Instant Pot Korean Beef Bowls (or Burritos!)
Instant Pot Korean Beef Bowls are the perfect thing to make when you’re looking for something quick and easy for dinner! Load everything into your favorite bowl or wrap it all up in a tortilla if a burrito is more your thing!
What can I even say, I’m a foodie at heart.
We’re throwing it back to 2016 with Korean beef but we’re bringing it into 2018 because we’re ditching all the hard work and just tossing it all in the instant pot. This is my favorite kind of food. B-I-G in both the flavor and color department!
Guys, I’m comin’ at you today with a stupid simple Instant Pot Korean Beef recipe that’s great to use if you want to make BOWLS or BURRITOS or TACOS on weeknights! We’re talking about a recipe that has just a handful of ingredients. You’ll toss in the pressure cooker and then just sit back for 35 minutes while it all cooks up for you. Take the dog out, go for a run, read a book on the couch or just take a load off while dinner cooks itself for you. I’ve got to tell you. These instant pot Korean beef bowls are so easy to make that I’m willing to bet they’re going to become a regular staple around our little nest.
My hope is the same for you.
Just take a closer look at all those tender chunks of beef. Would you believe me if I told you there’s no searing here, just a tossing of ingredients and out comes this perfectly cooked meat that you can shred if you want to make burritos or leave it as if you’re going to bowl route. There’s no wrong answer here. We’ve had them both ways. Don’t make me choose between the two.
For my rice bowls, I used regular parboiled rice that I cooked up super quickly. You could swap the rice for quinoa, farro, or even serve the beef on a bed of greens if you’ve got that kind of willpower. But seriously, if you serve this with a leafy green salad, I LOVE your dedication and I want to be just like you. ❤️
Instant pot Korean beef came about after tons of recipe testing. I’ve made bulgogi beef kabobs on the grill, bowls with marinated beef in the skillet, and finally today’s instant pot version. With every recipe, one thing remains constant; we use unripe pears to tenderize the meat and lend it tons of flavor.
It starts with a knob of ginger, a few cloves of garlic, half a small onion, and bosc or Asian pear. At this point, I’m confident that you could even use a Barlett. Can you tell I’ve tested Korean style beef with a variety of pears! Toss it all into a food processor and let it break down into a paste. Once that’s done, add it to the instant pot along with the chunks of beef, soy sauce, brown sugar, water, sesame oil, and gochujang (affiliate link). Gochujang is a fermented hot chili paste that’s commonly used in Korean cuisine. If you can’t find it in your grocery store, I suggest purchasing on Amazon. But if you’re can’t wait that long, you can swap it for sriracha. It’s not the same thing, but it’ll certainly work in a pinch!
If you didn’t want to cook this all up immediately, you can combine everything and pop it into the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. And for a long-term solution, place it in a zip-top bag and just freeze it. I do suggest defrosting the Korean beef marinade before cooking it in the instant pot to make sure that it cooks up in 35 minutes. I’ve never tried adding anything frozen into the pressure cooker so I’m not too sure if that would affect the cooking time.
For serving, I suggest kimchi, sriracha mayo, chopped scallions, peanuts, and fresh cilantro leaves. You can wrap all of that along with cooked rice and beef in a tortilla to make a burrito. Toss it all in a bowl if you’re doing a desk lunch or something.
You could even make instant pot Korean beef for meal prep! Just add the rice and beef to one side of the container, and you know these little condiment containers (affiliate link)? They’d be perfect for storing the herbs, kimchi, and sriracha mayo. Not to mention you can just pop the containers into your meal prep box, so everything stays together. Then just pull them out before reheating.
I’m lovin’ all the possibilities with this one simple Instant Pot Korean Beef recipe!
Instant Pot Korean Beef Bowls
Instant Pot Korean Beef Bowls are the perfect thing to make when you're looking for something quick and easy for dinner! Load everything into your favorite bowl or wrap it all up in a tortilla if a burrito is more your thing!
- 1/2 an Asian pear or 1 bosc pear
- 8 cloves garlic
- 2-inch knob of ginger, sliced
- 1/2 small yellow onion, cut into quarters
- 2- 2 1/2 pounds lean stew meat, cut into 1 ½ inch pieces
- 1/4 cup water
- 6 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons gochujang or sriracha
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Blend: Combine the ingredients listed in the 'blend' section in a food processor or blender until a smooth paste forms. If you do this in a blender, use the 1/4 cup of water listed under 'instant pot' also.
- Instant Pot: Add the prepared mixture to the IP along with the all the remaining listed ingredients. Cover the IP make sure it is sealed. Cook the Korean Beef on manual, high pressure for 35 minutes. When it's done, do a quick pressure release. Shred the meat if desired to use in burritos, I leave it as is for bowls!
- Burrito: to make a burrito, spread sriracha mayo on a warm flour tortilla, top with cooked rice, shredded meat, lettuce leaves, kimchi, chopped peanuts, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime.
- Bowls: to make a bowl, add cooked rice to your bowl, along with the prepared meat, kimchi, chopped peanuts, cilantro, a fried or half boiled egg. Sprinkled with scallions or toasted sesame seeds!
- The stew meat can also be replaced with a trimmed chuck roast or top sirloin cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes. Keep in mind, using a different it of meat may change the cooking time slightly.
- To make your own sriracha mayo: combine 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 2-3 tablespoons sriracha sauce, 1 teaspoon sugar, and 1 teaspoon soy sauce in a bowl and stir until completely mixed. Use immediately or refrigerate until needed. Will last about 5 days in the refrigerator.
I can’t wait to try this! I’m Korean and I love Korean food, but I have to be honest, I’m usually too lazy to do the labor-intensive cooking most recipes call for. This looks like a much easier option!
This is definitely as easy as it gets and you don’t miss out on that flavor! Hope you give this recipe a try, Danielle!
Hi! I have two family members that can’t handle spiciness… can you still add the chili paste for flavor (in a lesser amount) and have it be less spicy?!? Trying to figure out if it would be better to not cook it with the meat but to add it later (for those who like spice)! Thanks!
Hi Tracy! You can simply omit it from the recipe if you wish and just serve it with sriracha on the side or cut back to 1 teaspoon. We found the recipe to be on the milder side even with the 2 teaspoons but everyone’s tolerance for spice is different 🙂 Hope you all enjoy the bowls/burritos!
We made this tonight and it was fantastic!! So easy too! We didn’t have mayo on hand, so mixed the sriracha with horseradish…very spicy but right up our alley! Another winning recipe from this amazing site – thank you!
O.M.G! This recipe was INCREDIBLE. I followed the recipe exactly, and used the beef to make burritos with the siracha mayo, kimchee, cilantro, and peanuts. It was honestly OUT OF THIS WORLD. Keeper recipe for sure. I even froze half the meat (I cook for only two of us) with the intention we can have it for another dinner next week. Can’t wait to try your other recipes (the instant pot chili looks great)!
I would add 1 tsp of Worcestershire sauce.
Also you can substitute kiwi for the pear. A common variation.
I love your cooking and have done many of your recipes. I do have a question. I do not have an instant pot and was wondering if I can use a slow cooker instead? If not I will just have to go out and get an instant pot because this looks divine 🙂 Thank you for your time.
Hi Jill! I’m so glad you’ve tried a few of my recipes! Yes, I think you could do this in the slow cooker! You may need to add a bit more water (like another 1/4 cup or so) and play would need to play around with the cooking time a bit (in the 3-5 hour range on the high setting.) Hope you enjoy the bowls! 🙂
Do you use the liquid in the pot at all? To top the rice? Or do you just toss it?
I usually keep the leftovers in the cooking liquid so they stay nice and moist. When I’m serving, I’ll drizzle a little over the meat/rice and anything that’s remaining usually gets tossed out when the leftovers run out! I’m sure you could be super creative and use the leftover liquid as a cooking liquid for rice or maybe even cook something else in it though!
I make these regularly!! Amazing!!!!
Do I peel the pear? Can’t wait to make this!
No need to peel unless you’d like to! I’ve done it both ways!
Can I add all ingredients except mayo in IP without chopping?
Absolutely delicious recipe! I served over rice and with a side of green beans. All I can say is, “Make it!”
Loved this. Made a few changes. Juice of one orange plus beef broth. Fuji apple instead of pear. Thickened with corn starch slurry and served over rice with green beans! So good…thanks!
A friend sent me this recipe when I got my instant pot and it it’s so good as is! My whole family loves these bowls. Thanks so much!
Just discovered your site, and made this recipe last night. So, so good! Did not have any Kimchee, but tried it with some homemade spicy purple sauerkraut, and it worked well. The sriracha mayo really adds a lot to the dish. Didn’t have pears, so just used half a honeycrisp apple. I was also out of sesame oil, and it was still good, although I will make sure I have it next time, and I will try it with Gochujang next time instead of Sriracha.
YUM! Made this tonight…topped it with the kim chee, peanuts, chopped cilantro and sesame seeds. So good! Beef was super tender. Everyone loved it. Will definitely make again!
Great recipe. Easy and delicious.
I love this recipe! Sometimes I will make it as a stuffed red bell pepper with cilantro, green onion and lime pickled red onions as additional toppings.
What a great idea, thanks for sharing, Kate! 🙂
I have frozen stew meat. Do I adjust the time in the IP for that?
Amazing recipe! Will definitely make it again.