Galbi Taco (Korean-Style Taco with Beef Short Ribs)

DSC 0104 1 e1457500971273 - Galbi Taco (Korean-Style Taco with Beef Short Ribs)


Today, I’m guest posting for Biren over at Roti n Rice while she’s visiting her parents in Malaysia. I’ve been a big fan of Biren’s blog for quite some time, so I was very excited to receive the invitation. Her blog is full of delicious Asian and Western recipes. Biren asked if I could share a Korean beef recipe. After some thinking, I decided to share Korean-style tacos made with my signature galbi recipe (Korean BBQ short ribs).

As you might know, Korean-style tacos were made famous by a food truck (Kogi – Korean BBQ-To-Go) in Los Angeles over 3 years ago. Since then, food trucks selling Korean tacos have become a nation-wide trend.
Unfortunately, I’ve never had tacos from “Kogi” truck, but the idea is to place Korean BBQ meat on a Mexican corn tortilla topped with a mix of Korean and Mexican flavors.
Here, I turned Korean BBQ short ribs into my version of a popular Korean/Mexican fusion dish. I paired the meat with a refreshing salsa made with kimchi, Korean pear and other crunchy vegetables. I used good amounts of cilantro and lime juice to incorporate Mexican flavors.
For the taco sauce, I used some gochujang (Korean red chili pepper paste) to give the tacos extra heat, but you can use any of your favorite taco sauce. 
Korean style taco - Galbi Taco (Korean-Style Taco with Beef Short Ribs)
Try making Korean-style tacos also with bulgogi, dak (chicken) bulgogi, or dweji (pork) bulgogi
There you have it – delicious Korean-style tacos! 

Korean style taco3 - Galbi Taco (Korean-Style Taco with Beef Short Ribs)

For galbi (BBQ short ribs):
3 pounds beef short ribs (flanken cut)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons honey (or use more sugar)
1/4 cup rice wine (or mirin)
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/4 cup (about 1/4 of a large) Korean/Asian pear grated
1/4 cup (about 1/4 of large) onion grated
3 scallions thinly sliced (optional)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Kimchi salsa:
1/2 cup diced kimchi
1/2 cup diced cucumber
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced red cabbage
1/2 cup diced Korean/Asian pear
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (more for garnish)
juice from 1 lime (about 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons)
salt (about 1/4 teaspoon) and pepper to taste

Gochujang sauce:
1 tablespoon gochujang (Korean red chili pepper paste)
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce (or your favorite hot sauce)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar (or to taste)
1 tablespoon ginger ale (you can use other soda or water instead)

10 – 12 4-inch corn tortillas

Mix all marinade ingredients well. Rinse the meat to wash off bone dust. Pound the meat slightly with a meat tenderizer. Marinate the meat for at least 6 hours or longer (overnight for best results). For making tacos, grill the meat turning only once, 2 – 3 minutes on each side, until nicely caramelized, and then cut into small pieces. Or, cut the marinated meat into small pieces first and grill in a pan.

In a large bowl, toss all the salsa ingredients well.

In a small bowl, whisk together all the sauce ingredients until the sugar is dissolved and the sauce is smooth.

Heat the tortillas in a skillet over medium heat, about 30 seconds each side.

To assemble, place the meat on a tortilla and top with a spoonful of kimchi salsa and cilantro. Serve with the sauce on the side.


Leave a Comment



  1. diane goetz says

    5 stars
    I love this website. My husband and I loved to go to our favorite Korean restaurant. I wish I had known about this before me passed. but my children will enjoy this with me.

  2. I made this tonight and it was delicious!

  3. I made this yesterday for dinner and it tastes as fabulous as it sounds. I usually make changes to recipes as I go, but I don’t think I changed anything on this one. This is the first of your recipes I have tried but I will be trying more. Thank you so much for sharing your talent.

  4. Korean Mexican/Latin fusion is one of my favorite fusions!! Tonight I had half a package of short ribs and needed to whip up a quick late night dinner. I searched your site and came across this recipe and had almost everything you asked for in the recipe. I had to make a few modifications -added gochujang to the marinade for some spice, used green apple instead of pear which worked well, whipped up a white sauce to drizzle on the taco also. Despite the meat only having 30 minutes to marinate, it turned out exceptionally well. Instead of grilling, I sauteed in a hot pan until the marinade cooked off and left this gorgeous caramel coating the short rib. The kimchi salsa turned out so much better than I expected. I don’t eat beef so I steam-sauteed a julienned russet potato with butter and salt. I used that as a base instead of the meat and oddly enough it was SO good with that kimchi salsa. This was absolutely delicious and I honestly didn’t want dinner to end. Thank you for this awesome recipe.

  5. Kevin Young says

    Great recipe. Here in Portland, OR. we have a truck that does Korean fusion cooking and has a great bulgogi taco so I got a taste for the Korean/Mexican fusion which is fabulous. This recipe is fabulous and one that will be on my grill many times.

    • Those Korean fusion trucks are great! Enjoy grilling!

      • Kevin young says

        The one here is called Koi Fusion. It is very good but I think since finding your web page here he won’t be seeing me quite as much. What a treasure this site. My family will be eating a lot if Korean food now. Thank you for the time you have put into this.

        • Glad to hear you’ll be cooking more Korean food at home. (Sorry Koi!) And I’m thrilled to be able to help!

  6. The only one’s I’ve tried are the ones at Duke’s Waikiki. Known as Kalbi Street Tacos, They must be similar to L.A. Anyhow, can’t get through Duke’s without an order. Great snack for two.

  7. This looks great! I’ve never heard of combining these two food styles. I’m going to have to try this!

    Do you think this combo (mexican/korean flavors) would work using Korean bbq chicken in place of the beef in this recipe?

  8. Anonymous says

    what do we do if we have no asian pear? is there something else we can substitute it for? thank you so much for your recipe!

  9. Elizabeth @Mango_Queen says

    Wow! Just saw this recipe and chanced upon your blog via Facebook, through Namiko Chen. What a delish Galbi Taco recipe! Love this! I’ll try it this weekend. Thanks for sharing a very good korean tacos recipe!

  10. live sports says

    nice work

  11. Hi, Hyosun! This is truly something to look forward to, I love your idea, I’m gonna make a Galbi Burrito.

  12. Yummy!! I bet galbi with a mango type of slaw would be good, too! 😀 Thank you for the fusion dish!

  13. I wish this food truck would make its way to London! I love Korean food and this idea of Korean and Mexican fusion sounds really exciting….the taco looks awesome 🙂

  14. I have never heard of Korean style tacos! Mexican and Korean fusion sounds very intriguing (I have never heard of the food truck either). They look delicious!

  15. Kelly Siew says

    Wow this looks really great! Fusion done right. 🙂 actually Korean food does very well with a lot of western cuisines, surprisingly.

  16. Kitchen Riffs says

    Really nice recipe. I found your blog through Roti n Rice, and it’s wonderful! Glad I found you – I’ll be back. Thanks.

  17. I agree with muh muh maxwell! These tacos look delicious!!

  18. Nami | Just One Cookbook says

    Hyosun, this taco looks so good! My friends in LA all talked about the food truck. I so wish we have one in SF! BUT, now I can make this at home… THANK YOU!! Off to Biren’s site now.

    • Hyosun Ro says

      Hi Name – I’m sure there is one in SF, although not by the same people. Thank you for stopping by!

  19. RecipeNewZ says

    I found this post though Pinterest. The photo was so beautiful that I just had to come here to read the recipe! Love it! And love your site :-).

    I would like to invite you to share this post (and your other posts 🙂 ) on a new photo based recipe sharing site that launched in May. The idea is simple: all recipe photographs are published within minutes of submission. And, of course, the images link back to the author’s site.

    It’s called RecipeNewZ (with Z) –

    I hope you get a chance to visit and to share some of your delicious posts with our viewers. It would be a pleasure to have you on board 🙂

  20. My Little Space says

    I just started to learn some Korean dishes lately and glad to have found you at Biren’s site.
    Hope you’re having a lovely weekend.

    • Hyosun Ro says

      Thank you for coming over from Biren’s site! Hope you find some good dishes to try out here. Hope you’re have a great weekend as well.

  21. Nasifriet says

    Hi Hyosun

    I’m hopping over to your blog after reading your guest post on Biren’s blog. Nice to meet you and being introduced to Korean dishes which is a mystery to me. I love mysteries, so I will definitely check out your blog now and then 😀


  22. Sandra M. says

    I think that you whole taco is working wonderfully together. Although kimchi salsa sound heavenly, I think that I will be in love with Gochujang sauce…one more on my must try list!
    Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful weekend!

  23. Katerina says

    This kimchi sauce has intrigued me! I would love to try it!

  24. Anonymous says

    Such an awesome recipe for summer! Thanks for sharing.

    I also have a future recipe request for a simple, staple Korean side dish: Kong-jang! Braised black beans.


  25. anyeong Hyosun 😀
    What a wonderful pics of galbi taco you have here.
    Perhaps you’re interested to submit your food photos on a food photography site that has tagline “Food Photography that will make you hungry” 🙂
    It’s free to submit, free to join, and a lot of members can enjoy your creation!

  26. Fern @ To Food With Love says

    That looks superb! Will definitely be a hit on a Kogi truck 🙂
    I haven’t had time to try out your recipes recently. But this looks soooo good!!!

  27. Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious says

    Wow, this looks amazing! Will definitely have to make this over the weekend. The boyfriend is going to be thrilled.

  28. Holly | Beyond Kimchee says

    Hyosun, this is rocking recipe! I also heard and read about the famous Kogi taco but never had chance to try it. I like your kimchi salsa. Great job on the recipe!

  29. muh muh maxwell says

    holy crap this looks awesome

  30. Biren @ Roti n Rice says

    Many thanks Hyosun for this very tasty recipe and informative post. Your galbi and kimchi salsa looks absolutely delicious. I can’t wait to give it a try.