Delicious Beef Jap Chae, A Korean Glassy Noodle Stir Fry

Author Sharon Wong @Nut Free Wok


  • 1/2 pound rib eye or sirloin steak or chicken or pork or omit
  • 5 tablespoons soy sauce divided
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon sugar divided
  • 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon sesame oil divided, see blog post for alternatives
  • 3 scallions chopped (divided)
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 6 oz 1 bag baby spinach
  • 12 oz Korean sweet potato noodles
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil or any oil of choice
  • 1/2 onion thinly sliced
  • 2 stalks celery sliced
  • 2 carrots use a vegetable peeler to make ribbons
  • Salt to taste


  1. Pat dry meat with a paper towel, place the meat in a freezer bag, and freeze for 30 minutes to firm it up.
  2. Remove the meat from the freezer bag and thinly slice against the grain, transfer to a mixing bowl.
  3. Marinate the meat with 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, minced garlic, and a small handful of green onions, mix and marinate for 30 minutes.
  4. Boil water in a large pot (1/2 to 2/3 full) and blanch spinach for 30 seconds.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to take the spinach out of the hot water and rinse under cold running water in a colander.
  6. Gently squeeze out excess water and transfer to a small bowl, add 1 teaspoon sesame oil, a pinch of salt, mix and set aside.
  7. Add sweet potato noodles to the boiling water, stir, and cook for 7 minutes or until tender.
  8. Drain and rinse the noodles in a large colander with cold water.
  9. Use your hands to pick up a handful of noodles and cut the noodles so that they are about 12 inches long, place in a large mixing bowl.
  10. Season the noodles with 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, mix, and set aside (if allergic to sesame oil, use any allergy safe oil to prevent the noodles from sticking).
  11. Preheat a wok or a large frying pan on medium high heat for a few minutes, the pan is ready when a small splash of water sizzles in the pan.
  12. Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil in the pan and saute sliced onions until tender, add celery and saute 30 seconds more, set aside.
  13. Add 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil in the pan and saute the carrot ribbons for 1-2 minutes until tender crisp, set aside.
  14. Add 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil in the pan and add the beef into the pan, spread it out, and let the beef sear for a minute or two, then stir fry and cooked through, set aside.
  15. Turn down the heat on the pan to low-medium, add 2 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sugar, and stir to dissolve sugar.
  16. Add the noodles, meat, and vegetables to the pan and gently stir fry until thoroughly mixed.
  17. Season to taste with additional soy sauce and drizzle with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, garnish with the rest of the scallions.
  18. Serve with rice as a main entree or by itself as a side dish.

Recipe Notes

If using shitake MUSHROOMS, clean 4 mushrooms and remove stem, thinly slice (1/2 cup) and stir fry with the meat. If using red BELL PEPPER julienne 1/4 of a bell pepper (1/2 cup) and stir fry with the carrot ribbons. Please refer to the blog post about how to substitute for soy, wheat, or sesame allergies.