Spicy galbijjim (braised beef short ribs) cooked in the pressure cooker! Enjoy tender ribs that are spicy, sweet and savory in a fraction of the time.
Galbijjim (갈비찜, braised beef short ribs) is something I cook over and over simply because everyone loves the sweet and savory taste of the delectably tender ribs. Lately, I’ve been making this spicy version with excellent results! It’s becoming a new favorite.
Until I bought an Instant Pot, I mostly used my slow cooker for braising tough meat because of its easy, hands-free cooking. The Instant Pot pressure cooking offers the same benefit but in a fraction of the time! If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can always turn to my recipe for traditional stove top galbijjim or slow cooker galbijjim. Simply adjust the seasonings to make this spicy version.
How to prepare the short ribs:
First off, look for short ribs with the most meat and less fat. I almost always use bone-in short ribs for braising simply because meat cooked on the bone tastes better. However, use boneless if that’s all you can find.
Even high quality short ribs will have some fat, which is not a bad thing. Trim off any thick layers of fat from the short ribs without removing the thin, tough skin that holds the rib together.
Korean cooks soak the ribs in water and parboil to remove the blood and fat for a cleaner taste. Here, I skipped parboiling and simply presoaked the ribs in cold water to draw out the blood. Adding a couple of tablespoons of sugar to the water helps expedite the process.
How to prepare the braising liquid for spicy galbijjim
For this spicy version, I adjusted the braising liquid used for my slow cooker galbijjim to incorporate gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes) and gochujang (Korean red chili pepper paste). If you like it really spicy, add more gochugaru, some dried whole red chili peppers, or fresh chili peppers.
I also grated all the aromatic vegetables for the flavors to penetrate the meat faster because the cooking time here is much shorter.
How to braise the short ribs in the Instant Pot
Traditionally, Korean braising does not involve searing the ribs, although more people do it in modern days. I didn’t sear the ribs in this recipe, but you know it’s easy with the “Sauté” function of the Instant Pot (see my Instant Pot braised oxtail), if you like that rich browned meat flavor.
You can do all the prep work the night before, and turn on the Instant Pot when you’re ready to cook. This, of course, marinates the ribs, which is a flavor contribution as well. You can also cook the ribs ahead of time. The flavor of short ribs improves over the next day or two.
All you need is about 35 minutes (40 minutes if you like it fall off the bone tender) pressure cooking time, depending on how thick your meat is and how tender you want your meat. To let the meat rest and further tenderize, I usually wait 10 to 15 minutes for a natural pressure release before releasing the remaining pressure.
More Instant Pot recipes
Instant Pot Spicy Galbijjim (Braised Beef Short Ribs)
- 3.5 to 4 pounds English cut beef short ribs, galbi (갈비)
- 8 ounces Korean radish, mu (무) cut into large chunks
- 1 medium carrot cut into large chunks
- 3 to 4 dried shiitake mushrooms briefly soaked and quartered
- 1/2 medium Korean/Asian pear
- 1/2 medium onion
- 8 plump garlic cloves
- 1 inch long ginger piece
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 4 tablespoons rice wine (or mirin or dry white wine)
- 3 to 4 tablespoons gochugaru (고추가루)
- 2 tablespoons gochujang (고추장)
- 3 tablespoons honey (or sugar)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- pepper to taste
Other additions and garnishes:
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 scallions roughly chopped (and some finely sliced for optional garnish)
- sesame seeds - optional
- Trim off any thick layer of surface fat. Place the ribs in a large bowl with enough water to cover all the ribs. Add a couple of tablespoons of sugar and stir until dissolved. Let the ribs soak for about 30 minutes. Drain and rinse the ribs. Drain well while preparing the other ingredients.
- In a small blender, blend the pear, onion, garlic, and ginger well. You can separately grate them if you want. Transfer to a bowl. Mix it with the remaining braising liquid ingredients.
- Place the short ribs in the pot, and add the vegetables.
- Pour the braising liquid over. Toss everything well to coat the ribs evenly. Close the lid tightly. Press the “Meat” function, and using the “+” button, set the time to 35 minutes (or 40 minutes for fall off the bone tender meat). Make sure the pressure switch is turned to “sealing”. When finished, the Instant Pot will automatically turn to the “Keep Warm” mode. Leave the pressure cooker alone for 10 to 15 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure and opening the lid. You can leave it longer if you want.
- Stir in the scallion and the sesame oil. Remove the meat and vegetables from the pressure cooker. Spoon off the fat. 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, and then reheat the sauce. Garnish with the optional scallions and sesame seeds.