Family Favorites - Beef Chow Mein

  Made Chow Mein for supper tonight. Now this was a dish popular back in the fifties and sixties. Not Stir Fry or Asian food as we know it now. I am sure no self respecting Asian ever ate it. However, it was served on many American dinner tables. 
  We all like it so I serve it once in awhile for my family. You can make a casserole out of it, but traditionally it was served over rice and you put deep fried Chinese noodles on top. I can still buy these here. Canned or in cello bags which are crunchier. This recipe works equally well with left over chicken or pork, but the traditional way is with ground beef. Molasses is needed for the flavor.
Beef Chow Mein
Makes: 4 servings
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 1/2 cups sliced celery
1 (16-oz.) can bean sprouts, drained
1 (8-oz.) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
1 (4-oz.) can Mushroom Pieces and Stems, drained
1 3/4 cups beef flavored broth *
1 (2-oz.) jar diced pimientos, drained
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons molasses-add one at a time tasting before adding more
1/2 teaspoon ginger
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
4 cups hot cooked rice
chow mein noodles for top
1. Brown ground beef in large skillet over medium-high heat for 5 to 7 minutes or until thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently. Drain.
2. Add celery, bean sprouts, water chestnuts, mushrooms, broth, pimentos, soy sauce and ginger; mix well. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, in small bowl, blend cornstarch and water until smooth.
4. Stir cornstarch mixture into beef mixture. Cook until mixture is bubbly and slightly thickened. Serve over rice, top with chow mein noodles. If desired, serve with additional soy sauce.
1/4 of Recipe: Calories 705 (Calories from Fat 340); Total Fat 38g (Saturated Fat 10g); Cholesterol 65mg; Sodium 1460mg;
*If you do not have beef broth, bullion cubes work, but they will make it saltier. I have many times used chicken broth which works well.


  1. Brings me back to Pork Chow-Mein we made with sliced pork and otherwise the same as your recipe. It was served in a little diner we all ate lunch at in Noblesville, Indiana. It was a big hit back then in the 60's. Thanks for the memories.......Diane

  2. I L-O-V-E Chow Mein! It was even a favorite at grade school lunches & church suppers! Thanks for this. I love molasses too, which my recipe doesn't have. Can't wait to try it very soon! maybe tomorrow?! ;-) Happy Summer Solstice to all of you!

  3. I really like this style of Chow Mein also. And yes, I ate it at church suppers and ladies luncheons. Don't think we were ever lucky enough to get it for school lunches.


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