Crock Pot Mongolian Beef

Crock Pot Mongolian Beef | Very Culinary

by Amy on February 28, 2012 · 77 comments

…aaaand here’s the other successful crock pot recipe I promised.

I know this sort of has 3 strikes against it out of the gate: red meat, expensive red meat, and for people celebrating lent who gave up red meat. Sorry :( Easy and fast are my friends, tidy and convenient seem to be on strike.

I’m still surprised I have another successful crock pot recipe. I’m convinced it has something (if not everything) to do with the fact that neither this or the Honey Sesame chicken included some sort of “cream of crap” mixed in.

Unlike the sweetness that the chicken held, this one isn’t sweet at all. It’s slightly tangy and spicy, and the meat is tender. It’s really good – I’ve already made it twice.

I don’t know if I could give up these ingredients for 40 days – I’m not even capable of eliminating bread for 7 days at Passover. Can you just stop folding laundry? That I could do.

Crock Pot Mongolian Beef
Serves 4
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 4 hours on low

• 1 1/2 pound flank steak or ball tip steak
• 1/4 cup cornstarch
• 1/2 cup soy sauce (low sodium or gluten-free)
• 1/4 cup white wine
• 1/4 cup cooking sherry
• 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 1 teaspoon molasses
• 1 teaspoon ginger
• 1 teaspoon dried onion
• 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
• 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
• 3 tablespoons brown sugar
• 1/2 tablespoon peanut butter (I used sunflower butter)
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 4 scallions, chopped

Slice the meat thin and coat evenly with the cornstarch, shaking off any excess.

Put all the liquids and dry spices into the crock pot, add sunflower butter (or peanut butter) and mix well. Add garlic and scallions.  Put meat on top, toss gingerly.

Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. Serve over white rice.

(originally from Notes from the Heartland)

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{ 77 comments… read them below or add one }

Pam K March 28, 2015 at 4:55 pm

Would this work as a slow cooker freezer meal? As in, can I put everything in a freezer bag, freeze, then put in the crock pot the morning of use?


Amy @Very Culinary March 28, 2015 at 5:30 pm

Hi Pam – hm. I can’t say for sure. I’m skeptical that everything would defrost and cook in 4 hours. You could try it for 8 hours? Or maybe on high for 4.


Nicole October 25, 2014 at 2:36 pm

This was great! Thank you for posting it! I only used a little over a pound of meat since there was only 2 of us and we really like sauce, used a 4 quart crockpot, subbed chicken broth for white wine, and skipped the molasses cause i didn’t i realize i didn’t have any until too late! I also didn’t get home in time and it cooked for 6 hours and …. It was Fab-u-lous! Thank you! Can’t wait to make it again!


Amy @Very Culinary October 25, 2014 at 4:53 pm

Glad you loved it, Nicole, even with all your changes!


Michelle May 17, 2014 at 12:57 am

Any suggestions for what kind of white wine to use? I’m a red drinker so am pretty clueless on what would work with this recipe.


Amy @Very Culinary May 17, 2014 at 6:44 am

Hi Michelle – I’m not really a drinker, so I don’t know much about wine at all. I usually just have a sauvignon blanc in the house to use for cooking, like Sutter Home or Beringer. Something inexpensive, but that you would be ok drinking on its own.


Tandra March 13, 2014 at 8:16 am

Can you sub dry sherry for cooking sherry? Does one have more salt or do you know if one will impart more flavor than the other?


Amy @Very Culinary March 13, 2014 at 8:26 am

Hi Tandra – you can absolutely use dry sherry instead. Cooking sherry is actually a low-quality sherry with salt added, but what I had on hand when I first made this recipe. It came out great when I first made it, so I stuck with it. But a dry sherry will actually give you better control over the sodium content of the food.


Judy toal February 5, 2014 at 12:43 pm

Great recipe!


Amy @Very Culinary February 6, 2014 at 11:19 am

Thanks, Judy! It’s one of my favorites :)


Judy toal February 5, 2014 at 12:40 pm

Looks good & easy


Amber January 28, 2014 at 3:48 pm

The flavors sound amazing!! I love Mongolian beef!!

I was wondering…what is the final texture like? I assume very moist from being in the crock pot with those lovely acids helping it along. Does the exterior have a little bit of a crunch? It looks like it has a lovely crispness like it was pan fried.



Amy @Very Culinary January 28, 2014 at 4:14 pm

Hi Amber – the meat is tender, but not mushy on account of it cooking for 4 hours (as opposed to 6-8.) I wouldn’t say the exterior is crispy, but it does have a nice coating to it and the sauce is awesome.


Lisa January 23, 2014 at 5:19 pm

Thanks for the recipe, it was so good! I had to sub honey for the molasses and rice vinegar for the white wine vinegar but those seemed like they weren’t too far off. This is the first time I’ve used flank steak in the crock pot and was very happy with the outcome. And very happy with how the sauce was all thickened up and ready to go without having to do any extra steps.


Amy @Very Culinary January 23, 2014 at 5:20 pm

Awesome, so happy to hear it! I love this recipe – it’s a family favorite :)


Twigger70 September 16, 2013 at 2:33 pm

Should the ginger be fresh grated ginger root or dried ground ginger from the spice section? Thanks! Looking forward to making this.


Amy @Very Culinary September 16, 2013 at 2:40 pm

fresh grated!


Elaine March 14, 2013 at 1:12 am

I love Mongolian Beef too. And it is a good idea to use crock pot.


Lucy November 26, 2012 at 8:24 am

This looks absolutely awesome, and I can’t wait to try it! I have a couple of questions though:

Can I cook it on high for 2 hours? The reason I ask is because, I leave the house by 6:30 AM, and don’t get home until about 6 PM. I can prepare everything and have my boyfriend throw it in when he gets home around 4, if it can cook like that.

Also, given that I can do the above, do you think it’s ok to just mix it all together in a ziplock and toss it in?


Amy November 26, 2012 at 9:35 am

Hi Lucy – I think 2 hours on high might dry out the meat, or make it tough. BUT I really don’t know. I’ve never made it any other way than what I posted, sorry.


Maggie October 1, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Love this recipe, making it for the second time this week. My question is can this be made with chicken instead of beef?


Amy October 1, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Hi Maggie. Hm. I couldn’t say, sorry…I’ve never tried that. I don’t know that these flavors would work with chicken, but there’s only one way to find out…try it and report back!


Heidi September 25, 2012 at 11:30 pm

Hi Amy,
I love the recipe but I was wondering if switching the flank steak out for a chuck would work here? I’m trying to find a good recipe for Asian style shredded beef.
Thank You!


Amy September 26, 2012 at 5:15 am

Hi there Heidi – I couldn’t say for sure, since I’ve only used flank steak for this. However, in some other recipes that called for flank, I have successfully swapped it out for top sirloin. So you could try that? I would stay away from chuck. And since all meats cook at different speeds, you might want to check it after 3 hours. Hope it works out for you!


Mom April 17, 2012 at 6:33 pm

I don’t have a crock pot, so I cooked at 300 degrees in the oven.
It was delicious. We had three meals from this one.


Amy April 17, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Oh YAY. I knew you two would like this. Enough spice to give it zing, but not so much that Dad wouldn’t like it. I love this dish. Glad to know it worked well in the oven on low heat.


Erin April 13, 2012 at 6:19 pm

Amy-you did it again!! Made this tonight & it was GREAT!! I doubled the recipe for four of us & there’s only about one serving left over. So tasty! My DH had THIRDS. Thanks for another addition to my regular rotation. I didn’t really have a good beef crock pot recipe outside the standard pot roast & stew so I’m glad to have this one now. Thanks again for all your efforts & sharing your gift with us. I’ll watch for more recipes to try. Best wishes!


Amy April 13, 2012 at 7:17 pm

HEE. Erin! You’re just making me all warm and fuzzy, thank you! And thank you for your lovely comment on the sesame chicken, too. I know how excited *I* was when I made both of these, so it brings me enormous joy to know I’m not alone. Cheers to you!


Rachel March 23, 2012 at 7:07 pm

Omg Amy this was incredible!!!! Huuuuge hit at my house, so I’ll be making this over and over!! Thank you for sharing!


Amy March 24, 2012 at 7:44 am

Awesome!!! I thought this would be a winner for you guys. Yay :D


Eisley Jacobs March 23, 2012 at 7:00 am

This looks amazing! However, with a soy allergy in our house, do you know of a good soy alternative for this recipe?


Amy March 23, 2012 at 8:19 am

Hi Eisley – hm. I don’t know, honestly :( Maybe tamari or ponzu??


Casie May 17, 2012 at 8:32 pm

Have made this soy sauce replacement and it worked out great in the recipes I needed it for. Easy to make and you can make it ahead and store in the fridge. Used it for someone sensitive to soy sauce.


Lynn March 22, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Oh no worries! I have a 7qt I believe. Like I said it tasted good and came out fine, just next time I’d have to double it.


Lynn March 22, 2012 at 7:28 am

I’m curious, what size crock pot you have? I made this the other day (with some changes) and it tasted good, but I have a larger size crock pot and this was definitely a bit small for it. I ended up having a decreased cooking time, and a bit of a problem with things almost burning; thankfully I checked on it before it got to that point, just ended up being a pain to clean the pot.

I would just recommend that for future recipes you include what size crock pot your using, that way some people (like me) can know if they’ll need to double the recipe or not. Thanks!


Amy March 22, 2012 at 7:37 am

Hi Lynn- sorry you had issues :( I have a 5 quart round crock.


Julie March 19, 2012 at 5:33 pm

I made this to it and it was excellent! My family likes things a little more highly seasoned so I doubled the red chili flakes and added 1/4 cup of hoisin sauce. To serve it I stir fried a huge bunch of vegetables and then out the beef over jasmine rice and the vegetables. This recipe is so great! Thank you!


bob March 18, 2012 at 12:26 pm



Sara March 18, 2012 at 11:10 am

Hi, i just found thie recipe and it looks awsome! i was just wondering what kind of vegetables dish would you make with this. what has other people make. any suggestions would be great!



Erin April 13, 2012 at 6:09 pm

I did fresh green beans with bacon, a Rachele Ray recipe, and it was a good combo with this recipe.


Amy April 13, 2012 at 7:13 pm

I found with the rice, it was so filling and didn’t need a side dish, BUT what you made sounds delicious in its own right.


Rachel March 13, 2012 at 7:51 am

This. Looks. Awesome. Printing out NOW. Thanks A!!!!!


Amy March 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm

I think this is more in Shawn’s wheel-house…not sweet. We love it.


Rachel March 23, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Shawn approved! This is in my arsenal!!!


Sue S. March 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm

I made this for dinner tonight and it was really delicious! I used a thin steak from the freezer that I had marked “Carne Asada” (so I don’t really remember what actual cut it was, but I’m sure it wasn’t ‘flank steak’…) and I added very thinly sliced red bell pepper. Right at the end, I added some steamed broccoli and served it over sticky rice. Super easy and really tasty! BTW, you can get sesame oil at World Market for $3.99 and you DO need it for the recipe! I might even add a couple of drops right at the end a few minutes before serving. Thank you for sharing this recipe with all of us!


Amy March 6, 2012 at 7:37 pm

I would never dream of skipping the sesame oil…it’s one of my favorite ingredients. Good to know other cuts of meat work well. So glad you enjoyed it!


Me March 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Mongolian Beef (Crockpot)


Amy March 5, 2012 at 4:45 pm

Just had this for dinner tonight and it was delicious!! Such a great one-pot recipe – thank you for sharing!


Amy March 5, 2012 at 6:27 pm

Yay! I’m so glad everyone’s making it and enjoying it so much. It’s a big hit here, too. Thanks for poppin’ over!


Nicole March 5, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Thank you for this recipe! I just made it and it was deliiiiish!! Ive been searching for a good mongolian beef recipe and this one takes the cake!


Amy March 5, 2012 at 2:58 pm



Julius March 5, 2012 at 8:47 am

Well, the girl and I love steak, love hot and love not messy. Very tasty filling meal.


Stephanie March 5, 2012 at 7:59 am

There’s something to be said about one-pot meals. Less cleanup and generally easier (especially crock pot meals). This looks outstanding! It’s simple, yet elegant. It’s your little secret that it’s a crock pot meal.


Kim March 3, 2012 at 7:55 am

This is my kinda prep. You throw everything in and after an hour or so beautiful, succulent smells start to fly around your house…while you’re cleaning, sweeping and folding the laundry. ; ) That’s my Saturday today. I have a bed full of unfolded, un-ironed clothes. ugh.


Amy March 4, 2012 at 7:35 am

That sounds like every Saturday for me! Laundry…ugh. Life’s little chores that nobody ever looks forward to doing. Can’t I just cook all day?


Melissa February 29, 2012 at 6:44 am

Noted. :) Not for this week’s menu, though. I’m using the last of the cool weather to make lasagna bolognese to eat all weekend. Soon, though!


Amy February 29, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Your ragu bolognese? I’ve made that. Humana humana.


myfudo February 28, 2012 at 6:56 pm

My dad will be asking for a second or (a take-home bag) of this dish,. Looks really delicious! Can’t wait to try this.


Yi @ Yi Resevation February 28, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Your Mongolian Beef looks absolutely flavorful and juicy! I couldn’t believe it was done in a crock pot. Thanks for sharing!


Becki's Whole Life February 28, 2012 at 6:46 pm

This sounds wonderful and very flavorful. I bet flank steak would do very well in the crockpot..yum!


Joanne February 28, 2012 at 6:30 pm

Can we make that a thing? Giving up chores for lent? Cause…I could so do that.

I’m actually totally a bad catholic and gave up nothing for lent…though I guess since I don’t eat meat, I’m actually a really good catholic? Hmm.


Aggie February 28, 2012 at 6:01 pm

Yay, another winner. This looks so good. My daughter & husband are all into steak, they would love this. I may even be able to convince my son too :)
Keep the crock pot recipes coming!!


Amy February 28, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Right?! I told you how surprised I was to have another good crock recipe. And it’s really good, I swear. I know you’re a really healthy eater, but a little meat now and then won’t hurt :D Thanks Aggie!


Dana Smith February 28, 2012 at 3:29 pm

Good point about red meat being expensive. And just when I was getting excited about grilling season arriving soon, too. I think we have a few steaks in the deep freeze I could use for this, because we are likely to get very sick of chicken. I’m hoping that since it is Lent, there might be some good sales on beef so I can stock up again! Can’t wait to try this!!


Sandi February 28, 2012 at 11:31 am

Saving this until Lent is over!! Looks and sounds TOO Yummy!!!!


Dad February 28, 2012 at 10:45 am

Since Mom makes this and I’ve had yours, it’s worth every penny, it’s delicious and that’s no crock.

I do find it odd that you refer to your friends as fast and easy…albeit tidy.


Mom February 28, 2012 at 10:42 am

Already printed out to try. Since I don’t have a crock pot, I’ll try stove top or oven on very low heat and see what happens.


Andrea February 28, 2012 at 9:33 am

Here, the meat–all meat–is off on Fridays. But since Milo is beef-free for his Hindu half, I’m going to try this with pork. I’ll let you know how it is. I need at least one decent crock-pot recipe a week. Thanks!


Amy February 28, 2012 at 10:28 am

Mmmm, sounds yummy :D. Since thinly sliced pork loin will cook more quickly than the beef, I suggest checking it after 3 hours.


Jenna February 28, 2012 at 9:07 am

Keep rockin’ those crockpot recipes! They’re awesome! (thankfully I didn’t give up meat for lent =)


Brian February 28, 2012 at 9:03 am

What can you use in place of the wine and sherry? I’m allergic to alcohol and can’t cook with it…


Amy February 28, 2012 at 9:19 am

Hi there Brian – substituting ingredients takes a lot of trial and error practice, and I cannot vouch for how this dish will come out without the sherry and wine. However, here are some general guidelines. Let me know how it turns out!

A general substitution for sherry is apple cider…for the 1/4 cup sherry, use 4 tablespoons vinegar + 1/2 tablespoon sugar + 4 tablespoons water OR 1/2 tablespoon vinegar, plus chicken stock or water to make 1/4 cup.

A general substitution for white wine is white grape juice, apple cider, or apple juice…substitute an equal measure of one of those.


pam February 28, 2012 at 9:01 am

I don’t give up meat, I figure my week night gin and tonics was enough.


Amy February 28, 2012 at 10:26 am

Lol. Yes, I’d say that’s sacrifice. Giving up both would just be cruel.


Sherrill February 28, 2012 at 7:33 am

Ahem… meat a strike against it? I’d say that’s a strike FOR it! (I know it’s Lent and all, but just don’t eat it on Friday for cryin’ out loud.) A girl can’t live without red meat! Gonna make this tomorrow, thank you Miss Amy!


Ella February 28, 2012 at 6:57 am

Every time I read “Crock Pot” I think it says “Crack Pot.” Honestly though, I’d totally make a recipe for Crack Pot Mongolian Beef.


the wicked noodle February 28, 2012 at 6:46 am

Again, I totally hear you on the “cream of crap”. UGH!! None of those strikes apply to me so I’m all on board for this yummy recipe!! xoxo


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