Learn How to Make Our Super Quick Korean Beef
With this Super Quick Korean Beef dish in your repertoire, dinner will be on the table in no time.
On the Table in 15 Minutes
This dish came about when we had some extra ground beef in the Test Kitchen and it was dinnertime and we all needed to eat. Like now. We often make a big batch of rice and we happened to have some already made, which meant we just needed a flavorful beef dish using pantry items.
That was the challenge.
Fresh or Dry?
Sure, you could make this Super Quick Korean Beef with fresh ginger but we found that the ground ginger from the spice rack works in a pinch.
We call this “Korean” because it combines typically used flavors like salty soy, sweet brown sugar, spicy hot pepper along with the aromatic ginger and toasted sesame oil, which are often used in Korean beef dishes.
Speaking of fresh, the fresh chopped scallion greens are not optional! They really add to the dish.
Multi-task and steam some green beans while stir-frying the beef and you will have dinner ready in 15 minutes! The sesame seeds are optional, but if you have them around (we store ours in the freezer) they add visual interest and texture to the dish.
This dish was a FODMAP IT!™ recipe based on one that we found at Damned Delicious.
Looking for More Quick Recipes?
Use our Recipe Filter! You can search for Quick recipes, which you can get on the table in 30 minutes or less, and/or search for Easy recipes, too. Those have 15 minutes or less of prep time, with perhaps longer time in the oven or cooking or resting time that can be unattended.
You’ll find meaty Quick and Easy recipes as varied as Lamb Burgers with Feta Tzatziki Sauce, Juicy Pork Chops and Asian Pork Lettuce Wraps (certified by Monash University) to a few pork loin recipes and that’s just for starters! And if you love this recipe you will also love our Low FODMAP Pork & Noodles.
Try our Korean BBQ Short Ribs, too!
For another VERY popular FODMAP IT!™ recipe, check out our Ben Lee’s Butter Chicken.
Super Quick Korean Beef
Tangy, sweet and salty flavors combine in this super easy ground beef dish. If you have rice already made, dinner will be on the table in no time.
- 1/4 cup (54 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 teaspoon ground dry ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon Garlic-Infused Oil, made with vegetable oil or purchased equivalent
- 1 pound (455 g) lean ground beef
- 1/4 cup (16 g) chopped scallions, green parts only
- 1/4 teaspoon white sesame seeds optional
Whisk together the brown sugar, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, ginger and hot pepper flakes in a small bowl.
Heat your wok or a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and heat until shimmering. Break meat with hands and add to hot wok or pan. Stir-fry the beef, breaking up with a spatula as you go. After about 1 to 2 minutes or when the beef is about halfway cooked through add the sauce and continue to stir-fry until beef is cooked all the way through. Add scallions and sesame seeds if using and give the beef one last toss.
Serve immediately with hot rice, white or brown. Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days and reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop. (This makes a great lunch to take to the office, by the way).
Dédé’s Quick Recipe Tips Video
If You Can Tolerate
- Fructans: If you have passed the garlic fructan Challenge you can use 1 tablespoon regular vegetable oil and add 1 minced garlic clove along with the meat.
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more. For a more detailed explanation, please read our article Understanding The Nutrition Panel Within Our Recipes.
Tell Us What You Think
59 comments for “FODMAP IT!™ Super Quick Korean Beef”
It is quite yummy, but I would use less sugar— it doesn’t need to be quite as sweet. Thank you!
Hi Sandy, Thank you for writing. The goal was to bring the original recipe through our FODMAP IT!™ process, staying close to the original vision. We make this recipe now all the time on-the-fly with less sugar and agree that it works very well!
Loved it!! Followed recipe as written. I work nights for 12 hours a shift and I’m always looking for delicious quick recipes. Love it!! Served mine with rice vermicelli mmm 🙂
That’s great Kristen! Thanks for letting us know. We also love quick meals that are delicious and this definitely fit both bills in our opinion.
You state to fry the hamburger in the garlic infused oil, but what if your ground beef is fatty and needs to be drained? I didn’t think if this until it was too late. The recipe should be modified to put the oil in the sauce mix so one can drain the grease from the hamburger after it’s cooked or almost done cooking.
Hi Audrey, if you have particularly fatty beef, or if you are sensitive to fat, you could try the approach you mention. The garlic flavor in the oil will not imbue into the beef as much, but it is certainly a technique that you could try.
Hands down, my family’s favorite Low FODMAP dish!
YAY! Also easy and very flavorful. So glad you like it.
I made this this week using half the brown sugar and loved it! My 17 y.o. son who has no gut issues loved it too. I do appreciate how quick and easy it is to make as well.
We love when families can eat together – deliciously.
YUMMY!! Will definitely be a weekly favourite.
This one has been a hit with many. So glad you liked it too…reminds me to get it back into my own dinner rotation!
This may be a dumb question but can you tell me how many carbs are in this?
Stephanie, it is not a dumb question at all, however, it is not one that I can answer. We are focused on FODMAPs and have made a decision not to present nutritional data with our recipes at this time, for many reasons. You could try looking up a nutritional calculator and perhaps plugging the information in. In brief, I do not fancy including the data because I find it very inaccurate. For instance, how much fat is in your beef? How much do you choose to drain away, or not? Are your measurement tools accurate and the same as those used to calculate the data? There is so much room for coming up with an inaccurate representation.
Could you use fresh ginger or would dried ground ginger be better?
Hi Sarah, you absolutely can use fresh ginger. I developed the recipe with dry ground ginger as it was meant to be a “pantry”, last minute dish. 1/4 teaspoon of dried is approximately equal to 1 tablespoon of fresh grated ginger, but it varies greatly and depends on how fresh the dried ginger is!
I would love to try this tomorrow, but I only have ground turkey. Can I use ground turkey instead of beef ?
Absolutely! It won’t be as “meaty” but it should be plenty flavorful! Let us know how it goes. Make sure you cook the poultry all the way through, which shouldn’t be hard because it is ground and because you can just go by color. There should be no raw/pink color left whatsoever.
Do you think this would freeze well?
Hi Erica, thank you for writing. I really do not think this would freeze well and you can make it so quickly that I can’t really see the benefit. You could try it but it will dry out and will most likely need to be helped along upon reheating.
Hi. I made this to help with my busy family. It freezes and reheats very well for us.
Hi Zoe, thank you for writing! I have never frozen this dish. Did you freeze it with for without the rice? Was it in a zip-top bag with the air removed? I would love to know – and how did you reheat? I guess since this dish takes such a short period of time to make fresh, freezing would never have occurred to me since the reheating would be about the same amount of time.
Just wanted to let you know this recipe has become a staple at our house. The first time I made it I knew it would be. Even my husband loves it and he doesn’t have issues. It is so nice to be able to make a meal that feeds us both and we both enjoy. I have also passed it along to a friend of mine that is doing Weight Watchers as I think she could enjoy this as well. Simple and quick is just another good point. Will be checking back often to see what other goodies you are putting out there for us to try!
Nancy, Thank you so much for the note. It helps us with future content to hear from our community – this has proven to be a very popular recipe! And as you said, it pleases FODMAPers and others, alike. And, thank you so very much for spreading the FODMAP Everyday gospel! The more, the merrier!
Very yummy! I use half the sugar (it’s pretty sweet) and I serve it on lettuce as lettuce wraps with white rice on the side. It’s super easy and everyone loves it. It’s a go-to!
Thank you for letting us know! The amount of sugar can be so variable depending on the saltiness of your soy sauce, in particular. Glad you found a happy medium!
Question: what cut of beef would you recommend if we wanted to go to the trouble the slice it before cooking instead of using ground beef?
Any cut that you like to stir fry! You could try sirloin, tri-tip or tenderloin for starters…but, FYI, the texture of the ground beef is one of the joys of this dish.
Loved it!! I’m new to a low fodmap diet and this recipe gave my taste buds hope! My teenage daughter loved it too, but wants to know the calorie count.
So great to hear that you enjoyed the dish! We do not have the calorie count at this time. You could look up the calorie count of ground beef for 4 ounces, which is approx. 210 calories. Pay attention to serving sizes. While there is sugar and additional oil and soy sauce etc., but per serving are very small portions.
My husband and 8 year old daughter really enjoyed it. Will definitely be making it again Great for lettuce wraps or poke bowl. Thanks for the awesome recipe.
Yay! Thank you for letting us know. I do like it in lettuce wraps as well – even with the rice as well in there.
Tastes great! Easy to cook. My darling is picky but he really liked this will make it again.
Thank you for letting us know and we are thrilled to be helping you eat well! Last time I made it I used turkey and that was great as well. I have also stuffed it into lettuce cups.
This was delicious! I doubled the recipe, but still used only the 1/4 c brown sugar after reading through several of the comments. Might even use a bit less sugar than half next time (personal taste). Other than that, followed the recipe and it was awesome! My boyfriend was very excited about this one and about licked the pan clean! Thanks for the super quick, delicious recipe!
Tell him I am a plate, pan and finger-licker, too:) No judgment here! Thank you for the feedback and comment!
Delicious! I winged it with salmon filets instead of ground beef. Only problem was that when I poured the soy mixture on it caramelized. Next time I think I would add more water if I use salmon. Great taste and definitely worth trying again
Wow great idea to do with salmon! Thank you for telling us about it:) I love the rich flavors of caramelization, so sounds good to me.
One of my favorite staple dishes when I have a limited amount of time to prep and cook. The dish is so delicious! Goes really well served on top of rice. It can be difficult to find low FODMAP options that have so much flavor. Thank you for sharing.
You are going to love my version with noodles! Working on it now, with ground pork. Stay tuned!
It was easy to make but I feel as if it lacked a little flavor. I didn’t have the issues everyone else did of there being too much sugar but I do plan on making it again and seeing how I can get the great flavor of the sauce to really resonate in the meal itself.
Hi Amanda, you could up the ginger and red pepper, if you tolerate capsaicin, or even try fresh ginger! Let us know how it goes. Also, definitely make sure you are using a high quality soy sauce that is naturally brewed, such as San J brand. Many supermarket soy sauces would leave this lacking.
This is a fav recipe in our house! I generally use ground turkey. Is there a way to adapt this for shrimp and maybe a nice rice noodle to mix it up? Just wondering your thoughts cause I may try this!
Our Pork and Noodles will be up your alley! For shrimp, I would try one of our shrimp dishes.