Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls

Difficulty Easy

An easy and delicious weeknight favorite: Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls. All the salty-sweet flavor of bulgogi. With accessible ground beef. Make this easy rice bowl and top with a fried egg for a complete meal. The best kind of 15-minute simple dinner!

Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls

If you love Korean flavors, you’ll love this easy recipe: Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls. Ground beef is flavored with bulgogi marinade and cooked until caramelized and golden. Piled on top of a bed of rice and topped with a quivering golden fried egg, it’s easy, fast, and delicious!

In Korean cuisine, Bulgogi means “fire meat.” It’s a traditional dish that’s characterized by thin slices of beef, a soy sauce marinade, and quick cooking over intense heat.

Korean Beef Bowls are the ground beef version. With all the salty-sweet, garlicky flavor of traditional Beef Bulgogi. But made with ground beef and served in a rice bowl.

One of my favorite ways to enjoy the flavors of traditional beef bulgogi. Perfect for a busy weeknight meal! A nourishing and satisfying Korean ground beef recipe.

Serve with a fried egg on top and spicy kimchi on the side. Or add your favorite veggies. YUM!

Why Ground Beef?

  • Accessible. Unlike thinly sliced bulgogi meat, ground beef is easy to find at most grocery stores. You don’t need an extra trip to Asian grocery stores to make easy beef bulgogi bowls.
  • Budget-friendly. Ground beef is an economical, inexpensive protein. You’ll only need a pound of ground beef to feed 4 people.
  • Familiar. A kid-friendly, common protein that even the pickiest eater will eat and enjoy.
two bulgogi bowls with fried egg on top and side dish of kimchi

Ingredients:

  • Ground Beef. Extra-lean ground beef works best. Otherwise, the final dish will be very greasy and oily. Can be swapped with ground chicken or ground turkey, if you prefer.
  • Onion. You’ll need 1 large onion. Half is grated to a juicy pulp and placed directly into the marinade, and the other half is diced and sauteed.
  • Garlic. Fresh garlic is essential for the flavor. Don’t skimp on the amount!
  • Soy Sauce. Lots of salty umami flavor.
  • Sugar. Regular white sugar works fine. Swap with brown sugar, if you like.
  • Mirin. Sweet Korean cooking wine adds intense flavor and depth. A common addition to meat in Korean cooking so it doesn’t taste or smell too gamey. Look for it at Korean grocery stores. Can be swapped with sake, vermouth, or sherry.
  • Sesame Oil. A fragrant, nutty drizzle of sesame oil completes the meal.
  • Green onions (scallions) + Sesame seeds. The garnish that every bowl of Korean food needs.
  • Rice. Serve with white rice. Or swap with cauliflower rice, quinoa, or brown rice. Multi-grain Korean Purple Rice is also a nice base.
  • Egg. A fried egg on top add more protein and lots of flavor. A classic Korean rice bowl topper.

Instructions:

  1. Prep the onion. Grate half an onion on a box grater into a juicy pulp. Dice the remaining half an onion into chunks.
  2. Marinate beef. In a medium bowl, make the bulgogi sauce: add grated onion, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, Mirin, and sesame oil. Add ground beef. Mix until well combined.
  3. Cook. Heat a wok or large skillet over medium heat. Add a little oil and the diced onion. Cook onion until soft and translucent. Crank up the heat to medium-high heat. Add the marinated beef. Cook until most of the juice has evaporated and the beef has taken on a lovely, caramel-brown color with crispy edges.
  4. Serve. Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Heap into rice bowls with a fried egg on top. Add toppings of choice. Enjoy!

PRO Tips:

  • Use a wok or cast iron skillet. For that charred, smoky flavor.
  • Cook until caramelized. Ground beef releases a lot of water. Cook until crispy and caramelized with a dark-brown color. It will take a few minutes.
  • Make in advance. Reheats well. Make once and organize into separate portions for easy lunch meals all week long. Good for meal prep.
  • Make it spicy. If you’d like more fiery heat, add 1-2 Tbsp of Gochujang to the marinade.

To Serve:

For an easy dinner, add a fried egg. With kimchi on the side, it’s a complete meal!

Or, drizzle with Gochujang Sauce. And serve with lettuce wraps or red or green leaf lettuce. Or perilla leaves or roasted seaweed snack (gim).

Other side suggestions: Korean Cucumber Salad, Korean Lettuce Salad, or Gamja Salad.

spoon breaking into sunny side up egg

FAQ:

How do I store leftovers?

Easy Beef Bulgogii Bowls can be stored in airtight containers. Transfer to the fridge where they should keep for 4-5 days.

More bulgogi recipes:

black bowl on a napkin filled with rice, bulgogi, and fried egg

Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls

Lis Lam
An easy and delicious weeknight favorite: Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls. All the salty-sweet flavor of bulgogi. With accessible ground beef. Make this easy rice bowl and top with a fried egg for a complete meal. Ground Beef Bulgogi Bowls are the best kind of 15-minute dinner!
4.88 from 8 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Korean
Servings 4
Calories 504 kcal

Equipment

  • wok or cast iron pan

Ingredients
  

In a bowl:

  • 1 lb extra lean ground beef
  • 1/2 large onion, grated
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce (not the low sodium kind)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Mirin (Korean sweet cooking wine) rice wine also works
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1-2 Tbsp Gochujang *optional ingredient (for more spicy flavor)

In the wok:

  • 1/2 large onion, diced

Assemble into bowls:

  • 4 cups (cooked) rice
  • 4 sunny side up eggs
  • 2 green onions, chopped

Instructions
 

  • Cook rice, according to package directions.
  • Prep the onion. Grate 1/2 onion on a box grater so that it becomes juicy, onion pulp. Dice the other 1/2 onion in a medium dice.
  • Marinate ground beef. In a large bowl, add ground beef, grated onion, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, Mirin, and sesame oil. Mix until well combined with hands or a fork. Set aside.
  • Cook. Heat a wok or cast iron skillet on medium heat. When the pan is hot, add 1-2 Tbsp neutral oil (I use grapeseed oil) and swirl around in the pan. Add onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes.
  • Increase the heat to medium-high heat. Add the marinated ground beef and keep cooking, breaking apart big chunks with a metal spatula or wooden spoon. Initially, a lot of liquid will release from the meat. Keep cooking until most of the liquid has evaporated and the meat has turned dark brown in color with crispy edges, about 8-10 minutes.
  • Garnish. Remove from heat and add green onion and sesame seeds.
  • Assemble. Evenly divide rice among 4 bowls. 1 cup cooked rice is a generous portion so feel free to adjust, according to your preference. Evenly divide ground beef bulgogi over the rice. Top with a fried egg. Enjoy!

Notes

Tips:
    • Use a wok or cast iron skillet. For that charred, smoky flavor.
    • Cook until caramelized. Ground beef releases a lot of water. Cook until crispy and caramelized with a dark-brown color.
    • Make in advance. Reheats well. Make once and organize into separate portions for easy lunch meals all week long!
    • Make it spicy. If you’d like more fiery heat, add 1-2 Tbsp of Gochujang to the marinade.

Nutrition

Calories: 504kcalCarbohydrates: 56gProtein: 36gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0.4gCholesterol: 234mgSodium: 928mgPotassium: 606mgFiber: 1gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 298IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 69mgIron: 4mg
Keyword Beef, Bowls, Bulgogi, Rice
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
15 minutes, All Recipes, Beef, Korean, Rice, Weeknight Meals

10 Comments

  1. Hi,
    I’ve made your pork mince bowl quite a few times, it’s easy and definitely a favourite of mine.

    I think there’s some errors with this bulgogi recipe however.
    First, there’s nothing hot in the recipe as it stands. The recipe doesn’t include gochujang or gochugaru.
    Second, the grated onion is used twice in the instructions. It’s in the marinade and it’s also used at the start of the cooking step where it is sautéed. I expect that the intent is to sauté the garlic and onion, and not have it in the marinade.

    Thanks for posting your recipes.
    Cheers,
    – Mark

    • Hello! Thanks for your feedback and it’s nice to hear you enjoy the pork mine bowl. For this recipe (Ground Beef Bulgogi Rice Bowls), you are right — the onion is used twice. One half of the onion is used in the marinade and the other half is sauteed at the beginning of the cooking process. Adding grated onion to the meat marinade and also while it cooks is a classic Korean preparation. Also, this is not a spicy bulgogi recipe. Not all bulgogi is spicy! This on has a salty-sweet flavor. However, if you’d like more spicy flavor – I’ve listed an optional ingredient: you can add 1-2 Tbsp of Gochujang to the beef marinade. I’ve listed it as an option but I will make sure to include that option in the recipe card – thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    Easy to make and guaranteed great flavour. My kids are mastering this recipe too. Garnishing with green onion and sesame seeds makes it look like a restaurant dish!

  3. Michelle

    5 stars
    My family and I love this recipe! I have to double it for my family of five. I serve it with white rice or will also use quinoa. This is an easy weeknight dinner – as long as I remember to thaw the ground beef!

  4. 5 stars
    Absolutely fabulous! Made with ground turkey. Cooked the meat as the recipe suggested until it turned a little brown and crispy (took more like 15-18 minutes) and that made a huge difference in the texture and flavor.
    Served with green onions, kimchi, toasted sesame seeds, chili garlic paste. Next time will pickle some carrots and daikon.
    Great recipe!!!!

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious! This is now on my bi-weekly meal plan! It feels so comforting and there are endless toppings to add!

  6. 5 stars
    This was so easy and tasty to make! I never thought I would be able to make the bulgogi sauce with ingredients I already have at home. I typically buy the pre-made jars! I will use this future again for the future 🙂

  7. 5 stars
    This was such an easy, fast, last minute meal. A really homey dish that I’ll definitely make again.

  8. Pingback: Gochujang Pork Bowls | The Subversive Table

  9. Pingback: Spicy Sichuan Chicken Stir Fry | The Subversive Table

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating