Saturday, March 10, 2012

Korean Beef Bulgogi

Korean style BBQ beef (Bulgogi) is very easy to make and has a wonderful balance of sweet and savory .  I got this recipe from my father in law about 25 years ago and have not made any changes to it, because its just that good.  Irresistible tender thin slices of beef rib-eye marinated in a garlicky soy sauce.  Once you have tried this dish you will become an instant fan.

If the outdoor charcoal is available this becomes a NONE pot meal. But if you have to cook indoors it will only become a one pot meal.  There are a couple of options; broil it in your oven or fry the meat in batches in a hot pan.  It won't be the same as the charcoal bbq, which gives the meat a nice smokey flavor, but it will still be extremely tasty cooked indoors.

a couple of TIPS and TRICKS...
For a quick, no chop option
***I place all of the marinade ingredients into my blender adding the garlic and ginger at the bottom so they will be close to the blade and chop up quickly.
To toast sesame seeds
***Place them in a small frying pan on low heat and toss or mix occasionally until the seeds are a light golden brown. You can make these ahead of time and keep them in a glass jar in your fridge for when you need them.

2 pounds rib eye, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. oil, add just before cooking
¼ cup Kikkoman soy sauce
¼ cup water
1/3 cup sugar
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 slices ginger, minced
½ cup green onions, chopped small
2 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. sesame seeds, toasted and crushed
1 tsp. black pepper

Chop, mince and mix marinade ingredients together and pour over meat.

Marinate meat for at least 2 hours or overnight in a zip lock bag (overnight is my first choice, for optimum flavor).

Cook over a charcoal grill or in a very hot pan. If cooking in a hot pan, cook in batches to get the meat well browned.


  1. I started drooling when I saw this, is that bad? lol

    1. If I put liquid smoke will that help make it taste more like outdoor bbq? How long and how hot will I need to cook it in the oven? :)

    2. You could add liquid smoke, but I don't think it's needed. However, if you choose to add it, a little goes a long way. So, I would recommend that you add only a few drops and up to no more than 1/8th of a teaspoon. You can cook this meat in a hot skillet over high heat on the stove top or under the broiler for about 3 - 4 min. on each side.

  2. Can i use chicken?

    1. Yes, and boneless thighs would work best. But it will need no less than an overnight marinade for the flavors to fully penetrate the chicken pieces. Also, chicken will take longer to cook, so allow for that too.

  3. Forgot the green onions yesterday-- sweet onion ok... ?

    1. You could... However, i have found that green onions are crucial in Korean cooking. I would highly suggest you wait until you have the green onions. So you can enjoy this dish at its best. Aloha, Susan

  4. Will it taste as good if i use aloha shoyu instead?

    1. Yes - Aloha shoyu will work if you use 1/2 cup of shoyu and skip the water. Because it is not as strong as Kikkoman.
      Aloha, Susan

  5. I want to try making this later this week. It sounds yummy!
    I found a tip on making the beef slices very thin online. If the meat is frozen, let it thaw a little and cut the slices when the meat is in a 1/2 frozen,1/2 thawed state; apparently a lot easier to do.

    1. That is absolutely correct! Thank you for sharing ๐Ÿ˜€ Enjoy!