South Korean Dishes To Try

I had tried some Korean food before coming to Korea but little did I know that I was in for a big treat. Most meals out are served with banchan or side dishes. There are a variety of side dishes and some places make their own so there is never 2 banchan dishes which are the same. Here are some Korean dishes to try!

  1. Cold Soybean soup (kong guksu)
    This is an interesting dish that once I heard about, wanted to try. It’s wheat noodles served in cold soy milk soup. The soy milk soup is quite nutty and a little grainy unlike the soy milk you can buy in the shops. I had a look at some recipes and apart from soy beans, you can add other types of nuts or tahini in too when making it. It’s served cold and usually with egg, cucumber and tomatoes depending where you go.

2. Knife cut noodles (kalguksu)
Kalguku is a heart warming dish. You can use different kinds of broth (anchovy based, chicken based etc) and add different foods (chicken, vegetables or even seafood). On this particular occasion, we also had pork dumplings and the side dishes served were white kimchi and regular kimchi.

3. Bossam
Another fabulously delicious dish, bossam is boiled pork belly (oh so tender!) which is commonly eaten with a range of side dishes and sometimes also eaten wrap style. This is where you use lettuce of some sort and load in the pork and veges, wrap it up and then eat it. At this particular place I went to, they served it with a soup and rice.

4. Gimbap
An all in one combo. These rolls contain a mix of vegetables and meat (or tuna) depending on what you order. There are vegetarian ones too and small gimbap restaurants with friendly aunts can be found everywhere. Gimbaps are the go to foods for picnics and hikes. One roll will cost you around 4,000 won which is an easy and wallet friendly meal.

5. Bibimbap
The famous bibimbap. You can have this served hot in a clay pot so the rice becomes alittle crunchy or opt for a normal bowl. Depending on what restaurant you go to will depend on the toppings you get. There’s usually a mix of vegetables, sometimes meat and sometimes an egg. Pour over the bibimbap sauce and you have yourself a very healthy and delicious meal.

6. Naengmyeon
This translates to literally cold noodles, it’s usually buckwheat/potato or sweet potato starch noodles in a clear broth of beef broth and/or radish water broth. It’s served cold with ice cubes it in and topped with cucumber, egg and or radish. I hadn’t had cold noodles prior to having this so it was something different. I can see why it’s a popular dish in summer.

It’s summer now so there will be another stew/jjigae post when it gets colder! What are your favourite Korean dishes that you’ve had?

20 thoughts on “South Korean Dishes To Try

  1. I LOVE Korean food. I’m lucky to live close to a Korean supermarket and in an area of my city where Korean food is readily-accessible. That said, kimbap is my favorite, and I also love mandoo, tteok-bokki, and soondae. Granted, these are more like small eats, but they are incredibly savory and comforting to have. Bimbimbap is a classic, too! So envious you’re in Korea and enjoying all of the yummy foods– have a wonderful time!

    1. So great that you are able to easily access Korean food given it is a favourite of yours! I have yet to try soondae as I only just want to try a piece but you can’t just buy a piece. Thank you! Hope you will make it to Korea one day and be able to merrily eat!

  2. I tried a variety of dishes when I was staying in Korea but ended up with delicious soups as most other food was far too spicy for me. The side dishes I liked a lot, too. Eating with the very long and slick metal Korean chopsticks was rather difficult for me. After a long day hiking I asked for a fork and was served a little plastic one 😉.
    If you are interested:
    There are a few other posts about my travels in Korea…

  3. My son loved bimbimbap when he was in South Korea. I have not had it myself so inhering to see it. He seeks out authentic Asian food and Korean kimchi. The imitations just don’t cut it!!
    And he is so not adventurous with his food so Korean cuisine must be great!

      1. Well – there are a couple – but that son who knows authentic Korean cuisine tells me it is just fusion of Korean and Asian – not authentic Korean. I am out of the city areas now, but in the city there is quite a few restaurants with authentic Korean dishes.

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  5. I looove samgyupsal, gimbap and Korean Chicken plus the tteokboki. However, naengmyeon is on my bucket list for sooo long. Unfortunately there are no Korean restaurants near me who makes one so I have to wait til I visit Korea. 😔

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