Spicy braised chicken

Dakbokkeumtang 닭볶음탕

Dakbokkeumtang (닭볶음탕) is very popular spicy chicken dish in Korea. It’s also called dakdoritang (닭도리탕).

This video is a remake of an earlier one I made in 2011 in Amsterdam with my reader Sarah. It was during my Gapshida tour, and Sarah hosted a meetup in her house. Ever since then when I have dakbokkeumtang I have to think about that beautiful time with my readers. Now as I update this video it’s already 2019 and I can’t believe how much time has passed! I hope everyone at the meetup has a happy life and is in good health, and I hope they are still making Korean dishes!


Usually dakbokkeumtang is made with chunks of whole chicken. Since I first posted this recipe many people have told me they made it with chicken breast, but it never sounded like a good idea to me because chicken breast is often so dry. But I’ve been experimenting for some time now, trying to make juicy dakbokkeumtang with chicken breast.  I’ve found that using milk works well, and it also gets rid of any chicken smell. I also use apple instead of sugar. I was very happy when the experiments turned out successful enough to share with you.

Even though I’ve updated this recipe and video, the original video will always remain, because the recipe is delicious and a part of my life and memories. No matter what ingredients are available to you – chicken breasts, wings, or thighs, sugar or apple – you can make great dakbokkeumtang.

Enjoy the recipe! Be happy with your delicious dakbokkeumtang!


Serves 2 to 3

  • 1 pound chicken breasts (about 2 large chicken breasts)
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 small apple, peeled, cored, and sliced thinly (about 1 cup)
  • 8 ounces potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 to 1 inch thick bite sized chunks
  • 1 medium onion (6 ounces), sliced
  • 1 green chili pepper, chopped
  • 2 green onions, cut into 1 inch long


For seasoning paste:


Prepare the chicken:

  1. Cut each breast crosswise into 2½ inch chunks. You will get about 4 pieces.
  2. Make 1 inch deep slits into each chunk ½ inch apart.  Transfer them all to a medium bowl and sprinkle the salt over top and in the slits evenly.
  3. Add the milk and gently mix to marinate. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours.

Meanwhile make the seasoning paste:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well with a spoon.

Cook dakbokkeumtang:

  1. Put a piece of chicken on the cutting board, the slit side up. Use your hands to push a few apple slices into each slit.
  2. Then transfer it to a pan or pot. I use a shallow 9½ inch pan that’s 2½ inches deep.
  3. Repeat with the rest of chicken and the apple slices. If you have some leftover apple slices, put them anywhere in the pan.
  4. Add the seasoning paste over the top of the chicken and add 2½ cups water. Cover and cook for 15 minutes over medium high heat.dakbokkeumtang (Korean spicy braised chicken: dakdoritang: 닭볶음탕, 닭도리탕
  5. Add the potato, onion, and green chili pepper. Gently stir the chicken and vegetables with a wooden spoon. Cover, reduce the heat to medium, and cook for another 15 minutes. If it boils over or the water is boiled down, add more water and crack the lid open a little.  dakbokkeumtang (Korean spicy braised chicken: dakdoritang: 닭볶음탕, 닭도리탕
  6. Open and add the green onions. Turn up the heat to medium high and stir for 1 minute until vigorously bubbling.dakbokkeumtang (Korean spicy braised chicken: dakdoritang: 닭볶음탕, 닭도리탕
  7. Remove from the heat


  1. Transfer to the table and serve right away in the pan with rice, kimchi, and a few more side dishes. If you cook this in a large pot, you can use a ladle and transfer to a plate and serve.



  1. lmhjgsfever Hungary joined 1/12 & has 17 comments

    this was just so good to make, although since I had quite an empty fridge I skipped the green onions. I will definitely make again. Thanks Maangchi <3

  2. Suzninca CA joined 1/12 & has 1 comment

    Hi, Maangchi!
    Another big fan of yours for years now~ This dish turned out the best out of all the ones I tried. Yum!! I used chicken thighs cut into bite sizes. Thank you for sharing!!

  3. fstroupe NE Mississippi joined 11/11 & has 6 comments

    Thank you Maangchi! I finally made it to a Korean market to get the proper ingredients and made Dakbokkeumtang tonight. All I want to know is how I have lived 53 years and never eaten this wonderful dish! :)

  4. banchi00 San Jose, CA joined 11/11 & has 1 comment

    I made this tonight. It was very delicious! My whole family enjoyed it. I didn’t think it was too spicy, I thought it was perfect. :D

  5. pucca joined 3/11 & has 9 comments

    Thank you Maangchi! I was one of the many people who requested this recipe! I might add some more vegetables at the end to make it a sort of “one-pot” sort of meal….

  6. chef Benedict Manila, Philippines joined 11/11 & has 45 comments

    that was too spicy… a very spicy korean dish… but i just want to make it love to eat that dish as well! :D

  7. ISHA KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA joined 12/11 & has 5 comments

    ouhh that was super hot..!

  8. Jasper Philippines joined 5/11 & has 26 comments

    I have one word for this Maangchi: “BURNING!!!!” Haha. It was so hot, and I absolutely loved it! Favorite chicken dish!! Mom thought it was
    too spicy though, but I just thought it was great!!

  9. cutekids usa joined 12/11 & has 3 comments

    Is pepper paste the same as “fermented” pepper paste?
    Thank you!

  10. Koreaboo101 florida, United States joined 7/11 & has 2 comments

    Made this dish yesterday and it turned out amazing!! My sister and I had fun making this dish for our family! Now my parents are proud that their two young children can cook not only regular food but Korean food as well :D

  11. caramelly Durham, England joined 11/11 & has 2 comments

    Ohh this look easy! I can’t find the hot pepper flakes, is the hot pepper paste still ok to use it? :)

  12. korea4me South Korea joined 10/09 & has 54 comments

    That looks magnificent and it seems you had a lot of fun making it. ^__^

  13. oksipak California joined 1/11 & has 72 comments

    This dish is so quick to make, only took me about 30-40 minutes which included prep and cooking time. Unfortunately it took me about 10 minutes to gobble it up! Very tasty recipe. I cut the recipe in half because I only had a lb of chicken. I’ll definitely be making this recipe regularly. It is so good! Made date 12/29/11 Thursday. :)

  14. jaylivg Houston joined 7/10 & has 107 comments

    It looks delicious maangchi , and not to mention super easy too !!! Going to put this on my list to cook this weekend , thanks !!

  15. Ryan Germany joined 7/11 & has 14 comments

    Hey Maangchi,
    can I also add some coconut milk ? I wonder if they work good together though.
    This recipe is actually almost the same as spicy stir-fried pork, only it has water added.

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