A Recipe for Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs

A Recipe for Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs

The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

Prep: 40 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Marinate: 2 hrs
Total: 3 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 12 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
658 Calories
48g Fat
25g Carbs
33g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 658
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 48g 61%
Saturated Fat 14g 71%
Cholesterol 159mg 53%
Sodium 901mg 39%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 19g
Protein 33g
Vitamin C 5mg 24%
Calcium 48mg 4%
Iron 3mg 14%
Potassium 556mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Although many Koreans love short ribs, one of those fall-off-the-bone dishes, these spicy Korean pork ribs are sure to please, too—regardless of where your guests are from. With this dish for Korean spicy pork ribs, you're not likely to have leftovers, either. The ribs are tender and a little bit sweet, but sticky and spicy. Pair them with rice and they're hard to resist.

As you make the dish, note the difference between Korean-style spareribs and American-style ribs. This recipe for spicy Korean pork ribs contains soy sauce (for some good umami flavor), along with rice wine vinegar and mirin for sweetness and acidity. Finally, the marinade also contains some sugar and honey to make for a flavor experience that's sticky, sweet, savory, and sour.


  • 4 pounds pork spareribs, in serving-size pieces

  • 1/3 cup soy sauce

  • 3 tablespoons mirin

  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 2 tablespoons honey

  • 5 tablespoons gochujang, Korean chile pepper paste

  • 1 sweet onion, minced

  • 5 cloves garlic, minced

  • 3 slices peeled fresh ginger, minced

  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil

  • 3 to 4 scallions, thinly sliced and cut on a bias, for garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs ingredients

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  2. In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add ribs and simmer for about 30 minutes.

    Pork Spareribs in a pot with water

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  3. Remove ribs from pot and place into a shallow glass or ceramic dish.

    Pork spareribs in a baking dish

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  4. Mix all seasonings together to make marinade.

    Mix all the seasonings together to make the marinade

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  5. Pour mixture over meat, coating thoroughly.

    Pork ribs and marinade in a baking dish

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  6. Turn meat over and cover and marinate for at least 2 hours. You can also marinate overnight.

    Pork ribs and marinade in a baking dish

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  7. Cook meat on grill or in oven (meat-side up) for 25 to 30 minutes, turning several times and basting with marinade.

    Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs in a baking dish

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma

  8. The meat should be very tender. Depending on the thickness of the meat, you might need to cook ribs for a longer or shorter time. To serve, garnish with scallions.

    Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs on a plate garnished with scallions

    The Spruce Eats / Christine Ma


  • The marinade for these pork spareribs can be made a day or two ahead of time and then stored in the refrigerator in a sealed container until ready to use.
  • Feel free to double the sauce if desired, if you want to serve some extra alongside the ribs.


This marinade is versatile and can be used on short ribs, too, or on chicken or turkey drumsticks and wings, if desired.

How to Store and Freeze Korean Sweet and Spicy Pork Spareribs

These pork spareribs will keep in the refrigerator, wrapped well or in an airtight container, for up to 5 days. Wrap in foil and reheat in a 350 F oven, and serve with additional sauce from this recipe or make a different spicy Korean marinade for pork.

You can freeze any leftover pork spareribs well wrapped in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 6 months. Defrost in the fridge or pop the frozen ribs right in the oven, wrapped in foil. Serve with additional marinade, if desired.