Korean Beef Skewers

GrillKoreanGluten-FreeLow Carb

Grilled beef skewers with a spicy Korean marinade. Quick and easy Paleo dinner.

Photography Credit: Sabrina Modelle

These grilled Korean beef skewers are a little sweet, a little spicy from the gochujang (which is a Korean chili paste), and full of umami. The best part is that you can have them on the table in about a half hour.

I’ll never forget the first time I ate Korean food. We were visiting my mom’s friend in Los Angeles and she took us out for Korean barbecue. My first taste of kimchi, banchan, and bulgogi and I was hooked.

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Korean Beef SkewersI live in California where great Korean food is not difficult to come upon, but in 2012 I learned I would have to be gluten free for the rest of my life. Instead of saying goodbye to my favorite foods, I set about learning to make them at home. Korean food was one of the first cuisines I tackled.

I love serving these skewers with rice, kimchi, and some extra gochujang on the side. For a real treat, wrap everything up in a sheet of nori for a Korean taco, like in the photo below!

Korean Beef Skewers

Korean Beef Skewers Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 8 minutes
  • Marinating time time: Marinating time
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6

These Korean beef skewers are best when cooked on a grill, but they are also great cooked on the stovetop. Use a very hot cast iron skillet and cook for 3 to 4 minutes per side.

If you can't find gochujang or you don’t like the ingredients in the store-bought stuff, use miso in the marinade instead or make your own. It’s an indispensable condiment in our house!


For the steak:

  • ¼ cup tamari or soy sauce
  • ¼ cup mirin
  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons gochujang or light miso
  • 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak (flap steak or flank steak works well here, too)
  • Canola or other neutral oil

To serve (optional):

  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • Cilantro or mint leaves
  • Kimchi
  • Extra gochujang
  • Cooked rice, optional
  • Nori (seaweed sheets), optional


1 Whisk together the marinade: In a large bowl, combine the tamari (or soy sauce), mirin, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, and gochujang (or miso) for the marinade. Whisk until the ingredients are well-combined.

2 Marinate the steak for 20 to 30 minutes: Cut the skirt steak into 2-inch wide strips. Add the strips to the bowl of marinade and stir until evenly coated. Marinate the strips of beef for 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature. If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 20 minutes.

Korean Beef Skewers

3 Preheat the grill for at least 20 minutes while the meat is marinating. The grill is hot enough when you can only hold your palm over the grill grates for a second or two.

4 Grill the beef skewers: Thread meat onto the skewers and brush with oil. Grill the skewers for 4 minutes. Flip and grill another 3 to 4 minutes on the second side, until the steak reaches your preferred doneness.

Korean Beef Skewers

5 Serve the skewers: Sprinkle the skewers with sesame seeds and cilantro or mint, if using. Serve with rice, kimchi, nori, and extra gochujang

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Korean Beef Skewers

Sabrina Modelle

Sabrina Modelle started The Tomato Tart in 2010. Since then, recipes and photographs have been featured in media outlets, worldwide. The site features handmade, homemade, food that happens to be gluten free. When she’s not working, Sabrina can be found with her nose in a cookbook and a dog in her lap.

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25 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Kelly McCormick

    I think my husband would ask me to marry him all over again! I made these last weekend and he about died over how delicious they are! We couldn’t find the gochujang or the light miso. Instead we used a packet of miso soup mix (a small individual packet). These were so tender and flavorful! He insisted I make them again (like every week) ;) so here we go again as they are on our July 4th menu. I found the light miso so I’ll use that this time instead of the packet. Seriously, try these~~~


  2. Sharon

    I’m sure these seasonings would be delicious with chicken or pork but I’m not sure how long I should marinate those proteins. I would also be baking these rather than using a grill if that matters.

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  3. Patricia

    I made these last summer, along with lemon chicken skewers, for a party for 40 people. I actually grilled them before people started to arrive, then put them in a warm oven covered in foil. They were a huge hit! I am making them again soon for a party of four, and will not marinate or cook them ahead of time – but I probably will speed things up by fixing the marinade ahead of time, so I can just start the marinating at the appropriate time. I think the meat would be fine marinated a little longer than 30 minutes but would worry about the texture of thin strips left too long, especially overnight or all day.


  4. Aron

    I made this for dinner tonight and it was excellent! Easy, quick and versatile! My husband AND 3 children (ages 7, 4 and 2) all loved it which is a rarity. This will be added to my go-to recipe binder. Thanks for the yummy meal! I made a batch with strip steak and another with pork tenderloin. Both were delicious!

  5. Marianne | Basil and Bubbly

    I seriously felt like I had gotten to the end of the internet looking for a korean beef recipes that actually had some flavor — all of the ones I’d found before fell flat. However, I made this last night and it was wonderful! I was too lazy to skewer, so I just cooked in my cast-iron like suggested. I’d never used ( or heard of ) the gochujang before — it was definitely that “secret ingredient” that our local restaurant uses that we could never reproduce until now. Thank you SO Much!

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