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Addicted Mongolian Chicken – Takeout Copycat

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Mongolian Chicken
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I love Mongolian beef, but I’ve been trying to cut down on red meat lately. So, I decided to switch things up and make Mongolian chicken instead. The chicken is cooked in the same savory sauce, coming out perfectly crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. 

Plus, it’s so easy to make and tastes so good over rice. This Mongolian chicken recipe is a fantastic twist on the classic dish that you’ll definitely want to add to your weekly meal rotation. Let’s get cooking.

What you need

For the Chicken:

  • 1 lb chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp salt

For the Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp regular soy sauce 
  • ½ tbsp dark soy sauce 
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ½ tbsp sesame oil
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch slurry (1 tbsp cornstarch mixed with 1 tbsp water)
  • A handful of Fresno chilies, thinly sliced

For Garnishing:

  • Sesame seeds
  • Green onion, chopped
Mongolian Chicken Ingredients

How to make Mongolian Chicken

  1. Start by cutting your chicken thighs into bite-sized pieces. Make sure to cut against the grain to prevent chewy chicken.
  2. In a bowl, mix the cornstarch and salt.
  3. Coat the chicken pieces with the cornstarch and salt mixture, ensuring each piece is evenly coated.
  4. In a large skillet or wok, heat a generous amount of oil over high heat.
  5. Fry the chicken pieces in batches, ensuring they don’t overcrowd the pan. Cook until golden brown and crispy, then transfer to a rack to drain excess oil.
  6. In a separate bowl, mix grated ginger, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil. Stir until well combined.
  1. In the same skillet, saute garlic until golden brown.
  2. Add the sauce mixture and bring it to a simmer over medium heat. Allow it to cook for a few minutes.
  3. Add the chicken back into the skillet with the sauce. Toss until the chicken is well coated in the sauce.
  4. Add the slurry and stir continuously until the sauce reaches your desired thickness.
  5. Turn off the heat and add Fresno chilies. The residual heat will gently cook the chilies, adding a nice flavor and slight heat to the dish.
  6. Garnish with chopped green onion and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
Mongolian Chicken

Tips to make the best Mongolian chicken

  • Don’t Over-fry the chicken: make sure not to not over-fry the chicken. Fry them just until they are golden and crispy to ensure they remain juicy and tender inside. You’re still cooking the chicken in the sauce, so over-frying can make the chicken dry and tough later on.
  • Cut the chicken against the grain: Always cut the chicken against the grain. This means slicing perpendicular to the direction of the muscle fibers. Cutting against the grain shortens the muscle fibers, and makes a more tender bite. If you cut with the grain, the chicken can be chewy and less enjoyable.
  • Fry on high heat: Frying the chicken on high heat for a crispy crust. High heat will make the outside of the chicken cook quickly, forming a crispy crust while keeping the inside moist and tender. Lower heat may cause the chicken to absorb more oil and become greasy.
  • Use a Stainless Steel Pan: A stainless steel pan is ideal because it heats evenly and retains heat well.
  • You can also air-fry the chicken: If you prefer a healthier option, you can air-fry the chicken instead. Preheat your air fryer to 400°F (200°C) and cook the chicken (cornstarch coated) for about 5-8 minutes, shaking the basket halfway through. The air fryer will give you crispy chicken with less oil.

The glossy sauce comes from cornstarch 

The slurry is a mixture of cornstarch and water. It is a common thickening agent in Asian cooking that activates when heated. As the sauce simmers, cornstarch swells and absorbs water, transforming the sauce from a thin liquid to a thicker consistency. 

It also gives the sauce a beautiful, glossy look. This sheen makes the Mongolian chicken more appealing. 

Mongolian Chicken

How to give the chicken its rich and deep color?

The secret is dark soy sauce. In Asian cooking, dark soy sauce is prized for its distinctive color. Unlike regular soy sauce, which is lighter in color and saltier in taste, dark soy sauce is thicker, sweeter, and has a more umami flavor. 

Make sure you don’t use too much of it or else it could make the sauce overly dark. Just a small amount of dark soy sauce goes a long way in giving the dish its signature color and flavor. 

If you don’t have dark soy sauce, you can substitute it with molasses. Molasses give a similar deep color and slightly sweet flavor. Remember to reduce the amount of sugar in the recipe since molasses is already sweet on its own.

There you have it. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do. Let me know in the comments how it turned out. Until next time. Happy cooking!


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Hey, I'm Sa. Welcome to Wikisizzle! I’d like to keep it simple with everyday meals that are easy to make. Hope you find some delightful flavors here. Let’s get cooking.

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