Mongolian Ground Beef

This is what I call an emergency dinner. Not because it precedes or follows an emergency but because it is a dinner I turn to when dinner absolutely feels like an emergency. (And we’ve all had those nights, right?) When time is short, when I’m out of ideas, when I have nearly nothing in the fridge, this fifteen-minute Mongolian Ground Beef is something I turn to time and time again. For starters, it’s absolutely delicious and takes just a few ingredients, but it’s also something the rest of my family will always eat and it pairs perfectly with some white rice and steamed broccoli. When you don’t even have time for takeout, this gets the job done, and it does it deliciously.

This is really about as simple as dinner gets. I use a pound of ground beef here, but you can easily scale up or scale down the recipe as needed. You’ll start by browning that ground beef in a skillet and once the beef is no longer pink, you’ll add some garlic and ginger to the pan and let it work until it’s just fragrant. Nothing compares to the flavor of fresh ginger so I always keep a knob in my freezer to grate up when I need it, but if you don’t have any (or don’t want to go to the trouble of having any), ground ginger will work just fine.

1 lb ground beef
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup tamari or soy sauce
1/4 cup beef broth
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1-inch piece ginger, grated
4 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 green onions, sliced
White rice, for serving

In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, broth, rice vinegar, brown sugar, and cornstarch. Set aside.
In a large skillet, brown ground beef over medium heat, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Reduce heat to medium-low and add garlic and ginger to pan. Let cook until fragrant, just 2-3 minutes.
Pour sauce into pan and stir. Let simmer and thicken, 1-2 minutes.
Stir to coat ground beef with sauce. Add green onions and cook briefly to wilt, about 2 minutes.
Serve over white rice with steamed vegetables, if desired. Enjoy!