Whether you’re new to the instant pot or a seasoned pro, this easy recipe for Korean beef tacos is a really flavorful dish that will give your taco game a fun new twist. It also uses ingredients that you probably have in your pantry, or should be able to easily get at the market. Yeast and toilet paper may be almost impossible to come by, but there doesn’t yet seem to be a run on sesame oil or chuck roast. The great thing about this recipe is that it has a truly unique flavor and you can vary the options for the coleslaw topping. Heck, you can even ditch the tacos if you really didn’t have any tortillas, and use the meat as a great bowl topping. As I often say, the possibilities are endless! 😉 Let’s get started shall we?
What’s In This Korean beef Taco Recipe?
For this recipe you will need a 3-4 lb boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 4 large chunks. For the sauce the beef will cook in, you will need sesame oil, soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic and optional fish sauce and chili oil. If you do not have chili oil, you can sub in cayenne pepper. Fish sauce is now quite easy to find; Trader Joe’s and health focused stores like Whole Foods carry Red Boat, but a lot of other markets routinely carry the brand Thai Kitchen. The fish sauce adds another level of umami, but don’t sweat it if you can’t find it or don’t want to make a special trip to the market. We’ll cover the slaw ingredient options a bit later.
How To make korean beef tacos in the instant pot
Begin by seasoning your beef with salt and pepper and set aside while you make the sauce. You’re going to combine the minced garlic, sesame oil, brown sugar, soy sauce, chili oil or cayenne pepper, and optional fish sauce in a small bowl. Set aside. Heat up your Instant Pot on saute mode, and add about 2 tbsp of canola oil. Add your beef to the Instant Pot and saute until brown. Flip and saute on the other side, then press Cancel on your Instant Pot.
Pour the sauce over the beef, and secure the lid, making sure the pressure release valve is closed. Set on Manual High and cook for 45 minutes. When done cooking, allow a natural release for 5-10 minutes, then do a quick release as to avoid over-cooking the meat. Remove the beef from the pot and allow to slightly cool before shredding.
Making Your Coleslaw Topping
My suggestion is to first decide if you want a creamy coleslaw topping, or a lighter vinegar-type coleslaw. That will determine where you go with this, but I will offer options for both, since I have made it both ways. Shown here, I made a lighter version that includes standard coleslaw mix, shredded pear (optional), sesame oil, soy sauce, sriracha and lime juice. The directions for this particular slaw will be in the recipe card. If you’d prefer to make a creamier version, combine with 2-3 tbsp of mayonnaise with 1 tsp of sriracha, and mix with 1/2 bag of coleslaw mix.
What’s The Difference Between manual versus Natural Release?
A quick pressure release is when you turn the pressure release switch to the Venting position and let the steam release quickly (and aggressively) when the cooking time is complete. You will want to make sure you use a oven mitt or dish towel when releasing the valve, as steam escapes quite rapidly and vigorously.
A natural pressure release is when you leave the pressure release switch in the sealed position when the cook time is complete. This lets the pressure release slowly over time. When the pressure is fully released, you’ll be able to unlock and release your lid. Either way though, your lid will not unlock until all the pressure has subsided, either via manual or natural release.
Why Do You use both natural and Manual quick release in this recipe?
When you do a manual release, the cooking time immediately ends. This is really important for foods you don’t want overcooked, like veggies, potatoes and seafood. Natural release is great for large cuts of meat, stews and soups, because the food essentially continues to cook, but at a much gentler pace. For meats, think of this natural release time as a resting period. For soups, it’s like a gentle warming simmer.
Typically you would use a slow natural release on a large cut of meat like a chuck roast, but since we cut this roast into quarters, we don’t want it to get overcooked and tough. So let it “rest” for a few minutes, then manually release the rest of the pressure to stop the cooking.
Other Helpful Tips For making instant pot beef tacos
If you have a smaller chuck roast, say about 2-2.5 lbs, cut your cooking time down by 5 minutes. If your roast still seems too tough when the cooking cycle is complete, you can cook it for another 5-10 minutes and it should be good after that. You can alternately cook your meat in the slow cooker, or using the slow cooker function on your Instant Pot, for 6-7 hours. But isn’t the beauty of having an Instant Pot to get dinner done quicker? 😉 Still, the option is available!
More Instant Pot Dinner Recipes
- General Tso’s Chicken
- Pot Roast With Chipotle Cocoa Gravy
- Chicken Alfredo With a Dairy Free Sauce (also Gluten Free!)
- Shrimp Risotto with Asparagus
- Instant Pot Meatball Soup Recipe
Instant Pot Korean Beef Tacos
- Pressure Cooker
- 3 lb Boneless Beef Chuck Roast
- 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
- 3 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tbsp Sesame Oil
- 1 tbsp Chili oil or 2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp Fish Sauce optional
- 8 Street Style Flour Tortillas
- 2 cups Coleslaw Mix
- 1/2 cup Shredded Pear optional
- 2 tbsp Sesame Oil
- 1 tsp Sriracha
- 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 tbsp Lime Juice rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar would also work if you don't have fresh limes
- Cut up beef chuck roast into quarters. Season with salt & pepper.
- Heat vegetable oil in your Instant Pot on Saute mode.
- Saute beef on all sides for about 3-5 minutes each, until a nice brown sear is achieved
- Meanwhile mix the remaining sesame oil, soy sauce, garlic, brown sugar, and chili oil or cayenne in a bowl
- When the meat is done searing, press CANCEl on the Instant Pot and pour the sauce over the beef.
- Close and seal lid, set timer on Manual High pressure to 45 minutes.
- When meat is done cooking, allow to release naturally for 5-10 minutes, then do a manual quick release for remaining pressure. Remove beef from the pot and allow to cool slightly until you can shred it.
- To make slow, combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well.
- Top warm tortillas with beef and coleslaw mix and serve immediately.