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Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl

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Spicy pork bulgogi rice bowl is an easy and delicious meal made with Korea’s signature spicy pork BBQ stir fry and hot steamed rice. The BBQ pork is coated with addictively spicy sauce and it is sure to please anyone who loves spicy food.

Spicy pork bulgogi is a popular Korean pork stir fry dish that is slightly spicy but also sweet. It is great for BBQ or over rice! | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Korean spicy pork and my family’s obsession

My husband’s obsession about Korean spicy pork BBQ is no secret. (I’ve mentioned it here and there on my blog over the years.) Long story short, this is one meal he used to get almost every single night when he was an ESL teacher in Korea. And his habit and obsession didn’t die down when he came back to Australia.

This naturally forces (I’m sure this is the right word, Ahem) me to make more spicy pork for him and as a result, I become more creative with my Korean spicy pork recipe. Good thing, I guess? 😉

Korean spicy pork has many names under its belt. Amongst many, (Spicy) Pork bulgogi, Dwaeji Bulgogi (돼지불고기), Gochujang Bulgogi (고추장 불고기) and Jeyuk Bokkeum (제육볶음) are all well-known names.

In case, you don’t recognise some of these Korean words, Dwaeji (돼지) = Jeyuk (제육) = Pork and Gochujang (고추장) = Korean chilli paste.

Also, in case you’re wondering (because I know you will ask me if I don’t stipulate here), it’s not very common to make spicy beef bulgogi. I’m not saying it can’t be done. it’s just not common in Korea.

In the same way, it’s not common to have non-spicy pork bulgogi. That’s just how it is. 🙂

Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl Platter | MyKoreanKitchen.com

There are many things I love about my spicy pork bulgogi rice bowl

First of all, it’s spicy! Well, you might not notice the spiciness in your first bite because the sauce is also heavily sweetener coated (aka grated apple and honey), but soon enough it grows in you. But it’s so darn addictive! Your chopsticks will be so busy to get more of these delicious bites!

Second, this actually relates to the first reason. It’s spicy but also so delicious. So it makes me happy. I mean, seriously. I’ve read many times that spicy food is actually good for reducing the stress level in various publications and I think it’s true! Well, at least for me. 😉

Third, this spicy pork bulgogi rice bowl is so easy to prepare. Work hard for maybe 10 minutes (prepping) and sit and relax for 30 minutes (marination) then cook for 10 minutes. Voila! It’s a perfect weeknight solution! This can also be made ahead of time if you’re organised.

Fourth, this bulgogi rice bowl provides a miniature version of the whole Korean BBQ experience. Of course, this is based on what you would serve the bowl with. But look below. This is how I typically serve my spicy pork bulgogi rice bowl at home nowadays.

Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl - It's addictively delicious! | MyKoreanKitchen.com

It has rice, BBQ meat, fresh salad (cucumber, lettuce, and Korean perilla leaves) all shredded and Korean spicy BBQ dipping sauce, all in one bowl! Of course, don’t forget the KIMCHI!

Rice Bowl Alternative

I’m sure not everyone will want to serve this spicy pork bulgogi over rice. Maybe you’re itching for some outdoor BBQing instead? Then it can certainly be arranged too! But my recommendation of the meat for this is pork belly!

As you see will below, I used pork shoulder otherwise known as pork collar butt for today’s spicy pork bulgogi recipe. Because I found that this is better suited for stir-frying. But if you’re going to use an outdoor BBQ, I think pork belly is a better choice. The extra fat in each layer makes the meat extra tender and delicious. Also, I absolutely love when the fat burns a little bit and is charred. It gives a really nice smoky flavour. No one can resist that!

Another way to serve is stir-frying with other vegetables. I particularly love stir-frying them with Korean perilla leaves. It adds such a nice aroma to it. Also, when you add other vegetables, they lose some water, so it can dilute the spiciness as well. For this, check my other Korean spicy pork recipe. (FYI, this recipe is actually made with pork belly. Also, this is a less spicy version compared to today’s recipe.)

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this spicy deliciousness!

Spicy Pork Bulgogi | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Ingredients for Spicy Pork Bulgogi, 4 servings 

Main

  • 600g/1.3 pounds pork shoulder (pork collar butt), cut into small pieces for stir frying (*see note)
  • 1 medium onion (170g/6 ounces), julienned
  • Some cooking oil (I used rice bran oil)
  • 30g/1 ounce green onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp roasted sesame seeds

Pork Bulgogi Marinade (Blend these together in a handheld mixer or food processor)

How to Make Spicy Pork Bulgogi Marinade | MyKoreanKitchen.com

  • 100g/3.5 ounces red apple (e.g. royal gala) or nashi pear
  • 50g/1.8 ounces brown onion
  • 3 Tbsp gochujang (Korean chilli paste)
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp honey (or brown sugar)
  • 2 Tbsp gochugaru (Korean chilli flakes)
  • 2 Tbsp rice wine (mirin)
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp minced ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper

Pork Rice Bowl Serving Suggestions

*1 Tbsp = 15 ml

** If you want to learn more about Korean ingredients, check my 30 essential Korean cooking ingredients list!

 

How to Make Pork Bulgogi

1.Marinate the meat in the sauce for at least 30 minutes.

Marinating Spicy Pork Bulgogi

2. In a well-heated wok or skillet cook the marinated meat over medium-high heat until the meat is about 70% cooked (about 7 to 10 mins). Add the onion and cook further until the meat is completely cooked. Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Serve the meat with steamed rice, fresh lettuce, and Korean spicy dipping sauce.

How to Make Spicy Pork Bulgogi | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Note

-Pork shoulder (pork collar butt) purchased from a Korean grocery store is easier to use since it’s more prepared for this type of cooking. However, it can also be easily purchased from your local butcher too. It’s a popular cut for roasting or other slow cooking. Make sure it’s skinless and boneless. You can even ask them to thinly slice it for you for stir frying.

-I found that the best size for the each meat is 5 cm/2 inch (length) x 2 to 3 cm/0.8 to 1.2 inch (height) x 0.5cm/0.2 inch or less (thickness).


Spicy pork bulgogi is a popular Korean pork stir fry dish that is slightly spicy but also sweet. It is great over rice! | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl

Spicy pork bulgogi rice bowl is made with Korea's signature spicy pork BBQ stir fry and hot steamed rice. It's delicious and seriously addictive!
4.95 from 20 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: gochujang, spicy pork
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 510kcal
Author: Sue | My Korean Kitchen

Ingredients

MAIN

  • 600 g pork shoulder (pork collar butt) cut into small pieces for stir frying (*see note above)
  • 170 g medium onion (julienned)
  • Some cooking oil (I used rice bran oil)
  • 30 g green onion (chopped)
  • 1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds

MARINADE (BLEND THESE TOGETHER IN A HANDHELD MIXER OR FOOD PROCESSOR)

  • 100 g red apple (e.g. royal gala) or nashi pear
  • 50 g brown onion
  • 3 Tbsp gochujang (Korean chilli paste)
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp honey (or brown sugar)
  • 2 Tbsp gochugaru (Korean chilli flakes)
  • 2 Tbsp rice wine (mirin)
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp minced ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper

RICE BOWL SERVING SUGGESTIONS

  • Steamed rice (for 4 people)
  • 1 English cucumber (thinly sliced)
  • 10 leaves Lettuce (thinly sliced)
  • 10 leaves Korean perilla (thinly sliced)
  • 4 tsp Korean spicy dipping sauce (for 4 people, about 1 tsp each)
  • Kimchi

Instructions

  • Marinate the meat in the sauce for at least 30 minutes.
  • In a well-heated wok or skillet cook the marinated meat over medium-high heat until the meat is about 70% cooked (about 7 to 10 mins). Add the onion and cook further until the meat is completely cooked. Garnish with green onion and sesame seeds. Serve the meat with steamed rice, fresh lettuce, and Korean spicy dipping sauce.

Notes

*1 Tbsp = 15 ml

Nutrition

Calories: 510kcal | Carbohydrates: 80g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 1030mg | Potassium: 797mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 1480IU | Vitamin C: 12.7mg | Calcium: 106mg | Iron: 3.5mg
Tried this recipe?I love hearing how you went with my recipes! Leave a comment below or Tag me on Instagram @MyKoreanKitchen.

 

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Written by: Sue

Last Updated: May 13, 2019

Hi, I'm Sue and I am the creator of My Korean Kitchen. Thank you for joining me in this delicious culinary journey!

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60 thoughts on “Spicy Pork Bulgogi Rice Bowl”

  1. Hello Sue, thanks for the recipe. I want to ask you something. Is better use brown sugar/honey for this recipe ? I want to make it but i cant find korean brown sugar in my town. Thank you.

  2. Our whole family loves this recipe they couldn’t stop eating it. It is a fantastic balance between sweet and spicy. If you are thinking about making this do it! Yum yum

  3. I made the recipe using Kiwi as a base instead of apples. I followed all of the other ingredients but had to omit the onion. I cut up a porterhouse steak and used that as the meat. The recipe was delicious and probably a bit different than the original.

  4. I made this for friends one weekend. It was amazing, everything was eaten and my friends requested the recipe.
    I had to sub smoked paprika and cayenne pepper for the gochugaru as this wasn’t available in my local shops.
    Cannot wait to make this again and try your other recipes. Absolutely love Korean food and as there are no Korean restaurants in my city, I will have to cook at home instead!

  5. Hi! I live in Texas so we love our spice here! Is this ok to marinade overnight? I like to prep as much as I can beforehand so that cooking on the day-of is quick. 🙂

  6. Made this last night and it’s fantastic. Just the right balance of spice, sweet, tangy and umami. I served it with the sweet and tangy cabbage salad as well as the cucumbers, lettuce and rice which added a cooling contrast and nice crunch to the dish.

    II’m just discovering Korean cuisine and the recipes on here are great, easy to follow and accessible.

  7. This was exceptionally good. I used Boston butt and followed the recipe fairly closely. Had to order the Korean spices from Amazon and made Kimchi from scratch. When I tasted the marinade, I was fearful that it might be too spicy, but turned out great. Marinated overnight. Thanks for great recipe!

  8. I have to say this has become a regular dish in my family. I don’t know if I got the right kind of gochugaru though, since a single tablespoon of it makes it almost inedible. Being at the asian market was a bit overwhelming, since the one that looked closest to what you linked was this GIANT bag I would have taken years to go through. But I just tapered down the gochugaru I got and it’s always a sensation of a dish. 🙂

    But thank you for making such an easy to follow recipe!

    • Yes, Korean gochugaru often comes in a large bag. My 500g gochugaru typically lasts me 18 months to 2 years. I keep it in the fridge (well sealed). Anyway, it’s good to hear you worked out the balance with your gochugaru!

  9. Thank you for this recipe. It is so detailled that I think I we be able to cook it. I am in Korea right know and I am happy to discovered your website. I love so much Korean food !

  10. New to Bulgogi here; when you cook the pork after marinating it, do you put the marinade (sauce) in the wok too? I thought the marinade was just a marinade and didn’t, and my dish did not turn out at all like the picture.

  11. Made this in the fry pan with pork belly, cooked the meat until the edged were charred, and it was smokey and tender and so full of flavour I ended up eating all of it before the rest of the family got home! thanks for such a great recipe.

  12. Loved this! Used several banchan with this: Green onion salad, pickled carrots, pickled daikon and chopped cooked eggs. Going to try this with chicken.

  13. Hi Sue! This dish is fantastic! However, I was wanting to reduce the heat just a little. Should I reduce the chili paste, or the chili flakes (or both)? I was thinking of going 2 TBSP each instead of 3 and 2. Thoughts?

  14. I am trying to work on my Korean cooking skills and am loving this website. I always love the spicy pork served in restaurants, and am looking forward to trying it on my own. Thanks for the motivation!

  15. I have never eaten Korean food before but I made this today and it was sooooo delicious. My husband and I lave spicy food but I was grateful for the salad on the side. Yummm I will be doing this again. Thank you.

  16. And this is the next recipe that I’m going to try! Looks absolutely amazing.

    I’m a chili freak. I refuse to eat a single meal unless there is some chili involved. Whenever I go out for dinner, I make sure that I have some form of chili with me. Some say it masks the flavour of foods, but nothing could be further away from the truth. Just as salt elevates flavours, so does chili. You have to have a well developed and refined palate to appreciate chillies, and I know I do 🙂

    Spicy food is the spice of life!

    Ronnie B.

  17. I’m ready to try it, but how do I make the Korean Spicy Dipping Sauce. I just made the Korean popcorn chicken & we all enjoyed it, except it was a little too hot & spicy. I’ll cut down a little on the gochujang. You can be sure I’ll be making it again, & again!
    Thank you, I’m anxiously waiting for your next recipe.

    • Hi Judy, You can either buy the spicy dipping sauce from a Korean grocery store (http://amzn.to/2brxAcO) or make one using this recipe. It’s not too difficult!
      If you found my popcorn chicken was too spicy for you then this will be even more so. Maybe two times more spicy. Just a friendly warning! 😉 Enjoy!

  18. I have on occasion used port instead of beef for bulgogi. It is really good. As you might have guessed, I am a pork lover. I will have to try this version.

    Brenda

  19. Very nice. I love Bulgogi. My only issue with Korean food is the addition of Honey or sugar in many of the dishes which is absent in many other Asian dishes. I wonder what the history behind that is Sue.

    For sure Pork Belly is really great to use, especially if you are on a Keto diet. The fat helps weight loss and get you to burn fat for energy as opposed to sugar. I love you gave an alternative without Rice, although serving it over plain white rice and the Cucumber offsets the spicy Bulgogi very nicely.

    • Not sure which Asian cuisines you are thinking about but the ones that I know well- Japanese, Thai and Vietnamese- use as much if not more sugar than Korean cuisine in many of their dishes. I think it’s related to their preference for dishes that are slightly salty and slightly sweet at the same time. I always reduce the sugar quantities by at least half in most of the Japanese recipes because we prefer the dishes less sweet than they do. I do tend to follow the amounts in Thai cuisine though because they have the addition of the sour element that is then well compensated with the sugar to reach a good balance.

      • Actually I’m Northern Vietnamese and we don’t use much sugar in our cooking at all. Most dishes we don’t use sugar. It is in the south that has a lot of sugar in the meal. Just want to clarify.

    • You got my point right! Serving spicy bulgogi over rice and other salad will certainly help you deal better with the spiciness.

      To answer your other question, using sugar or honey is a fairly recent trend in Korean cuisine (post 1940). Although honey was used prior to this, it was more commonly used as a medicine or to make dessert. Honey was a rare and expensive ingredient for normal public to use in the old days.

      In recent times, people love having strong flavoured dishes (e.g. spicy, salty), so to balance out these flavours, more sugar and honey is being used, compared to traditional Korean food.

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