The European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) infests a wide array of host plants and is considered one of the most serious pests of maize in Europe. Recent studies suggest that individuals feeding on maize in Europe should be referred to O. nubilalis (sensu nov.), while those infesting dicots as Ostrinia scapulalis (sensu nov.). We test if the clear genetic distinctiveness among individuals of O. nubilalis living on maize vs. dicots is tracked by mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). We used fragments of COI and COII genes of 32 individuals traditionally recognized as O. nubilalis collected on three host plants, maize, mugwort and hop, growing in different parts of Poland. In addition, we reconstructed the mtDNA phylogeny of Ostrinia species based on our data and sequences retrieved from GenBank to assess host and/or biogeographic patterns. We also compared haplotype variation found in Poland (east-central Europe) with other regions (Anatolia, Eastern Europe, Balkans, Far East, North America). Our study showed high mtDNA diversity of O. nubilalis in Poland in comparison with other regions and revealed rare haplotypes likely of Asian origin. We did not find distinct mtDNA haplotypes in larvae feeding on maize vs. dicotyledonous plants. Phylogenetic analyses showed an apparent lack of mtDNA divergence among putatively distinct lineages belonging to the O. nubilalis group as identical haplotypes are shared by Asian and European individuals. We argue that human-mediated dispersal, hybridization and sporadic host jumps are likely responsible for the lack of a geographic pattern in mtDNA variation.