Spicy soft tofu stew with kimchi and pork belly

Kimchi-sundubu-jjigae 김치순두부찌개

It’s about time for some sizzling, comforting stew, isn’t it? How about sundubu-jjigae? It’s hot, spicy, filling, comforting, delicious, soft tofu stew and has many reasons to be one of the most popular items in Korean restaurants.

I made a video and recipe for sundubu-jjigae seven years ago (!) and it’s been watched over a million times on YouTube (!!). So it was about time for an HD remake and a variation on the recipe, too. That recipe was for seafood sundubu-jjigae, which is my favorite, but since then I’ve learned that kimchi-sundubu-jjigae is more popular. This recipe is is for that version, it’s sundubu-jjigae made with kimchi and pork belly, really hard to go wrong with this dish. Whichever one you choose, you won’t be disappointed. Both are delicious, spicy, and savory, much better than anything you can order at a restaurant.

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This recipe serves 1 or two people, but you can double or triple the recipe for more people, and use a large stainless steel or cast iron pot for the cooking. If you want to serve everyone in a ttukbaegi then you’ll need to cook them on multiple burners, just like a restaurant!

Enjoy my recipe, and let me know if you make this! Take a photo and send it to me!

Ingredients (Serves 1 or 2)

  • 8 large dried anchovies, heads and guts removed
  • 5 ounces of radish, peeled, washed, and sliced thinly
  • dried kelp (6 x 4 inch piece)
  • 2 tablespoons hot pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • ½ cup pork belly (or any cut of pork: 2.5 ounces), cut into small pieces
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • ½ cup well-fermented kimchi (4 ounces), chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tube of soft tofu (sundubu)
  • 1 egg

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Directions

Make anchovy kelp stock (myeolchi dasima yuksu):

  1. Put dried anchovies, radish, dried kelp, and 4 cups of water in a pot. Cover and boil over medium high heat for 10 minutes until it starts boiling.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and boil another 20 minutes
  3. Remove from the heat and strain. It will make about 2 cups of stock.
    sundubu jjigae -anchovy stocksundubu jjigae-stock

Make the spicy paste:

  1. Combine the hot pepper flakes and the sesame oil in a small bowl and mix well.

ingredients-tofu-stew
Put it all together:

  1. Heat up a 3 cup earthenware pot (ttukbaegi) on the stove over medium high heat for about 3 to 4 minutes. If you use a small heavy pan or pot, it will take less.
  2. Add the vegetable oil, onion, and garlic. Stir it with a wooden spoon for 1 minute.
    sundubu jjigae (순두부찌개)
  3. Add the pork. Stir for 3 minutes until the pork is no longer pink.
    sundubu-jjigae (spicy soft tofu stew: 순두부찌개)
  4. Add kimchi and keep stirring for a minute. Add ½ cup anchovy stock. Cover and cook for 7 minutes over medium heat.
  5. Add the salt and the sugar and mix well.
  6. Cut the tube of soft tofu into half and squeeze it out into the pot. Gently break up the tofu with a wooden spoon. If you want, add a few tablespoons of stock.
  7. Put the hot pepper mixture on top and spread it with the spoon.
    sundubu-jjigae (순두부찌개: Korean spicy soft tofu stew)sundubu jjigae (순두부찌개)
  8. Crack the egg and put it on top, in the center of the stew. Let it bubble and sizzle for 1 minute.

Serve:

  1. Sprinkle with the chopped green onion and serve with rice and a few more side dishes.

sundubu-jjigae (순두부찌개: Korean spicy soft tofu stew)

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64 Comments:

  1. lwilliams50 Atlanta My profile page joined 9/16
    Posted September 13th, 2016 at 8:50 am | # |

    Thank you Maangchi for this delicious and addictive Korean Sundubu-Jjigae recipe!
    I was traveling over an hour every week to a restaurant to get my Sundubu fix. I went the the local H-Mart, stocked up on my goodies and now I can make it at home. I varied my recipe by one ingredient and used beef this time instead of pork. My next challenge is Korean Fried Chicken, another of my addictions!


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  2. Estar Singapore My profile page joined 7/14
    Posted September 13th, 2016 at 8:15 am | # |

    I love this recipe. Sometimes I make it with minced pork, other times with clams. And I usually add some shiitake mushroom because it makes the stew so savoury. The egg is the best part – I even put in 2 eggs for myself sometimes! Haha…

  3. Divski New York, NY My profile page joined 8/16
    Posted August 13th, 2016 at 12:45 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi! I love sundubu and often go out of my way to have some!
    Is there a vegetarian version of your Sundubu recipe that you can recommend?

  4. Omsin Salamanca, Spain My profile page joined 7/16
    Posted July 23rd, 2016 at 9:45 am | # |

    I tried making this with your recipe several months ago and loved it so much! It has become one of my favourite Korean dishes and I’m going to cook it again and again. Thank you <3


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    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted July 25th, 2016 at 12:40 pm | # |

      Just like the name of the dish spicy and soft tofu stew, yours looks so soft and spicy! All we need is some rice!

  5. Mamegordy SINGAPORE My profile page joined 5/16
    Posted July 23rd, 2016 at 9:19 am | # |

    Yippee!! I get the taste of kimchi sundubu jjigae better than restaurant… Woohoo!… WHO I LEARN FROM? Is Maangchi! Maangchi!


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  6. vvcosta United States My profile page joined 6/16
    Posted June 27th, 2016 at 7:34 pm | # |

    I substituted the pork for mushrooms and used beef stock instead (because I didn’t have anchovies or kelp on hand) and it was delicious! I used to always have to go out for really good sundubujjigae but now I can stay home and enjoy it!

  7. Hilldabeast Groveland, Ca My profile page joined 10/12
    Posted June 16th, 2016 at 5:39 pm | # |

    Thank you maangchi! My husband is Korean and always says that soondooboo is only good at restaurants but today I proved him wrong! He loved your recipe and we are happy to have it since we live hours away from Korean restaurants. Thank you! He doesn’t like egg so here’s an eggless soondooboo. :)


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    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted June 18th, 2016 at 9:20 am | # |

      Wow I’m so happy to hear that and your sundubu-jjiage looks good. No wonder he loved it!

  8. ZNP Slovenia My profile page joined 5/16
    Posted May 6th, 2016 at 9:10 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi! I made the stew – it was spicy, bubbly, one of the best things I have ever made. Kimchi tastes so different when cooked, turns out I love kimchi in any form and shape! And the egg at the end – I kept eating around it till most of the dish was finished, and then broke the yolk… Omg, loved it. Sorry, I have no pic – it was so good I ate it before I remembered to take a photo :) Thanks for this awesome recipe. Love your cooking!

  9. poppythien UK My profile page joined 4/16
    Posted April 27th, 2016 at 3:49 pm | # |

    Hi!! i made this today following the youtube that you post. eventhough I dont have all the ingredient for the soup base, also the radish not intend to buy just for this recipe because its a huge one and I wont be using it for any other recipe soon. I put carrot in instead though for a little sweetness.
    The soup was really great!!! I can just have it purely on its own!!.
    Thanks Maangchi!!


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  10. toughcc1 Omaha My profile page joined 4/16
    Posted April 14th, 2016 at 1:00 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi,

    Question: Is there a reason that you use chicken stock in your book versus creating the stock using anchovies and kelp in your recipe online? Is taste the same? I deciding whether to use this recipe (which I have in the past) versus the chicken stock used in your book (which I love!!).

    Thank you!

    • toughcc1 Omaha My profile page joined 4/16
      Posted April 14th, 2016 at 1:02 pm | # |

      And when I say love, I love the book. I haven’t tried soondubu with the chicken stock yet.

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted April 15th, 2016 at 11:15 pm | # |

      Thank you very much for leaving the question here.
      Yes, in my tofu stew recipe, I used a can of chicken broth instead of using homemade anchovy stock. Actually you can try both and choose which one you like.
      Korean sundubu-jjigae has many versions depending on the ingredients (seafood, pork, beef, kimchi, bulgogi, vegetables).

  11. HoneyMonkey My profile page joined 11/15
    Posted February 8th, 2016 at 11:10 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi!
    I made this for the first time tonight! I did not know what to expect from the flavor since I have never tried it before but you made it look so wonderful I had to make it. It was delicious!! My whole family loved it on this rare cold night in Florida. :). Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful and easy to follow recipe!


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    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted February 11th, 2016 at 1:21 pm | # |

      Congratulations! Your kimchi pork sundubujjigae looks perfect! I’m very happy to hear that your family loved it! Happy cooking!

  12. rchou01 My profile page joined 1/16
    Posted January 6th, 2016 at 10:52 pm | # |

    Been pretty making this all winter. Thanks!


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    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted January 7th, 2016 at 9:24 am | # |

      I’m glad you enjoy this recipe! It looks awesome! You will become a queen or king of sundubu jjigae making soon. : )

  13. Jeff Chicago My profile page joined 1/11
    Posted December 23rd, 2015 at 11:00 pm | # |

    Wow! Looks so delicious Maangchi! I love Korean food, thanks so much for your wonderful recipes. Only need dried sardines to make soondubu jiggae, they have them at H-Mart here in Chicago.

  14. nmt_0605 My profile page joined 11/15
    Posted November 2nd, 2015 at 8:05 am | # |

    Love your recipe <3
    It's delicious.


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  15. rainedaywoman My profile page joined 6/15
    Posted October 11th, 2015 at 11:21 pm | # |

    Made this last week and it came out so good. Thank you for sharing your recipes. Definitely want your cook book. I adjusted it to make it family sized since I do not yet have dolsots (the Asian grocery I frequent have not had any dolsots right now) to make it individually for each of us so had to make it in one pot.


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  16. Sara Alice My profile page joined 7/15
    Posted August 18th, 2015 at 12:10 am | # |

    Very delicious Maangchi!!! I will consider using anchovy stock for kimchi jjigae next time. I love it


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  17. fay349 My profile page joined 8/15
    Posted August 12th, 2015 at 4:28 am | # |

    Hi maangchi i’m fay from malaysia love your utube channel and you hihi may i ask… Can i replace hot pepper flakes with chilli flakes? Is it same taste? Or i can replace with gochujang? Which one is better? Or i must use hot pepper flakes? Any suggestion what should i replace the hot pepper flakes? I cant find any stores sell it aroud my place… Tq

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 13th, 2015 at 7:38 am | # |

      Hi Fay, I think you should find Korean hot pepper flakes if you really learn Korean cooking. Hot pepper flakes (gochu-garu) are very essential to Korean cooking This is a list of Korean grocery stores in Malaysia. http://www.maangchi.com/shopping/malaysia

      • MaisyaraMeor Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia My profile page joined 2/16
        Posted February 28th, 2016 at 6:54 am | # |

        Hi Maangchi… thank you for the list. I have been frequenting iSetan KLCC as per listed in your list and am really glad that you have listed more store for me to visit. You will be glad that I have tried a lot of Korean recipes and mostly are from your youtube channel :) I have made sundubu jjigae last week and this week is attempting at the spicy chicken feet.

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