15 Minute Veg Meals: Spicy Water Spinach Stir-Fry

Water spinach, also known as morning glory or 空心菜 in Chinese, is a nutrient-rich vegetable that provides an array of essential vitamins and minerals. Packed with vitamin A, C, and E, along with a generous dose of potassium, iron, and fiber. Water spinach offers a remarkable combination of health benefits. It aids in digestion, strengthens the immune system, and promotes healthy vision, making it an excellent addition to any balanced diet.

Water Spinach 空心菜 (photo by Divya Butani)

Whether stir-fried, steamed, boiled, or added to soups, water spinach shines in a wide range of culinary applications. The tender, hollow stems and vibrant green leaves possess a mild, slightly sweet flavor that complements various ingredients and sauces. Its versatility extends beyond Asian cuisines, blending seamlessly with international flavors and cooking styles.

Water Spinach: A Sustainable Food Choice

One of the remarkable aspects of water spinach is its ability to thrive in both soil and water. Its adaptability and rapid growth make it an ideal vegetable for home gardeners and farmers alike. By simply cutting a stem and placing it in a container with water, you can easily regrow water spinach for a constant supply throughout the year. This low-maintenance crop is a gardener’s dream!

Water spinach is also celebrated for its environmental benefits. Its ability to grow quickly and abundantly makes it an efficient crop that requires minimal resources to cultivate. Beyond that, water spinach effectively acts as a natural filter to purify water bodies, making it an eco-friendly addition to aquatic ecosystems.

With my 15 minute recipe, you can enjoy this delicious green that is not just beneficial to your body, but for the environment too!

Cut Water Spinach (photo by Divya Butani)

15 Minute Meals For Vegetarians: Spicy Water Spinach Stir-Fry

The Veggie Wifey
water spinach stir-fried in miso paste, fresh red chillies and lots of garlic
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Chinese, Thai
Servings 2 people



  • 200 grams water spinach Wash and thoroughly remove any dirt. Cut hard ends of the stem. I like more of the leafy part of the water spinach, so I cut the stems and only keep the stems closest to the leaves. However, the stems are very nutritious.
  • 1 fresh red chilli
  • 4 cloves garlic


  • 1 tbsp non-GMO miso paste
  • 1 tbsp vegetarian oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp organic low sodium soy sauce
  • 1.5 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp chilli oil
  • 3/4 cup water


  • Chop the water spinach into finger length pieces
  • In a large wok, heat up some black sesame oil over medium heat
  • Sauté the garlic and red chilli until fragrant
  • While you're cooking the chilli and garlic, in a small mixing bowl, whisk all the sauce ingredients together. Set aside
  • Add the water spinach to the wok, and let it crackle for a few minutes. Sauté it around the wok and let it slightly sweat (not for too long or else it will turn soggy)
  • Add the sauce to the wok, and stir it in
  • Transfer the cooked water spinach over to a clean plate, once the stems are tender and bright green. Remember, you don't want to over-cook this.
  • Garnish with some crispy garlic and dried chilli
  • Serve with some freshly steamed rice
Keyword Morning Glory, Water Spinach
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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