How to Make Realistic Vegan Mongolian Beef and Broccoli
If you are craving Chinese takeout, here you go! This is a take on the classic Mongolian beef and broccoli. This takeout recipe is incredibly delicious, easy, and quick to make. It’s sticky, sweet, savory, chewy, and slightly crunchy. This vegan Mongolian beef and broccoli should one hundred percent be on your list of recipes to make this week!
Quick and Easy
I’d say it takes around only a short thirty minutes to prep and cook. It requires only twelve ingredients and basic kitchen techniques, too. This recipe is excellent if you’re looking for something tasty without much fuss!
First, I steam the broccoli florets, which can instead be boiled, but I prefer to steam them, so they soak up less water. I then season the seitan with salt and pepper and toss it in cornstarch. Then I cook the seitan in coconut oil to get it golden brown and crispy.
Next, I remove the pot’s seitan and saute fresh minced garlic and ginger until slightly soft. I add water, coconut aminos, and brown coconut sugar and bring it to a low boil. The seitan gets tossed back into the pot, along with the excess cornstarch it was previously tossed in. Lastly, I add in the steamed broccoli florets and large strips of green onion and toss to coat.
Authentic Taste and Texture
I love this recipe because it tastes incredibly authentic and nostalgic. My mom, who is not vegan, is even obsessed with this recipe. She said it tastes just like the real thing, which says a lot considering this recipe contains mock meat! I usually eat this over a bed of brown or white rice, but it would also taste amazing tossed with rice noodles!
What is Seitan?
A quick answer to that is it is a cruelty-free meat substitution. The base of seitan is vital wheat gluten. With added liquid and spices, and after it’s been cooked, it mimics meat’s taste and texture. This allows vegans and vegetarians to have a meat substitution. It has a slightly savory flavor but can take on many different flavors depending on how it is dressed. It’s more popular due to its texture and meat-like texture. If I’m not making my seitan from scratch, I love using either of these seitan brands for this recipe: Sweet Earth and Upton’s Naturals.
The fact that this recipe contains healthier choices makes me happy! For example, I chose to use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce and brown coconut sugar instead of regular brown sugar. However, just because I used healthier substitutions does NOT mean this dish is healthy. The flavors of this dish have also not been compromised, despite having made these substitutions.
Want another recipe with a fun Asian twist to it!? Check out these Potato and Chive Vegan Pierogies, which use wonton wrappers, making them super easy to make!
If you try this vegan Mongolian beef and broccoli take-out recipe, don’t forget to post a picture to Instagram, tag me @chefsummerstorm, and #gardengrub so I can see your recreation!
How to Make Realistic Vegan Mongolian Beef and Broccoli
- 4 cups fresh broccoli florets, large bite-sized pieces
- 16 ounces seitan, cut into large bite-sized pieces (I love Sweet Earth's Traditional Seitan. Upton's Naturals also makes a good one.)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 3/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 7 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp fresh garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 3/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup organic coconut aminos
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp organic brown coconut sugar
- 4 green onions, cut in half the long way and then cut into 3 strips- about 2-inch long pieces
- First, bring a medium-sized saucepot of water to a boil. Place a steamer basket in it. Add the broccoli florets into the basket, cover, and steam for 3 minutes or until al-dente. Alternatively, you can boil the broccoli straight in the water for 1 minute.
- Strain the broccoli and run it under cold water to completely stop them from cooking. Set aside.
- Add the seitan into a medium-sized bowl and season it with the salt and pepper. Add the cornstarch and toss well to coat the seitan evenly.
- Now, add 3 tablespoons of the coconut oil to a large saute pan and place it over medium/medium-high heat. Once hot, shake off any excess cornstarch and add half of the seitan to the pan—cook for 3-4 minutes or until crispy and lightly golden brown in color. *Do not over stir. Only stir when necessary to flip them over; otherwise, they will not get as crisp.
- Place the cooked seitan on a sheet pan or a plate.
- Dump out the saute pan, so it is clean of the old, dirty oil and brown bits. Add 3 more tablespoons of the coconut oil to the pan and cook the other half of the seitan per the same last instructions. ***DO NOT throw away the leftover cornstarch mix that was used to coat the seitan. We will be using this later! Then, add the cooked seitan onto the sheet pan with the first half.
- Once again, dump out the saute pan so it is somewhat clean, and add in the last 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Place over medium/medium-high heat. Once hot, saute the minced garlic and ginger for about 45 seconds, constantly stirring to prevent burning.
- Now, add in the water, coconut aminos, and brown sugar. Stir and bring up to a full, steady boil.
- As soon as it is at a rolling boiling, add in the seitan and the leftover cornstarch mix. Stir well to coat and turn the heat down to medium.
- Add in the green onions and broccoli, stir well to coat, and cook for about 30 seconds or until the sauce is at your desired thickness. Do not cook for much longer; otherwise, the broccoli and green onions will turn into mush.
- Serve over rice of choice, and garnish with white sesame seeds, if so desired.
Welcome to my tip section of the vegan Mongolian beef and broccoli recipe! Here I provide my top tips to help you perfect the recipe. Sometimes, I also give substitute suggestions that I think you may find helpful.
- Like it spicy? Add a heavy pinch of red chili pepper flakes or a squeeze of your favorite vegan sriracha!
I’ve been making this at least once a month for quite awhile now and I’m absolutely addicted!! Thank you!!!
Wow! That’s amazing! Thank you so much for letting me know, and I’m so glad you’re enjoying it so much!
I made this last night.
I had to use Tempeh but found the sauce (which is the jist of the dish) to be awesome. Adjusting the amt of cornstarch and heat allows you to make the a sauce as thin or thick as you like. I am probably going to use this sauce for a veggie stir fry. Easy to make too! I didnt have to buy all these ingrediants that I have to buy for other asian dishes that I end up using once and having them go bad before I use them up.
Keep them coming…your knocking them out of the park!
Hi Bill, I am SO glad to hear you enjoyed this recipe! I love tempeh, so I imagine the dish tasted very yummy with it! Yes, I totally encourage others to adjust the cornstarch and heat if needed to get their ideal thickness- thanks for mentioning that! I appreciate you coming back to leave a lovely comment. Thank you!!
I have made this recipe twice and both times I found the sauce to be a bit watery. Last time, I added a bit more cornstarch mixed w/water and tamari. It helped the consistency a bit, but the salt content (and flavor) was really intense. I try to use a mix of coconut aminos, liquid aminos and tamari. Could that be the issue? Otherwise, I love everything about this recipe and would love to find the right balance.
Hi, Caitlin! Thank you for making the recipe twice! Are you making sure to add all of the cornstarch leftover in the bowl from coating the seitan into the pot? The liquid should thicken very quickly as long as all of the excess cornstarch is added in. Make sure the pot’s mixture is then brought up to a full boil before turning the heat down. Perhaps instead of turning the heat down to medium-low after adding in the cornstarch, turn the heat down to medium instead, and cook until it is at your desired thickness. In regards to the salt and flavor, I only ever use coconut aminos for this recipe. It may be a bit saltier because of the tamari and liquid aminos you’re also using. With that being said, you can also skip the addition of kosher salt in the recipe. I don’t know if you saw it, but I have a YouTube video demonstrating exactly how to make this recipe, and I think it’s helpful. Let me know if you need any further help!