Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos with toppings.

Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos

84 reviews / 4.8 average

These. Tacos. Are. Life.

They are so life that I used the periods-after-each-word trick right up there to really make you understand. Had to. Desperate times, desperate measures, all that stuff. You HAVE to understand the beauty of this combination:

  • tender, fall-apart, juicy, flavorful meat (this from a veg-lover, okay? so please just realize that I do not often praise meat like this)
  • bendy, pillow-soft flour tortillas, because we’re going for a total food truck vibe here
  • kimchi, which is spicy fermented cabbage that sounds 100% awful but is, in fact, delicious
  • chopped cilantro
  • chopped peanuts
  • spicy mayooooo and don’t even go middle school on me with the “I don’t like mayo” thing. these tacos require mayo.

This beef – this gingery, garlicky, flavor-loaded beef – is kind of a workhorse around here. It has shown up in many of my recipes: Korean BBQ Burrito, Korean BBQ Steak Salad Bowls, Korean BBQ Yum Yum Rice Bowls… and now, look. Here it is again. I kind of  hope it never leaves.

Basically what has happened is me saying “I need to eat that Korean style beef again” + “I have an Instant Pot now” and then *poof*! This recipe.

Guys, I have mixed feelings about the Instant Pot. Mostly because I don’t like telling you that you need to buy something when I think you probably don’t need it. You probably already have a ton of unused appliances in your kitchen and I would be adding to that long list. That stresses me out.

On the other hand, YOU KINDA NEED IT. It can cook your meat in less than an hour. Wait though: it can cook your meat in less than an hour!! You don’t have to plan ahead. Dinners will be rescued, souls will be saved. I dunno, it’s up to you. A slow cooker would work. A pan on the stove would work. Instructions for both are in the recipe.

But still. Think about that hour. You might kinda need it.

How To Make Our Korean Beef Tacos (1 MIN):

Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos close up.

This is kimchi. Are you guys on that bandwagon? Or are you closing your browser window?

Kimchi in a container.

Annnnd juicy beef. Ready in an hour. Did I say that already?

Instant Pot Korean Beef.

I honestly do not rave about meat recipes. That’s just not my jam.

But this is a meat recipe I am raving about. I adore it. I think you will love it.

Buy some quality meat, legit kimchi, and extra fluffy tortillas. You are about to operate a standard FOOD TRUCK SERVICE out of your house. For yourself. Singularly you. Sweatpants-wearing, top-knot-rocking you.

Tacos are the best. Have fun. XO

Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos.

PS. I adore this video. It’s where I got the inspiration for this Korean style beef recipe way back when I made it the first time. ♡

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Korean Beef Tacos in a row.

Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour

Description

Food truck fusion-style tacos, straight outta the Instant Pot! Flavorful garlic and ginger beef gets tucked into flour tortillas with kimchi, cilantro, peanuts, and spicy mayo. Oooo-ee!


Ingredients

Scale

For the Korean Beef:

  • 1 14-ounce can pears, drained (fresh pears work, too)
  • 1 two-inch knob of fresh ginger
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 lbs. top sirloin (see notes)
For the Tacos:
  • chopped cilantro
  • chopped peanuts
  • kimchi !!!! or slaw of some sort
  • sriracha mayo or yum yum sauce
  • flour tortillas

Instructions

  1. Make the sauce: Pulse pears, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, and brown sugar until mostly smooth. Reserve half for later use (see notes).
  2. Cook the meat: Trim any fat off the meat and cut into a few large chunks (it will shred, but cutting the meat helps it cook faster). Place in an Instant Pot and cover with half of the sauce. Cook on high pressure (manual) for 45 minutes. Release steam and shred the meat in the Instant Pot with two forks.
  3. Tacos: Fill each tortilla with beef, cilantro, peanuts, kimchi, and spicy mayo. Oh.My.Gosh. It’s so good.

Notes

Slow Cooker: If you want to make this in the slow cooker, follow the same directions but cook the meat on high for 3-5 hours, or low for 6-8 hours.

Stovetop: If you want to make this on the stovetop, I recommend slicing the meat thinly and following these directions for super quick and yummy beef.

Cuts of Meat: Chuck roast can work, but I found that even with some trimming, it still had too much fat for my liking. Top sirloin is a little more spendy, but I love it in this recipe because there is less fat to work around and you really just get the awesomeness of the beef.

Marinating: If you have time to marinate the meat, DO IT. It really enhances the flavor of the meat to let it all kinda hang out together with the sauce for a while. If you don’t have time, no biggie. I usually don’t have time either, and I’d still give it 5/5 for flavor.

As written, you’ll have double the sauce you need! So save the remaining sauce (fridge or freezer) for a super fast and easy Round Two of your Korean Beef Tacos. LUCKYYYY.

Freezer Meal Version

  1. Blend into a sauce:
    1 15-ounce can pears, drained (or 2 fresh pears, cored)
    a 2-inch knob of ginger
    4 cloves garlic
    1/4 cup soy sauce
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1 tablespoon sesame oil
  2. Freeze sauce with:
    2 lbs beef chuck or top sirloin, cut into 4 pieces
  3. Instant Pot Instructions: For beef chuck: From frozen, 65 minutes on high pressure + 10 minutes nature release. For top sirloin: From frozen, 45 minutes on high pressure + 10 minutes nature release.
  4. Slow Cooker Instructions: High setting 6 hours (thaw first)
  5. Final Step: Serve in rice bowls or fusion-style burritos or tacos with kimchi, rice, slaw, spicy mayo, etc.
  6. Check out our full freezer meal posts with all recipes and instructions here!
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: Korean-Inspired

Keywords: korean tacos, korean beef tacos, beef tacos

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View freezer meal version of this recipe here.

You might also like our full freezer meals post.


One More Thing!

This recipe is part of our collection of best taco recipes. Check it out!

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Recipe rating

354 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Michelle

    Do you think rhis would work with pork? I am using up the rest of a pig we bought last year and I have no idea what to do with the (uncured) ham steaks!

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Tammy

        Ha ha I just discovered I accidentally bought pork to make this instead of beef so came online to see if it would work & that is the first question! 😝 thanks guys

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Sara

    This reminds me of my favorite order at World Street Kitchen, the Korean Beef lettuce wraps. I’m super excited to replicate that flavor at home!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Nini

      I did this exact recipe with pork butt, and it was delicious, even though is was more greasy than the beef version.
      Now I wonder how it would be with chicken thighs/chicken breast…I might experiment soon!!

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Meagan

    Hi Lindsay! I love you and your website! This looks fantastic, but I’m getting a little thrown off here. I have some constructive criticism for you. I don’t have, nor will I ever have, an instant pot. I get it, it’s great. It’s fantastic, but it feels like 9 out of the last 10 recipes you’ve posted have been “Instant Pot XYZ!” I don’t like skipping your posts, but I feel like I have to. Please switch it up for a while. I want to keep coming back instead of giving up on POY because it has become an IP recipe drop spot.

    I do like that you put the alternative method recipes in this one! I don’t know if you’ve done it for the last several because I couldn’t bring myself to click. If you have, that’s fantastic. Maybe play that up a bit more on your next IP recipe.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Brittany

      Meagan – just an FYI, Lindsay has purposely been doing an “instant pot series” of recipes over the last several weeks. She has posted alternative methods for every one. (I also don’t have an instant pot so I look for the alternatives.) Please please please don’t give up on POY – all the recipes are fantastic and the instant pot recipes are not the majority 🙂

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Meagan

        Hi Brittany! Thanks. I didn’t realize this was a series. Having that in the post title might have been helpful for me to understand the idea. I do love the website and I’m not ready to give up yet! I was just hoping to offer some constructive feedback.

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Meagan

        I really didn’t want to post this comment. I really didn’t. This one just seemed like the 100th one. I tried to be positive in my approach and offer some constructive feedback. Please don’t make this a negative space for me or Lindsay or anyone else.

        1. Pinch of Yum Logo
          Annie

          Meaghan — do not let Tracy make you feel badly. Your post was not mean spirited but instead reflected a lot of our sentiments — that we love Lindsay, and we want her to stay true to herself and not lean on promotions/sponsored brands. I, too, thought the instant pot series was only for October so I was a little
          bummed,
          As I don’t have the money for one right now. I trust that Lindsay will be back with more regular old stove top/oven recipes soon!

          1. Pinch of Yum Logo

            Hi Annie, thanks for the comment! Just wanted to clear up any potential misunderstandings. These Instant Pot posts are not sponsored. Sponsored posts will always be disclosed right at the top of the post with language that says “sponsored by.” I own an Instant Pot (bought it myself) and use it regularly. I will always be true to myself in all my content, sponsored or unsponsored. 🙂 Thanks for being here! Let me know if you have other questions. lindsay @ pinchofyum.com

        2. Pinch of Yum Logo
          Nicole

          Meagan – * you* have made this a negative space for everyone. It “feels like 9 out of the last 10…”? The four posts previous to this one have not been Instant Pot and many of the October Instant Pot series recipes do have alternative methods. You seriously couldn’t bring yourself to click? You should have had the respect for the POY team to check for yourself before complaining. I’m an instapot-free vegetarian and even I read this post (and was rewarded in the video link at the end to a vegetarian BBQ recipe).

          1. Pinch of Yum Logo
            Nicole

            It did! And I don’t even really like mushrooms but I might try it. Thanks for the link 🙂

    2. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Hi Meagan, I really appreciate your respectful feedback. I actually get a ton of requests for Instant Pot recipes on Instagram, and also: I am using the IP a lot lately for recipes in my real life. 🙂 And the blog always reflects the food I actually make and eat in real life. We did have an Instant Pot series going in October (those posts were all marked as being part of a series), same idea as our Gluten Free series last spring, and a Comfort Food series last January after we went through a personal tragedy. I am not sponsored or partnering with the brand – I’m just working on creating content that is valuable and relevant and yummy, whether you own an Instant Pot or not. Hopefully this helps give context for why there have been so many IP recipes lately! Thanks for being here!

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Rebekah

        As someone who will never be ballsy enough to create my own IP recipe…I absolutely cannot thank you enough for doing this series and making me feel like the purchase was %100 worth it! You have one of the best selections of recipes for it….please don’t stop. Some of us need ya! And some just haven’t realised it yet!

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lindsay

    I made these tonight with moose steak instead of sirloin. They were delicious! Thanks for another great IP recipe!






  5. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lindsay

    This recipe was amazing! What a wonderful way to get back into the routine of cooking after a long weekend away. The flavors in the meat we’re straight up incredible. We used the slow cooker. It was my first time having kimchi and I loved it! Say this every time but it’s maybe my favorite recipe of yours! For now anyway.






  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    You are. An Instant Pot genius. And that’s all there is to it. These tacos look absolutely positively amazzzingggg!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Christa Bond

    In my college days I used to go a korean restaurant – gammeeok.nyc where kimchis were available. This recipe just remembered me those college days.

    Thanks a lot!!!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Lindsay

      My two small-town grocery stores carry it. They have it in the refrigerated vegetable/salad dressing section and in the refrigerated organic aisle. It’s kind of like spicy sauerkraut.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Penny

      These are our fave! Sorry haven’t posted a comment earlier. Made this over a year ago and this recipe now a staple in our house. Off to the store today to make a large batch. 3 college kids so we often do 6-10 pounds of top sirloin.

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    MyFrogs

    I made this last night and it was DELISH! Especially with all the toppings! I made into a lettuce wrap with a bit of rice in it. Today was a little rice bowl as leftovers. Very easy and Very tasty!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      MyFrogs

      I also totally cheated and used “beef for stew”, beef already cubed up, and it was really tender still, with no fancy meat!

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Lauren

        I am copying your cheat 🙂
        Do you remember if you adjusted the cooking time at all?

        1. Pinch of Yum Logo

          I am also going to try this with steak tips? Hope it works! Any advice on how long to cook it? Also, any subs for pears? I’m allergic but the meat looks amazing!!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Danielle

    What brand of kimchi and tortiallas do you use? I want wasn’t to taste as good as they sound!!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      The Kimchi I use is from Whole Foods – it’s Spirit Creek Farm, I think? And the tortillas are Mission brand “street taco” size. SOOOO cute and fluffy and yummy! I love them.

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Tracey

    I can’t even….Korean beef….kimchi?!?! Omg. I get cravings for both. We don’t eat out much. When we visit L.A., my only request when we visit our friends is authentic Korean BBQ. I have made a few recipes at home…this is now on my TO-DO list in a few weeks. Thank you for sharing!!!!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Jamie

      I don’t have fresh ginger… what portion of ground ginger would you recommend??

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Allie

    I’m excited to try this! I happen to be allergic to pears (and apples). Do you have any suggestions for a substitute?

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Samantha

      I make a lot of Korean dishes and some of the meat recipes also call for kiwi or Asian pears, so try kiwi!

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Linsdsay,
    You are right! These. Tacos. Are. Life! Made them for my omnivore friends and I threw portobello mushrooms in a pan on the stove with the extra sauce. Whipped up some spicy vegan mayo for me and everyone was beyond happy! Talk about a crowd pleaser- this is a recipe to impress! Thanks!!

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Jenni

    Made this for dinner last night. So good! Thanks for the recipe. Served it with cauliflower fried “rice” and then had leftovers for breakfast. 🙂






  14. Pinch of Yum Logo

    These look awesome! The pears and korean style marinade along with the kimchi sound so amazing – will have to give this a try soon 🙂

  15. Pinch of Yum Logo

    The Korean Beef Tacos sound awesome! I think maybe even my 12 year old would like it. Oh, the question is to buy the instant pot or not…
    I’m a former teacher as well. I miss it sometimes and other times, no.
    I’m going to make the tacos and I’ll write back to let you know how they turned out. Thank you!






  16. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Val

    I have made the Korean bowls with chicken with great success (and made the kimchi with Kale- so yum), so I’m fully intending on making this with boneless chicken thighs tomorrow night. I can taste it already! Thank you!

  17. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Annie

    Can’t wait to make this! About how many servings are in this recipe? I plan to make this for an upcoming party (14 adults) and debating if I should double or triple the recipe. Thanks!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Connie

      I was wondering the same thing on servings, thinking of having for a party on Saturday.

      Thanks for the great posts, Lindsay! I finally got an InstantPot and it is blowing my mind. I always look to you first for recipes, tho, because they are always delicious and very well-tested. Keep it up! You and POY continue to Rock!

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Erin

        Did anyone double or triple the recipe? Wondering if it affects the instant pot cooking time. Any advice is appreciated!

    2. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Harriet

      Hi this looks great, can I check the cooking time for the fresh version (not frozen) that it’s 45 mins high pressure? I read the frozen version and it says only 30 mins +10 release which has left me a little confused. I’m so excited to cook but I want to get the timings right! Thank you so much 🙂

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Krista @ Pinch of Yum

        Great question, Harriet! I’d suggest following the cook time in the original recipe! We will double check our notes regarding the cook time in the freezer meal instructions. We hope you enjoy the tacos!

        1. Pinch of Yum Logo
          Kathy

          I just ran into this problem – the freezer meal recipe post says 65 minutes for chuck roast and 45 for top sirloin in the Instant Pot. Would be so helpful if both posts of the recipe for the “from frozen” instructions matched! Thanks!






          1. Pinch of Yum Logo
            Krista @ Pinch of Yum

            We apologize for the confusion! We’ve updated the freezer meal instructions in this post.