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.

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


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.

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.


  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)



  1. just_plain_zack My profile page joined 7/15
    Posted July 28th, 2015 at 2:24 pm | # |

    Hello Maangchi!

    I’ve been a long time watcher and recently picked up your Cookbook! I made soondubu jjigae the other night for me and my partner and it was absolutely phenominal. I didn’t have any korean radish so I substituted some shitake mushrooms and the stock was AMAZING! I added mussels and a few small rice cakes and it turned out really well. I also used some of the stock ingredients to make banchan!

    Thank you for the recipes and keep up the good work!


    Click for full image

  2. nikki_n My profile page joined 6/15
    Posted June 22nd, 2015 at 2:48 pm | # |

    Hello Maangchi should I still add radish and dried kelp if I replace anchovies with chicken broth?

  3. Jay-R-Tee My profile page joined 6/15
    Posted June 7th, 2015 at 11:04 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi! Thanks for your wonderful site :) I’m just wondering of its possible to freeze the left over anchiovy stock?

  4. iamtrinket My profile page joined 6/15
    Posted June 3rd, 2015 at 1:00 am | # |

    I Made this today and added mushrooms and squash. So easy and so yummy.

    Click for full image

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted June 4th, 2015 at 8:16 pm | # |

      Mushrooms and squash sounds great! What kind of mushrooms did you use?

      • iamtrinket My profile page joined 6/15
        Posted June 4th, 2015 at 8:31 pm | # |

        Just regular white mushrooms found at the regular grocery store. My mom had left them in my fridge when she visited. I’m excited to try other things now that an h mart has opened near my house. I like to put fish cakes in everything, do you think cut up fish cakes would go well with this stew?

        • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
          Posted June 5th, 2015 at 11:10 am | # |

          oh white mushrooms! “an h mart has opened near my house” I know how you feel! I can’t live far away from a Korean grocery store. : ) Yes, adding some fish cakes sounds great to me.

  5. Keramira Arizona My profile page joined 4/14
    Posted April 1st, 2015 at 5:15 pm | # |

    THANK YOU!! I really enjoy making 통배추김치 (cabbage kimchi) but I only ate it with rice and didn’t really know what else to do with it. I am so happy to see this video and recipe. I made this dish for the past two days and shared it with my family. Only my 9 year old son didn’t want it because it was too spicy for him! It is so delicious that I feel I can eat it every day! I am so excited!

    Today I will be making kimchi soup with pork and tofu.
    Happy Cooking everyone!!
    Thank you Maangchi!
    attached is my soup picture

    Click for full image

  6. kekota My profile page joined 3/15
    Posted March 26th, 2015 at 9:30 am | # |

    thx for the recipe!! but i made some modification, and i find that using gochujang is more delicious for me and it gives a wonderfull aroma.. thx and keep give inspiration for many people!!

  7. Freakness Cairo, Egypt My profile page joined 12/14
    Posted March 22nd, 2015 at 8:21 pm | # |

    Maangchi :(
    i can’t find Dried anchovies
    any substitute for it ?!!
    or can i use fish sauce and boil it with some water
    tell me what to do :(

  8. Victoria Leow My profile page joined 3/15
    Posted March 22nd, 2015 at 8:22 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi! I am very new to your Youtube Korean Food videos. This sundubu-jjigae was the first video that I watched. I was so tempted by it so I decided to make it tonight. I bought “the most spicy” chili flakes and was so worried that it will be too spicy for me. Haha….I wasn’t spicy at all! I will buy chili flakes from other Korean store next time. I don’t have ttukbaegi so i just used a normal pot to cook this jjigae. It was very delicious but I think it will be so so so much more delicious with the ttukbaegi.I can’t wait to cook for my fiance next time I see him. ^^

    I really like you very much! You are so adorable! I like your gesture and your sense of humor. I am very excited and looking forward for your cookbook! Unfortunately, I am living in Japan, I don’t think I can get your signature. =(

    Click for full image

  9. AmandaBoon My profile page joined 3/15
    Posted March 21st, 2015 at 5:00 am | # |

    Hey, Maangchi. I could not find any kelp in my nearby stores.\
    What can i replace it with?

  10. Oxide California My profile page joined 2/15
    Posted March 20th, 2015 at 7:47 pm | # |

    I have made this recipe 2 times already! It is so delicious. But I used udon bowls — it was all I had. I recently made it over to the Korean market and picked up a couple ttukbaegi. Guess what’s for dinner tonight.

  11. sanne Munich My profile page joined 8/14
    Posted March 13th, 2015 at 8:15 pm | # |


    Thanks to you, I finally found the courage to use one of my 4-cup-ttugbaegi on the electric stove. 1/3 more of all the ingredients for two persons, the ttuugbaegi was filled to the top – now it’s empty, and we’re stuffed. ;-)

    Bye, Sanne.

  12. honeymustardseeds Arcata, Ca My profile page joined 2/15
    Posted February 20th, 2015 at 11:34 pm | # |

    This is my first attempt at making any “real” Korean food. This was so yummy! I wasn’t able to find any pork belly at my local shops, so I had to use pork rib and it worked very well! I also couldn’t find any dried anchovies, and I only had some that were in oil. I did have everything else and it turned out fantastic! I had a hard time getting past the smell of the anchovy stock, but I powered through and I am very glad I did.

    Thanks for introducing me to a new type of cooking, it’s very fun and so so tasty!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted February 21st, 2015 at 10:23 am | # |

      I’m happy to hear that your tofu stew turned out delicious! Good luck with your Korean cooking!

  13. marian0515 Netherlands My profile page joined 2/15
    Posted February 19th, 2015 at 8:00 am | # |

    I love your shirt Maangchi, and your dishes!
    Thank you for introducing me to the Korean kitchen, it is very tasteful and good. :)

    I’m making this sundubu-jjigae this evening, yay!

  14. indelibledotink Honolulu My profile page joined 5/11
    Posted February 5th, 2015 at 11:00 pm | # |

    Made this tonight, came out very tasty. Did not realize how much I like kim chi chigae until making the dish myself!

    I put the radish and seaweed back in the stew, and had to increase the spicy level for my portion, but the heat level was ok for my dad. You would think older people would need more heat cause of old tastebuds, but his Korean stomach is getting more sensitive with age…. no good. He loved the chigae!

    Making some gim tonight or tomorrow!

    Good luck with book sales ;)

  15. Fishming China My profile page joined 2/15
    Posted February 1st, 2015 at 7:22 pm | # |

    Hi maangchi, I come from China, I like your vedio very much, but in China we can’t watch YouTube. so can you update your vedio to some Chinese vedio web such as youku or tudou, I think we will like your vedio, Thank you!:)

  16. CiscoTX Houston, TX My profile page joined 7/14
    Posted January 30th, 2015 at 2:25 am | # |


    Thanks for this soondubu update! Today I made a combination between this recipe and your classic one from years ago. Pork and kimchi, but I used the stock recipe from your older video. I also added some enoki and “seafood” mushrooms… Lol not sure of their real name but that’s what it says in the package!

    It All came together tonight! I converted my husband (he always hated stews and soft tofu) to looooove soondubu jjigae. Thank you 😄😀

  17. hikarisgarden アメリカ合衆国 My profile page joined 1/15
    Posted January 28th, 2015 at 1:25 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi!
    I just stumbled upon your blog a few days ago- and am so glad I did :)
    Im a newly wed and am in need of great help of cooking delicious meals.
    I have found your website to be super helpful! Thank you!

    I have a question, for the stock, i have an oxtail stock, would this work, or should i do the anchovies and kelp instead??

    Also, are japanese miso, and korean soybean paste different? Thank you!

    • hikarisgarden アメリカ合衆国 My profile page joined 1/15
      Posted January 29th, 2015 at 1:21 am | # |

      Hi Maangchi,

      I ended up making the soup with the oxtail broth that i hade made days before – it came out delicious!
      i think it was the best meal we had, my husband was super happy and was raving about it.
      I even showed him your video :) Im excited to learn more from you and your website!

      Thank you!

  18. Just_Tina Washington DC Metro Area My profile page joined 7/10
    Posted January 27th, 2015 at 4:13 pm | # |

    Seriously, Maangchi? :) I already modified this recipe years ago! This is how I make my kimchi jigae (w/a shot of soju)! Actually, sans kimchi, I call this my dubu jigae and I add squash as well. I don’t always have seafood mix available so I usually get some pork butt and slice it up. I don’t care for sundubu because it disintegrates and I can’t see any dubu in front of me. (I love tofu but I have to see it w/my eyes.) Usually any tofu stew I make I use medium tofu. I gotta see those tofu pieces in front of me otherwise I feel cheated. Strange, I know, but that’s how I like my tofu. Right now I’m in the mood for kong biji jigae! Yum!

  19. Lynnjamin New York My profile page I'm a fan! joined 11/14
    Posted January 26th, 2015 at 6:25 pm | # |

    And a few minutes later I am eating it! MAN this is tasty! What a fantastic recipe. It’s the best of everything.

  20. Lynnjamin New York My profile page I'm a fan! joined 11/14
    Posted January 26th, 2015 at 5:37 pm | # |

    Thanks for the inspiration! Just sitting here, snowed-in, getting close to dinner time. I never expected to see a new video just in time to help me decide what to make for dinner. It’s going to be a yummy, snowy, blizzardy New York evening now. Thanks!

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