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Mongolian Sauce Recipe

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Craving that restaurant-style Mongolian sauce but don’t know where to start?

I’ve got you.

This definitive guide will help you craft your very own savory, sweet, and spicy Mongolian sauce at home.

I am going to explain the ingredients, guide you through the steps, and show you how to tailor it to your taste.

Let’s make Mongolian sauce.

What Do You Need To Make Mongolian Sauce?

Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is the backbone of this sauce, providing a deep, umami-rich base.

Its salty flavor gives depth to the entire dish, while its dark color lends an appealing hue to the sauce.


Water is used to dilute the intensity of the soy sauce, preventing it from overpowering the other flavors in the sauce.

It also helps achieve the right consistency.

Brown Sugar

Brown sugar brings a beautiful sweetness that balances the salty depth of the soy sauce.

Its molasses content contributes a slight caramel note and enhances the overall richness of the sauce.


Minced garlic provides a strong aromatic character to the sauce.

Its pungent flavor introduces a level of complexity that contrasts beautifully with the sweetness and saltiness.


Freshly grated ginger offers a zesty tang and subtle warmth to the sauce.

It harmonizes with the garlic, lending an invigorating freshness that cuts through the rich, heavy flavors.

Hoisin Sauce

Hoisin sauce contributes to the sweet and savory balance of the sauce.

Its distinct, complex flavor—derived from fermented soybeans, vinegar, and spices—adds depth and roundness.

Sesame Oil

Sesame oil infuses the sauce with a toasty, nutty flavor.

It gives the sauce an additional layer of complexity and a hint of richness that complements the dominant sweet and savory notes.


Cornstarch, when mixed with water to form a slurry, is the key to achieving the sauce’s desired thickness.

It helps the sauce cling better to food and gives it a glossy, appealing sheen.

Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Optional for those who prefer some heat, the crushed red pepper flakes introduce a spicy kick.

They add a layer of excitement and enhance the overall flavor profile of the sauce.

How To Make Mongolian Sauce

Step One: Start by gathering a medium-sized saucepan, and combine the soy sauce, water, brown sugar, minced garlic, grated ginger, hoisin sauce, and sesame oil within it. Stir these ingredients until well integrated.

Step Two: Set the saucepan on medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has completely melted into the mixture.

Step Three: At this point, if you’d like to add some spice to your sauce, sprinkle in the crushed red pepper flakes.

Step Four: Separately, in a small dish, whisk together the cornstarch and water until a smooth, lump-free slurry forms.

Step Five: Slowly pour this cornstarch slurry into the saucepan, all the while stirring the sauce to distribute it evenly.

Step Six: Maintain the heat at medium and keep cooking the sauce, stirring occasionally, until you see it beginning to thicken, usually around 2-3 minutes.

Step Seven: Upon reaching your preferred thickness, remove the saucepan from the stove.

Step Eight: Wait for the sauce to cool down before incorporating it into your meal, or transfer it to a sealed container for storage in your refrigerator.

Other Things To Consider When Making Mongolian Sauce

Ingredient Quality

Try to use fresh garlic and ginger, and high-quality soy and hoisin sauces for the best results.

Low-quality ingredients may not deliver the robust, balanced flavor you’re looking for.

Adjusting Sweetness and Heat

The balance of sweetness and heat in this sauce is quite flexible.

If you prefer a sweeter sauce, you can add a little extra brown sugar.

Conversely, if you like a spicier sauce, you can add more red pepper flakes or even a dash of hot sauce. Feel free to adjust these elements to suit your taste.

Thickening the Sauce

The thickness of your sauce is largely controlled by the amount of cornstarch slurry you use.

If you prefer a thicker sauce, you can increase the amount of cornstarch in your slurry.

Remember, though, that the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools, so it’s best to err on the side of caution and avoid making it too thick initially.

Storing and Reusing

If you have leftovers, you can store this sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

The flavors will intensify over time, making it even more delicious.

When you’re ready to use it again, you may need to add a little water and heat it gently to return it to its original consistency.


You can experiment with adding other flavors you enjoy, such as a splash of rice vinegar for a tangy note, or a spoonful of oyster sauce for extra richness.

Don’t be afraid to play around and create your own unique version!

What To Serve Mongolian Sauce With?

Stir-Fry Dishes

Whether it’s a simple vegetable stir-fry or one that includes tofu, chicken, beef, or shrimp, this sauce adds a delightful sweet and savory touch.

Grilled or Roasted Meats

Brush it onto chicken, beef, or pork towards the end of the cooking process to give the meat a beautiful glossy finish and a burst of flavor.

Noodles and Rice

Stir in Mongolian sauce with noodles or pour it over steamed rice for a quick and easy flavor boost.

It’s particularly good with soba or udon noodles, or with jasmine or brown rice.


Its sweet, salty, and spicy elements complement the fillings of dumplings excellently.


This sauce can be used to roast vegetables or as a dressing for steamed vegetables.

Drizzle it over broccoli, bell peppers, bok choy, or zucchini to instantly elevate their flavor.

Wraps and Sandwiches

It pairs particularly well with crispy chicken wraps, beef sliders, or even as a dressing in Asian-inspired tacos.

Be More Adventurous

Remember, the versatility of Mongolian sauce means it can be used in countless dishes.

Feel free to get creative and experiment with different pairings!

Mongolian Sauce Recipe

Mongolian Sauce Recipe

This homemade Mongolian sauce marries savory, sweet, and spicy elements. Its umami-rich soy and hoisin base is sweetened with brown sugar, while fresh garlic and ginger impart aromatic heat. Finished with a nutty hint of sesame oil and an optional dash of red pepper flakes, this glossy, velvety sauce elevates any dish.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes


  • 1/2 cup of low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar (adjust to your liking)
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon of fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 tablespoon of hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon of water (cornstarch slurry)
  • Optional: 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes for heat


  1. Take a medium-sized saucepan, add the soy sauce, water, brown sugar, minced garlic, grated ginger, hoisin sauce, and sesame oil. Mix well.
  2. Heat the mixture over medium heat until the sugar is fully dissolved.
  3. If you want to add some heat to your sauce, add in the crushed red pepper flakes at this stage.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the cornstarch and water to create a slurry, ensuring there are no lumps.
  5. Gradually add the cornstarch slurry to the sauce while stirring continuously.
  6. Continue to cook the sauce on medium heat until it starts to thicken. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
  7. Once your sauce reaches the desired consistency, remove it from the heat.
  8. Allow it to cool before using it in your dish, or store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

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