Bulgogi (Korean Grilled Beef) Lettuce Wraps Recipe

grillmag April 26, 2016 0
Bulgogi (Korean Grilled Beef) Lettuce Wraps Recipe


  • 1-1.5 lbs. of boneless English-style short ribs, rib-eye or sirloin (or thinly sliced rib-eye steak purchased from a Korean market).
  • 1⁄4 of a medium yellow onion, halved and sliced into medium moon shaped slivers
  • 2 scallions, sliced into 2 inch pieces
  • 1-2 tablespoons neutral oil (like grapeseed or peanut) for pan frying

For the marinade:

  • 1⁄3 cup of soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon mirin (or increase sugar by 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ Asian pear, coarsely grated (about ¼ cup) *not necessary if using tender rib eye
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or grated
  • 2 teaspoons ginger. minced or grated (about 1 inch piece)

For the lettuce wraps:

  • 1 head butter lettuce (or romaine), cleaned and leaves separated
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 scallion, finely sliced
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 cup Red Cabbage Salad with Spicy Miso-Ginger Dressing (optional)


  1. Prep the meat: If slicing your own meat, placing it in the freezer for 20-30 minutes makes slicing easier. Trim the meat of excess fat and slice it as thinly as you can cutting against the grain. If using pre-sliced meat, just separate the pieces and dry them.
  2. Whisk all the marinade ingredients together in a large bowl. When the sugar has dissolved, add the beef, scallion and onion slices to the bowl and toss very well (I find using my hands is the best way to ensure every piece gets coated). Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
  3. Take meat out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before you plan to cook it to take the chill off. Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet on medium high heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Working in batches, place a few slices of beef into the pan and quickly maneuver them so they are laying flat and in a single layer. Cook on one side for 1-2 minutes and then flip and cook the other side, 1-2 minutes longer. It’s not really traditional but I like each piece to get brown and crisp at the edges.
  4. Once beef is cooked, you can serve it right away with a bowl of hot rice or make lettuce wraps.
  5. For the lettuce wraps, spoon a little rice into each lettuce leaf. Top with a slice or two of Bulgogi, and garnish with sesame seeds, sliced scallions and a bit of Red Cabbage Salad with Spicy Miso-Ginger Dressing, if using.

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