Bibimbap means “mixed rice” in Korean. I, for one, love mixing stuff into rice, so when my sister sent me this recipe from Damn Delicious, an idea was born. Bibimbap For Cheaters is filling, delicious, customizable, and easy enough to make on a weeknight.
What is Bibimbap?
Bibimbap is a Korean rice bowl topped with beef (usually thin strips of sirloin), egg, and vegetables. All of the ingredients are mixed together and eaten with a spoon. Traditionally, the beef and egg yolk in bibimbap are raw, but there are many, many recipes in which they are cooked. We will be doing a cooked version.
So Why Is This Version of Bibimbap “For Cheaters?”
Like I said above, bibimbap is usually made with strips of sirloin. We will be using ground beef. In her Korean Beef Bowl, Chunga uses a Korean-inspired sauce on ground beef to make an easy weeknight dinner. I’ve adjusted that sauce slightly and added some bibimbap toppings for a heartier meal, without having to purchase or mess with sirloin steak. I always have some ground beef in the freezer, so this is one of those meals that I can whip up in about 30 minutes.
Also, in traditional bibimbap, there are usually many types of vegetables that all have different cooking preparations. I simplified this and just added raw cucumber and pickled carrots as the veggies, along with the red bell pepper and onion that are cooked into the beef mixture. I strongly suggest using the pickled carrots. They are so easy to make, and they add an acidic contrast to this rich dish. I also added Japanese mayo, which is not traditional, but very tasty.
How Do I Make This?
First, start by sautéing an onion and a red bell pepper. Actually, very first you’ll cook your rice. Have you ever made dinner just to discover that you forgot to start the rice? That’s the worst. So, start your rice and then start cooking your onion and bell pepper. After those are softened, add three or found cloves of garlic and one pound of ground beef. While the beef is cooking, you’ll mix together your sauce, which has soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, ginger, crushed red pepper flakes, and a little cornstarch, for glossiness.
While the beef is cooking, prepare your toppings. I sliced up some English cucumber and pulled my quick pickled carrots out of the fridge. When the beef is finished, make your fried eggs however you like them. Mark likes his hard cooked, like a barbarian, and I make mine over-easy. The beauty of a sunny side up or over-easy egg is that when you break the yolk it mixes into everything like a second sauce. It’s awesome.
After everything is ready, it’s time to assemble the bibimbap! Put your rice in a bowl, and then add your beef, fried egg, cucumbers, pickled carrots, green onions and sesame seeds and Japanese mayo if you wish. Then, mix everything up and dig in! Of course, you can also add any other toppings you’d like. Sriracha would be good if you like things spicy. We are spice wimps.
We never got tired of this dish while we were testing it. In fact, I had it again for lunch yesterday, and it was still totally delicious. I’m so excited for you to try it! If you enjoyed this post, will you please share it? And, as always, I’d love to see your pictures if you make this! Have an awesome weekend, and I’ll see you next time.
Bibimbap For Cheaters
For the Sauce
- 1/2 cup soy sauce using low sodium soy sauce will give you more control over the salt. You can always add more salt if you need to, but it's not so easy to take out.
- 1/3 cup brown sugar lightly packed
- 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 inch fresh grated ginger or 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon cold water
For the Beef
- 1 medium onion diced into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1 red bell pepper diced into 1/2 inch pieces
- 2 Tablespoons neutral oil vegetable, grapeseed, etc.
- 3 or 4 cloves garlic grated or minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- white rice
Garnishes and Toppings – All Optional But Delicious
- fried eggs
- sliced green onions
- Japanese (kewpie) mayo
- sesame seeds
- pickled carrots
- julienned cucumbers
- First, get your rice cooking. I always use my rice cooker if I can help it, and I cook 1 cup of uncooked rice for our family of 4. If my kids were bigger I would probably do 1 and 1/2 cup, uncooked. If cooking rice on the stove, add 1 part rice to 2 parts water to a pot. Heat over medium high heat until boiling. Cover and turn the heat down to low. Simmer for 20 minutes. Then turn off the heat and leave covered for another 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
For the Sauce
- Mix the soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, red pepper flakes, and ginger together in a bowl. In a smaller bowl, add the cornstarch and then the cold water and whisk together. Add the cornstarch slurry into the sauce and whisk it all together. Set aside.
For the Beef
- Preheat a pan over medium heat. Add the oil and sauté the onions and red pepper until the onion is slightly translucent, about 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and the ground beef.
- Brown the beef, crumble it with a spatula, and drain off excess fat if necessary.
- Prepare your toppings and garnishes while the beef is cooking.
- When the beef is done, add the sauce. You may need to whisk the sauce to re-combine it. Bring the sauce to a boil and let it cook for a minute or two. This will activate the cornstarch and give the beef a glossy finish, and help the sauce stick to the rice.
- If you need more time to get your toppings ready, leave the beef simmering on low heat. It'll wait for you for a few minutes.
Assemble the Bibimbap
- In a bowl, add rice, then your beef, then any toppings you desire. Mix everything together and enjoy!