Beef Donburi with Fresh Vegetables and Mint Aioli

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My Beef Donburi

Beef Donburi

Korean Marinated Beef With Fresh Vegetables, Purple Rice And Mint Aioli.

The Origins Of Beef Donburi

Donburi, Beef Donburi is a Japanese dish that started to appear in the Edo era (1603–1867).

The first know recorded Donburi dish was Unagi (eel) Don. Donburi is the modern version, with a mixed style of fresh vegetables and meat on rice.

It’s so easy to prepare and can be eaten quickly. I serve Beef Donburi sometimes for staff dinner in my restaurant, the staff love it, fresh, healthy, and tasty.

Since the meal is very easy to prepare and tasty, it popularly spread very quickly around the Meiji era (1868 – 1912) in Japan.

Now Donburi has become a Japanese staple and is famous around the world. Beef Donburi can also be served with miso soup as a side dish.

Donburi (丼, literally “bowl”, also abbreviated to “don” as a suffix”) is a Japanese “rice bowl dish” this consists of fish, meat, vegetables, or other ingredients simmered together and served over rice.

Donburi meals are served in oversized rice bowls also called Donburi. 

A more modern version is where you cook the meat or fish separately, use thinly sliced raw vegetables and serve this on rice.

The heat of the meat or fish and the rice steams and wilts the vegetables slightly.

This is the version I have cooked, I love cooking simple food like this, so quick and easy to produce. More importantly, it’s healthy and tasty.

Cooking Rice

Now cooking rice is an art, whatever anyone tells you, you will need a rice cooker.

My sons are half Korean, yes my wife is from South Korea.

They have a saying for rice not cooked in a rice cooker they call it “Kiwi Rice” this reference is to overcooked, soggy, water-logged white rice cooked in a pot.

Cooking rice isn’t just about the cooking process, it’s about respect!

Respect for the land the rice is grown on, respect for the hard-working farmer that grows the rice, and respect for the rice itself.  Rice is life.

Sadly western society doesn’t understand this. Rice is Life and this goes back a long way in time.

Before we had cold storage fridges, and freezers, uncooked rice was kept in clay pots in an ambient environment for very long periods of time. Cook only what you need this was a way of survival in the long winter months.     

Rice Paddy Bali
Rice fields Bali Indonesia
Rice Plants
Grains of growing rice

My Professional Pick

Cuckoo CR-0351F Electric Heating Rice Cooker (Red)

The Cuckoo CR-0351F rice cooker not only cooks perfect rice every time, but it can also slow cook beef short ribs in half the cooking time and functions as a pressure cooker too!

I’ve been using my Cuckoo rice cooker for a while.

It has some features that make cooking easier, including delayed timer programs and a keep warm mode.

I use it when I need to cook something else simultaneously like pork or if the food requires more hours than my oven or stovetop can give me even overnight!

Food Is Very Subjective

What I like, you might not, and vice versa. Different people have different taste buds – some overly savory flavor orientated.

Others are at the other end of the scale. Some people may want overly spicy, sour, or sweet flavor notes.

There is a cultural aspect that is sometimes overlooked, Halal and Kosher are two that come to mind.

Allergens in today’s world are trending where people make an informed or uninformed lifestyle choice to remove allergens from their diet, gluten, dairy or soy are good examples.

Then there are the people who if they eat a certain food group like peanuts or crustaceans (shellfish) both these foods can induce Anaphylaxis: A life-threatening reaction.

Adequate treatment for anaphylaxis can save lives.

If you suspect that you or anyone are experiencing a severe allergic reaction, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Symptoms of anaphylaxis include but are not limited to hives, difficulty breathing, and sudden weakness or confusion.

Getting to the point the quantities in this recipe are only a guideline, you can add more or less of any ingredient or omit something altogether. 

However in saying that for the best flavor profile and micro-nutrients it is recommended that you follow the recipe and don’t remove too many ingredients.

My Creative Thought Process

I’m good at what I do, and the food I cook touches people’s lives, this is what keeps me going and I love it.

Food and cooking are life, cooking in a professional environment is relentless, unforgiving and at times punishing it never stops.

It could be all going well one minute, then the next it can all turn the other way.

I get instant gratification from my customers. They’re eating the food that I created for them.

My creative process starts with ingredients that I might see.

This sets a thought process in motion and from there a dish is created.

I look at current trends, the seasonality of ingredients, and what I love to eat, which is pretty much anything.

Beef Donburi I created for you, if I can entertain you, and inspire you to try different things, I will have achieved what I set out to do.

Everything I do is for you, your enjoyment if I can in some way make your life easier where you don’t have to think about the small stuff. This is what makes me happy.

Larder Stables And Must Have Kitchen Tools

  • I’ll make it easy for you. stock your kitchen with these basic ingredients – Butter, milk, Himalayan pink or quality sea salt, whole peppercorns, sugar, vinegar, virgin olive oil, and plain flour.

Essential Kitchen Tools – Must Haves

You can’t be at a professional level in the kitchen unless you own a variety of high-end tools. Genius kitchen gadgets are an essential part of any home cook’s or aspiring chef’s arsenal. From some of the best chef knives, and kitchen cookware, to wooden cutting boards. These will set you apart from others and get you ready with what you need to start making meals like a chef.

My Professional Recommendations

Seasoning Food

Maldon Sea Salt Flakes
  • As a chef the most underrated ingredient in the kitchen is salt. When my recipes call for salt and pepper I use a variety of different salts and freshly ground black pepper.

Many chefs, including myself, prefer sea salt like Maldon salt flakes or Himalayan pink salt. Both can be used for cooking and finishing. They have a refined flavor that brings out the natural taste of food.

Korean Galbi Beef Sauce

Galbi beef sauce is a Korean beef marinade that can be used for any beef cut.

This recipe calls for the use of galbi beef, which is thinly sliced ribeye steak. You can purchase galbi beef from any Korean butcher.

After marinating, the beef, cook it in a pan or even better over hot charcoal. The result is an intense flavor that you won’t forget!

To make this recipe easier you can buy Galbi marinade from any Korean supermarket.

Korean Galbi Beef Marinade
Galbi marinade

How To Cook Rice In A Pot

The best way is to cook rice in a pot. First, measure out the cups of uncooked rice and place them into the pot.

Wash the rice 4 – 5 times, and add fresh water so the level is about 1 – 2 cm above the rice, if you put your forefinger into the water and just touch the rice the water level should be just above the first knuckle on your finger.

Place the pot on the stove and cover it with a tight-fitting lid, bring to a boil then turn the heat down to the lowest setting and leave for 15 minutes. Remove the rice from the heat and let it stand for 5 minutes, DO NOT remove the lid.

My Beef Donburi

Beef Donburi with Fresh Vegetables and Mint Aioli

Korean Marinated Beef With Fresh Vegetables, Purple Rice And Mint Aioli.
4.17 from 6 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Fusion, Japanese, Korean
Servings 4 People
Calories 378 kcal


Korean Beef Marinade

  • 500 grams Beef ribeye - thinly sliced
  • ½ each Asian pear or Kiwifruit - peeled
  • 1 each Onion brown
  • 4 cloves Garlic - peeled
  • 2 tbsp Soy sauce - Sempio brand, non-GMO
  • 2 tbsp Mirin
  • 2 tbsp Sugar - brown
  • ½ tsp Black pepper - freshly ground
  • drizzle Sesame oil

Salad Ingredients

  • 1 each Onion red - peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 each pepper aka capsicum red - seeds removed and thinly sliced
  • 2 each Tomatoes - seeds removed and sliced
  • 3 Radishes red - thinly sliced
  • 3 each Chilies green - thinly sliced
  • ½ each Cucumber - halved and sliced
  • Iceberg lettuce - chiffonade
  • Crunchy beans sprouts
  • Coriander aka cilantro - fresh
  • Himalayan pink salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mixed Rice

  • 2 cups Rice medium grain - uncooked
  • ¼ cup Rice wild - uncooked
  • 3 ½ cups freshwater

Mint Aioli

  • ½ cup Mayonnaise - store brought
  • English mint - chiffonade
  • ½ clove garlic - crushed


Korean Galbi Marinade

  • In a food processor place garlic, Asian pear, dark soy, brown sugar, mirin, and black pepper, blend to a smooth paste (the paste will be quite thin).
    Pour the sauce in with the beef and add the sesame oil, mix the beef and sauce together and place in the fridge for no more than 2 hours.
    CHEFS TIP: The reason I leave the sesame oil until last is if you mix it with the other ingredients in the blender the flavor is lost.
    Thinly Sliced Beef

Cooking Rice

  • To cook rice, the easiest and best way is to use a rice cooker.
    However, if you don’t own a rice cooker, the best way is to cook rice in a pot.
    First, measure out the cups of uncooked rice and place them into the pot.  
    Wash the rice 4 – 5 times, add fresh water so the level is about 1 – 2 cm above the rice, if you put your forefinger into the water and just touch the rice the water level should be just above the first knuckle on your finger.
    Place the pot on the stove and cover with a tight-fitting lid, bring to the boil then turn the heat down to the lowest setting and leave for 15 minutes.
    Remove the rice for the heat and let it stand for 5 minutes, DO NOT remove the lid.
    Cooking Rice


  • Place all the prepped vegetables into a bowl mix well and season with salt and pepper put to one side.  
    Prepped Fresh Vegetables

Cooking The Marinated Beef

  • To cook the beef heat oil in a cast iron or heavy-based pan, add the beef along with the marinade, and stir fry.
    If you want to add a slightly smoky flavor cook in a hot pan, letting some of the meat caramelize and catch but not burn.

Mint Aioli

  • To make the aioli mix mayonnaise, crushed garlic, and mint together. 


  • Spoon the rice into a bowl, place some of the vegetables on top of the rice.
    Place the cooked beef onto the vegetables and spoon on some of the mint aioli.
    Garnish with some more of the vegetables.  Enjoy! 
    My Beef Donburi
Keywords Beef Ribeye, Fresh Vegetables, Galbi Marinade, Purple Rice, Soy Sauce

Serving Size: 200g Marinated beef, vegetables, rice, and mint aioli.
Calories 378 | Total Fat 14.9 g | Carbohydrates 27.6 g | Fiber 3.7 g | Protein 29.2 g | Iron 3.2 mg

Note about Asian pear and Kiwifruit these 2 fruits have a type of cysteine protease enzyme in them that breaks down protein strands in meat and makes it tender.

So it is important not to leave the meat in the marinade too long.

Other ingredients with protease enzyme properties that you can try. Pawpaw, mango, and black cardamom which is different from green cardamom. Black cardamom has a subtle sweet smoky flavor.

Black Cardamom
Black cardamom pods
My Beef Donburi
Beef Donburi with fresh vegetables, purple rice, and mint aioli 

My Enjoyment For Your Benefit And Value

I create these dishes for your enjoyment, I have fun doing it. After cooking in manic fast pasted environments, cooking at home is relaxing and therapeutic.

If I can add value to your life, giving you ideas for breakfast, lunch, or dinner even children’s meals I will have achieved what I set out to do.

All the ingredients in this recipe you can find at your local whole foods or grocery store.

I always try to use organic, free-range, or ethically farmed products, the traceability of the product is also important to me.

This usually has a story behind it that I can pass on to my family, friends, customers, and you.

Try this recipe and I hope you enjoy cooking and eating it as much as we did. I believe that recipes are worth nothing until you share them.

Let me know how you got on with my beef donburi recipe, and also what you think of the flavor.

About The Author

8 thoughts on “Beef Donburi with Fresh Vegetables and Mint Aioli”

  1. Gene Mayberry

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