Bulgogi is a must for any Korean BBQ – the thinly sliced beef is marinated in a sweet soy sauce marinade that will caramelise as soon as it hits the grill.






Skill level

Average: 5 (1 vote)


  • 1 kg (2 lb 3 oz) beef tenderloin or rib eye (see Note)
  • 1 onion, sliced (optional)
  • 3 spring onions (scallions), cut into 5-cm (2-in) lengths
  • spicy dipping sauce (Ssamjang) (recipe here), to serve



  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tbsp caster (superfine) sugar
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time: 1 hour

  1. Cut the beef in half lengthways into two long strips, then slice each half against the grain into 3-mm (⅛-in) thick slices. Combine the beef slices, onion, if using, and spring onion in a large bowl and set aside.
  2. To make the marinade, put all the ingredients in a bowl and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the marinade over the beef and, using your hands (wear food preparation gloves if necessary), mix until well combined. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  3. Heat your barbecue to high, or set a chargrill pan over high heat. Working in batches, chargrill the beef for 1–2 minutes each side until caramelised.
  4. Serve the barbecued beef with the spicy dipping sauce and a big bowl of steamed rice.



If you freeze the beef for about 1 hour before slicing it, it will be much easier to cut thinly.


Recipe and images from Little Korea: Iconic Dishes and Cult Recipes by Billy Law, Smith Street Books, RRP $49.99