Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs (Paleo, Whole30)

Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs are an easy, hearty dinner!

Tender, fall-off-the-bone short ribs and veggies are coated in a sweet and savory sauce that’s full of flavor.

It takes just minutes to prep and is perfect for dinner or meal planning.

And with just a few simple changes, these Korean short ribs are also gluten-free, dairy-free, Paleo and Whole30!

a short rib, carrot and onion stew in a white bowl next to a blue towel and bowls of sesame seeds and chopped parsley

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Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs

This Korean short ribs recipe is one of my favorite kinds of recipes: easy to throw together, no need to babysit it as it cooks, filling, flavorful, healthy.

I mean, what else do you need?

Short ribs, carrots and onions are always going to be good together. But when you coat them in a quickly blended sauce of pear, onion, garlic, ginger, coconut aminos (the Paleo version of soy sauce), honey and more, you have an irresistible stew.

And like so many stews, it’s perfect to make ahead of time because it tastes even better the next day.

Short ribs can be tough, so cooking them long and slow creates meat that is tender and succulent.

The pear and honey add a bit of sweetness that balances the umami of the beef and coconut aminos.

Serve it with rice or veggie rice to soak up all the sauce and your dinner is set.

And by using dates instead of honey, you can also make this a Whole30 short ribs recipe!

 

What you need for Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs

a wooden cutting board full of short ribs, carrots, an onion, a pear, condiments, garlic and a measuring spoon full of ground ginger

Ingredients:

Equipment:

How to make Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs

  1. Peel the carrots, trim and discard the ends and chop into 1″ chunks.
  2. Peel the onion and cut in half from root to root. Cut one half into 4 wedges.
  3. Add the short ribs, carrots and onion wedges to the slow cooker and toss with salt and pepper.
  4. Roughly chop the other onion half and add to a blender.
  5. Core and roughly chop the pear and add to the blender.
  6. If using fresh garlic, peel the 4 cloves, Roughly chop if they’re big. Add to the blender.
  7. If using fresh ginger, peel with the edge of a spoon (yep, it works great!) and roughly chop. Add to the blender.
  8. To the blender, add the beef broth, coconut aminos, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, red pepper flakes and honey (or chopped dates). If using garlic powder and/or ground ginger, add them now as well. Blend until smooth.
  9. Pour the sauce over the beef and veggies. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours or high for 5, or until the meat is tender and starting to fall off the bone.
  10. Serve with rice or veggie rice, if desired, and sprinkle the toasted sesame seeds and cilantro or parsley on top.

a crockpot insert full of short ribs and vegetables in a dark sauce

Make ahead

These Korean short ribs can be made up to 5 days in advance and stored in the fridge.

After about 24 hours, some fat will have formed a layer on the surface. You can use a spoon to scoop this up and discard.

You can also freeze the cooked stew for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge. Reheat in a slow-cooker on the low setting or in a saucepan over low heat.

 

Substitutions and variations

  1. You can brown the meat in 2 tablespoons of oil first if you prefer. Browning the meat will make it caramelize and bring out its flavor, but I don’t think it’s absolutely necessary.
  2. You can use boneless beef chuck roast cut into 2″ cubes instead of short ribs.
  3. Instead of coconut aminos, you can use low-sodium tamari (gluten-free soy sauce).
  4. You can use maple syrup, brown sugar or coconut sugar instead of honey or dates.
  5. You can garnish with thinly sliced scallion, as well.

 

Other recipes you may like:

  1. Beef Satay Stew (oven, slow-cooker, Instant Pot)
  2. Slow-Cooker Italian Chicken Stew
  3. Creamy White Chicken Chili (oven, slow-cooker, Instant Pot)
  4. Spiced Coconut Chicken

 

Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs in a white bowl and in a crockpot
a short rib, carrot and onion stew in a white bowl next to a blue towel and bowls of sesame seeds and chopped parsley
Print Recipe
5 from 6 votes

Slow-Cooker Korean Short Ribs (Paleo, Whole30)

All you need to do is quickly blend up a sauce and pour it over meat and veggies. Then set it and forget it! These Korean short ribs are hearty, healthy and full of flavor. Plus they're great to make ahead of time - they actually taste better the next day!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time7 hrs
Total Time7 hrs 15 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: korean short ribs, short ribs, slow cooker short ribs
Servings: 4 people
Author: Don Baiocchi

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. carrots
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 3 lbs. bone-in short ribs
  • 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 pear
  • 4 garlic cloves or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1" piece of fresh ginger or 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup coconut aminos
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey or 4 chopped, pitted dates (for Whole30)
  • 1 teaspoon roasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • rice or veggie rice, for serving
  • toasted sesame seeds and fresh cilantro or parsley, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  • Peel and trim the carrots and cut into 1" chunks.
  • Peel the onion and cut in half from root to root. Cut one of the halves into 8 wedges (just keep cutting in half, root to root, until you have 8 pieces).
  • Add the short ribs, carrots and onion wedges to a large slow-cooker. Season with the salt and pepper.
  • Roughly chop the remaining onion half and add to a blender. Core and roughly chop the pear and add to the blender. If using fresh garlic, peel. If the cloves are large, roughly chop them. If using fresh ginger, peel and roughly chop. Add the garlic and ginger to the blender.
  • Add the coconut aminos, beef broth, rice wine vinegar, honey/dates, roasted sesame oil and red pepper flakes (plus the garlic powder and/or ground ginger, if using) to the blender and blitz until smooth.
  • Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours or high for 5 hours.
  • Serve with rice or veggie rice. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and chopped fresh cilantro or parsley, if desired.

Notes

Make ahead
These can be made up to 5 days in advance and stored in the fridge.
After about 24 hours, some fat will have formed a layer on the surface. You can use a spoon to scoop this up and discard.
You can also freeze the cooked stew for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge. Reheat in a slow-cooker on the low setting or in a saucepan over low heat.
Substitutions and variations
  1. You can brown the meat in 2 tablespoons of oil first if you prefer. Browning the meat will make it caramelize and bring out its flavor, but I don't think it's absolutely necessary.
  2. You can use boneless beef chuck roast cut into 2" cubes instead of short ribs.
  3. Instead of coconut aminos, you can use low-sodium tamari (gluten-free soy sauce).
  4. You can use maple syrup, brown sugar or coconut sugar instead of honey or dates.
  5. You can garnish with thinly sliced scallion, as well.

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