My sister insisted that I add the word “surprise” to the title of this recipe. Why? Well, this Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise tastes like it has soy sauce and/or some sort of Asian bottled sauce in it. BUT it doesn’t!

The delicious and simple sauce in this recipe is light, healthy, non-processed and all natural. The taste is “surprising” because it has a delicious spicy Asian flair to it without any soy sauce at all. Yum!

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,

I decided to make this Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise the other day because I was in the mood for vegetables. Well actually, I was just sick of unhealthy carbs and the only thing I could fathom eating was vegetables.

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,

I had been visiting my family in Florida for a week and we had a few too many baked goods. My sister exclaimed that she couldn’t handle another carb for the rest of the day one morning, so I started thinking about what healthy dish I could make for lunch.

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,

I was inspired by the Asian flavor of one of my favorite chicken dishes, 20 minute Caramelized Orange Chicken, and decided to tweak the sauce in that recipe to make a stir fry FULL of vegetables.

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,

It turned out wonderful! My brother, sister, and I gobbled up almost all of it before I even had a chance to take pictures of it.

This recipe can be eaten as a meal for 4 people or a side dish for 6 people. It also would taste really great with some chicken.

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,

In my sister’s words.. this stir fry is great because… “Surprise!! There’s no soy sauce!” haha

Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF) | Perchance to Cook,
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Vegetable Stir Fry Surprise (paleo, GF)

Servings: 4 -6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 3 cups of broccoli florets
  • 8 ounces of sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 Tbs + 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 1/2 cups of chopped pencil onions, (also called green onions),make sure to chop the green parts of the onions too... this was 6 pencil onions for me
  • 1 1/4 cups diced red pepper, (this was one red pepper for me)
  • 1 1/4 cups shredded carrots
  • 2 Tbs honey
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice, (this was the juice of 2 oranges for me)
  • salt to taste, (I used about 1/4 tsp)
  • pepper to taste
  • A pinch or two of crushed red paper flakes, , depending on how hot you want the dish
  • 6 ounces canned water chestnuts
  • 2 cups of diced yellow squash, ( this was 3 small squash for me)
  • 2 cups of shredded cabbage


  • In a large pot, boil some water. Put the broccoli florets inside and cook for 5 minutes. Drain and set the broccoli aside.
  • In a small pan, cook the mushrooms over medium-high heat with a little bit of olive oil until the mushrooms are golden on each side. Set the mushrooms aside.
  • In a large sauce pan, heat 1 Tbs of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and chopped pencil onions to the pan and mix them into the olive oil with a rubber spatula. Cook for 2 minutes, while mixing the garlic and onion often. If the garlic starts to burn, lower the heat. (It depends on your stove).
  • Lower the heat to medium, add the diced red pepper and the shredded carrots to the sauce pan and mix well. Let the mixture cook for 3 minutes.
  • Then add the orange juice, honey, salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes to the pan. Mix everything together. Increase the heat to medium high and cook the veggies for 4 minutes.
  • Add the water chestnuts to the sauce pan, mix, and let the mixture cook for 2 minutes.
  • Add the yellow squash to the sauce pan, mix, and let the mixture cook for 4 minutes.
  • Then add the cabbage and the broccoli and mushrooms that were set aside earlier to the pan. Let the mixture cook for 4-6 minutes, while stirring every so often. The liquid should be mostly evaporated by now. If it isn't, cook for longer. Some liquid is normal.