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4.93 from 14 votes

Spicy Beef with Coconut Rice

Spicy Beef with Coconut Rice - literally what your weeknight dinner dreams are made of!! And don't skimp on the cucumbers!!
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Servings: 4 people
Author: Gaby Dalkin


For the Spicy Beef

  • 3 Persian cucumbers
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 6 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 2 red Fresno chiles finely sliced
  • 1 tablespoons sambal oelek
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 shallot thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh herbs mint, basil, scallions and cilantro
  • Lime wedges

For the Coconut Rice

  • 2 cups jasmine rice
  • 2 ½ cups water
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 lime zested and juiced


  • Gently smack cucumbers with a rolling pin or the bottom of a heavy pot until they begin to break apart. Tear into bite-size pieces.
  • Heat oil in a large cast iron over high heat. Add beef and break apart using a wooden spoon and season with salt and pepper. Cook, undisturbed, until bottom side is browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. Break up meat with a spatula and stir to cook the other side, about 5–7 minutes more.
  • Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, sambal and Fresno chiles to the beef and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add shallot and smashed cucumbers and cook, tossing occasionally and scraping up any browned bits, until cucumbers are softened and translucent, about 4 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and stir in vinegars, water, soy sauce, and sugar. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring, until sauce is reduced slightly, about 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Spoon beef and cucumbers over bowls of coconut rice and top with herbs and lime wedges.

To make the coconut rice:

  • Place the water, coconut milk, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan, and warm over medium-high heat until the mixture starts to simmer. Add the rice and bring back to a low simmer. Cover the pot with lid, then reduce the heat to low. Cook, undisturbed, for about 15 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the rice steam for another 5 to 10 minutes. Uncover, fluff, and season with the zest and juice of 1 lime.


You can tone down the spice level by using different or less of the chilis or spices. However, I think pairing it with the coconut rice does a great job of cooling things down.


Calories: 851kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 43g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 1197mg | Potassium: 800mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1474IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 111mg | Iron: 6mg