to try your dish soon =)

  7. Serious wow factor - those candied orange peels are genius Gwen!

  8. If this tastes half as good as it looks it will be fantastic

  9. This looks so good and the candied oranges and chocolate... Yeah, I can get on board with that!

  10. What a fun recipe...I would never have thought to use candied oranges, but the flavor combinations make total sense.

  11. You had me at shitake sauce! What a lovely dish with the candied orange!

  12. Wondering what you do to the orange rinds to "candy" them?

  13. Nevermind...skipped ahead to the recipe and missed the other instructions! Sorry


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