This easy Keto Korean Beef is so full of flavor, your tastebuds will sing. It’s a delicious way to serve zucchini noodles, and using ground beef makes it extra fast and easy.
Pardon the interruption, folks, but you need to drop whatever you’re doing right now and put this keto Korean beef on your menu. And then you need to check your cupboard and make sure you have all the necessary ingredients.
Because this one ranks up there as one of my all time favorite easy keto meals. I knew it would be good but I was truly blown away by just how good it was.
Since I cook and bake for a living and I literally wrote the book on Easy Keto Dinners, that’s saying a lot!
It’s a perfect dish to work in some of that summer zucchini, just like Cheesy Zucchini Casserole and Keto Zucchini Bread.
Korean beef bulgogi with a keto twist
I haven’t attempted Korean food at home in a long time, not since before I was keto. In those days, I would have used bottled Korean BBQ sauce without even considering the sugar content.
With all the modifications I made to this, I won’t even pretend that it’s remotely authentic. But it does capture the spirit and flavors of the original. I recommend this article from My Korean Kitchen if you want to great tips on how to make authentic Bulgogi.
In addition to making mine sugar free, I also used ground beef rather than sliced beef. This eliminates the step of cutting up the beef and makes the recipe even easier.
And then I added some zucchini noodles to make it a full one-pan meal. Delicious!
How to prep zucchini noodles
There are many ways you can prep zucchini noodles, but for a stir fry like this I recommend salting and draining in advance.
Zucchini is a wonderful and healthy low carb pasta substitute, but if you simply add it raw, it turns your dinner into a soupy mess. It’s a common error I see in a lot of recipes.
By salting the noodles and letting them drain for an hour, you draw out much of the moisture and will have much better results. It also softens them somewhat, so they don’t need to be cooked very long.
Unlike shredded zucchini, however, you don’t want to squeeze it out as it will break up your noodles. Simply lay out a tea towel and spread your noodles on top, then pat dry with another tea towel.
How to make Keto Korean Beef
This is a fast and easy one-pan meal with fabulous flavors. Here’s how it’s done:
- Spiralize the zucchini. If you have a spiral cutter like this one, then I recommend using the plate with the larger holes for more sturdy noodles. But if you don’t, thinner noodles will work fine.
- Salt and drain the noodles. Place them in a colander in the sink and sprinkle with salt, then toss to combine. Let drain 1 hour. Then pat dry.
- Whip up the sauce. Simply add all the sauce ingredients into a glass measuring cup or bowl and whisk to combine.
- Cook the beef. Sauté the beef in a hot skillet until no longer pink.
- Stir in the sauce and the noodles. You only need to cook the noodles until they are warmed through, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Grab a plate and dig in!
Frequently Asked Questions
Sure thing! Try shiritaki noodles or hearts of palm noodles, both would be delicious. But trust me, you cannot taste the zucchini in this recipe.
Tamari is a kind of gluten free soy sauce. I prefer it over things coconut aminos for two reasons: it’s lower in carbs and has much more flavor. If you avoid soy, then coconut aminos will be fine but less flavorful.
Yes, but there are a few things to keep in mind. A brown sugar replacement like Swerve gives the sauce the proper Korean BBQ flavor. The allulose helps it thicken and become syrupy. Other sweeteners may not give you these qualities.
Sure, you can make it easily with ground or sliced chicken, or even turkey. It will still be delicious.
They do! I ate some for lunch the next day. The noodles get a little mushier but it’s still a great meal.
More delicious keto one-pan meals
Keto Korean Beef Recipe
- 1 ½ lb zucchini (you will end up with about 18 to 20 ounces)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup tamari
- 3 tablespoon Swerve Brown
- 2 tablespoon allulose (or BochaSweet or xylitol)
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 teaspoon sriracha optional
- 2 teaspoon grated ginger
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 ⅓ lb ground beef
- 1 medium green onion, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- Cut the ends off of the zucchini. Use the spiral cutter plate with larger holes to make zucchini noodles. Chop them slightly a few times to break up the long noodles.
- Place the noodles in a colander and sprinkle with salt. Toss to combine and drain for 1 hour, then pat them dry between tea towels (do not squeeze them out). Set aside.
- In a glass measuring cup, whisk together all of the sauce ingredients. Set aside.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the coconut oil. Once hot, add the beef and stir fry until no pink remains, about 7 minutes. Break up the clumps with the back of a wooden spoon as you cook.
- Stir in the sauce and green onion and cook until the sauce has reduced and thickenend, another 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the zucchini noodles, toss to combine, and cook 2 to 3 minutes to heat through.
- Garnish with sesame seeds before serving.
Debbie B says
Outstanding! Easy, tasty and oh so easy. Great recipe!
I Havent tried this recipe yet, but I cant wait to! I absolutely love your site! I just tripped over it by accident but sure plan on staying for a long visit!
Would coconut amino’s work instead of tamari?
Yes, but it doesn’t have nearly as much flavor and has more carbs.
Cheryl M says
Amazing flavor and simple to make. I doubled the recipe and mixed half with shiritaki noodles and half with rice noodles (for the rest of my family members, who insist keto food isn’t good) and every plate was wiped clean. My 11 yo was a huge fan and this one is going into the regular rotation. Thank you so much!
Glad to hear it!
Because I live in Canada (BC) I can’t get allulose. Bochasweet disagrees with me and xylatol is out because we have two dogs – lol! I made this dish using all Swerve brown and used 1/4 tsp. Konjac power to thicken it. It was delicious! Thought your other Canuck fans might be interested.
Love this site and your humorous and down to earth writing style.
Thanks! I do know that people are getting allulose at one place online in Canada. Can’t remember which one!
Delicious! My whole family loved it!
Super easy, surprisingly flavorful and family loved!
This was so much more than I expected!
When I saw it, I knew I had to try it. It was easy, though the need to salt and drain the zoodles meant it was not fast from start to finish. Still, I just started early and played Dragon Question until time for Phase II.
The flavors were excellent and most items are pantry items – I only needed to buy fresh garlic, ginger, zucchini, and pull ground beef from the freezer. And is is as economical as it is tasty! And, today I bought more zucchini to see what else I might do now that zoodles are a delicious thing in my life!
Delighted to hear it!
This was so delicious! I didn’t have zucchini, so I made with fresh broccoli florets. Made the beef according to directions, then moved to a bowl to keep warm. Added a little avocado oil to the same pan and then the broccoli. Allowed to stir fry for a few minutes, then added a little water, covered it so it would steam.
Even my picky 11 year old said it was so good! I don’t normally post comments, but wanted to say thank you for this! It will definitely be in my dinner recipe rotation.
Stacy DaSilva says
We made this with a Wagyu Ground Beef our grocery had on sale and served it in lettuce cups and it was delicious.
Making or own zoodles with the salting technique was so much better and cheaper than buying them prepared.
So glad you liked it!
Bulgogi is absolutely one of my favorite dishes and I had been so tempted to indulge so wow! This is a life saver, delicious and easy! Another spot on recipe- thanks Carolyn ❤️
I am so glad!
This is a fabulous dish! It has become one of the two most requested dishes at our biweekly potluck lunches (the other being pesto pizza with cauliflower crust). I discovered shaved beef at Trader Joe’s, and that makes it just about as authentic as the bulgogi we enjoyed on our trip to Seoul almost every day. Also easier to eat with Korean metal chopsticks than ground beef. ???? Thank you for this recipe, you Keto Magician! ????
Summer Fox says
I made this for dinner tonight and it is delicious and so easy!
Have you ever tried this sauce on chicken? I’m just wondering if it would taste good on chicken thighs.
It’s somewhat similar to my keto yakitori so yes, I have! 🙂 Use my search box and type in yakitori for that recipe.
Jerri Gregory says
Loved the flavor! Simple and delicious! For my tastes, I’d use thinner noodles or cut them up further as was slightly challenging to eat.
Erica Lynch says
Oh my this was so good!!! So fast and easy. Thank you for yet another fabulous recipe.