Asian Food

Korean Bulgogi and Pear Kale Salad

A pear and cabbage salad with marinated Korean steak bulgogi and a creamy tahini, pear and pepper dressing. The markets are full of local pears these days and I’ve been waiting for you to use them to make this bulgogi and cabbage salad! Bulgogi is a Korean barbecue/grilled meat where the meat is marinated in a mixture of soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and garlic. The marinade often contains things like mashed pears and onions to add sweetness and help soften the meat to be perfect with some drops! Bulgogi can be made with different kinds of meat and my favorite is beef. Since this dish is based on meat, in this case beef, it is good to use a first piece of meat such as pork tenderloin, tenderloin, rib eye, flank steak or flank steak (for this batch of bulgogi I went with some nice Ontario corn-fed beef loins! ) Using a good slice of beef, thinly sliced, cutting against the grain and marinating the steak in the pear marinade at night makes for a deliciously tender and juicy bulgogi! You can eat this bulgogi alone, with rice or, like me in this case, in a salad!
Of course, the bulgogi beef is the star of the show and the sweet, crisp and juicy fresh pears are the top of the show. For the dressing I put a base of mashed pears with a little Korean pepper paste, Korean bean paste, vinegar, soy sauce, tahini (sesame butter), sesame oil and ground sesame seeds, which is so delicious and creamy and full of flavor!

Korean Bulgogi and Pear Kale Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes Marinate Time: 8 hours Cook Time: 15 minutes Total Time: 30 minutes Servings: 4

A pear and kale salad with Korean style marinated steak bulgogi and spicy chili, pear, and creamy tahini dressing.


  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 small pear, peeled and cored
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, grated
  • 2 tablespoons ginger, grated
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 pound Ontario Corn Fed Beefsteak (flank, skirt, strip loin, ribeye, etc.) thinly sliced
  • 1/2 pear, pureed
  • 1 tablespoon gochujang (Korean chili pepper paste) (or sriracha)
  • 1 tablespoon doenjang (Korean soybean paste) (or miso or omit)
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon tahini (or peanut butter)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted and crushed
  • 6 cups baby kale (or shredded kale)
  • 1 cup cabbage, sliced
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 pear, sliced
  • 1/2 cup kimchi
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted


  1. Puree the soy sauce, pear, onion, sugar, garlic, ginger, and sesame oil before mixing into the steak and placing it in a sealed container to marinate in the fridge overnight.
  2. Drain the marinade and cook the steak on the grill or in a pan over medium-high heat, about 6-8 minutes.
  3. Mix everything!
  4. Assemble the salad and enjoy!

Option: Omit the pear and onion from the marinade.
Option: Replace the pureed pear with an apple or kiwi or 1/2 cup pineapple, etc.
Option: Replace the brown sugar with plain sugar or honey, etc.
Option: Add 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese or blue cheese, feta, etc.

Nutrition Facts: Calories 515, Fat 29g (Saturated 10g, Trans 0), Cholesterol 56mg, Sodium 848mg, Carbs 34g (Fiber 9g, Sugars 10.1g), Protein 31.4g

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