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Korean stew-Kimchi jjigae-05.jpg
Alternative namesKimchi stew
Place of originKorea
Main ingredientsKimchi
Korean name
Revised Romanizationgimchi-jjigae

Kimchi-jjigae[1] (김치찌개) or kimchi stew[1] is a jjigae, or stew-like Korean dish, made with kimchi and other ingredients, such as pork or seafood, scallions, onions, and diced Dubu. It is one of the most common stews in Korean cuisine.


Kimchi existed as a non-spicy pickled vegetable dish well prior to the Joseon era; it was not until the introduction of chili peppers to the Korean peninsula mid-era that the variant of kimchi which has become the de facto standard of today was created. Kimchi jjigae is assumed to have developed around this time as well.[2]

Preparation and serving[edit]

It's common sense to throw away old food if it's spoiled, but kimchi becomes a better ingredient as it ages.[3] So kimchi jjigae is often cooked using older, more fermented, and "riper" kimchi, which has a much more pronounced flavor and contains higher amounts of probiotics.[4] (Living bacteria in fresh, uncooked kimchi will not survive the cooking process.) As kimchi is the core ingredient in kimchi jjigae, other ingredients are dependent on personal preference.

Sliced kimchi is put into a pot with the meat of choice and other typical ingredients such as tofu, sliced spring onions, and garlic. They are stewed in water or anchovy (myeolchi) stock. The stew is seasoned with fermented bean paste (doenjang) or fermented red pepper paste (gochujang).[2]

Like many other Korean dishes, kimchi jjigae is usually eaten communally from the center of the table if more than two people are served. It is accompanied by traditional side dishes (banchan) and rice. It is usually cooked and served boiling hot in a stone pot.


Tuna kimchi-jjigae

Beyond the standard ingredients of beef, pork, or chicken, some varieties are called by their particular names.

  • Chamchi kimchi jjigae (참치 김치찌개) is made with tuna, usually the canned type made specifically to use in jjigae. It is popular for camping trips or picnics, because of its ease of cooking and portability.[5]
  • Ggongchi kimchi jjigae (꽁치 김치찌개) is made with Pacific saury.
  • Budae jjigae (부대찌개) is made by stewing kimchi with various ingredients not native to Korean cuisine, including Spam, hot dogs, American cheese slices, etc. Budae means “army base” in Korean; it originated during the Korean War, when South Koreans used ingredients procured from the US military.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b (in Korean) "주요 한식명(200개) 로마자 표기 및 번역(영, 중, 일) 표준안" [Standardized Romanizations and Translations (English, Chinese, and Japanese) of (200) Major Korean Dishes] (PDF). National Institute of Korean Language. 2014-07-30. Retrieved 2017-02-19. Lay summary.
  2. ^ a b (in Korean) Kimchi jjigae Archived 2011-06-10 at the Wayback Machine at Encyclopedia of Korean Culture
  3. ^ "김치찌개". (in Korean). Retrieved 2021-04-04.
  4. ^ (in Korean) Bacteria in kimchi, Doctor's News, 2009-05-18. Retrieved 2010-06-24.
  5. ^ (in Korean) Tuna in jjigae, Hankyung News, 2010-01-19. Retrieved 2010-06-24.
  6. ^

External links[edit]