This low-carb version Beef and Broccoli is so simple and tasty. We use ground beef to keep it super budget friendly, utilizing ingredients you already have on hand.
There’s something really satisfying about beef and broccoli. It’s a great go-to meal when you don’t have a lot of time, and it’s really satisfying when you’re craving something flavorful.
I used to make a version of Beef & Broccoli before I went low-carb that had a lot of sugar in the sauce and was piled up on a bed of rice. It was incredible, but also packed with carbs.
No worries. I experimented a little with different options for a low-sugar sauce that fit into my keto lifestyle and didn’t skip a beat. I’ve been serving this version for dinner ever since.
You may not have even realized how much sugar is typically packed into a Beef & Broccoli sauce, but that’s okay. You can definitely enjoy this tasty dish without all those carbs.
You won’t miss the sugar in this version. We use a brown sugar substitute to give it some sweetness (you can also just use whatever granulated sugar substitute you normally use).
And we pile up the ground beef and broccoli on cauliflower rice in place of the regular rice. It’s so good. Also it’s a one-pot meal, so clean up is simple.
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Ingredients You’ll Need
- Cooking oil – You can use whatever oil you have on hand. Olive oil, coconut or peanut.
- Ground beef – Feel free to use the fat percentage you like best. We are using Butcher Box 85-15 for this recipe.
- Broccoli – Cut into bite sized florets.
- Sauce ingredients – Sesame oil, soy sauce, chili oil, brown sugar substitute, minced garlic, and grated ginger.
- Salt & ground black pepper – to taste.
What is in Ground Beef and Broccoli Sauce
The sauce for this dish is very similar to a teriyaki sauce. It contains sesame oil, soy sauce, chili oil, brown sugar substitute, minced garlic, and grated ginger. You can purchase a low-carb teriyaki sauce for an easier version. To keep it low in sugar, I prefer to make my own. You can adjust the flavors as you like.
How to Make Low-Carb Ground Beef & Broccoli
Heat the cooking oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the broccoli florets and fry until just slightly tender, about 6 minutes.
You don’t want to fully cook them, because they’ll become soggy before you add them back in. I think it’s best when they have a slight bite. It adds texture to the dish. A great way to cook broccoli fast in is in the air fryer.
Remove the broccoli and set it aside on a plate.
Add half the sesame oil to the pan along with the ground beef. Saute the beef, breaking it up into small pieces as it browns.
While you’re cooking the beef in the skillet, you can mix up the sauce. Combine the soy sauce, chili oil, remaining sesame oil, brown sugar substitute, garlic and ginger in a bowl.
Once the meat is browned, lower the heat and add the broccoli back into the pan.
Pour in the sauce and stir the beef and broccoli together until the sauce is incorporated. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. If it’s too thick for your liking, you can add a little bit of broth to thin it out.
I usually serve ground beef and broccoli on top of cauliflower rice or on its own. Add on some more chili oil or sriracha if you like some more heat.
Notes About the Ingredients
A few notes about these ingredients. I always use low-sodium soy sauce because the full strength is just way too salty for me. You can also use tamari or liquid aminos.
For the chili oil, I use Lee Kum Kee Chiu Chow Style Chili Oil. I love this stuff. It’s quite spicy on its own, but when you add it into the dish, it’s very mild. You can use another type of chili oil, sriracha, or just leave it out if you don’t like heat. Substitute it with additional soy sauce, if you leave it out.
For the brown sugar substitute, I use Lakanto Golden or Swerve Brown. There are other choices available. You can use whatever version you have. You can also just use any granulated sugar substitute. Just stir it into the sauce until it is fully dissolved.
Pro Tips and Recipe Notes
- You could use frozen broccoli in a pinch. Make sure to drain excess liquid out after cooking.
- You can substitute coconut aminos for the soy sauce. It has sweetness on it’s own so you many need to cut the amount of sweetener added. Make sure to account for the added carbs this sauce has.
- Try swapping the ground beef for ground turkey, pork, or chicken.
- Don’t overcook the broccoli. There is nothing worse than soggy broccoli.
Storing beef and broccoli properly can extend its shelf life and keep it tasting great for your next meal. Once it’s cooled down to room temperature, transfer the dish into an airtight container to lock in freshness.
Pop it in the fridge, and you’re good to go for about 3 to 4 days. If you’re planning to keep it longer, consider freezing it. Just remember, when reheating, ensure it reaches a safe internal temperature to maintain quality and safety.
When you’re ready to eat, thaw it in the fridge overnight and reheat thoroughly, making sure it reaches a safe internal temperature.
How to Serve Beef & Broccoli
To serve ground beef broccoli, you’ll want to first lay down a bed of cooked cauliflower rice on each plate—this acts as the perfect base to soak up the savory sauce. Next, spoon generous portions of the ground beef and broccoli mixture over the base.
Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds or chopped green onions for added flavor and presentation. Voila! You’ve got yourself a simple yet hearty meal that hits all the right notes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is ground beef keto?
Yes. Ground beef is an excellent keto ingredient. It’s easy to work with, budget friendly, and widely available.
Is broccoli good to eat on a keto diet?
Broccoli is a keto-friendly vegetable. It is high in fiber and protein with only about 2 net carbs per cup.
Can you freeze beef & broccoli?
Absolutely, you can freeze beef and broccoli to extend its life and have a quick meal ready for later. First, let the dish cool down to room temperature. Then, portion it into freezer-safe, airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags. If using containers, leave a little space at the top to allow for expansion. You can store it in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.
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Low Carb Ground Beef & Broccoli
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil olive, coconut, peanut
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 head of broccoli cut into florets
- 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil divided
- 1 1/2 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon chili oil
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar substitute or other granulated sugar substitute
- 1-2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small piece ginger grated
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the cooking oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the broccoli florets and cook until just slightly tender, about 6 minutes. Remove from pan.
- Add half the sesame oil to the pan along with the ground beef. Saute, breaking up into small pieces as it browns.
- Meanwhile, combine the soy sauce, chili oil, remaining sesame oil, brown sugar substitute, garlic and ginger in a bowl.
- Once the meat is browned, lower the heat and add the broccoli back into the pan.
- Pour in the sauce and stir the beef and broccoli together until the sauce is incorporated. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Serve on top of cauliflower rice or on its own.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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Laura is dedicated to a low-carb lifestyle after losing 52 pounds on the keto diet. As many of us do, she struggles with her weight and has found that one of the only diet lifestyles that allows her to maintain a healthy weight is a low-carb diet. She shares her favorite low-carb recipes here that are both easy to make and full of flavor, so you don’t even miss the carbs.