Korean Beef Bulgogi (without pear)

Over-head shot of Korean BBQ beef bulgogi, lettuce, steamed egg, rice, cucumber kimchi, and vegetables.

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Korean Beef bulgogi (Korean BBQ beef) is easy to make. Enjoy this sweet soy-marinated beef dish with everyday ingredients at home!


  • 1 pound sliced beef (ribeye, sirloin, flank, or New York strip steak, thinly sliced against its grain), cut into large bite-size (about 2 to 3-inch pieces)
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened plain applesauce 
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons brown sugar, depending on how sweet you like the meat to be
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced/minced
  • 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 large onion, sliced
  • 1 small carrot, thinly sliced
  • 2 green onions, sliced at a biased angle
  • Cooked rice and other side dishes, for serving


  1. Cut your meat to be large bite-size pieces, about 2 to 3- inch pieces. Set aside. 
  2. In a large bowl, mix together applesauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, minced green onions, sesame oil, and black pepper. 
  3. Add the sliced beef. Mix well until all the meat is coated with the marinade. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes up to 24 hours. 
  4. Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add a little bit of oil. Add the marinated beef. Cook until most beef is cooked. 
  5. Add the sliced onion, carrot, and green onion. Cook until the vegetables are heated through. 
  6. Serve with cooked rice and other side dishes of your choice. 


  • I recommend buying the sliced meat but if you were to slice them yourself, place the meat in the freezer for 20 minutes before slicing. Slice the meat against the grain. 
  • Adjust the marination time depending on the cuts of meat and the thickness of the meat. Very thin sliced ribeye won't need to be marinated long but if you sliced sirloin yourself, marinate the meat overnight to tenderize the meat. 
  • If you like your bulgogi to be saucy, cook all the meat at once in a pan. But if you like more caramelization on the meat, cook the meat in batches and omit to add the vegetables. You can also cook this on a grill. Cooking them for 2 minutes per side is more than enough time. Since they are sliced meat, I recommend using a grilled basket to cook the meat on the grill. 
  • The Prep Time does NOT include marination time since it can vary depending on the cuts of meat and the thickness of the meat.