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Korean BBQ Short Ribs (Kalbi)

  • Author: Ellen Castro
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Inactive Cook Time: 12 hours 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 13 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


This recipe was passed down from my mom, who would marinate and prepare the meat for a family gathering, birthday, or any time I have friends over. My dad will usually cook the meat on the BBQ until evenly charred. We will enjoy it with homemade kimchi, lettuce wraps, and other Korean sides known as “banchan”. The sweetness from the sugar combined with the saltiness of the soy sauce marinade makes the ribs quite addicting. It is best served fresh off of the BBQ.


5 lb of LA style short ribs (thin cut)

3/4 to 1 cup of white sugar 

1 cup soy sauce 

2 tablespoons garlic, minced

1 tablespoon black pepper, freshly ground 

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1/2 kiwi, peeled and pureed 

1/3 cup rice cooking wine (Mirin)

1 tablespoon agave

(Optional) Chopped green onion to garnish




  • Substitute: If kiwi cannot be found, substitute for ⅓ – ½ cup of Pepsi or Coke
  • Use gloves for coating ribs in the marinade to keep things clean and sanitary
  • If using a plastic bag for marinating, double bag to prevent leaks
  • Store cooked meat in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week