Korean BBQ Beef

Try this tasty Korean BBQ Beef recipe from Chef Esther Choi.


  • 1 pound Kalbi Beef Short Ribs, cut in 1/2-inch slices across the bones (Korean or flanken-style) 
  • 1 pound Skirt Steak 
  • 1 cup Soy Sauce 
  • 1 cup Asian pear 
  • 1 cup onion 
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup of toasted sesame oil 
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of sake  
  • 1/4 cup of Fish Sauce 
  • 1/2 cup gochujang


  • Lettuce bouquet  (These can be variety, whatever looks beautiful) 
  • 1 head butter lettuce 
  • 1 head red leaf lettuce 
  • 1 head little gem lettuce  
  • 1 head radicchio 
  • 1 head purple lettuce 


  • 1lb napa kimchi, whole head 

Cucumber kimchi:

  • 5 mini seedless cucumbers 
  • 2 small shallots 
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt 
  • 1/4 cup gochugaru (Korean red chile pepper flakes) 
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil 
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar 
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce 
  • 5 cloves garlic 
  • Sesame seeds

Apple Ssamjang:

  • 1/2 cup gochujang  
  • 1/4 cup doenjang
  • 1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic, grated 
  • 1 cup fuji apple, diced small 
  • 2 stalks scallion, chopped

Kimchi animal sauce:

  • 1/4 cup mayo 
  • 3 tablespoons ketchup 
  • 2 tablespoons caramelized onion 
  • 2 tablespoons chopped kimchi 
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard 
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper 
  • 1 teaspoon sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil


  1. In a blender, add soy sauce, Asian pear, onion, garlic, sesame oil, sugar, sake and fish sauce. Blend until smooth.  Place Beef Short Ribs into a large sealable freezer bag (you may need 2). Add half the marinade, press out excess air from bags, and seal. Turn bag over several times to ensure beef is evenly coated. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours but preferably overnight. 
  2. Place Skirt Steak into another large sealable freezer bag.  Add gochujang in the remaining marinade and add to the bag.  Press out excess air from bags and seal.  Turn bag over several times to ensure beef is evenly coated. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours but preferably overnight. 
  3. To cook, drain and discard marinade.  Cook Beef Short Ribs on a medium hot grill for 2-3 minutes per side, until it reaches the desired temperature as measured by a meat thermometer. 
  4. Separate and wash all lettuce heads and arrange on a platter (like making a flower bouquet!) 
  5. Grill kimchi on the hot grill for 2 minutes on each side.  Slice into 2 inch pieces and plate. 
  6.  For the cucumber kimchi, toss the sliced cucumbers and shallots with the salt in a medium bowl and let stand for 20 minutes, tossing every 10 minutes. Rinse and drain the cucumbers and shallots and wipe out the bowl with a paper towel. Put the mixture in cheesecloth and squeeze to remove all the moisture. (The cucumbers will be slightly bruised.) Add the gochugaru, sesame oil, vinegar, fish sauce and garlic and toss until the cucumbers are completely coated. Sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving. 
  7.  Mix all ingredients for apple ssamjang 
  8.  Mix all ingredients for kimchi animal sauce 

Nutrition information per entire recipe: 553 Calories; 37 g Total Fat (7.2 g Saturated Fat; 0.3 g Trans Fat; 12.7 g Polyunsaturated Fat; 13.9 g Monounsaturated Fat); 58 mg Cholesterol; 3378 mg Sodium; 34 g Total Carbohydrate; 4.3 g Dietary Fiber; 20.1 g Total Sugars; 8 g Added Sugars; 25 g Protein; 92 mg Calcium; 4.5 mg Iron; 789 mg Potassium; 0.1 mcg Vitamin D; 0.4 mg Riboflavin; 8 mg Niacin; 0.6 mg Vitamin B6; 1.8 mcg Vitamin B12; 176 mg Phosphorus; 5.1 mg Zinc; 19.6 mcg Selenium; 64.1 mg Choline

Chef esther choi