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10 Minutes Dish: Stir Fry Sambal Long Beans

10 Minutes Dish: Stir Fry Sambal Long Beans

Sambal Long Beans is a very simple dish that’s fast to cook and is full of flavour. It’s spicy, very fragrant, and sweet. With the sambal paste pre-made, the cooking time can be shortened to just under 10 minutes; most of it is just waiting for the long beans to cook and soften.

This recipe is good for a vegetable side dish; with a main dish consisting of crispy fried meat, or with a rich and creamy coconut base. I would personally have this dish with rice and fried chicken. It is also a great addition to nasi lemak.

Stir Fry Sambal Long Beans Recipe


The long beans are the main ingredient of this dish. Try to get young long beans, as they are tender and less fibrous to eat. Other types of beans can be used with this recipe too: French beans, Green Beans, and even Four Angled Beans.

Long beans, water, sugar, fish sauce, sambal and sliced onions in bowls.
All the ingredients needed for our Sambal Long Beans dish.

Apart from the beans, the sambal is the next important ingredient. I’m using a portion of my homemade sambal. The level of heat is controlled by the sambal paste itself, using sugar to mellow out the spiciness if necessary. Red onions give the dish its thick-like consistency, as well as provide a naturally sweet texture. Shallots and yellow onions can also be used to substitute red onions.

The fish sauce also adds a lovely all-around fragrance to the dish, in addition to flavoured saltiness. It can be substituted with salt if it’s not available too.

Cooking Long Beans Sambal

Before cooking, prepare the long beans and red onions. Cut the long beans into 1.5inches in length, or to bite-size lengths. This helps with eating and cooking later. Slice the red onions thinly, so they become soft and very tender.

Now it’s time to cook!

Heat the pan to medium heat. Non-stick pans or stainless steel works great. Add in all the homemade sambal and the sliced onions. Stir and cook them for 30 seconds, or until all the sliced onions are evenly coated with the sambal.

Red onions coated with sambal in a pan.
The onions and sambal are well-incorporated.

As the onions and sambal cook, they will release a wonderful aroma. Then, add in all the long beans and water. Stir again to mix until well-combined. This will not take more than 30 seconds.

Fresh long beans in a pan with sambal onions.
Add in all the long beans.

Once the water is well incorporated in the sambal, and long beans are fully coated with the gravy, add in the sugar and fish sauce. Once again, stir to evenly mix the sugar and fish sauce into the gravy.

Then, cover the pan. Allow the Sambal Long Beans to simmer and cook for 4 minutes. The heat will slowly cook the long beans. Make sure to stir in between to evenly distribute the heat, and to prevent the sambal gravy from burning at the bottom of the pan.

After 4 minutes, the Sambal Long Beans are cooked and ready. At this stage, they are quite crunchy and fun to eat. There is a nice amount of gravy as well. If this texture of long beans is preferred, switch off the heat and serve immediately. I personally prefer them to be very soft, so I will let them simmer with the lid closed for another 2 minutes.

Cooked long beans coated with sambal gravy and onions in a pan.
4 minutes is enough to cook crunchy long beans, but I prefer them soft and tender.

After 2 minutes, the long beans are now quite soft and tender. The sambal gravy is quite dry as well. I really like this consistency for this dish, turned out perfect.

Cooked sambal long beans in a pan.
The long beans are soft and tender; it’s perfect!

Taste and adjust as preferred. To me, no extra seasonings are needed for this dish. Switch off the heat and serve.

Let’s Eat!

A spoonful of long beans, some onions and sambal.
Bon app├ętit!

Spicy, soft, and tender, with a distinct sweetness from the melt-in-the-mouth onions, these Sambal Long Beans dish makes a very flavourful side to go with rice. No garnishing is needed, fuss-free cooking and really fast too. Enjoy!

Storage Instructions

Sambal Long Beans dish is best served immediately after cooking. After it has cooled completely, it can be kept in the fridge in a clean container for up to a day. Reheat until the gravy boils a little before serving again.

sambal long beans

Stir Fry Sambal Long Beans

Somjit Najaireeb
Spicy sambal, naturally sweet sliced onions and tender, soft long beans comes together in this Sambal Long Beans dish. It's perfect as a side dish, with rice, and even nasi lemak!
0 from 0 votes
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine Asian, Malaysian
Servings 4 servings
Calories 71 kcal


  • Non-Stick Frying Pan
  • Silicone Spatula


  • 400 g long beans, washed and cut into 1.5 inch in length
  • 100 g red onions, sliced thinly
  • 135 g sambal, homemade
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 120 ml water


  • Switch on the heat to medium. Add in the sambal and onion to the pan. Stir for 30 seconds, or until well-coated.
  • Add in long beans and water. Stir until well-combined.
  • Add in sugar and fish sauce. Stir until well-combined.
  • Cover the pan and let it cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • After 4 minutes, the long beans are cooked. If crunchy long beans are preferred, taste and adjust as preferred. Switch off the heat and serve.
  • For soft and tender long beans, cover the pan and allow to simmer for 2 more minutes.
  • After 2 minutes, taste and adjust as preferred. Switch off the heat and serve.



  • Long beans can be substituted with other types of beans: french beans, green beans, four-angled beans.
  • Red onions can be substituted with shallots and yellow onions.
  • Fish sauce is used for fragrance. Can be substituted with salt (to taste).
  • Best served with plain food, or crispy/ crunchy fried meats. Goes well with plain rice and nasi lemak.
  • For storage: once cooled completely, store in clean airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 day. Reheat before consuming.


Calories: 71kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 4gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 540mgPotassium: 337mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 866IUVitamin C: 21mgCalcium: 59mgIron: 1mg
Keyword easy vegetables, long beans, sambal, stir fry
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