Mongolian beef coated in a sweet and savory sauce made with brown sugar, soy sauce, ginger & garlic is perfect for a take-out at home night!
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Why you’ll love this recipe!
📌 All of the flavors of takeout without the price.
📌 Ready and on the table in under 30 minutes.
📌 Versatile! Serve it with noodles, rice, veggies or whatever fits your fancy!
Mongolian Beef Ingredients
- Steak – Flank steak, cut against the grain into slices.
- Cornstarch – For coating the beef.
- Oil – Vegetable oil.
- Ginger – Freshly grated will give you the best flavor but ground ginger will also work.
- Garlic – We recommend fresh minced but jarred minced will work too.
- Soy sauce – Low sodium.
- Water – Cold filtered water.
- Sugar – Brown sugar.
- Green onions – Cut into slices.
- Sesame seeds – For garnish.
How do you make Mongolian beef? (step-by-step directions)
⭐ First, put the steak slices in a gallon bag with the cornstarch and shake to coat the steak. Sprinkle off any excess and let rest.
⭐ Next, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the steak in batches, a minute on each side, remove from the pan and set aside. Add the ginger and garlic to the skillet and cook until fragrant.
⭐ Then, stir in the soy sauce, water, and brown sugar. Bring mixture to a boil and return the steak to the pan. Cook until the sauce has thickened.
⭐ Finally, turn off the heat and stir in the green onion slices. Garnish with sesame seeds and enjoy.
Scroll down to the printable recipe card toward the bottom of this article for ingredient measurements and detailed cooking instructions.
What cut of steak should I use for Mongolian beef?
We recommend flank steak for this recipe because it slices well into strips. You could also use sirloin steak if that is what you have on hand. Make sure to cut against the grain to get those nice thin strips of meat!
How much ground ginger should I use if I don’t have grated ginger?
Grated ginger will give you the best flavor but if you only have ground ginger on hand, use ¼ tsp of ground ginger for every 1 tablespoon of grated ginger.
Can I make Mongolian beef ahead of time?
This recipe is best enjoyed fresh but yes you can make this ahead of time. Store in the fridge and reheat on the stovetop.
Is there a substitute for brown sugar?
If you don’t have brown sugar, you can use alternatives like honey, maple syrup, or white sugar mixed with a bit of molasses to mimic the flavor of brown sugar. Keep in mind that the taste and sweetness level may vary slightly.
Can I add vegetables to the Mongolian beef?
Absolutely! You can add vegetables like bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, or snap peas to the dish. Sauté the vegetables in the same skillet before cooking the beef or stir them in when you return the steak to the pan with the sauce.
Storage and leftovers
How long does Mongolian beef last?
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Reheat either in the microwave or on the stovetop.
Can I freeze Mongolian beef?
Yes, this is a great recipe for meal prepping! This recipe will freeze well in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
Tips and tricks
✅ Don’t skip coating the steak in cornstarch, it tenderized the meat, helps to seal in the juices when cooking, and thickens the sauce.
✅ Make it spicy by adding some red pepper flakes!
✅ Need it to be gluten free? Swap the soy sauce for gluten free soy sauce or tamari sauce.
✅ Don’t overcrowd the pan when cooking the beef, fry the slices in batches to allow them to cook evenly.
Frequently asked questions
Can I use a different type of meat instead of flank steak?
While flank steak is the recommended cut for this Mongolian beef recipe, you can experiment with other cuts of beef if you prefer. Thinly sliced sirloin or skirt steak could work as well.
What can I do if the sauce doesn’t thicken as expected?
If the sauce doesn’t thicken to your desired consistency, you can create a slurry by mixing equal parts cornstarch and water. Stir this slurry into the pan while the sauce is simmering, and it should thicken up.
Is Mongolian beef a spicy dish?
By default, Mongolian beef is not a spicy dish, but you can easily add some heat by incorporating red pepper flakes, sriracha, or your favorite hot sauce to the sauce.
Can I adjust the sweetness of the sauce?
Certainly! If you prefer a less sweet sauce, reduce the amount of brown sugar in the recipe. On the other hand, if you enjoy a sweeter flavor, you can add a bit more brown sugar to taste.
Can I use frozen sliced beef instead of fresh?
While fresh beef is recommended for this recipe, you can use frozen sliced beef in a pinch. Thaw the beef thoroughly before cooking, and ensure it’s patted dry before adding the cornstarch for coating.
What to eat with Mongolian beef (serving suggestions)
Other great recipes with flank steak
- Steak tostadas
- Cilantro lime steak
- Grilled flank steak
- The BEST flank steak marinade
- Chimichurri steak
- See all our steak recipes!
More delicious Asian style dishes
- 3 ingredient orange chicken
- Bang bang cauliflower
- Bourbon chicken
- Chicken fried rice
- Sweet and sour chicken
- Vegetable chow mein
- See all our Asian inspired recipes
Tools we love
- Knife sharpener – Make sure your knife is sharp so you can get perfect thin slices!
- Enameled cast iron – Perfect for these delicious one-pot meals. From stove top to oven!
- Walnut cutting board – I like a cutting board with somewhere for the juice to run when cutting meat.
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How to Make Mongolian Beef
- 1 pound flank steak cut against the grain into ¼" slices
- ½ cup cornstarch
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- ⅓ cup soy sauce
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 3 stalks green onions cut into 2" pieces
- sesame seeds for garnish
- Put the slices of steak and the cornstarch in a large ziploc bag and shake to coat the steak fully. Sprinkle off excess and let rest about 10 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the steak for about a minute, flip, cook another minute and then remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add the ginger and garlic and cook until just fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Stir in the soy sauce, water, and brown sugar. Bring to a boil, then return the steak to the pan and cook until the sauce has thickened about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the green onion pieces. Garnish with sesame seeds.
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