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Korean Grilled Short Ribs (Kalbi) |

Korean Grilled Short Ribs (Kalbi)

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Total Time: 4 hours 8 minutes
  • Yield: 2 pounds of ribs 1x


Korean Grilled Short Ribs. Korean kalbi in your own back yard.


  • 2 lbs Korean cut short ribs (sliced 1/4" thick, across the bone.)
  • 1 head Boston bibb lettuce (for wraps, optional)


  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 scallion
  • 1 Pear, peeled and cored
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp rice wine


Marinate the short ribs for 4 hours: In a food processor or blender, pulse the garlic and scallion until finely minced. Add the pear, and pulse again until finely minced. Add the rest of the marinade ingredients, and run until well combined. Toss the ribs and the marinade (I do this in a gallon ziploc bag), and store in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours, turning occasionally to marinate evenly.
Preheat grill for direct medium heat cooking: Preheat grill for direct cooking over medium heat. Clean grate with a grill brush, and brush the grate with a paper towel dipped in vegetable oil. On a gas grill, preheat on high for ten minutes, brush the grates clean, then turn the heat down to medium. On a charcoal grill, light the coals, wait until they are covered with gray ash, then spread them in a single layer over the charcoal grate. Brush the grill grate clean and you're ready to grill.

Cook the ribs for 4 minutes a side: Remove ribs from marinade, and cook over the direct-medium heat for 2-4 minutes per side, or until well browned on both sides. Remove ribs to a plate and let rest before serving.


  • On my gas grill, I cook in a 2-2-flip-2-2 pattern; cook 2 minutes, turn the ribs 90*, cook another 2 minutes; flip the ribs, 2 more minutes, turn 90*, final 2 minutes. This gives you a nice diamond pattern on the ribs.
  • Watch the ribs carefully - the marinade has a lot of sugar in it, and will burn if left over too hot of a fire.
  • Serving: To serve as lettuce wraps, use a head of Boston bibb lettuce, leaves separated and rinsed. I usually serve it with a vegetable stir fry, jasmine rice, and, even though they're not really Korean, some hoisin sauce and Sriracha hot sauce. To be really authentic, you'd serve this with Kimchi, Korean pickled fermented cabbage, but that can be a acquired taste. (That's a euphemism for my kids saying "it smells awful.")
  • A trick I learned at my local Korean barbecue restaurant: Use Kitchen Shears to cut the meat off of the bone.
  • If you can't find Korean cut (aka "Flanken cut") short ribs, substitute either flank steak or skirt steak, cut on the diagonal into 1/4" thick slices.
  • Prep Time: 4 hours
  • Cook Time: 8 minutes
  • Category: Weeknight Dinner
  • Method: Grilling
  • Cuisine: Korean