8 New Things to Cook in a Wok

Besides just adding quick stir-fries to your weeknight routine, there are plenty of other things you can do thanks to the wok’s unique sloped design. 
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Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Beyond Stir-Fry

If you don’t already own a wok, we highly recommend you get one! Its unique sloped shape works well for scrambling eggs, popping popcorn and even searing burgers. A note before you get started: Make sure your wok is seasoned properly; directions can be found in the owner’s manual. And if you have it, use the wok stand.

Popcorn

Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of your favorite cooking fat (butter, coconut oil, vegetable oil and olive oil all work great) and a couple of popcorn kernels to a seasoned wok. Heat over medium heat. Once the kernels pop, add 1/3 to 1/2 cup of kernels, cover the wok with a tight-fitting lid and shake until the popping subsides. Remove from the heat and season with salt and any other finishers you like. Bonus: maximized seasoning exposure, thanks to the wok's sloped sides, which make it easier to mix and stir.

Eggs

Make them scrambled, fried or poached, just as you would in a skillet or pot. Bonus: Eggs won't stick in a well-seasoned wok — and, if you’re poaching, your water will boil in no time.

Burgers

Heat a seasoned wok over medium-high heat. Add a splash of oil and swirl the wok to coat the sides. Once the wok begins to smoke, press the burgers all around the sides and cook, turning with a metal spatula to cook the other side, until your desired doneness. Bonus: Now you can cook onions or mushrooms in the collected drippings at the bottom. 

Mussels

Follow any method or recipe for cooking in a large pot. Bonus: The mussels will be infinitely easier to stir because of the wok’s sloped sides. 

Deep-Frying

The wok is better for smaller pieces of food. Dredge or batter as usual. Bonus: The shape of the wok allows expensive frying oil to pool, so you can use less.

Steam Fish and Vegetables

Fill your wok with a couple of inches of water and use your regular collapsible pot steamer to steam your favorite fish or vegetables. Bonus: Both pieces of equipment have a small kitchen footprint.

Soup

Follow just about any recipe you would in a pot. Small batches are better. Bonus: Ever notice that slight smokiness in your stir-fry? It's called wok-hai, and that subtle flavor can transform your soup. 

Fajitas

These are very similar to stir-fries. Make your favorite recipe in your wok. And if you have a wok stand, you can serve in the wok at the table. Bonus: Before you throw together your fajita mix, heat your wok over medium-high heat and stick your flour tortillas around the inside walls for a few seconds on each side, to heat through. Stack them and wrap in foil to keep warm.