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Taiwanese beef noodle in a bowl with spoon and chopsticks.
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5 from 2 votes

Mom's Taiwanese beef noodle soup

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 45 mins
Course: Main dish, Taiwanese
Cuisine: Taiwanese
Servings: 6
Author: Edwina


  • Pressure cooker


Broth (can be replaced by store bought chicken stock)

  • 2 lb beef bones or 2 whole chicken bones/carcass from leftover rotisserie chicken
  • 8 cups water
  • ½ onion
  • A 3-inch piece of fresh ginger smashed
  • 1 carrot optional
  • 2 stalks celery optional
  • salt

Braised Beef

  • 2.5-3 lbs beef chuck roast
  • ¼ cup rock sugar
  • 2 tbsps doubanjiang Chinese bean paste, spicy or regular
  • ¼ cup hot water
  • 5 slices fresh ginger
  • 1 scallion minced
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 3 tbsps cooking wine
  • 2 tbsps tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon white pepper powder
  • 1 Chinese spice braising packet Lu Bao (see note for alternative)

Everything else

  • Wheat noodle
  • Scallion finely chopped
  • Cilantro finely chopped
  • leafy green of your choice boiled
  • sesame oil
  • chili oil



  • Boil a pot of water for blanching the bones. Cook the bones for 3 minutes, then drain and wash the bones and pot (this gets rid of the scum). Add the bones back to the pot with the rest of the broth ingredients except salt and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and skim any other scum that may develop. Cook for 2 to 2.5 hours with lid on or 90 minutes in an Instant Pot on the high setting.
  • When it's done, add in the salt to make it only slightly salty.

Braised beef

  • Melt rock sugar in a sauce pan on low heat, turn off the heat when it starts to caramelize.
  • Add in doubanjiang right away, and then add ¼ cup hot water. Turn on low heat and cook until the sugar melts completely and set it aside.
  • Heat a dutch oven or pressure cooker on medium heat until it's very hot, then brown the meat on both sides. Do this in 2 batches if needed.
  • Add in ginger and scallion, and continue to stir fry for 1 minute.
  • Add in the caramel/doubanjiang paste, soy sauce, cooking wine, tomato paste, white pepper powder, salt and Lu Bao. Cook and stir for another 30 seconds, then add in enough water to just cover the beef.
  • If using dutch oven, bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer for 3 hours with lid on, stir every 30 minutes and adjust the heat if needed.
  • If using the stove top pressure cooker, lock the lid and set on high pressure, cook with medium high heat until the pressure cooker hiss. Turn to medium low to low heat and cook for another 20 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and let it sit until pressure releases naturally. unlock the lid, take out the spice packet and let it simmer (with lid on) on low heat for another 30~40 minutes, the meat will be really tender at this point so don't stir too much.
  • Cook noodles according to the package, drain the water and mix noodle with a bit of salt and sesame oil.


  • Put noodle in a bowl and pour in braised beef and soup, then dilute with an equal amount (or more, according to your taste) of broth before finally topping it off with scallion, cilantro and bak choy. season with more salt and white pepper powder if needed.


I usually heat the pot until it's very hot and brown the meat without adding extra oil, as beef chuck roast has higher fat content.    
If you can't find the Chinese spice braising packet, simply wrap 2 inch cinnamon stick, 2 bay leaf, 2 star anise and ½tbsp Sichuan pepper corn in a cheese clothe.