These sous vide braised short ribs are cooked for 24 hours in a magical Korean marinade. Once the ribs are cooked, we sear ’em, shred ’em and coat ’em in extra marinade. The result? Flavors so incredible your tastebuds will thank you.
English Style Short Rib Cut
First things first, you want to make sure you buy the correct cut of short rib. This recipe calls for the English style cut, which means a thick piece of meat is sitting on top of one piece of bone (pictured below).
Note that English style is different than Flanken or cross-cut short ribs. If you use these cuts instead you will end up with very different results. If you want to make sure you are using the right cut, ask your local butcher and they will be happy to assist!
An essential part of cooking sous vide is putting ingredients in an air-tight bag or container. The two most common techniques to package your ingredients are vacuum sealing and using the water displacement method.
A vacuum sealer removes all the air and seals the contents of a plastic bag through a vacuum. Since we are adding a marinade in the bag, please make sure your vacuum sealer is capable of sealing liquids. If not, please use the displacement method.
The displacement method is a technique where you first place your food and marinades in a Ziploc double-zipper freezer bag, submerge your food in a container of water, and allow the pressure to force all the air out of the bag.
Braised Short Rib Time and Temperature
Through loads of experimentation, we’ve found that cooking the short ribs sous vide at 170F for 24 hours is the perfect combo. Leaving the ribs in for 24 hours breaks down the connective tissue (collagen), which is the sweet spot for extremely tender meat. Also, cooking the short ribs at a temperature of 170F results in a delicious, braised style beef.
Just make sure you have a reliable sous vide that accurately regulates the temperature of the bath or your results may vary (check out the Anova or Joule). For other time and temperature options, check out our cooking guide here.
Searing is the most critical step in the sous vide process. Getting a deep, rich sear can make your food look like it is Michelin star quality. Failing to do so will make your dinner guests wonder why they let you cook again.
If you want to get an amazing sear on your short ribs, you’ve got to first pat the meat completely dry using paper towels.
After the meat is dry, we’d normally season the meat generously with salt. However, since we are using a Kalbi marinade with ample salt there is no need to add any more.
For the last step, get your cast iron skillet extremely hot and add an oil with a high smoke point. I prefer using grapeseed oil or avocado oil. Sear each side of the short rib for 1 minute. Let rest for 5 minutes and then shred the short ribs with a fork.
Sous Vide Machine – To cook sous vide, you’re going to need a device to precisely regulate the temperature of the bath water. The two best sous vide machines in the game right now are the Anova Precision Cooker and the Breville Joule.
12-quart Container – Although you can use a basic stockpot for your sous vide cooking needs, I highly recommend buying a large plastic container. They are inexpensive and spacious, so you won’t have to worry about cooking a big roast in a small pot. I recommend a 12 quart Rubbermaid container, as it is BPA free, sturdy, and large enough for just about anything you will be cooking.
Container Lid – If you are going to buy a plastic container, I highly suggest buying a compatible lid for it. When you sous vide for a long duration, the heat of the water causes evaporation. With a lid, it eliminates a majority of the evaporation so you can cook for 24 hours care-free.
Cast Iron Skillet – If you are looking to take your searing game to the next level, we recommend investing in a cast iron skillet. By using a cast iron in this recipe, you’ll achieve a deep sear on the protein. Cast irons are also extremely handy for searing just about any and all sous vide meat. Lodge offers the best quality and price, which is why it is our favorite cast iron brand.
Check out our full list of recommended gear here.
Sous Vide Braised Short Ribs in Korean Marinade
- 3 lbs beef short ribs, bone-in
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- 1 Tbsp gochujang
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 1 small asian pear (or regular pear), peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 4 scallions, halved
- 1 1-inch knob of ginger, peeled
- 2 tsp black pepper
- sesame seeds for garnish
Set sous vide machine to 76.5C/170F.
In a food processor or blender, combine soy sauce, brown sugar, rice wine, sesame oil, gochujang, garlic, asian pear, scallion, ginger and black pepper. Pulse until ingredients are combined and smooth.
Place short ribs in freezer bag with half of the marinade, and remove the air through a vacuum sealer or the displacement method. Drop the bag in the bath for 24 hours. Place the remaining half of the marinade in the fridge.
Remove bag from bath. Take short ribs out of the bag, discard the marinade from the bag and pat the meat dry.
Heat up large skillet on high and add oil. Sear short ribs for 60 seconds on each side, or until deeply browned. Remove from pan, and place on a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes. Once rested, pull the meat from the bone and shred the ribs with a fork.
In a small sauce pan, add the remaining marinade from the fridge. Cook over medium heat until reduced and thickened, about 8-10 minutes.
In a large skillet over low heat, pour in the marinade and add the shredded short ribs. Stir until fully combined. Cook for 3-5 minutes to emulsify the flavors. Serve with jasmine rice, kimchi, a sous vide egg, or any other favorite toppings and enjoy!