Mongolian Beef Recipe (2024)

Published: by Dina

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This easyMongolian Beef Recipe is simple, quick, and downrightdelicious. The tender beef has a slight crust that goes perfectly with the thick salty-sweet sauce.

Are you a sucker for takeout fake-out? So am I! Here are a few other Asian-inspired takeout dishes you might enjoy: Grilled Teriyaki Chicken and Chicken Chow Mein.

Mongolian Beef Recipe (1)
Table Of Contents
  • Mongolian Beef Recipe Details
  • What You’ll Need
  • Ingredient Notes
  • How to Make Mongolian Beef
  • Recipe Tips
  • Add-ins and Substitutions
  • FAQs
  • Serving Suggestions
  • Make This Mongolian Beef in Advance
  • More Tasty Asian-inspired Dishes!
  • Full Recipe Instructions

Mongolian Beef Recipe Details

I love this Mongolian Beef recipe because it’s so flavorful and easy. It also makes a great next-day lunch – if there are any leftovers, that is!

  • TASTE: This Mongolian Beef has a mild, sweet flavor. It gets lots of tastiness from the onion, soy sauce, and ginger.
  • TEXTURE: This tender beef is juicy and delicious. The cornstarch gives it an amazing crust that adds a little crunch to every bite.
  • TIME: This recipe takes just 45 minutes.
  • EASE: This dish is so simple and easy to make. And it tastes even better than takeout!

What You’ll Need

Mongolian Beef Recipe (2)

Ingredient Notes

  • Beef– Flank or top sirloin beef are best because they have a tender bite to them. Avoid using chuck or round since they are tougher cuts that only work well in beef stew.
  • Cornstarch– This is a thickening agent that will give the Mongolian Beef a thick, sticky, and delicious sauce.
  • Oil– You want to use a high smoke point oil like vegetable, canola, or avocado oil since the beef needs to be cooked at high heat for a crispy seared texture.
  • Brown sugar– This will give the sauce a sweet sticky consistency that will coat the beef.

How to Make Mongolian Beef

  • Make the sauce. Cook the minced garlic and ginger in a saucepan over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Then add the brown sugar, soy sauce, and water into the saucepan and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
Mongolian Beef Recipe (3)
  • Coat the beef– Place the thinly sliced beef into a large bowl and coat the beef in the cornstarch.
  • Cook beef in batches– Heat the vegetable oil in a wok and cook the beef in 2 batches. Once the beef is cooked, remove it and set it aside.

Pro Tip:Batch cooking the beef ensures that the meat comes into direct contact with the wok, giving it an all-over crust.

Mongolian Beef Recipe (4)
  • Stir-fry onion and garlic– In the same wok, cook the garlic and yellow onion. Then add the cooked beef and sauce back in and cook for another 5 minutes.
Mongolian Beef Recipe (5)
  • Mix beef, sauce, and green onion– Add the sliced green onion to the beef and cook for about 2-3 minutes. Serve this Mongolian beef recipe warm over hot rice.
Mongolian Beef Recipe (6)

Recipe Tips

  • Slicing the meat– A great way to get thinly sliced beef is by having the meat partially frozen when you cut it. That way it doesn’t slide around and you achieve super thin slices.
  • Cook in batches– In order to get nice and crispy pieces of cooked beef, don’t overcrowd the wok. Cook the beef in batches. Overcrowding will cause a lot of liquid to collect and result in mushy grey looking beef.
  • Use dark brown sugar– This will give the beef sauce a deeper and bolder flavor.
  • Make it ahead of time– You can chop up all the veggies and make the sauce in advance, that way when dinner time rolls around, all you need to do is cook the meat and vegetables and add in the sauce.

Add-ins and Substitutions

  • Add broccoli- This vegetable tastes great with beef and this sweet, salty sauce.
  • Make it gluten-free- Substitute the soy sauce with tamari sauce for a gluten-free dish. Both sauces have almost identical flavors.
  • Use a slow cooker- Add the ingredients to the slow cooker and cook on high for 2-3 hours or on low for 4-5 hours. This is great if you want to come home to a delicious meal.
  • Substitute honey- If you are avoiding processed sugar, you can use honey as the sweetener in the Mongolian Beef sauce.
Mongolian Beef Recipe (7)


Why is it called Mongolian Beef?

Although the title of the recipe says Mongolian, there really isn’t any Mongolian origin associated with the dish at all. It is actually a Chinese dish that came from either the Shandong province or the Xinjiang province.

Is Mongolian Beef spicy?

Nope, its typically never spicy, just like my easy pepper steak recipe, Mongolian beef tastes a lot like most Asian dishes that don’t have any spiciness in them. Its mild, sweet, and has a strong flavor of onion, soy, sauce, and ginger.

Serving Suggestions

This Mongolian Beef is versatile enough to be paired with any number of side dishes. Here are some delicious ways to enjoy this recipe.

  • Rice: Serve this with some Hibachi Fried Rice, Wild Brown Rice, or Quinoa Fried Rice.
  • Salad: Enjoy this hot dish with a crisp green salad, such as Spinach Salad, Cabbage Cucumber Salad, and Asian Chicken Salad. Or try this Kani Salad.
  • Noodles: This Mongolian Beef pairs well with Chow Mein (VIDEO), Shrimp Tempura Udon Soup, and Gluten-Free Stir Fry with Rice Noodles.
  • Vegetables: Serve this dish with a side of Roasted Air Fryer Vegetables, Crispy Air Fryer Broccoli, and Bacon Wrapped Asparagus.
Mongolian Beef Recipe (8)

Make This Mongolian Beef in Advance

Make ahead: You can make this recipe ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. Microwave it for 30-60 seconds or warm it in a skillet on the cooktop for the best flavor.

Storing: Keep the Mongolian Beef in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 5 days.

Freeze: Once you’re done making the beef, allow it to cool before placing it in a gallon-sized ziplock bag. Keep frozen for up to 1 month. Let it thaw overnight in the fridge or defrost it in the microwave before warming up to serve.

More Tasty Asian-inspired Dishes!

  • Pepper Steak Recipe
  • Crispy Shrimp Tempura Recipe
  • Easy Mongolian Chicken
  • Hibachi Fried Rice Recipe

Love this recipe? Please leave a 5 star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below ⬇️ and/or a review in the comment section further down.

Let’s connect on social media! 😍 find me @ Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Pinterest. And don’t forget to tag me if you try one of my recipes!

Full Recipe Instructions

Mongolian Beef Recipe (13)

Easy Mongolian Beef Recipe

An easy, quick, and delicious Mongolian beef recipe that you will want to make over and over again!

5 from 13 votes

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Course: Main Course

Cuisine: Asian

Prep Time: 15 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes minutes

Servings: 8

Calories: 495kcal

Author: Dina


Ingredients for the sauce

Ingredients for the beef

  • 2 lb. beef (flank steak or ribeye)
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 bunches green onion

US CustomaryMetric


  • Start off by making the sauce: Mince 1 garlic close and 1 tbsp ginger and cook it in a saucepan filled with 2 tbsp vegetable oil. Cook it over medium-high heat for 1 minute.

  • Add the 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 cup low sodium soy sauce, and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.

  • Thinly slice the 2 lb. beef into small pieces. Pro tip: place the beef in the freezer 15-20 minutes prior to slicing to make thinner cuts without the meat sliding around.

  • Place the sliced beef in a large bowl and mix it with 1/3 cup cornstarch.

  • Heat 1/3 cup vegetable oil in a 14-inch wok and cook the beef in 2 batches to avoid overcrowding and mushy texture. Once cooked, remove the beef and set it aside.

  • In the same wok, cook 1 clove minced garlic over medium heat for 1 minute. Then add 1 cup sliced yellow onion and cook until translucent.

  • Add the beef back into the wok and pour in the sauce. Bring to a simmer for another 5 minutes.

  • Add 2 bunches of sliced green onion to the beef and stir for about 2-3 minutes. Serve warm over hot rice.


  • Slicing the meat– A great way to get thinly sliced beef is by having the meat partially frozen when you cut it. That way it doesn’t slide around and you achieve super thin slices.
  • Cook in batches– In order to get nice and crispy pieces of cooked beef, don’t overcrowd the wok. Cook the beef in batches. Overcrowding will cause a lot of liquid to collect and result in mushy grey looking beef.


Calories: 495kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 1700mg | Potassium: 403mg | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 30IU | Vitamin C: 1.8mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 3mg

Did you make this recipe? Snap a photo of it and tag me on Instagram @simplyhomecooked or use the hashtag #simplyhomecooked so I can see it and feature it!

Note: This recipe was originally posted in February 2016. We’ve updated it since.

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Hi, I’m Dina, so glad you stopped by! I believe life is too short for bad coffee and boring meals. With my easy to follow step-by-step recipes, you’ll be surprised at how quickly a wholesome and delicious meal can come together. I hope you find something you enjoy!

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  1. Theresa says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (16)
    Great recipe. I had bought shaved beef at the grocery store and decided to try using that for this recipe. Turned out so good. Followed the recipe exact except for the change in meat. Served with garlic string beans and rice – perfect easy meal!


    • Dina says

      Theresa I am so glad that you enjoyed this Mongolian beef recipe! Thank you for the kind feedback 🙂


  2. Jin says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (17)
    This was really good! This totally transformed our leftover beef that had been tough and bland. A light cook with the cornstarch softened the meat and the sauce was delicious! Next time we’ll add broccoli.

    Thanks for the recipe!

    • Dina says

      That’s awesome Jin! What a great way to use up leftover beef! Thank you for taking the tome to write your kind feedback 🙂


  3. FoodDoz says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (18)
    Thanks for the recipe.


    • Dina says

      You’re welcome! 🙂


  4. susan says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (19)
    Easy and high marks on taste.


    • Dina says

      Thank you so much, Susan! Happy to hear you loved this Mongolian beef recipe! 🙂


  5. Carol says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (20)
    I use aminos instead of soy sauce. Gluten
    I use half a cup and it is was still way too salty.


    • Dina says

      Hi Carol, I am sorry that the recipe turned out too salty. I have never made this with aminos so I can’t really say much about how it changed the saltineses of the dish. The recipe calls for low sodium soy sauce. I am not sure if you missed that or not.


  6. Susie Durrance says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (21)
    I have been looking for something different to try to cook for dinner. I have never tried to make Asian, but we love it. With the pandemic I tried this recipe and my husband absolutely loves it!! It’s so easy!! Thank you.


    • Dina says

      You are very welcome Susie! I am very happy to hear you loved this Mongolian beef recipe! Always a win when the hubby loves it! Thank you so much for your feedback! 🙂


  7. Chad says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (22)
    I like to add sesame oil and a dollop of gochujang paste to this same basic recipe for added kick. One of my favorites!


    • Dina says

      Thank you Chad! I am glad you loved this recipe.


  8. jessica says

    It turned out salty, probably will decrease the amount of soy sauce next time, otherwise its amazing, thanks


    • simplyhomecooked says

      HI Jessica, I’m sorry to hear it was too salty. Did you use regular or low sodium soy sauce?


  9. Robin says

    Mongolian Beef Recipe (23)
    Dina, this looks really good. I think i will get my husband to make it for me. He is a good cook and a good man!



    • simplyhomecooked says

      Thank you, Robin!


  10. Anna says

    This looks delicious! Would I be able to substitute the peanut oil for another type and still get the same results? Canola or avocado?


    • simplyhomecooked says

      Thank you Anna! You can definitely substitute the peanut oil for canola oil.


  11. olga says

    This looks so perfect. What cut of meat did you use for this recipe?


    • simplyhomecooked says

      Thank you Olga. I used top sirloin for this recipe. Traditionally people use flank steak, but it’s a little pricy. It’s totally up to you what cut you want to use 🙂


      • Kathy says

        Are sesame seeds sprinkled on top?

      • Dina says

        Hi Kathy 🙂 Yes, those are sesame seeds. I hope you love this Mongolian beef recipe! Please let me know how it goes 🙂

Mongolian Beef Recipe (2024)


What is Mongolian beef sauce made of? ›

Making the Mongolian Beef Sauce

Whisk the Mongolian Beef Sauce ingredients together consisting of soy sauce, water, brown sugar, Asian sweet chili sauce, rice wine, hoisin, pepper, sriracha and cornstarch.

Why is Mongolian beef so tender? ›

The science behind using baking soda to marinate Mongolian Beef: The alkalinity of baking soda raises the pH of the meat, causing the proteins to move further apart, and that makes it more tender and easier for us to chew or bite into.

What is PF Chang's Mongolian sauce? ›

Deep and flavorful, our Mongolian Style BBQ Sauce can attribute its flavor profile to smoked black pepper, sweet molasses, soy sauce and garlic making this sauce versatile for marinades and as a finishing sauce.

What does Mongolian sauce contain? ›

This Mongolian sauce is a delicious combo of soy sauce, brown sugar and corn flour (cornstarch) mixture. The key elements of this sauce are soy sauce and brown sugar. These two ingredients create the contrasting flavors of sour and sweet. And obviously, they are the 'must' ingredients of this sauce.

What is the secret ingredient in stir fry beef? ›

Velvet the beef: The velveting technique involves tenderizing, marinating, and a quick searing of the meat. To tenderize: Sprinkle with baking soda (the secret Chinese meat tenderizer). To marinate (a quick marinade): Add basic beef marinade and mix to coat evenly. Let marinate for 15 minutes or up to overnight.

Does Mongolian beef contain oyster sauce? ›

Place the steak in a shallow bowl and add the water, vegetable, and cornstarch mixture. Massage all the ingredients into the meat. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 12 hours. For the sauce: Combine the oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, cornstarch, vinegar, garlic and half the ginger in a small bowl and set aside.

How do Chinese restaurants make the beef so tender? ›

It all starts with tenderizing the meat with baking soda and water that is massaged into the thinly sliced meat. It is then left to marinate for about an hour or two before cooking. Cornstarch instead of baking soda will also do the trick. Typically, the cornstarch is blended with soy sauce and sesame oil.

Do you need to rinse baking soda off meat? ›

Just as you would with dry brining, rinse your meat until it's (mostly) free of all the baking soda.

What do the P and F stand for in PF Chang's? ›

P.F. Chang's was conceived and developed by Paul Fleming (P.F.) and Philip Chiang (Chang) so both names were incorporated into the name of the concept.

What is the difference between Szechuan and Mongolian beef? ›

Mongolian Beef can be described as having a savory soy-based sauce with scallions as its main aromatic. Szechuan Beef has a similar soy sauce-based profile but with the addition of a spicy element, such as fresh or dried chilis and/or Sichuan peppercorns for a numbing sensation.

Which is hotter Mongolian or Szechuan? ›

Szechuan Beef is characterized by its bold, spicy, and numbing flavors, often derived from Szechuan peppercorns and chili peppers. Mongolian Beef, on the other hand, has a milder and sweeter flavor profile, with a balance of savory and sweet notes from ingredients like soy sauce and brown sugar.

What goes good with Mongolian beef? ›

We also love serving this dish with garlic noodles, chow mein and a side of lightly roasted green beans. In the U.S. Mongolian beef is also commonly served over a bed of fried cellophane noodles, which adds a light, crisp texture to the overall dish.

What is hoisin sauce made of? ›

Ingredients. The key ingredient of hoisin sauce is fermented soybean paste. Some hoisin sauce ingredients include starches such as sweet potato, wheat and rice, and water, sugar, soybeans, sesame seeds, white distilled vinegar, salt, garlic, red chili peppers, and sometimes preservatives or coloring agents.

Is Mongolian beef an authentic Chinese dish? ›

Despite its name, the dish has nothing to do with Mongolian cuisine. Mongolian beef is among the meat dishes developed in Taiwan where Mongolian barbecue restaurants first appeared. Thus, none of the ingredients or the preparation methods are drawn from traditional Mongolian cuisine but rather from Chinese cuisine.

What is the difference between Mongolian and teriyaki? ›

True Teriyaki has Mirin and Sake in it and those two ingredients aren't in my Mongolian Beef recipe. That's like saying Ketchup is just co*cktail Sauce even though it needs horseradish to make it so.

What is Mongolian beef supposed to taste like? ›

When done just right, it's perfectly sweet and savory, slightly spicy, and loaded with lots of delicious aromatics such as ginger, garlic, green onions and even a few dried red chilis, all combined to bring a nice pop of deep, fragrant flavor.

What does Mongolian beef taste like? ›

It has a sweet/spicy and complicated taste. It is famous for the distinctive tingly numbing sensation it produces when eaten. Mongolian beef hails from Taiwan and has no actual Mongolian origins. Its main ingredients are flank steak, brown sauce, and green onions.

What does Mongolian food taste like? ›

For instance, meat from the Gobi region has a distinct taste with hints of wild garlic, while meat from the steppe areas is known for its rich wild onion flavor.” These nuances are important as many Mongolian dishes contain just three basic elements: meat, wheat and salt. Spices and sauces don't play a big part.


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