Easy Korean Beef Recipe

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This Korean Beef recipe is easy to make in the Instant Pot and served in a bowl with rice and kimchi or as lettuce wrap tacos for a healthier version.

When I visited South Korea, I had no idea that Korean cuisine is very diverse and full of bold flavors. Instead of relying on Korean BBQ for every meal, I sampled a variety of things.

During my time in Seoul I noticed two things about Korean culture. Koreans love their coffee shops and meat! Practically every coffee shop I visited was full any time of the day, and every meal I ate was loaded with meat.

Fermented or pickled vegetable side dishes were also plentiful, but served in small portions on the side. And these accompaniments were spicy hot!! I mean tears in your eyes and numb lips hot.

Lately, I seem to be having some Asian travel fever, because I’ve been craving foods that have lots of Asian flavors – ginger, garlic, soy.

So I thought it was only fair to share with you what I’ve been making recently.

Korean Beef Recipe Tips

Instant pot Korean Beef recipe

This Korean Beef recipe is is super delicious and easy to cook, I can’t claim it’s authentic or traditional.

One of the differences is that I made this recipe using lean stew meat, and most of the beef I ate during my trip was sliced very thin and much fatter than the beef we are used to in the US. That is also true for Japan and China.

The other difference is that is sweeter than the Korean version of Bulgogi. BUT, it is still so good!

Korean Beef Bowls with rice

There are several reasons why this version is so versatile.

  • This recipe can be cooked in the Instant Pot, but can also be cooked slow in the crockpot.
  • It requires little prep which makes it perfect for dinner tonight, a freezer meal and meal preps.
  • Korean beef can be served with traditional white rice, kimchi, and a vegetable or on lettuce wrap tacos as a healthier, lower carb alternative.

Special Ingredients and Substitutions

This Korean Beef recipe doesn’t require a multitude of specialty ingredients. In fact, I bet you if you cook regularly, you already have almost all of these items on hand.

The exception would be Gochujang Sauce which is an essential ingredient of this dish- it’s a spicy barbecue sauce that gives the beef a kick and smokiness at the same time.

You can find Gochujang sauce in most groceries under the Asian products aisles or order from Amazon. The sauce has a huge shelf life- like 10 years, so be sure to check the expiration date before buying.

There are no real substitutions for Gochujang, but if you are in a pinch, you can try sriracha hot sauce with a liquid smoke or a hot barbecue sauce that you already have.

If using a store bought American barbecue sauce, you will probably have to decrease the amount of brown sugar and add a little more heat with whatever pepper or hot sauce you have in the pantry. My advice would be to combine these ingredients in a small bowl and taste it before adding to the recipe. What you want is a smoky sauce that has a subtle heat.

Korean Beef Instant Pot Recipe

This Korean Beef recipe is easy to make in the Instant Pot and served in a bowl with rice and kimchi or as lettuce wrap tacos for a healthier version.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Resting Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Main Course, Main Dish
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: and rice, beef, bulgogi, dinner, easy, easy dinner recipes, easy recipes, fall, food, instant pot, instant pot recipes, korean beef, korean food, recipes, winter
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 679kcal

Equipment

  • Pressure cooker

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Chuck Roast (stew meat)
  • 1/2 yellow onion sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger root finely grated
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Gochujang Sauce
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic pressed
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup beef broth or water
  • green onions and sesame seeds to serve (optional)

Instructions

  • Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Marinade for 30 mins to 1 hr.
  • Once you are ready to cook, pour the ingredients into the pressure cooker. Turn the pressure cooker on the meat function and cook for 40 minutes.
  • Once it is ready, let the pressure cooker vent naturally and serve.

Notes

  • The flavors in this recipe are mild compared to authentic Korean food, so if you like it hot, add more Gochujang sauce.
  • This recipe gets even tastier the day after you make it. The juices have more time to combine with the meat and develop the flavor. That is why I also like to marinade the ingredients for 30 minutes before cooking.
  • I made this recipe using beef stew, but you can also use ground meat.
 

Approximate Nutrition (per serving):

Calories 679   Total Fat 33.3g   Saturated Fat 12g   Cholesterol 240mg   Sodium 1094mg   Total Carbohydrate 16.9g   Dietary Fiber 0.5g   Total Sugars 14.1g   Protein 72.8g

Interested in reading about my solo trip to South Korea? Read these posts:

Would like to try out more Asian inspired recipes? Check these out!

For more recipes, click here or follow my Recipe Board on Pinterest.

If you make this recipe, be sure tag me on Instagram and share your photo with hashtag #GLXrecipes. I’d love to see what you create!

What recipe should I make next?

For more recipes, click here. For the latest on my travels, click here.

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Easy Korean Beef (bulgogi) Instant Pot Recipe

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