South Korea is an fantastic nation. A cultural melting pot that’s the outcome of a variety of various impacts, from the colonial powers that at one time inhabited it to the special landscape and environment it boasts. It’s the confluence of these elements that have actually produced the customizeds, mindsets, and food culture that exists there today. And if you have not checked out Korea yet you need to absolutely put it on your list.
Standard Korean Meals
Korean food is based a lot on grains– in specific rice. From Kimchi fried rice to a sweet rice cake, it’s a food that isn’t scared of a little spice and utilizes a great deal of fermented active ingredients. Fish and seafood likewise play a crucial function in Korean food, due to the fact that of the sea surrounding the Korean peninsula.
Lots of South Korean meals have remarkable histories or cultural significance. A great deal of the foods here are embraced or adjusted from other cultures. We will be highlighting some standard meals however likewise a few of those contemporary handles Korean Food that have actually ended up being truly popular in the U.S.A..
It is time to begin your food journey in Korea. We can’t wait to reveal you a few of our all-time preferred meals.
1. Bibimbap (Korean Rice Bowl)
Bibimbap is among the more widely known Korean meals. You have actually most likely attempted it in the house however till you have it in Korea, we state you are losing out. Bibimbap is a rice-based meal that can include veggies, a fried egg, and whatever other protein you like.
If you wish to make it the standard method then make certain that each active ingredient is sectioned individually in the bowl. Then you can blend them together prior to consuming. The very best Bibimbap utilized veggies that have actually been blanched or sautÃ©ed with sesame oil and soy sauce, and meat that has actually been marinaded prior to being prepared. I like the egg to be sunny-side up and after that I top it with sesame seeds, spicy sauce, and scallions. Sounds fantastic right?
The good idea about this being such a popular Korean meal is that you can get a variation with seafood, beef, and tofu– there’s something to match all tastes! If you go to Korea you will discover that various areas have their own handles this meal.
2. Bulgogi (marinaded beef barbecue)
Bulgogi is a meal you can’t miss out on if you’re checking out South Korea. Its name indicates “fire meat” and stems from its technique of cooking. Bulgogi is comprised of thin-cut pieces of beef or pork that have actually been marinaded and grilled on a barbecue.
Bulgogi is among those basic Korean meals that you can make in the house. The secret to an excellent Bulgogi is absolutely the right cut of meat. We like to utilize leading sirloin, however you can utilize whichever kind of beef you like. Ensure to slice it great and thin, that method it is more tender, then marinade it in soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, and garlic. When you prepare it, you wish to hear that sizzle so make certain the grill is truly hot.
This meal really originates from Northern Korea, however today it is popular in South Korea too. This is a tasty and plain meal that you’ll discover in the majority of junk food and barbeque dining establishments throughout South Korea.
3. Korean barbecue (Gogigui )
Mentioning Barbeque, we could not do a list of Korean foods without consisting of among our favorites: Korean Barbecue! Likewise referred to as Gogigui, this kind of food is as enjoyable to consume as it is scrumptious.
At Korean Barbecue dining establishments, you purchase your meat, you’re provided a choice of veggies, and after that you can go to town barbecuing your own supper. It’s an incredibly enjoyable method to invest a night and an extremely social method of consuming.
Now you might believe that this sounds a lot like Bulgogi however the distinction is that Bulgogi is really a kind of Gogigui. The term Gogigui simply describes the practice of barbecuing or roasting meat in Korean food.
4. Gimbap: Korean Seaweed Rice Rolls
If you’re a fan of sushi then you have actually got to attempt gimbap. Gimbap is the Korean take on sushi and it’s usually taken pleasure in as street food– it’s incredibly economical so fantastic if you’re taking a trip on a budget plan It can consist of all sorts of innovative active ingredients, consisting of however not restricted to beef, cheese, omelet, and even pork stomach cutlet.
Another spelling of this meal is “kimbap” with Kim suggesting seaweed and bap significance rice. It was probably very first created when Korea was under Japanese guideline. Although some state it is an adjustment of the standard meal Bokssam.
Kimchi is another incredibly popular food in South Korea. It is a mix of spiced and fermented veggies typically functioned as a side meal. It is made from cabbage, carrots green peppers, radish, and spring onions.
We understand that it’s been around considering that ancient times, with composed accounts of it looking like early as the first century. Marinading and fermenting were popular techniques of protecting foods prior to the creation of contemporary home appliances such as fridges. What’s intriguing is that it wasn’t constantly spicy, the heat was just included after Portuguese traders presented chilis to the area in the 15th century.
You can make numerous various Korean meals utilizing it. There is kimchi stew (kimchi jjigae), kimchi pancake (kimchi jeon), and kimchi fried rice simply among others. Make your own Kimchi with this scrumptious dish!
6. Saengseon Jjigae (Spicy Fish Stew)
We pointed out above that seafood and fish are significant staples of South Korean food, therefore are soups and stews. This meal combines both of these principles and if you’re checking out South Korea you’ll no doubt see it on menus all over.
Saengseon Jjigae is a fish stew that consists typically of breast meat fish and typically prawns or other shellfish. If you’re an enthusiast of fish then you have actually got to make certain to attempt this meal!
Making this in the house is not that simple, however if you wish to offer it an attempt you generally cut the fish into bite-sized pieces, dust in flour, and pan fry till it is crispy.
The broth is made with anchovy paste and kelp in water to make a tasty stock. Then include some spicy chili paste, garlic, soy sauce, and other flavorings, to offer it an abundant and hot taste.
Lastly, you integrate the stock with whatever veggies you like and let it simmer till they are prepared. Lastly, include the fish, in addition to some sliced scallions, and let whatever cook together for a couple of minutes till the tastes have actually blended together.
7. Sundubu-jjigae (soft tofu stew)
If you want to attempt a Korean stew (or jjigae) however you do not consume meat or fish, you can constantly attempt Sundubu Jjigae, a variation of the standard stew that is made with tofu. Fish, kimchi, and beef can likewise be contributed to this meal if you like.
A Korean primary meal will usually included some kind of jjigae– that’s just how much of a staple it is! So if you remain in a dining establishment there’s a great chance you’ll get to attempt it. This meal is believed to go back to ancient times, however just recently more contemporary adjustments have actually been created too.
8. Hotteok (Korean Sweet Pancakes)
From the extremely mouthwatering to the incredibly sweet, Hotteok is a kind of pancake exuding with sweet syrup. This is among the most popular street treats in South Korea and it’s not difficult to see why! It can consist of additions such as crushed peanuts or cinnamon, and it’s typically consumed throughout the winter season to warm up cold commuters on cold early mornings.
9. Gilgeori Toast
If you’re searching for some delicious breakfast after you have actually gotten rid of your jet lag, we have actually got the ideal meal for you. Gilgeori toast is what the majority of young South Koreans will get for breakfast on their method to work. It’s mouthwatering, sweet, filling, and scrumptious.
Its primary active ingredients are egg, cabbage, and grated carrots. Catsup, mayo, and sugar– yes sugar– are other typical additions. This popular street food might sound insane, however in some way, it truly works!
10. Tteokbokki (Spicy Rice Cakes)
Another popular Korean street food, Tteokbokki is sliced rice cakes– though not as you understand them. Far from the crispy disks of puffed-up rice, this term summons, these rice cakes are soft, round, and pleasantly chewy.
To make Tteokbokki, initially, the rice cakes and fish cakes are boiled till they are soft and tender. Then, the red pepper sauce, which is made with gochujang (Korean red pepper paste), garlic, soy sauce, and sugar, is contributed to the pot. The mix is simmered till the sauce thickens and coats the rice cakes and fish cakes.
Tteokbokki can be found in a variety of various ranges, from curry to cream sauce and whatever in between. This sweet and hot meal is most likely unlike anything you have actually attempted in the past, however it’s too great to skip. This meal is especially popular on the streets of Seoul, so do not forget to watch out if you’re checking out.
11. Soondae (Korean blood sausage)
No, we’re not discussing ice cream and sauce here, so if you see this on a menu in Korea, do not make this error! Sundae remains in truth a blood sausage comparable to the type you may get in a complete Irish breakfast if you’re checking out the emerald island
This meal is typically made by steaming cow or pig intestinal tracts and packing them with different active ingredients. It’s not for the faint-hearted, however if you’re a daring eater it’s absolutely one to attempt.
12. Japchae (Korean Glass Noodles)
This is another meal that exhibits the South Korean fondness for the mix of sweet and mouthwatering. It’s made from glass noodles and typically consists of mushrooms, carrots, spinach, and other veggies. It was as soon as a meal booked for royalty, and it’s now typical to consume at events such as wedding events or birthdays.
There is absolutely nothing like a meal of glass noodles stir-fried in sesame oil and garnished with toasted sesame seeds to get your mouth watering. Attempt making your own in the house with this dish!
13. Gyeranppang (Egg Bread)
If you’re an enthusiast of all things abundant, then Gyeranppang is the meal for you. The name of this street treat equates to “egg bread” which’s precisely what it is.
A light, fluffy, little loaf of sweet-tasting bread which contains an entire egg inside. Typical garnishes consist of ham, cheese, or fresh herbs such as parsley.
14. Nakji Bokkeum (Spicy Octopus)
Nakji-Bokkeum is another meal that may be best delegated daring eaters, and if you’re not a fan of fish, you can most likely offer it a miss out on. Still, it’s an extremely popular meal in South Korea, and it’s absolutely worth having a look at.
Nakji-Bokkeum is a hot meal made from stir-fried octopus. It’s thought to be a fairly current addition to the South Korean diet plan, going back to around the mid-1900s.
15. Yaksik (Sweet Rice)
Lastly, we have a sweet meal that’s popular throughout South Korea. Yaksik is made from steamed rice, honey, and dried fruits. It likewise typically consists of cinnamon and even soy sauce.
This meal goes back to around the 13th century. Today, it is generally provided on Jeongwol Daeboreum, a Korean vacation. It is likewise taken pleasure in at wedding events.
16. Hangover Stew (Haejangguk)
Haejangguk, likewise referred to as Hangover Soup, is a standard Korean soup that is thought to assist treat hangovers. The name Haejangguk equates to “soup to chase after a hangover.” The soup is made with pork bones and a range of veggies like bean sprouts, Napa cabbage, and radish. The soup likewise consists of a range of spices and flavorings, like garlic, ginger, and Gochugaru (Korean chili flakes).
I would state you will be hard-pressed to make this in the house, however you can offer it a shot with this dish.
Haejangguk is typically served with rice, kimchi, and marinaded veggies. If you remain in Seoul you will absolutely see Koreans consuming this after a night of heavy drinking to assist minimize the signs of a hangover the next day. Does it work? Let’s simply state our company believe.
17. Samgyeopsal (Grilled Pork Tummy)
Samgyeopsal is a popular Korean meal that includes grilled pork stomach pieces. The name “samgyeopsal” translates to “three-layered flesh,” which describes the 3 layers of fat and meat on a pork stomach. The meal is served with a range of side meals, consisting of lettuce leaves, chopped garlic, ssamjang (a spicy soybean paste), and grilled onions.
To make Samgyeopsal, initially, a thick cut of pork stomach is sliced into thin, bite-sized pieces. Then marinade it in a mix of soy sauce, garlic, sugar, and sesame oil. Lastly, grill it on a warmer or barbecue till it is prepared through and a little crispy on the exterior.
The last action in this scrumptious meal is to position it on a lettuce leaf in addition to some garlic, ssamjang, and grilled onions, cover it up, and consume it in one bite.
18. Kimchi Fried Rice
Kimchi Fried Rice is a popular Korean meal that is made by stir-frying prepared rice with kimchi and other active ingredients. The meal is typically functioned as a fast and simple meal or as a side meal to accompany other Korean meals.
To make the Fried Rice, initially, prepared rice is required. Remaining rice works well, as it is a little drier and much easier to stir-fry. Kimchi is then sliced into little pieces and combined with other active ingredients such as diced onions, carrots, and green onions.
In a pan or wok, oil is warmed over medium-high heat. The kimchi and veggie mix is contributed to the pan and stir-fried till the veggies are softened. The prepared rice is then contributed to the pan and stir-fried till it is warmed through and covered with the kimchi and veggie mix. Some variations of this Fried Rice might consist of other active ingredients such as diced ham, bacon, or tofu.
It is typically served with a fried egg on top, which includes a velvety texture to the meal. The meal can likewise be garnished with extra sliced green onions and sesame seeds for included taste.
19. Steamed Mandu Dumplings (Jjinmandu)
Jjinmandu is a kind of Korean dumpling that is typically filled with meat and veggies. The dumpling resembles a Chinese-style jiaozi or Japanese-style gyoza however with its own special taste and texture.
To make Jjinmandu, initially, a filling is prepared by blending ground pork or beef with veggies such as garlic, onion, carrot, and green onion. The filling is skilled with soy sauce, sesame oil, salt, and pepper to taste. Some other kinds of Jjinmandu might consist of tofu, kimchi, or other active ingredients.
Next, little circles of dumpling wrapper dough are presented and filled with the meat and veggie mix. The edges of the wrapper are then pinched together to seal the filling within. The dumplings are then steamed or boiled till they are prepared through and the wrapper hurts.
Jjinmandu is typically served with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce, vinegar, and sesame oil. The meal can be taken pleasure in as a treat or as a main dish and is popular throughout Korea.
20. Kimchi Jjigae (Kimchi Stew)
Kimchi Jjigae is a popular Korean stew made with fermented kimchi, pork, tofu, and other veggies. Kimchi Jjigae is a standard meal in Korea and is typically functioned as a main dish, particularly throughout the winter season. The meal has a long history and was initially made throughout the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) when households would ferment their own kimchi in big earthenware containers called Onggi.
To make Kimchi Jjigae, initially, the kimchi is sliced into little pieces and contributed to a pot in addition to sliced pork and tofu. Other veggies like onion, garlic, and green onions are likewise included, in addition to some water or broth. The stew is simmered till the pork is prepared through and the veggies hurt. The resulting meal is hearty and warming, with a tasty and hot taste from the fermented kimchi.
21. Korean Fried Chicken
Korean fried chicken, likewise referred to as KFC, is a popular Korean meal that includes fried chicken covered in a crispy, crispy batter and normally served with a spicy or sweet sauce. The distinction in between Korean fried chicken and other kinds of fried chicken is using a double-frying strategy that produces an extra-crispy outside while keeping the meat juicy and tender on the within.
Once the chicken is totally prepared and crispy, it is normally served with a sweet and hot sauce made with Korean chili paste, soy sauce, honey, garlic, and ginger. Korean fried chicken is a popular Korean street food and you can discover it nearly throughout South Korea.
22. Jjajangmyeon (Noodles in Black-Bean Sauce)
Jjajangmyeon is a popular Korean-Chinese meal made with wheat noodles, black bean sauce, and different veggies like onions, zucchini, and potatoes. The meal has a long history in Korea and was initially presented throughout the early 20th century by Chinese immigrants who settled in Korea.
To make Jjajangmyeon, initially, the black bean sauce is prepared by frying diced pork stomach with sliced onions and black bean paste. Veggies like zucchini and potatoes are then contributed to the pot and prepared till tender. The resulting sauce is thick and mouthwatering with a tip of sweet taste.
The wheat noodles are then prepared and served with the black bean sauce on top. The meal is typically garnished with chopped cucumber and a drizzle of sesame oil. Jjajangmyeon is popular in Korea due to the fact that of its abundant and mouthwatering taste and pleasing texture.
23. Samgyetang (Chicken Ginseng Soup)
Samgyetang is a standard Korean soup made with an entire young chicken, ginseng, jujubes, and other medical herbs. The meal is typically consumed throughout the summer season in Korea and is thought to have health advantages like increasing the body immune system and increasing endurance.
So, how do you make Samgyetang? Initially, an entire young chicken is packed with glutinous rice and different herbs like ginseng, jujubes, and garlic. The chicken is then boiled in a pot with water till it is totally prepared and the broth is abundant and tasty.
The resulting soup is thick and hearty, with a fragile taste from the herbs and tender meat from the chicken. Samgyetang is a popular meal in Korea and is typically served in Korean dining establishments and as a part of standard Korean food.
Our Favorite South Korean Food
South Korea is an interesting and culturally abundant nation and Korean food does an incredible task of showing this. There are numerous various meals to attempt, and the above represent simply a few of our favorites. If you’re searching for more travel ideas, do not forget to have a look at the rest of our posts now!