Last Updated on March 19, 2021
Sometimes life gets crazy and you have very little time to whip up a wholesome meal. A bok choy mushroom stir fry is such a welcome last minute dish.
It's nutrient-dense, as among other healthy ingredients, you use another member of the cruciferous vegetable family: Bok choy also known as Pak choi.
I'll share more about bok choy's health benefits later. First let me introduce to you the bok choy recipe.
- quick and easy – all you need is around 20 minutes, a few ingredients and a skillet
- vegan and gluten-free – suitable for those with dietary restrictions
What you‘ll need
- Bok Choy: Look for smooth, firm white stalks and dark, crisp greens. Baby bok choy is ok to use too.
- Mushrooms: Brown or white button mushrooms
- Bean thread noodles: regular or wide Vermicelli or glass noodles based on mung beans are perfect. They can save you lots of time in your kitchen. Our favorites are Longkou vermicelli bean threads.
- Soy sauce: I recommend Tamari soy sauce, which is a little thicker, less salty and usually gluten free. But you can use also regular soy sauce. However it often leaves a burst of salt on the tongue and has a thinner consistency.
- Oil: Canola oil, olive oil or other high-heat vegetable oil.
- Optional ingredients include sesame oil, sesame seeds, and red pepper flakes to enhance the flavor.
If you don't have all ingredients at hand, here are some variations you can try:
- Use spinach or chard instead of bok choy or a combination of both
- Shiitake mushrooms are a perfect swap for button mushrooms
- If you are not a fan of bean thread noodles you can use cooked brown rice instead
- Use more vegetable broth or Miso instead of soy sauce
- For a low sodium dish decrease soy sauce and vegetable broth accordingly. Replace it with cold water and spice your dish up with more garlic and ginger, or red pepper flakes.
- Try nutmeg instead of ginger
Step by step photos
Step 1: Prepare bean thread noodles according instructions. The broader noodles need 6 minutes cooking time, the thinner bean threads are ready even quicker.
Step 2: Transfers stripes of bok choy stems in a large skillet, add a bit of water and let them cook for 3 minutes. If the water evaporates, add more water.
Step 3: Stir in button mushrooms together with canola oil and stir fry at high heat for 3 minutes.
Step 4: Add green bok choy stripes and minced garlic. Stir to combine while cooking for 2 minutes until the greens wilt.
Step 5: Add vegetable broth, Tamari sauce, ginger, sesame oil (optional) and cooked bean threads.
Step 6: Combine gently and heat it up before serving. Taste it with some red pepper flakes (optional).
Serve it in bowls and garnish with some sesame seeds. Enjoy!
Watch how to make it
Bok choy stir fry with mushrooms
A delicious, plant based one pan meal
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 10
- Total Time: 15
- Yield: 2 1x
- Category: stir fry
- Method: cooking
- Cuisine: Asian
- Diet: Vegan
- 1 head bok choy (250 grams), chopped in stripes
- 8 oz./230 gr. brown button mushrooms, chopped
- 8 oz. /230 gr. bean thread noodles
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon canola oil or other high-heat oil
- 4 tablespoon Tamari soy sauce
- 3–4 tablespoon vegetable broth or water
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)
- rep pepper flakes (optional)
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds (optional)
- Prepare bean thread noodles according instructions.
- Put stripes of white bok choy stem in a skillet and let them cook for 3 minutes in a bit of water. If the water evaporates, add more water.
- Stir in mushrooms with canola oil and stir fry at high heat for 3 minutes.
- Add bok choy greens and garlic. Stir to combine while cooking for 2 minutes until the greens wilt.
- Add vegetable broth, Tamari sauce, grated ginger, sesame oil (optional) and cooked bean thread noodles.
- Combine gently and heat it up before serving.
- Taste it with some red pepper flakes.
- Serve it in bowls, garnished with some sesame seeds.
For a low sodium dish adjust soy sauce and vegetable broth accordingly. Replace it with hot water and spice the dish up with more ginger, and red pepper flakes,
- Serving Size: 2
Health benefits of bok choy
Bok choy comes already with the privilege of being a member of the cruciferous vegetable family such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kale, broccoli, turnips and cauliflower.
Cruciferous vegetables are low-calorie, and rich in fiber, vitamins C, E, K, and folate. If weight loss is your goal, then you probably know that fiber is an important nutrient to incorporate in your daily meals as it helps you keep fuller longer.
These cruciferous vegetables also contain plant-based compounds (phytonutrients) – especially glucosinolate, that may reduce the risk of developing cancer. (1)
Researchers have concluded that the inclusion of cruciferous vegetables in our diet is essential for effective dietary based, preventive strategies.
In many different studies cruciferous veggies show the highest inhibitory activities towards cancer cells. Bok choy is maybe not the superstar within this potent family and yet it showed moderate activity towards prostate, breast and stomach cancer cells.(2)
Bean thread noodles are my latest finding
This one pot meal credits its short cooking time to the special noodles I'm using for this quick and easy plant based recipe.
There are plenty ‘alternative’ noodles to traditional pasta available these days and the sky is the limit. For most of my “pasta recipes” I use whole grain noodles with more complex carbs. These carbs are broken down more slowly by the body, and prevent blood sugar spikes.
Last year my daughter introduced to me glass or cellophane noodles. They are also called Chinese vermicelli, crystal noodles or just bean threads. I seemed to remember them from my “all-you-can-eat” times. But I always believed, that transluscent noodles are an “instant crap” with empty calories. How wrong was I!
Nutrient-dense bean threads
Besides being lower in refined carbohydrates and higher in protein, bean thread noodles usually have a springy, firm texture, similar to a perfectly cooked ‘al dente’ wheat pasta. They’re also a great source of gluten-free complex carbs, selenium and iron.
The best and most famous bean threads come from Longkou city (Shandong Province, China). Tip: If you spot the word “Longkou” on the packaging for Chinese noodles you know you get the best quality bean thread noodles.
So, if your family is missing traditional pasta and can't get used to whole grain pasta, then these bean thread noodles offer a great alternative.
If you don't use them yet, then I hope that my yummy bok choy stir fry recipe can inspire you to give them a try.
Additional bean thread noodles tip
Another idea is to combine bean thread pasta in a cold salad with some spring onions, thinly shredded carrots and a tangy Asian-inspired vinaigrette. This would make a wonderful meal you could take with you in a lunch box.