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Simple Mongolian Chicken Recipe

This Simple Mongolian Chicken recipe is easy to make and yields delicious results. The combination of crispy chicken cooked in a flavorful ginger-soy sauce with onions and garlic creates a mouthwatering dish.

If you enjoy this Mongolian chicken recipe, you might also like our flavorful Mongolian Beef or our savory Teriyaki Chicken.

Recipe Details

This recipe for Simple Mongolian Chicken is exceptional. The quick preparation and incredible flavors make it a delightful option for a fast dinner.

  • TASTE: The chicken is rich and pairs wonderfully with caramelized onions. The sauce’s flavor profile includes garlic, ginger, and soy sauce, delivering delightful umami undertones.
  • TEXTURE: The contrast between the sautéed vegetables and the succulent, crispy chicken thighs creates a satisfying texture, all coated in a luscious sauce.
  • TIME: This recipe can be prepared in approximately 30 minutes.
  • EASE: This dish is straightforward to make. You can even prep some steps in advance to save time on a busy evening.

What You’ll Need

Ingredients for Mongolian Chicken: green onion, white onion, chicken thighs, oil, ginger, garlic, brown sugar, soy sauce, cornstarch, and sesame oil.

Ingredient Notes

  • Chicken- Opt for boneless, skinless thighs for juicy Mongolian Chicken. Chicken breasts are also a suitable alternative.
  • Onions- Both white and green onions are used for their distinct flavors, with the former caramelizing and sweetening during cooking, while the latter adds a milder onion taste.
  • Soy sauce- Adds a savory umami profile to the dish. Regular or low-sodium soy sauce can be used.
  • Sesame oil- This potent oil imparts a rich sesame flavor that complements the other ingredients. A little goes a long way.
  • Cornstarch- Coats the chicken, resulting in a crispy exterior when cooked.
  • Ginger- Fresh ginger provides enhanced flavors.
  • Brown sugar- Balances the dish’s saltiness and aids in caramelizing the onions and chicken.

Add-ins and Substitutions

  • Substitute other meats- Try using pork, beef, or chicken breasts in place of chicken thighs.
  • Add other vegetables- Enhance the recipe with broccoli, water chestnuts, peppers, mushrooms, carrots, or zucchini.
  • Make it gluten-free- Replace soy sauce with tamari sauce for a gluten-free version of Mongolian Chicken.
  • Substitute the cornstarch- If cornstarch is unavailable, consider using potato starch, arrowroot starch, or tapioca starch as alternatives.

How to Make Mongolian Chicken

  • Prepare the chicken. Slice the chicken thighs into strips and coat them with cornstarch in a large bowl.
  • Cook the chicken. Heat a wok over high heat with oil. Cook the chicken in batches to ensure crispiness, then transfer to a separate bowl.
Steps to make Mongolian Chicken: combine the chicken with cornstarch, then cook it in a wok.
  • Cook the vegetables. Thinly slice the onion and mince the remaining garlic, then sauté in the wok (adding oil if necessary). Once cooked, reintroduce the chicken.

Pro Tip: Prepping the vegetables in advance eliminates the need to reheat the wok before cooking. As this dish comes together rapidly, preparation is crucial.

Steps to make Mongolian Chicken: cook the onion and garlic, then add the chicken to the wok.
  • Prepare the sauce. In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil, then add garlic and ginger. Stir briefly before adding brown sugar, soy sauce, water, and sesame oil. Bring to a boil and set aside.
  • Combine everything. Once the onions are cooked, reintroduce the chicken and pour in the sauce. Simmer until heated through.
Steps to make Mongolian Chicken: heat the garlic and ginger in a saucepan then add the sesame oil, brown sugar, and soy sauce. Combine with the chicken and onions.
  • Add the green onion. Thinly slice the green onion and mix it into the Mongolian chicken for a couple of minutes. Serve hot.
Steps to make Mongolian Chicken: add chopped green onions to the Mongolian Chicken and stir with a wooden spoon.

Recipe Tips

  • Cut the meat to a similar size- Ensure chicken slices are uniform for even cooking to prevent overcooking small pieces and undercooking large ones.
  • Make the Mongolian sauce ahead of time- Prepare the sauce in advance and store it in a container until ready to use.
  • Cut up the meat and veggies in advance- Save time by prepping vegetables and chicken ahead of cooking.
  • Cook the chicken in batches- Cook chicken in separate batches for crispiness and quick cooking.

FAQs

What is the difference between Szechuan and Mongolian chicken?

Mongolian chicken is less spicy and more tangy than Szechuan chicken. It has a more pronounced sauce. Szechuan chicken uses spicy Szechuan peppercorns.

What is Mongolian sauce made of?

Mongolian Chicken sauce includes brown sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and ginger for a sweet and savory flavor.

Wooden spoon stirring Mongolian Chicken in a wok.

Serving Suggestions

This Easy Mongolian Chicken is versatile and pairs well with veggies, rice, sushi, and other Asian dishes.

  • Rice: Enjoy with Wild Rice, Hibachi Fried Rice, Wild Brown Rice, or Pork Fried Rice.
  • Vegetables: Serve with Sauteed Garlic Asparagus, Chinese Eggplant Salad, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, or Asian Chicken Salad.
  • Sushi: Pair with Shrimp Tempura Roll, Dynamite Roll, Volcano Roll, or Spicy Salmon Roll.
  • Asian-inspired dishes: Serve alongside Fried Spring Rolls (VIDEO), Panda Express Mushroom Chicken (copycat), Hunan Chicken, or Roast Duck.

Make This Recipe in Advance

Make ahead: Prepare the sauce and veggies in advance. Combine with chicken when ready to cook.

Storing: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. 

Freeze: To freeze, cool completely and place in a freezer-safe container. Defrost before reheating in the microwave or wok.

More Delicious Asian-inspired Dishes!

  • Chicken Chow Mein
  • Teriyaki Chicken Wings
  • Panda Express Mushroom Chicken (copycat)
  • Hunan Chicken

Full Recipe Instructions

image

Easy Mongolian Chicken

Crispy chicken and flavorful sauce in this Easy Mongolian Chicken recipe. Simple and delicious, you’ll love it.

5 from 3 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Diet: Gluten Free
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 318kcal
Author: Dina

Ingredients

For the sauce

  • 2 tbsp corn oil
  • 1 clove garlic minced
    • 1 tbsp ginger minced
    • 4 tbsp brown sugar
    • 1 cup low sodium soy sauce
    • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
    • 1/2 cup water

For the chicken

  • 2 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1/3 cup corn oil
  • 1 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 bunches green onion

Instructions

  • Thinly slice 2 lb of boneless skinless chicken thighs into strips and place them in a large bowl with 1/3 cup of cornstarch.
  • Heat 1/3 cup of corn oil in a large wok over high heat. Cook the chicken in batches to achieve a crispy exterior, avoiding overcrowding the pan.
  • Once all the chicken is cooked, transfer it to a separate bowl.
    Steps to prepare Mongolian Chicken: coat the chicken with cornstarch, then cook it in a wok.
  • Next, finely chop a large yellow onion and finely chop 1 clove of garlic, then mix them in the same wok. Add oil as needed.
  • Once the onion is cooked, return the chicken to the wok.
    Steps to prepare Mongolian Chicken: sauté the onion and garlic, then add the chicken to the wok.
  • In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons of corn oil. Add 1 minced garlic clove and 1 tablespoon of minced ginger. Sauté for about 10 seconds.
  • Add 4 tablespoons of brown sugar, 1 cup of low-sodium soy sauce, 1/4 teaspoon of sesame oil, and 1/2 cup water to the saucepan. Bring to a boil, then set the sauce aside. 
    Steps to prepare Mongolian Chicken: sauté the garlic and ginger in a saucepan, then add the sesame oil, brown sugar, and soy sauce. Once done, add it to the chicken and onions.
  • Pour the sauce over the chicken and simmer. 
  • Chop two bundles of green onions and mix them into the Mongolian chicken for a few minutes. 
    Steps to prepare Mongolian Chicken: add diced green onions to the Mongolian Chicken and stir with a wooden spoon.

Notes

Time-saving tips

  • Prepare the Mongolian sauce in advance - You can make the sauce beforehand and store it in a container with a lid until you're ready to heat it and finish the dish.
  • Prep the meat and veggies ahead of time - You can save time by cutting the vegetables and chicken in advance, then assembling everything before dinner.
  • Cook the chicken in batches - Chicken cooks faster when not crowded, so divide the chicken into batches for quick, crispy cooking.

Serving suggestions

This Mongolian chicken dish pairs nicely with a starch like Wild Brown Rice or rice noodles. You can also serve it with Pork Fried Rice, Fried Spring Rolls (VIDEO), or an Asian Chicken Salad.

Nutrition

Calories: 318kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 1725mg | Potassium: 376mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 57IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 2mg

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