Mongolian Beef Soup is the favorite take-out dish made into comforting soup form! Featuring an easy homemade sauce loaded with Asian-inspired flavors, this hearty beef soup will become a family favorite as we all prepare to tuck in tight for the winter!
One of my favorite homecook-nerd things to do, when I’m just cooking IRL and not for the blog, is to recreate my favorite take-out dishes at home. In soup form (but of course, lol!).
And I don’t just mean refining the recipe and then making it soupyish by adding some broth to it. Because that’s not really how you make soup of any sort.
No, I mean creating a legitimate soup situation: fully flavored and properly textured. The best soups feature layers of flavor the create an extra special eating experience.
Just look at that photo above. Doesn’t it make you want to dig right into it with a spoon? It’s saucy and hearty and beautifully colored.
The soup ingredients themselves are wonderfully simple. Some good beef, onions, and peppers. Don’t forget the leeks. I love leeks in meat-based soups. They add a sweet-onion flavor that’s unique and oh-so-tasty.
The meat is gently seasoned, and the aromatic vegetables are cooked with an umami flavor bomb of tomato paste and ginger paste, which sets the stage for the sauce.
And speaking of that homemade sauce. Oh my. So glossy and sweet-savory. It’s really the star of the soup!
I know that making a sauce sometimes seems like a shoulder-slumping task, but there are just 5 ingredients, whisked together. And cooking everything together into sassy goodness is just an easy simmer away. No weird techniques.
The sauce, combined with the umami-bomb veggies and peppery seasoned beef, form a rock-solid flavor foundation for this Mongolian Beef Soup. Adding broth to this combination will not water it down.
It simply creates that ethereal thing that’s so inherently wonderful about eating soup: Spooning a tasty concoction with loads of satisfying textures from a hot bowl (or my favorite: an oversized mug). Such a comforting chilly weather soup!
More take-out favorites in soup form:
Mongolian Beef Soup
for the beef
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pound flank steak, sliced thinly into 1" wide pieces
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper (optional, but delish)
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
for the sauce
- 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce or tamari
- 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce (use more for more spiciness)
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
for the soup
- red wine (optional)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 leek, chopped (white and light green parts only)
- 1 small red bell pepper, diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger or ginger paste
- 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 3 cups cooked rice
- 2 green onions, trimmed and cleaned, sliced thinly on the diagonal
- sesame seeds, for garnish
prepare the beef
- Heat one tablespoon of the oil in a 4 to 5 quart Dutch oven over medium heat, until the surface shimmers.
- Toss the beef pieces with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch, optional Aleppo pepper, and paprika to coat. Add half of the beef to the pot in an even, single layer. Sear all sides. Remove to a bowl.
- Add another tablespoon of oil, and the remaining beef, repeating the cooking process. Transfer to the bowl and set aside.
prepare the sauce
- While the beef cooks in the step above, whisk all of the sauce ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
prepare the soup
- Add a splash of red wine or chicken broth to deglaze the pot. Add one tablespoon olive oil, plus the onions, leeks, and bell pepper. Saute until soft.
- Scoot the vegetables to one side of the pot. Add a splash of broth to the cleared space, and stir the tomato paste and ginger in the broth puddle until smooth and fragrant. Blend into the vegetables.
- Pour in the homemade sauce and mix well. Let heat for a few minutes – you’ll notice the sauce begins to thicken and turn glossy.
- Scrape the seared beef into the soup, along with all of the juices. Top with the remaining broth. Bring the soup to a light boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Top the soup with the green onions and a sprinkling of sesame seeds. Serve with the rice on the side, so that your guests can add the amount they want.*