Slow Cooker Galbijjim (Korean Braised Short Ribs)

Without a doubt, my slow cooker (aka Crock-pot) has become one of the most used appliances in my kitchen. It’s such a helper when I need to multi-task. I wish I had discovered the magic of a slow cooker back when I was raising my children. Make a note, young busy moms and dads!

I often use it to make traditional Korean dishes for my elderly parents and parents-in-law who are living nearby. On weekends, I just throw a few things in the slow cooker early in the morning, and this frees up time to do other things I need to do, such as testing and photographing recipes for the blog. By the time I’m done with my busy schedule, a succulent, fork-tender meat dish is ready to be delivered. They all love it, especially my mother-in-law who’s never been a meat lover before. She’s been recovering from some major health issues and trying hard to eat well to regain strength. I’m glad to be helpful in a small way.

This recipe is the slow-cooker adaptation of my recipe for traditional galbijjim, hence the same great authentic flavor. When I use my slow cooker, I like to minimize the prep work as much as possible. So, there’s no grating, mincing, par-boiling or browning in this recipe. You can do the prep work the night before. Start the slow cooker in the morning before heading out, and come home to a delicious meal waiting for you.

As I mentioned in my previous galbijjim post, traditional galbijjim does not involve initial browning of the ribs. But, it’s totally up to you if you want to take the time to sear the ribs to add that rich browned meat flavor. I’ve tried both ways with the slow cooker, and the results are equally delicious in slightly different ways.

This recipe is also excellent for other cuts of beef (chuck roast, brisket, flank steak, etc.), pork ribs or roast, and chicken. Simply cut the meat into a few large pieces. The ingredients in this recipe generate a lot of liquid, so no additional broth or water is necessary. The result is fall off the bone tender meat in a rich, slightly sweet and savory sauce!


3 to 4 pounds beef short ribs
1/2 medium onion
1 to 2 carrots
1/2 medium Korean/Asian pear (or 1 bosc pear or apple)
7 to 8 plump garlic cloves
3 to 4 thin ginger slices (about 1-inch round)
6 ounces Korean radish (omit if unavailable)
3 to 4 dried shiitake mushrooms, briefly soaked and quartered (omit if unavailable)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine (or dry white wine)
4 tablespoons honey (or sugar) – adjust to taste
pepper to taste
2 to 3 scallions, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon sesame oil

Trim off any excess fat. Rinse the ribs and let them sit in cold water for about 30 minutes to draw out excess blood. Drain well or pat dry with paper towels. Prepare the vegetables and pear by cutting into large chunks (about 1-1/2-inch pieces).

Place the ribs and vegetables and pear in the slow cooker. Mix together the soy sauce, rice wine, honey (or sugar) and pepper, and pour over the ribs. Toss everything to coat with the sauce. Cover, and cook for 6 to 7 hours on high or 9 to 10 hours on low. Flip the ribs over midway through the process if you’re home. (Adjust the cooking time, depending on how tender you want your ribs to be.) Stir in the scallions and sesame oil.
Remove the ribs and vegetables from the slow cooker. Strain the cooking liquid into a bowl to skim off the fat. I use a fat separator. Pour the sauce over the ribs to serve. (You can also cool it in the fridge or freezer until the fat solidifies to spoon off. Reheat the sauce.)


Serve with rice.

Leave a Comment



  1. Very true , the crock pot is a any busy mum’s best friend!. That meat you have used is so beautiful!!. have a nice day

  2. Hyosun – I LOVED your original Galbijjim recipe, but it was very time consuming. Will definitely try this one. Please post more crock pot versions of your recipes. Thank you!

  3. Hi Hyosun! I’m a Korean American mom but I am not fluent in Korean and my mother isn’t fluent in English. She’s a wonderful cook but I am barely passable and I don’t cook Korean food at all, so I love your site! I tried to find rice wine at the store today but could only find rice wine vinegar. What brand of rice wine do you recommend? I’m going to try this recipe but prob. half it as it’s my “first attempt…” :-) Thx so much for this site.

    • Hi Baxterita – Once you really get into Korean cooking, you’d be surprised to find out how much you’ve learned from your mom just by watching her cooking and eating her food. All my best wishes for your Korean cooking! I usually buy what’s on sale, but most Korean/Asian markets carry both Korean and Japanese brands. Mirin or Koreans call Mirim (미림) – sweetened rice wine – is okay too. Hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions. Thank you so much for using my recipes!

  4. Great idea of using slow cooker! Your galbi jjim looks divine, Hyosun! Perfect meal for the cold season. Hope you are doing well. Your parents and in-law parents must be so proud of you.

  5. tried this recipe using a pressure cooker. added one cup of water and decreased the amount of meat to 1 pound. very tasty. thanks for the recipe

    • Thank you so much, Ames! Great to hear the recipe works with a pressure cooker as well. I’m sure some of my readers want to know that. How long did it take with a pressure cooker?

  6. simply love it

  7. Anonymous says:

    Is there anything you can use to substitute for the rice wine? I am planning on making this tomorrow. Hopefully it comes out as good as yours looks. Thanks for posting!

  8. Thanks so much for posting this. I’ve been searching for a galbijjim recipe for the crockpot. Also, thank you so much for your mu guk recipe. It tasted almost identical to my mom’s!!

    • You’re welcome, Soo! It’s my great pleasure. Hope you like it. Also, I’m happy to hear my mu guk is almost like your mom. Thanks for letting me know! Happy cooking!

  9. Hi, do you think it would work to make this with boneless short ribs? The Costco near me sells only boneless short ribs. Thanks!

  10. How many people will the serve?

  11. Hi! I am married to a lovely Korean man and have two kids..Both my husband and 4 yr old LOVE meat and my husbands favourite dish is Galbi jjim, but its just so time consuming!I am making this version today! THANK YOU :)

  12. Hi,

    I’m making your recipe now and looking forward eating it. Question, is that liquid for crock pot or should I add beef broth or water ?

    • The recipe (slow cooking) generates enough liquid you can use as sauce, so you don’t need any additional broth or water. Please come back and let me know how you liked it. Thanks for trying it out! Enjoy!

  13. I am planning on making this today but realized my meat is only about 2 lb. should i put less soy sauce or add little water like the person who made it on pressure cooker?

    • Yes, just use a little less soy sauce, maybe 1/3 cup instead of 1/2 cup, and sugar or honey. If you’re using a slow cooker you don’t need to add water. Hope this helps. Thanks!

  14. We made this dish using less beef (about 2.6 lbs) and more carrots and turnip. The slow cooker was pretty packed — and I was a bit worried about the marinade not covering the beef but it all worked out in the end. It was an incredible dish! Thank you so much for posting this. This dish is definitely going to be a staple in our home. Can’t wait to see what other slow cooker recipes you post next.

  15. How does the taste for this differ from the original galbijjim recipe?

  16. Made this yesterday and it turned out great! Will try with potatoes next time.

  17. Anonymous says:

    excellent and easy recipe!

  18. Anonymous says:

    I tried this recipe over the last weekend, and it was a big hit with the family and guests. I can’t wait for your cookbook to debut. Lori

  19. nicole kim says:

    I just made this today and had to thank you for this amazing recipe!!

    • Aww that’s great to hear! Hope you find more recipes you like from my blog. Thanks for coming by and leaving me the feedback! Cheers!

  20. Hi! I am in the process of making this recipe now! Was wondering, do
    you add the seasame oil and scallions half way or at the end?

  21. Absolutely delicious! On high for 6 hours, perfectly tender! Also used Sauvignon Blanc, wine that I like to drink

  22. Well done, well done! This is what my family told me, so I’m telling you…well done! This recipe was excellent. The ribs were falling off the bone tender.

    • Well done, Valerie! Glad to hear your family enjoyed it. I made it with pork ribs today for my mother-in-law. She always loves it too. Thanks for coming by!

  23. I will try this soon! How many servings does 3-4 lbs make? If possible, serving size information for your recipes would be helpful! thank you!

    • I’d say about 4 – 5 servings. That’s only my guess, not based on standard serving size for meat. I’ll try, but the number of servings in a recipe really depends on your family portion sizes and what other dishes you serve with. Thank you!

  24. This was really easy and super delicious! Even my picky eaters liked it. Thank you for a great busy mom recipe.

  25. can i boil the meat quickly before going into the crock pot to get rid of the fat first? picturing it all stewed together makes me want to skip the fat straining part

  26. I’m korean and grew up having this made by my mom on stovetop/dutch oven. This slow cook recipe is easy and tastes just like my moms! Made it a month ago using 2.5 lbs of meat, all other steps were followed exactly and it was enough for my boyfriend and I to have dinner and then leftovers the next night. Added potatoes and omitted the optional items. We’re making it again tonight using 3lbs (the amount for us just depends on whats already weighed/packed at the korean grocery). Thanks for the great slow cooker recipe!

  27. Robin Hudson says:

    I tried to get short ribs at my local grocery store, but they look nothing like what I got in Korea, so I didn’t buy any. What do I tell the butcher so that I get the right thing?

    • Ask for tonggalbi or jjim galbi. Korean butchers will know if you tell them you’re making galbijjim. Hope you find good ribs.

  28. What I have at home is a die cast casserole Dutch oven, not a slow cooker or crockpot. Do I need to adjust cooking time and method?
    If I want to cook 8 lbs short ribs (I’d like to serve this at party), do I just double all the other ingredients, especially the liquid items ? Thank you for taking time to share your recipes! :)

    • Hi Jan – I haven’t used a dutch oven for galbi jjim, so I can’t tell you exactly how long it will take. Sorry about that. My guess is it should take much less than using a slow cooker. Yes, you will need to double the recipe for 8 pounds. If you end up using the dutch oven, let me know how it turned out. Thanks.

  29. Hi, I have some beef chuck boneless ribs from Costco…I’m looking forward to making this in the crockpot but want to make sure the meat doesn’t overcook…what can I do to ensure that it comes out tender, even if boneless??? Thanks so much!!!

    • Hi Kate – I’ve tried the recipe with boneless ribs before. It turned out tender. Long slow cooking will help ensure that, so I don’t think you need to do anything else. Try it and let me know. Thanks!

  30. Hi, I was just wondering if I use potatoes when should I put them in? I know they break down and gets all mushy too quickly. Thank you in advance!

    PS: tried your other slow cooker recipes and they came out GREAT!! Thank you!

    • You can add potatoes. Just make sure the potatoes are cut in large chunks. They will be fine. I’m glad to hear you tried my other recipes and they came out great. Thanks!

  31. John Rhee says:

    The slow cooker version of Kalbijim is wonderful and convenient. I love this recipe but I noticed it is not quite the same as the conventional method. Is there a reason why the chestnuts and dates were excluded?

  32. Alexandra says:

    Hi, tried this and mine turned a bit bitter. Is it because I added the sesame oil while cooking it for 8 hrs in high…i love korean food but I dont have a recipe that I have mastered yet and I hope this will be the one I will…thanks

    • I don’t think sesame oil would do that, unless it was a bad one and you used it a lot. Did you use a lot of ginger? I can’t think of anything else that would make the dish bitter. Let me know if you think of anything else. Keep trying. You will get there!

  33. I am planning on making this today. Can I use 1.5 by 1.5 inch pieces of boneless short rib? Thank u for this recipe!