As a child I remember going to a hole in the wall, walk up Chinese restaurant with my parents on the busy intersection of Belmont and Paulina in Chicagos Boys Town and ordering their Mongolian Beef. It would almost always be hours of wait time but the delicious food made it all worth it. A few years down the line, the restaurant abruptly closed but our family still remembers the sweet tangy flavors of the food. I now in my adult life refrain from eating beef so over the years I started making Mongolian Chicken. This dish has gone through many renditions with everyone in my extended family taking a stab at it but I have found the simpler route to best suit the tastebuds of my family.
- 2 Chicken Breast, thinly sliced
- 1 Small Onion, large thick slices
- 2 Scallions, only the green part, finely chopped
- 2 Cloves of Garlic, grated
- 1 inch of Ginger, grated
- 3 Thai Chilis, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup of Mirin
- 2 tablespoons of Cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons of Soy Sauce
- 1/4 cup of Oyster Sauce
- 1/4 cup of Dark Sweet Soy Sauce
- 2 tablespoons of Oil
- Sesame Seeds for garnish
- Thinly slice chicken breast against the grain at an angle and place in a large bowl.
- To the sliced chicken add mirin, soy sauce and corn starch and massage with your clean hands and then let rest for 15-30 minutes
- Heat a wok or a large heavy bottom pan on the stove and add oil once the pan is extremely hot, I personally use avocado oil but you can use any light oil that has a high smoke point.
- Add the marinated chicken and spread into a layer all across the bottom of your wok or pan. Let it brown properly without touching it. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
- Once the bottom starts to get a deep brown color add the onions, thai chilis (feel free to use more or less, we like things spicy in our house), and grated ginger and garlic and vigorously mix for 1-2 minutes on high heat. At this point your chicken should be mostly cooked and your onions should have charred edges without losing their crunch.
- Add in the oyster sauce and dark sweet soy sauce and mix and cook for 1-2 minutes. At this point if you wanted a sweeter sauce you could add some brown sugar but in our household we leave that out. The sauce should stick to the chicken and be glossy.
- Turn off the heat and add chopped scallions and garnish with sesame seeds. Serve with plain or fried, rice or noodles.
Make sure to let the massage the marinade into the chicken, this allows the cornstarch to really break down and coat the chicken nicely, this is important for tender yet crispy chicken.
Everything happens very quickly once you start cooking so make sure all your ingredients are pre prepped and ready to add.
Mongolian Chicken FAQs
What is the difference between Mongolian Chicken and Szechuan Chicken?
Mongolian Chicken has sweeter flavors, whereas Szechuan Chicken has spicier flavors.
What is in Mongolian Sauce?
Mongolian sauce contains soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar or honey to give it sweetness. It tends to be slightly milder and centered around the flavor of meats.
What does Mongolian chicken taste like?
Mongolian sauce tastes sweet, salty, and sticky, and the chicken is tender and crispy. The soy sauce flavor is predominant, but well-balanced with sweetness.