This Instant Pot Mongolian Beef with carrots and green onions is flavorful, delicious and so easy to make. It's perfect for an easy weeknight dinner and is wonderful served over some rice. Add broccoli for extra vegetables!
I've been using my Instant Pot more and more lately. It just makes meat SO tender and I love just tossing things in there and having them come out so flavorful.
And the Instant Pot is perfect for making weeknight dinners in, because it's just so quick and easy.
My latest favorite thing to make is this Instant Pot Mongolian Beef. And it's so easy. This is delicious served with broccoli, with carrots, or simply with rice. It really is the best Mongolian Beef I've ever had.
This recipe is not as sweet as other versions of Mongolian beef, which allows for the savory notes to come out more.
This is a low-sugar Mongolian Beef recipe. I love that this is a healthy Instant Pot Mongolian Beef since it does use less sugar than most versions, but still just enough to get the sweet flavor.
What is Mongolian Beef?
Mongolian beef is not actually from Mongolia! It's a Chinese dish that has thinly sliced meat that is seared and typically cooked with a brown soy sauce.
Most versions are sweet, and sometimes spicy. It's usually paired with cooked vegetables and scallions (green onions).
Mongolian beef is typically made with thinly sliced beef. Flank steak, round steak, or sirloin are common cuts to make it with. You'll want to avoid tougher cuts like stew meat or brisket.
- Beef - Sliced thinly. This can be flank steak, round steak, or other steak you have.
- Canola or vegetable oil - You can also use avocado oil if you prefer.
- Carrots - Grated. If you like, you can just slice the carrots too. They get pretty soft when cooking in the Instant Pot, which I like.
- Brown sugar - I use light brown sugar for this recipe
- Soy sauce - You can use coconut aminos in place of soy sauce if you wish or tamari
- Sesame oil - I love the flavor sesame oil gives this dish, but if you can't locate it, you can leave it out.
- Cornstarch - The cornstarch combines with water to thicken the sauce at the end.
- Green onions - This is optional. For topping!
- Rice, cauliflower rice, or quinoa
- Broccoli/green beans/veggie - If you like, throw in some broccoli or other vegetables at the end
The Instant Pot is a type of pressure cooker which is perfect for cooking the Mongolian Beef in! The beef gets perfectly tender in the sauce.
How to serve
I'd recommend serving the Instant Pot Mongolian Beef over white rice, brown rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice.
If you're making white rice, brown rice, or quinoa, I've found a half cup per serving works well. (So for this dish, I did 2 cups dry rice).
I love serving with a steamed vegetable like green beens or broccoli to make this even healthier and get in some more vegetables! There are two options.
- Steam the vegetable separately and then throw in at the end. I've done this and works well!
- If you have something like broccoli, after the Mongolian beef is all cooked, place the Instant Pot on saute mode and throw in your veggie. Cook until the vegetable is at the desired level of tenderness. This is the method I take lately so I don't have to dirty any extra dishes! I usually throw in some fresh or frozen broccoli and simmer until cooked.
Want to make it spicy?
If you want to make the Mongolian Beef spicy, add 3-4 dried chili peppers when cooking, or you can also add some red pepper flakes at the end.
How to store leftovers
Leftover Mongolian Beef can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
To reheat, simply microwave or add to a pot or skillet with a little water and cook until hot.
More Instant Pot recipes to try
- Instant Pot Chicken Risotto
- Instant Pot Parmesan Risotto
- Instant Pot Chili
- Instant Pot Potato and Leek Soup
How to make Instant Pot Mongolian Beef
First prep all the ingredients.
Mince the garlic, cut the steak into strips, and grate the carrots. That's honestly the hardest part of this dish.
Then you turn the Instant Pot onto Saute mode and add the oil, once it's hot (basically 30 seconds later), add the steak and then the garlic, stirring occasionally while the steak browns.
While that's cooking, mix together the water, soy sauce, sesame oil, and brown sugar and mix/whisk together until combined.
Add the grated carrots to the pot, then pour the soy sauce mixture over the top, stir, then it's time to close up the Instant Pot!
Set it on manual mode and high pressure for 10 minutes, then quick release and turn off.
Add the water/cornstarch mixture and stir in, then have it on saute mode for 2-3 minutes until sauce has thickened.
Serve over rice/quinoa/cauliflower rice and top with green onions and a steamed veggie (if desired).
Other weeknight dinners to love
Instant Pot Mongolian Beef
- Instant Pot
- 1.5 lbs steak (flank or round)
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil
- 2 medium carrots
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- ¾ cup soy sauce
- ¾ cup water
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 3 tablespoon cornstarch
- ⅓ cup water
- green onions (if desired)
- First -- prep your ingredients! Cut the steak (against the grain) into thin strips. Mince the garlic. Peel and grate the carrots.
- Get out your Instant Pot and plug in. Set the Instant Pot onto SAUTE mode and add the oil. Let heat up for about 30 seconds, then add the steak to the pot. Stir to start browning, then add the garlic. Stir occasionally until outside of meat is browned (about 3-5 minutes).
- While meat is cooking, combine the soy sauce, water, sesame oil, and brown sugar and stir or whisk until well-combined.
- Once meat is browned, turn off the saute function and add the grated carrots to the pot, and then pour the soy sauce/water/sesame oil/brown sugar mixture over the top. Stir to combine and then put the lid on the Instant Pot.
- Make sure the pressure release valve is set to SEALING and put the Instant Pot on MANUAL mode, HIGH pressure for 10 minutes. (Instant Pot will take 5-10 minutes to come to pressure, then will start counting down).
- While meat is cooking, combine the cornstarch and ⅓ cup water and set aside.
- Once the meat is done, QUICK RELEASE to release the steam, and then remove the lid. Turn off the Instant Pot.
- Pour the cornstarch/water mixture into the pot, and stir to combine. Turn the SAUTE mode on and cook for 2-3 minutes, until sauce has thickened.
- Serve the meat over a grain of your choice, and top with sliced green onions if desired.
Tips and Tricks
- I'd recommend serving over white rice, brown rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice. If you're making white rice, brown rice, or quinoa, I've found a half cup per serving works well. (So for this dish, I did 2 cups dry rice).
- I'd recommend serving with a steamed vegetable like green beens or broccoli if you'd like. Just toss in the steamed veggie after its all cooked and done and mix together with the beef and sauce before putting over rice, quinoa, or whatever grain you have.
Want to make it spicy?If you want to make the Instant Pot Mongolian Beef spicy, add 3-4 dried chili peppers when cooking, or you can also add some red pepper flakes at the end.
If nutrition info is shown, values are based on an online calculator and are estimates. Please verify using your own data.