bulgogi bibimbap

Bulgogi Bibimbap

Bulgogi is marinated, grilled Korean beef and bibimbap (pronounced bee-beem-bahp) is a Korean rice dish with meat and an assortment of vegetables. While you can make all different types of bibimbap with endless combinations of vegetables and meats I chose to serve mine with bulgogi, spinach, kimchi, carrots, cucumber, green onion, sprouts and a fried egg. More traditional recipes for bibimbap are served with raw beef and a raw egg on top but I chose to use cooked ingredients instead. The dish is stirred together just before eating. I like to serve the bowl with all the ingredients arranged on top of the rice because it looks prettier that way. Then everyone can mix up their own bowls and add gochujang, a delicious Korean fermented red chili sauce. This recipe is a great way to use up raw or cooked vegetables from throughout the week.



For the bulgogi:

1 pound boneless sirloin or flank steak

3 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon roasted sesame oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon grated ginger

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 (packed) tablespoon light brown sugar

½ cup finely diced yellow onion

1 scallion, thinly sliced

½ teaspoon ground black pepper  

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

Kosher salt, to taste


For the bibimbap:

1 bunch spinach, about 6 ounces

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

Kosher salt, to taste

4 cups cooked short-grain sushi rice

1 cup roughly chopped napa cabbage kimchi

2 medium carrots, julienned

1 large English cucumber, julienned

3 green onions, thinly sliced

1 cup bean sprouts (optional)

4 eggs, fried

½ cup gochujang*



For the bulgogi:

Use a sharp knife to slice the meat across the grain into very thin strips. In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes, brown sugar, onion, scallion and black pepper. Add the meat and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight.

Heat a large skillet over high heat, add 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil and heat through. Remove half of the meat from the marinade and add to the pan in a single even layer. Cook without moving until the edges begin to brown, about 1 minute. Toss the meat and continue to cook until the meat is cooked through, about an additional 3 minute. Remove to a plate. Repeat with the remaining oil and meat. Season the meat with salt to taste.


For the bibimbap:

Rinse and dry the spinach. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Add the garlic and sauté for just a second, stirring, then add the spinach and season with salt. As the spinach wilts toss to coat all the leaves in the garlic and oil. Once the spinach has entirely wilted, remove it from the pan to a serving bowl.

To assemble the bibimbap bowls, first divide the rice among bowls. Top each bowl with some of the beef, spinach, kimchi, carrots, cucumber, green onions, sprouts and a fried egg. You can serve it with everything arranged on top and allow guests to stir their own bowls or stir it before serving. If stirring before serving add about 2 tablespoons of the gochujang to the top of the bowl and toss to combine. Otherwise serve the sauce on the side.


*Note: Gochujang paste is a Korean thick, concentrated hot pepper paste made from glutinous rice and fermented soybeans. It can be found in the international section of most grocery stores or at an Asian market.


Serves 4. 

bulgogi bibimbap
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