Korean BBQ Burgers with Pickled Onions and Radishes and Miso Mayonnaise

Korean BBQ Burgers

5 from 6 reviews

The hamburger version of Korea’s famously delicious bulgogi beef. Once you try this recipe, you may never make burgers any other way.

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light



For The Pickled Onions and Radishes:

  • 1 bunch of radishes, ends trimmed and very thinly sliced
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled, sliced into very thin rings, rings separated
  • 1 1/2 cups distilled white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

For The Miso Mayonnaise

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (I recommend Hellmann’s)
  • 2 tablespoons miso paste (brown rice miso from Whole Foods is my favorite)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sriracha (hot sauce)

For The Burgers

  • 2 1/4 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 cup scallions (5-6), root end and 2 inches of green end trimmed off, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic (23 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger root (1 1/2 inch chunk)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 hamburger buns (I recommend potato burger buns)
  • 6 leaves from a head of green leaf lettuce, washed, ends trimmed


  1. To make the pickled onions and radishes, put sliced onions and radishes into a bowl. Combine vinegar, water, sugar and salt in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook just until salt and sugar dissolve. Pour the hot mixture over the onions and radishes and stir. Cool for 15-20 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour and up to two weeks.
  2. To make the miso mayonnaise, combine miso, mayo and sriracha in a small bowl and stir until combined. Can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.
  3. To make the burgers, In a large bowl, combine ground beef (2 1/4 pounds), scallions (1/2 cup), soy sauce (2 tablespoons), sugar (2 tablespoons), sesame oil (1 tablespoon), garlic (1 tablespoon), ginger (1 tablespoon) and black pepper (1/2 teaspoon). Use your hands to mix everything together. Shape into 6 burgers. (Burgers can be made up to 24 hours ahead and refrigerated until ready to cook)
  4. To Cook: Heat the grill to medium-high. Grill burgers for about 6 minutes per side for medium rare. Toast the buns on the grill for a minute or so.
  5. To serve, spread miso mayo on the buns, top with burgers, pickles and a lettuce leaf. Serve immediately.


Miso Substitute: If you can’t find miso, here’s a good substitute that comes close: In a small saucepan, simmer 2 tablespoons of brown sugar with 2 tablespoons soy sauce for 2 minutes, until it gets thick and syrupy.  To make the miso mayonnaise, wait until the mixture has cooled and mix it with 1/2 cup of mayonnaise and 1/4 teaspoon of Sriracha hot sauce.

[This post first appeared on Panning The Globe in July 2013. It was updated in May 2020 with a few new photos, clarifying details in the written post and clearer instructions in the recipe.]

Keywords: Grilled Korean burgers with homemade pickles and miso mayonnaise