How to Cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ

How to Cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ

Korean cuisine is renowned for its bold flavors and communal dining experience, and at the heart of this culinary tradition lies the beloved BBQ short ribs, or “galbi.” These succulent, marinated meat delights are not just a dish but a celebration of taste and culture.

Welcome to the ultimate guide on How to cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ.

In this article, we’ll walk you through selecting the finest short ribs, preparing a marinade that sings with flavor, and mastering the grilling technique that gives you perfectly cooked ribs every time.

Whether you’re a seasoned grill master or new to BBQ, our step-by-step guide will ensure your Korean short ribs are the show’s star.

How to cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ
Credits to Eitan Bernath

So, grab your apron, and let’s embark on a flavorful journey that promises to elevate your BBQ skills and impress your guests with an authentic Korean feast right in your backyard.

Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ

How to Cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ
Credits to Allrecipes

Preparing Your Ingredients

Before you fire up the grill, gather the ingredients for your Korean BBQ adventure. You’ll need:

  • Korean short ribs (also known as “galbi”): Look for well-marbled ribs. The fat will melt during cooking, adding flavor and tenderness.
  • Soy sauce: This will form the base of your marinade, bringing a rich, umami flavor.
  • Brown sugar: To balance the soy sauce with a touch of sweetness.
  • Garlic: Minced or grated garlic adds flavor that is essential to Korean cuisine.
  • Sesame oil: A little goes a long way in adding a nutty aroma to your ribs.
  • Green onions: Chopped for the marinade and garnish.
  • Asian pear: Grated to tenderize the meat and add a subtle sweetness.
  • Toasted sesame seeds: For garnish and an extra crunch.
  • Rice wine or mirin: For a hint of acidity and depth in your marinade.

The Art of Marinating

Marinating is crucial for infusing your short ribs with those signature Korean flavors. Here’s how to do it:

Combine the marinade ingredients:

In a bowl, whisk together soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, sesame oil, and rice wine. Add the grated Asian pear – its enzymes will help tenderize the meat.

Submerge the ribs:

Place your short ribs in a dish or a sealable bag. Pour the marinade over them, ensuring each piece is well-coated.


Let the ribs marinate in the fridge for at least two hours. For best results, leave them overnight, but if you’re short on time, leave them for at least two hours.

Flip occasionally:

This ensures every part of the rib gets to soak up the flavors.

How to cook Korean Short Ribs on BBQ Ingredients
Credits to OMG! Yummy

Remember, patience is key. The longer the ribs marinate, the more flavorful they’ll be. Now, you’re ready to grill them to perfection!

Preparing the BBQ

Grilling Korean short ribs requires some preparation to ensure your BBQ is ready to deliver those deliciously charred edges and tender meat. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Clean the grill: Start with a clean cooking surface to prevent sticking and ensure the best flavor.
  2. Preheat your BBQ: Whether you’re using charcoal or gas, preheat your grill to medium-high heat. The coals on charcoal grills should be white-hot.
  3. Oil the grates: Lightly oil the grill grates to prevent the ribs from sticking.
  4. Temperature check: Use a grill thermometer to check the temperature. For the perfect cook, aim for around 350°F (175°C).

With your BBQ prepped and at the right temperature, you’re all set to start grilling those ribs to perfection.

Cooking Korean Short Ribs to Perfection

Now comes the exciting part – cooking your marinated short ribs on the BBQ. Follow these steps for the best results:

  1. Place the ribs on the grill: Lay the ribs flat, leaving some space between each piece.
  2. Watch the clock: Grill the ribs on each side for about 3-4 minutes. Look for a nice sear and caramelization.
  3. Flip carefully: Use tongs to gently turn the ribs over. This helps keep the marinade intact and ensures even cooking.
  4. Check for doneness: The ribs should be a rich, golden brown with slightly charred edges. An instant-read thermometer should register 165°F (74°C) when inserted into the thickest part of the meat.

Once cooked, let the ribs rest for a few minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute, making your Korean short ribs juicy and flavorful. Serve hot, and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

Flavor Enhancements

Enhancing the flavor of your Korean short ribs on the BBQ can transform a good dish into an unforgettable one. Here’s how you can add that extra touch of deliciousness:

Wood Chips and Charcoal Types for Flavor
Glazed Salmon with Whole Foods BBQ Sauce
  1. Smoky Wood Chips: For an authentic BBQ experience, consider adding wood chips to your grill. Hickory or oak chips complement the rich flavors of the marinade and impart a subtle smokiness to the meat.
  2. Homemade Glazes: Brush your ribs with a homemade glaze in the last few minutes of grilling. Combine soy sauce, honey, and a touch of gochujang (Korean chili paste) for a sweet and spicy finish.
  3. Resting Time: After grilling, let your ribs rest under foil for about 10 minutes. This allows the juices to settle, ensuring each bite is as flavorful as possible.

Focusing on these flavor enhancements will elevate your Korean BBQ short ribs from simply tasty to truly extraordinary.

Side Dishes and Pairings

No Korean BBQ is complete without the perfect side dishes and drink pairings. Here’s what you can serve alongside your short ribs:

  1. Banchan: These small side dishes are a staple in Korean cuisine. To complement the flavors of the ribs, offer a variety of banchan, such as kimchi, pickled radishes, and seasoned spinach.
  2. Rice and Lettuce Wraps: Serve steamed rice and lettuce leaves for guests to make wraps. Adding a slice of rib, some rice, and a dollop of ssamjang (a thick, spicy paste) in a lettuce leaf is a traditional and delicious way to enjoy galbi.
  3. Beverage Pairings: Cold beer or soju are traditional drinks. Their crispness cuts through the richness of the meat and refreshes the palate.

With these side dishes and pairings, you’ll provide a well-rounded and authentic Korean BBQ experience that your guests will love.

Safety and Clean-Up

Safety should always be your top priority when cooking, especially with an open flame. Here’s how to ensure a safe and enjoyable BBQ experience:

  1. Never leave the grill unattended: Always watch the BBQ when it’s in use.
  2. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby: Be prepared for any unexpected flare-ups.
  3. Use the right tools: Long-handled tongs and spatulas can help keep your hands safe from the heat.
  4. Check for gas leaks: If you’re using a gas grill, check regularly.

After the feast, cleaning up properly can help maintain your BBQ and keep it ready for next time:

  1. Let the grill cool: Never attempt to clean a hot grill.
  2. Scrub the grates: Use a grill brush to remove leftover food particles.
  3. Clean the interior: Remove ash and debris from charcoal grills and wipe down gas grills.
  4. Cover your BBQ: Protect it from the elements to prevent rust and damage.

Following these safety tips and clean-up steps will ensure that your BBQ remains a source of delicious meals for years.

Final Analysis

Congratulations on mastering “How to cook Korean short ribs on BBQ.”  By selecting the best ingredients, marinating them to perfection, and grilling them with care, you’ve created a dish that’s sure to impress. Remember, patience and attention to detail are key to a great BBQ.

Whether serving these ribs at a family gathering or a casual weekend dinner, the rich flavors and tender meat will make your meal unforgettable. We hope this guide has been informative and easy to understand, with simple wording and short sentences to help you. Now it’s time to gather your friends and family, share the joy of cooking, and enjoy the delicious results of your hard work. Happy grilling!

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