Bulgogi Beef Sandwiches

Bulgogi. Ain’t never heard of it, have you? It might be a mouthful to say, but it’s a delicious mouthful to eat. The marinade will take at least 8 hours or so, so plan ahead. If you want to shorten that marinade time, cut your meat smaller…but I like to let things marinade for as long as possible. The smaller you cut the meat, the easier it will be to overcook it as well (if you’re cooking with beef), so keep that in mind.

SERVINGS: 4 sandwiches

TIMING: 15-20 minutes active time, 8 hours (ideally) for marinading


  • 1/2 pear, skin on, grated
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, grated, plus 2 garlic cloves peeled and smashed (for later)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder + 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1  teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more to taste if you like it spicyyyy)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger (it’ll look like juice more than anything…don’t worry)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil + 1 tablespoon for cooking
  • Kosher salt
  • Olive or Veggie Oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds trimmed flank steak (you could use boneless pork loin, trimmed hangar steak, boneless short ribs, or skinless/boneless chicken breasts…go crazy)
  • Three tablespoons quality mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon smooth Dijon mustard
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • Sliced scallions
  • Roughly chopped parsley
  • 4 hoagie rolls or ciabatta buns (or whatever buns you like)


Start your marinade. Grate all of your veggies in a large bowl. Yes, it might seem strange to grate a pear, but go for it. Add your soy sauce, orange juice, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, brown sugar, pepper flakes, 2 tablespoons of sesame oil, and cayenne pepper. Stir like crazy.

Slice your flank steak into about 3/4 – 1 inch slices. Leave them long (you can cut them after you cook if you want). You should get about 12-16 strips. Add to the marinade and either leave in the large bowl or throw into a large plastic bag – just make sure you get all that good marinade all over it. Ignore it in the fridge for about 8 hours or as long as you can. Leave out for about 30 minutes at room temperature before you want to cook it.

Heat the vegetable oil and the remaining sesame oil in a large (large!) skillet over medium-high heat (more on the high side). Remove the meat from the marinade and let drain/drip some of the excess off of it and season lightly with salt (don’t go crazy – you do have soy sauce in the marinade, remember). When the oil is really, really hot (it should shimmer on the surface or if a drop of water hit it, it immediately sizzles), add the meat to the pan and cook until browned – about 2 minutes. Watch that it doesn’t burn – it will try to quickly on you, given that there is sugar in the marinade. Flip over and cook, shaking the pan and flipping as necessary for another 1-2 minutes.

Mix the mayo, mustard, pepper and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder. Set aside. Split the rolls and brush with olive oil. Salt and Pepper. Broil in the oven until toasty and light brown. Take out of oven and rub the smashed garlic across the open face of the buns.

Spread some of the mayo-mustard sauce on the bread. Pile on some of the meat, drop some green onions and parsley, and you’re good to go! Warning – a bit messy, but worth it!


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