Slow Cooker Sesame Beef

$10.27 recipe / $1.71 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.73 from 44 votes
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Y’all know how much I love slow cooked meat, right? It’s always so tender and full of flavor, yet nearly effortless. While I usually opt for a southwest blend of spices, a couple of months ago I tested an Asian inspired beef version and fell in love. This Slow Cooker Sesame Beef uses only a few ingredients and comes out with so much flavor, which is good because beef is expensive, so I like to use it sparingly in my meal and combine it with other less expensive ingredients.

A bowl of Slow Cooker Sesame Beef served with rice and garnished with green onion and sesame seeds

How to Serve Slow Cooker Sesame Beef

So what do you serve this Slow Cooker Sesame Beef with? This tasty shredded beef can be used in so many ways. You can use it in a bowl meal like Bibimbap, or do a more simple combo with just some warm rice and broccoli florets. Asian inspired tacos are always fun, or you can just pile it on top of a crunchy cabbage salad. You can stir it into a batch of (not) Fried Rice, or serve it with some rich Garlic Noodles. Me? I couldn’t stop eating it right out of the slow cooker. :P But honestly, I’m going to pair it with rice, some quick pickled cucumbers, and shredded carrots (you might see this combo in a Sunday Meal Prep in the future!).

What Type of Beef Should I Use?

One more note about the type of beef used. I used an eye of round roast because there wasn’t much of a selection at my store the other day, and this cut was the best price. Eye of round is quite lean, so the resulting beef had more of a flakey texture. A chuck roast or brisket would be more ideal as both have a little more fat and connective tissue, which will result in a more tender and moist shredded beef.

What Size Slow Cooker Should I Use?

I am use a 6-quart Hamilton Beach slow cooker (affiliate link), and it was only filled about 1/3 of the way to the top. I would suggest using a 3-quart or larger for this recipe.

Slow Cooker Sesame Beef in the slow cooker with a wooden spoon
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Slow Cooker Sesame Beef

4.73 from 44 votes
This tender, rich, and flavorful Slow Cooker Sesame Beef is extremely versatile and only requires a few ingredients that can be found at most grocery stores. 
This tender, rich, and flavorful Slow Cooker Sesame Beef is extremely versatile and only requires a few ingredients that can be found at most grocery stores.
Servings 6
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 5 hours 20 minutes
Total 5 hours 35 minutes


  • 1/2 cup soy sauce ($0.72)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar ($0.24)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($0.16)
  • 1/2 Tbsp grated fresh ginger ($0.10)
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil ($0.12)
  • 2 lbs beef roast ($8.14)
  • 6 green onions, divided ($0.67)
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch ($0.04)
  • 1 Tbsp sesame seeds ($0.08)


  • Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup water in a bowl and stir until the brown sugar is dissolved. Mince the garlic and grate the ginger. Add the garlic, ginger, and toasted sesame oil to the soy sauce mixture. Set the cooking liquid aside.
  • Either slice or cube the beef roast. Slice three of the green onions into 1.5-2 inch sections (save the rest of the green onions for garnish after cooking). Place the beef roast and green onions in the slow cooker. Pour the cooking liquid over top and stir to combine.
  • Place a lid on the slow cooker, and cook on HIGH for four hours or LOW for eight hours. After four hours on high or eight hours on low the beef should be very tender and should shred easily with a fork. If not, replace the lid and cook for 30-60 minutes more.
  • Once the beef is tender, it’s time to thicken the sauce. Dissolve the cornstarch in 2 tablespoons of water, then pour it into the pot with the beef and cooking liquid. Stir to combine, then allow it to come back up to a simmer, at which point the sauce will thicken just slightly. Turn the heat off and garnish with the sesame seeds and remaining green onions (sliced). Serve over a bed of rice or as part of your favorite meal.

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Serving: 1ServingCalories: 293.35kcalCarbohydrates: 16.22gProtein: 33.52gFat: 10.97gSodium: 1301.2mgFiber: 0.83g
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Close up of chopsticks picking up a piece of Slow Cooker Sesame Beef out of the bowl

How to Make Slow Cooker Sesame Beef – Step by Step Photos

Sesame Beef marinade

Prepare the cooking liquid first. Combine 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup soy sauce, 1/3 cup brown sugar, 2 cloves garlic (minced), 1/2 Tbsp grated fresh ginger, and 1 tsp toasted sesame oil in a bowl (or large measuring cup). Set the liquid aside.

Eye of Round Roast in store packaging

I used a 2 lb. eye of round roast because there wasn’t much available at the store the day I was there. This will produce a slightly dryer, more flakey end result. I would aim for a chuck roast or brisket, both of which have more fat and connective tissue to keep things moist and soft.

Sliced Roast

Either slice the beef or cut it into cubes. The goal is to increase the surface area so that it can soak up all the delicious flavors of the cooking liquid.

Beef and Green Onion in slow cooker

Place the beef in the slow cooker, along with three green onions that have been sliced into 1.5 to 2-inch sections.

Pour on sesame marinade

Pour the cooking liquid over top and give everything a brief stir to make sure everything is in contact with the liquid.

Slow Cooker Sesame Beef finished cooking

Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours, or low for eight hours. After that time, the beef should be tender and easily shreddable. If not, replace the lid and cook a little longer. Once tender, stir together 1 Tbsp cornstarch with 2 Tbsp water and then pour it into the pot. Allow it to return to a simmer, at which time the cornstarch will turn from cloudy to clear and you’ll notice the liquid will thicken just slightly.

Slow Cooker Sesame Beef in the slow cooker garnished with green onion and sesame seeds

Garnish the beef with 1 Tbsp sesame seeds and the remaining green onions (sliced).

Slow Cooker Sesame Beef in a bowl with rice and green onion, chopsticks on the side

This Slow Cooker Sesame Beef is SUPER flavorful, so I like to pair it with more mild foods, like rice and plenty of vegetables. :)

Front view of a bowl full of Slow Cooker Sesame Beef and rice

More serving suggestions at the top of the post!

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  1. I used brisket and didn’t change anything about the recipe. I made it with the coconut rice and roasted broccoli. Amazing!

  2. This is delicious! I followed the recipe other than using low sodium soy sauce. We topped ours with cilantro and fresh jalapeño slices, gobbled up over rice. Saving this one, thank you!

  3. Loved the look of this recipe, but after following step by step – proved your inability to balance sweet and sour. Way too salty- recommend reducing soy volume.
    Sorry. But did not nail this recipe – even close.

  4. I love to use this beef as an extra protein in my rice bowls (loosely inspired by Smitten Kitchen’s crispy rice bowl with egg). It’s my favorite dinner lately and this beef goes super well with the SK green onion and ginger dressing that goes on the rice bowl.

    1. oh, and I do make it in my instant pot. I prepare it as instructed here and then just use the meat setting for about an hour, letting the pressure release naturally at the end. Works great.

  5. Thank you for this recipe. I used refrigerated garlic and ginger to save time and loved it.

  6. Toddler approved and easy to make. Will be recommending this to everyone! We served it with ramen noodles and green beans. I love finding these gems to add into the rotation.

  7. Could I use stew Meat and cook It in the instant pot? How could I convert this crockpot recipe into a pressure cooker

    1. We haven’t tested it in a pressure cooker, so we can’t offer any guidance. XOXO -Monti

  8. I made this tonight and I will definitely make it again. It was easy to throw together in the crock pot and I love that. However, I made it as-written with no changes to the recipe and found it too salty, even once it was served with white rice (I used low-sodium soy sauce). Also, I cooked it for 8 hours on low and there was no need for the corn starch because there was no juice left over, which was just fine with me. I liked it, I ate it, and I will continue to eat the leftovers over the next couple days… BUT, Next time I make it, I will use 1/3C of soy sauce and 1/3C of water instead of 1/2C of soy sauce. I might add a bit more brown sugar, too, because I like things a bit sweet. In addition, I used very lean stew beef and missed the fat so I’ll use a fattier cut of meat next time.

  9. A family favorite, we all make it on a regular basis and love how easy it is. I always add more sesame oil but that’s just me and it’s one of those recipes where the leftovers get more flavourful as the beef marinates.