This gluten free Mongolian beef recipe is also paleo with a twist – it’s grilled! Marinating and grilling the steak creates a more tender and flavorful meal than the traditional stir fry. Topped with a slightly sweet and savory sauce that is perfect with rice.
Migraine-Friendly Take Out
Although paleo and gluten free aren’t necessarily things we need to worry about when it comes to a migraine diet, people who have allergies or sensitivities to gluten find it can be helpful. However, avoiding soy is a necessary part of the elimination diet. This is where coconut aminos come into play. Previously I’ve discussed how they come from the sap of a coconut blossom. There tends to be some confusion because a lot brands are fermented, but overall, they are well-tolerated.
Asian recipes overall can be really difficult to re-create on this particular diet. You can’t use so many things that make these flavors pop, like fish sauce or rice vinegar. Still, I find the flavor can be wonderful with a few tweaks to the method of cooking.
Mongolian Beef Marinade
There are two methods I like to use for this paleo Mongolian beef to make sure the flavor is the best and one of them is to marinate the steak in the sauce. Even just an hour or two is great for extra flavor. Plus this helps what can be a tough steak become a little more tender. The marinade essentially becomes your sauce once it’s boiled down.
The second is to grill the steak rather than stir-fry. This is not the traditional way Mongolian Beef is prepared, but is perhaps my own little Texan twist. Again, I find the extra flavor and texture that grilling gives it just makes it spectacular. If you’re running a little low on time and just want to cook it the traditional stir-fried way, you certainly can do that. Just be aware that the steak won’t be quite as tender as if it was grilled. To get around this, you can tenderize the steak by pounding it with a mallet a few times before marinating.
To grill this, you want to preheat the grill to about 400-425 degrees F and grill on the first side for about 8 minutes, then about 6 minutes on the flip side for medium doneness.
Stuck on what to serve with this Mongolian beef recipe? Here are a few of my favorite sides.
Other Asian-Inspired Recipes
For more recipes that are migraine-friendly like this gluten free Mongolian beef try:
A healthy and flavorful twist on Mongolian beef that's soy-free and migraine diet friendly. This sweet and savory sauce compliments the grilled steak nicely!
- 1 1/4 pounds flank steak
- 3 tablespoons mild oil, like canola, grapeseed or avocado
- 1 1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
- 1/3 cup coconut aminos
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon sriracha
- 3/4 cup broth * I find vegetable, chicken, or beef works here but beef is the best
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder or cornstarch
- 5 green onions sliced into 2" pieces
- toasted sesame seeds for garnish
In a large ziplock bag combine the mild oil, toasted sesame oil, garlic, ginger, vinegar, coconut aminos, salt, and sriracha with the steak and marinate for at least 30 minutes-2 hours. Meanwhile preheat your grill or grill pan to 400 degrees F.
Once the grill is hot, remove the steak from the marinade, shaking off any excess. SAVE THE MARINADE. Grill for 7-8 minutes on the first side and then about 6 minutes on the flip side for medium. Cover with foil and allow it to sit for at least 5-10 minutes before slicing thin against the grain.
Meanwhile mix the leftover marinade with arrowroot powder, whisking till it's no longer clumpy. Add in the broth and continue whisking till it's smooth. In a large pan, add sauce and green onions bringing to a simmer over medium high heat. Cook until the sauce has thickened enough to coat your spoon about 2-3 minutes. Taste and adjust any seasonings as needed, adding more salt or sriracha if desired.
- Beef broth would work best here, but I have yet to find one that's easy to make + MSG-free for those on a migraine diet. I've used vegetable broth many times and it's still very flavorful!
- If you don't want to grill this, pound your flank steak with a mallet a few times then slice thin against the grain and coat with the arrowroot or cornstarch. Add your oil to the pan and fry the steak about 1-2 minutes per side then remove. Add the sauce ingredients and green onions and bring to a simmer. Then add the steak back in, tossing in the sauce. Cook till thickened, about a minute.
- People who are sodium sensitive, do not go by the sodium content in the nutritional information. I find it runs a little high, depending on what products you use at home. Trader Joe's has a good, lower sodium coconut aminos product.