Recipe: Korean style short ribs by David Theiss |

Recipe: Korean style short ribs by David Theiss

Korean short ribs, or galbi, by David Theiss

While camping this weekend I was shown a super easy, extremely delicious way of cooking a piece of meat. I had previously thought it was a tough piece of beef and needed to be cooked a very long time to become tender and flavorful. I’m referring to beef short ribs. For years I’ve cut these pieces of ribs for customers and come to realize that it was a special way of cooking them that creates such master pieces of meat.

The short ribs that were cooked this weekend were a Korean style short ribs which are cut thin, marinated in a Korean sauce, then thrown on the grill at a high temp and cooked very fast. I was happily amazed how tender they turned out.

Short ribs are always beef, taken from the brisket/chuck area, and approximately eight inches long with either three or four bones still connected. Your butcher then cuts them into your choice of short ribs. Whole long bone ribs are referred to as English cut short ribs. These ribs are usually cooked by braising them and then slow cooking to break down all the connective tissue. This long and slow process is a great cooking method for the winter, warming your house and filling it with a delicious aroma. This will be another article … Cross cut thin short ribs are referred to as flanken ribs. This is when the strips of meat still have the small ribs attached, typically never sliced any thicker than 1/2 inch crossways, usually less. This style of short ribs is used in many cultures such as today’s recipe, Korean style ribs, also Hawaiian short ribs or Maui ribs, and Jewish ribs or Kosher ribs.

To take this cut of short ribs even further, they were cooked boneless this weekend! I know boneless beef short rib sounds like an oxymoron, but this meat has been marketed boneless for years as a great piece of meat worthy of some attention. Boneless rib meat is just the actual beef that is wrapped around the ribs, but removed for ease. These ribs are what we are going to use for our Korean short ribs, or “galbi.” This recipe is easy to achieve great results with little effort and a little time for marinating. If it still looks too hard, or you are in a hurry, we offer these little goodies pre-marinated and ready for the grill. Grill, grill, grill while the summer lasts!

Korean Style Short Ribs (Galbi)


2 pounds beef short ribs cut flanken style

1 cup soy sauce

1 tablespoon honey

2 cloves garlic

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 cup mirin (rice wine), beer also works

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup scallions cut thin

1 tablespoon sesame seeds


To prepare the marinade, incorporate all the ingredients, except the scallions and sesame seeds, in a Ziploc bag. Squeeze around the meat so all surfaces get covered and let sit in refrigerator for at least one hour.

Place ribs on a very hot grill. Turn several times and do not walk away as these will only take a few minutes. You can be sure it’s done cooking when the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.

Garnish with scallions and sesame seeds.

Served well with rice, steamed vegetables, or cooled slightly and thrown into a salad.


By David Theiss, owner of Butler Meat company in Carson City.