Hot and spicy rice cake

Tteokbokki 떡볶이

When I lived in Korea I learned the secret to making good tteokbokki from a famous place in a market. It was run by an old lady who could always be found stirring her tteokbokki. People were lined up to buy it.

I saw she used dried anchovies in her stock, and that ingredient made a huge difference in the flavor.

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I once ran out of dried anchovies and made tteokbokki without it. It didn’t taste at all like what I was expecting. So don’t forget to always make a good stock with dried anchovies when you make this!

Ingredients

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Directions

  1. Add the water, dried anchovies, and dried kelp to a shallow pot or pan.
  2. Boil for 15 minutes over medium high heat without the lid.anchovy stockanchovy stock
  3. Combine hot pepper paste, hot pepper flakes, and sugar in a small bowl. Remove the anchovies and kelp from the pot and add the rice cake, the mixture in the bowl, the green onion, and the optional fish cakes and hard boiled eggs. The stock will be about 2 ½ cups. ddeokbokkiddeokbokkiddeokbokkie
  4. Stir gently with a wooden spoon when it starts to boil. Keep stirring until the rice cake turns soft and the sauce thickens and looks shiny, which should take about 10 -15 minutes. If the rice cake is not soft enough, add more water and continue stirring until soften. When you use freshly made rice cake, it takes shorter time. If you use frozen rice cake, thaw it out and soak in cold water to soften it before cooking.ddeokbokki
  5. Remove from the heat and serve hot.

ddeokbokki

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740 Comments:

  1. nicholashe43 Ca joined 5/14
    Posted May 28th, 2014 at 3:22 pm | # |

    Can i use Chinese red pepper flakes

    (1)
  2. Hey_16 Guam joined 8/14
    Posted August 7th, 2014 at 2:05 am | # |

    Hi maangchi i love love love all your recipes but can i replace the anchovie stock for chicken broth, beef broth, etc. if you can what are the measurments same thing or not. And also what do you do with it boil it for 20 minutes or just heat it up? Please answer me!

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted August 7th, 2014 at 11:34 am | # |

      Yes, use about 2 1/2 cups to 3 cups chicken or beef broth and just heat it up and make tteokbokki. You don’t need to boil it. good luck!

      (0)
      • bebes Egypt joined 10/14
        Posted October 2nd, 2014 at 4:57 pm | # |

        hi i wanna ask what should i do if i haven’t got that dried anchovies the caned one in oil is available ??
        and can i replace the paper paste with tomato sauce or hot ketchup ??

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        • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
          Posted October 3rd, 2014 at 9:18 am | # |

          bebes, use chicken or beef broth. It will turn out good.

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          • Sunghan CA joined 7/14
            Posted October 16th, 2014 at 3:12 am | # |

            Hi Maangchi! I was wondering if I were to use chicken broth, how would I use it? Would I boil the broth with kelp then the rick stick, then the rest of the ingredients? Please answer me.

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          • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
            Posted October 17th, 2014 at 10:08 am | # |

            If you want to use chicken or beef stock, bring 2 ½ cups of unsalted broth to a boil (skip the kelp and anchovies and skip steps 1 and 2) and then add it to step 3. The rest of the recipe is the same.

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          • Sunghan CA joined 7/14
            Posted October 20th, 2014 at 5:55 pm | # |

            Thank You Maangchi!

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  3. Stupidman2009 Johor Bahru, Malaysia joined 7/14
    Posted July 16th, 2014 at 3:23 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi… I want to try to make your Tteokbokki… But before that, i wish to know that is kelp and kombu the same thing? If both of them are different things, can I replace kelp by using kombu? Thank you.

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    • Hey_16 Guam joined 8/14
      Posted August 7th, 2014 at 2:10 am | # |

      Yes it is the same thing. You can just search it up first on google like i did. Kombu is kelp

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  4. Kaaaaat Malaysia joined 7/14
    Posted July 10th, 2014 at 10:15 am | # |

    Hi maangchi! I’m your huge fan :) always look up to your recipes whenever I wanna cook Korean food :) Thanks for sharing all those awesome recipes! Anyway, I wanna ask u regarding gochujang. The one i just bought says it contains 6% orion, which is the DS Sunchang Gochujang. Do you have any idea what that is? Coz i’m afraid that it is not halal. Look forward for your reply and Thanks in advance!

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  5. minimochi17 USA joined 6/14
    Posted June 25th, 2014 at 3:38 am | # |

    So i’ve made ddukbokkie with a pre made packaged sauce, and it was really sweet, i don’t remember what brand it was, but now i’m ready to make my own sauce, and was just wondering is the tablespoon of sugar was really needed, or could i do less? And, whats a good replacement for the anchovies, dried kelp and fish cakes? i have someone who has allergies to sea food, but i want to share this great dish with them.

    Please help~

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted June 25th, 2014 at 9:52 am | # |

      “wondering is the tablespoon of sugar was really needed, or could i do less?”
      of course, you can use less sugar or even no sugar. It’s up to your taste.

      ” whats a good replacement for the anchovies, dried kelp and fish cakes?”
      How about using chicken broth?

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      • minimochi17 USA joined 6/14
        Posted June 30th, 2014 at 3:50 am | # |

        Many many thanks! I’ll try it with chicken broth~ Very much appreciated for the suggestions~ xD

        (0)
  6. zeelatiff Kuala Lumpur joined 6/14
    Posted June 23rd, 2014 at 7:24 am | # |

    Dear Maanghi,I hope you’re doing good.I did my own “garatteok” the other day and they turned out fine.Chewy and elastic.I put them in the freezer.But when I tried making tteokbokki yesterday,the rice cakes became really soggy and mushy.Where did I go wrong?I used sushi rice and soaked it for 12 hours and grind them the next day.Please help me :(

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted June 25th, 2014 at 9:56 am | # |

      “the rice cakes became really soggy and mushy”
      I think the rice cake was not made chewy enough. You used short grain rice, so I think you needed to pound the rice cake longer. It’s difficult to pound it, right? But that’s the way of making chewy rice cake. Pound the rice cake dough when it’s still hot. Sprinkle some cold water and sesame oil to stop the dough from sticking to mortar and pestle.

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  7. Skarlett Canada joined 4/14
    Posted April 28th, 2014 at 7:51 pm | # |

    MAANGCHI! I just made the dukbokkie and it turned out awesome! Everything I’ve made from you has turned out great! I made Hottoek and everyone liked it so now I make it as much as possible since it’s so easy!
    I look forward to more great recipes!!!
    Cheers from Montreal, Canada!

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted June 25th, 2014 at 9:58 am | # |

      Great! Keep cooking and good luck to you!

      (0)
  8. farzane Iran joined 10/12
    Posted April 12th, 2014 at 11:16 am | # |

    hi, maangchi…
    thanks for these amazing posts.
    i have a question… there is no Korean stores around here. i can provide the other ingredients somehow. but is there any substitute for “kelp”??? please tell me there is!!
    thanks in advance

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted April 13th, 2014 at 2:13 pm | # |

      You can skip dried kelp. There is no substitution for it. When you make spicy rice cake, you can use only dried anchovies to make good broth or use chicken broth. Happy cooking!

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    • jordango Boston joined 8/13
      Posted June 16th, 2014 at 7:54 pm | # |

      You can use a bit of MSG in place of the kelp.

      (0)
  9. Jaeyette2014 Florida joined 2/14
    Posted March 20th, 2014 at 1:51 pm | # |

    Hello Miss Maangchi! I made the spicy ddukbokki just now and it was sooooo good and spicy.My husband said it was good too.I am so really grateful for all your recipes.I been a fan of Korean dramas since 7 yrs ago.My dreamed is to go to Korea and meeting wonderful Korean people.I.’m from Philippines and live in florida right now.Thank you again! By the way I’m a fan of JYJ boy band singers.My dreamed is to meet them.

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted April 13th, 2014 at 2:15 pm | # |

      Hi I’m happy to hear that you and your husband like my spicy rice cake recipe! It sounds like you are falling in love with Korean food and Korean culture! I hope your dream comes true soon!

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  10. ajrainbowz USA joined 3/14
    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 4:55 pm | # |

    Hello! I was wondering if the tteokbokki sauce is supposed to be a little sour? I cooked it for the first time today and it was good. Also, can I put the tteokbokki in the fridge and eat it tomorrow? Or does it have to be finished in one day? I made too large of a portion by accident…

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted March 18th, 2014 at 11:57 am | # |

      Best thing is to make it right before serving, otherwise the rice cake will turn soggy and it will lose its chewy texture.

      (0)
  11. Chloe89 Malaysia joined 3/14
    Posted March 17th, 2014 at 3:06 am | # |

    i wonder how to cook the tteok become more bouncy or chewy? i had try the tteokpokki in korea, but the texture is so different i find in malaysia. =( hope to hear from you soon. thank you

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  12. KissMeELF Washington joined 3/14
    Posted March 5th, 2014 at 5:01 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi!

    So I was wondering, what can I substitute for the anchovies? and how can I make my tteokbokki a little less spicy? Thanks!

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted March 5th, 2014 at 11:28 am | # |

      How about using a can of chicken or beef broth? And add less hot pepper paste or skip hot pepper flakes to make it less spicy. Good luck!

      (0)
  13. rainpool Hong Kong joined 3/14
    Posted February 28th, 2014 at 11:47 pm | # |

    Its so delicious made it just now without hot pepper flakes cause i dun have them. But its verry spicy i couldn’t eat more than a few pieces, and my stomach is also feeling the sipcyness @@. any ideas how to make it less spicy?

    (0)
  14. barry Finland joined 2/14
    Posted February 22nd, 2014 at 1:22 pm | # |

    I had been wanting to eat some Korean food especially Kimchi and this recipe. So, when
    I came accross frozen rice cakes ( Korean brand) from one of the Asian stores here in Finland, I wanted to buy some but the Thai owner could not explain how to cook it.

    And now that I saw your post explaining how to make Tteokbokki out of it, I would definitely go back there and try to cook my own Tteokbokki . I am sure my Finnish friends who like spicy food would love it.

    (0)
  15. Cutemom Indonesia joined 3/13
    Posted February 5th, 2014 at 1:47 am | # |

    Maangchi ssi!

    I always make this dish right after I made myeolchi bokkeum. I even make my stock ahead and freeze them.

    I was wondering, if I want to make rabokki when do I put in my ramyeon? After the tokpokki, eggs and fish cake absorb the sauce or together with the eggs & fish cake?

    Kamsahamida,
    Ima

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted February 6th, 2014 at 8:32 am | # |

      Hi Ima,
      Add ramyeon when the rice cake starts getting soft. Good luck!

      (0)
  16. nanasse Amsterdam - Paris joined 10/11
    Posted January 30th, 2014 at 11:43 am | # |

    I realized that I’ve never tried this new recipe!
    Tonight Tteokbokki ! =)
    Thanks for this new video! I was used to the older one with the Tteokbokki song ^^

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted January 31st, 2014 at 11:25 am | # |

      Good luck with making good tteokbokki! “I was used to the older one with the Tteokbokki song” : )

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    • Dusty8314 Watsonville joined 2/14
      Posted February 1st, 2014 at 4:12 pm | # |

      This was very good!
      Thank you,
      Maangchi

      (0)
  17. Nurdboi Hong Kong joined 1/14
    Posted January 17th, 2014 at 8:20 pm | # |

    Hey Mancha! Thanks for the recipe! Just wondering, how much many portions does this recipe make? I’m trying to make this for around 22 people.

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted January 18th, 2014 at 1:41 pm | # |

      This will serve 2 to 4 people.

      (0)
  18. SerenaWoo Malaysia joined 1/14
    Posted January 14th, 2014 at 1:03 am | # |

    Hi, Can i use without dried kelp to boil the soup?

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted January 15th, 2014 at 1:26 am | # |

      yes, make stock with dried anchovies. It will still turn out delicious.

      (0)
  19. Cassandre France joined 1/14
    Posted January 11th, 2014 at 4:07 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi!

    I found all the ingredients to make tteokbokki except dried anchovies. I bought anchovy dashida instead.
    I was wondering how to use dashida here. First, how many teaspoon of dashida do I need to add to replace 7 large size dried anchovies ; secondly, do I also add the dried kelp or do I skip this part?

    I saw you already reply partially :
    “foodcop2014 :
    Hi Maangchi!
    Can anchovy stock (Dashida) be used instead of dried anchovies? If so, what is the appropriate amount?
    Maangchi :
    I don’t use anchovy or beef stock (dashida), but if I were you, I would add 2 teaspoons first and add more if it needs it.”

    Is it always 2 teaspoons, what about kelp?

    Thanks in advance for your reply.
    Bye!

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted January 15th, 2014 at 1:30 am | # |

      Ok, boil water with dried kelp first and add dashida powder to your taste. The powder is salty.

      (0)
      • tat4fun Bandung, Indonesia joined 1/14
        Posted January 19th, 2014 at 9:29 pm | # |

        I wish I read comment section, 1 day earlier, before I put whole 1 tablespoon of anchovy dashida :D

        As the water evaporated, it was even saltier. It was still great for my kind husband’s taste, but it’s just too much for my own.

        Plus, I think I made too much sauce. So, I add some more water, dried shitake, garlic and onion, and voilaaa….soondubu jjigae for dinner :D

        (0)
  20. Demi91 United State joined 1/14
    Posted January 1st, 2014 at 7:25 pm | # |

    I really love korean food and I’m a newbie. Btw, can you make a video how to make rabbokki? they are rice cake and ramyun.

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted January 2nd, 2014 at 5:15 pm | # |

      Easy, add some ramyeon noodles when you add rice cake. You may have to add more water.

      (0)
  21. Fufu Singapore joined 12/13
    Posted December 25th, 2013 at 6:16 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi,

    I cooked the topokki and i eat is quite soft but i left it around 30min it start will to become hard. is this normal?

    (0)
    • koralex90 Davis, CA joined 6/09
      Posted December 25th, 2013 at 1:05 pm | # |

      Hi Fufu,
      Yes it is normal for it to do that. It is important to keep it warm for the rice cakes to stay warm. If you are cooking it in advance, leave the pot lid on so it stays warm longer.

      (0)
      • Fufu Singapore joined 12/13
        Posted December 26th, 2013 at 2:03 pm | # |

        Hi Koralex90,

        Thanks for the advice. Noted :)

        (0)
  22. mop Australia joined 12/13
    Posted December 22nd, 2013 at 4:47 am | # |

    hi maangchi!

    my friend LOVES ddukbokki! but she can’t eat seafood D: is it okay if we leave out the anchovies? ;~;

    love from
    mop

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted December 22nd, 2013 at 10:23 am | # |

      How about using chicken broth instead of anchovy stock? The broth should be delicious because it makes ddeokbokki delicious.

      (0)
  23. Fufu Singapore joined 12/13
    Posted December 20th, 2013 at 4:59 am | # |

    Hi, Can i know how much ml of water you added in? I got alot of different size cup at home. haha. :)

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted December 20th, 2013 at 3:36 pm | # |

      My 1 cup is 240 ML, so you need 960 ML water. Good luck!

      (0)
      • Fufu Singapore joined 12/13
        Posted December 21st, 2013 at 11:23 am | # |

        Thanks Maangchi! :)

        (0)
        • Nurdboi Hong Kong joined 1/14
          Posted January 20th, 2014 at 10:14 am | # |

          Thanks! Sorry for the spelling mistakes on the last post! Doing this on my phone haha. Thanks again for all your amazing recipes!

          (0)
  24. minphamtastic san jose joined 12/13
    Posted December 5th, 2013 at 1:37 am | # |

    Maangchi, I fell in love with your website when I was on a search for Korean recipes to try out, and I don’t know too much about the ingredients. I was wondering what brand of gochujang you recommend? I really like the sweetness in ddukbokki as well as the hotness of it. Please help!

    (0)
  25. ShadowMidget Canada joined 3/13
    Posted October 26th, 2013 at 2:58 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi,

    I recently tried using this recipe but I noticed a few things wrong with my rice cakes. The water wasn’t very consistent it was just pure liquid and the rice cakes didn’t soak up a lot of the gochujang how can i fix this??

    Thanks in advance

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted October 27th, 2013 at 11:59 am | # |

      “… the rice cakes didn’t soak up a lot of the gochujang how can i fix this” Cook longer then. Starch from the rice cake will make the broth thicker. You may have to add more water. Good luck!

      (0)
  26. chelleee UK joined 10/13
    Posted October 25th, 2013 at 12:55 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi,

    I bought a pack of rice cake from the Asian Supermarket which consists of individually frozen rice cakes (which does not require separation but just defrosting). On my first attempt I defrosted the rice cakes in warm water but the rice cake broke into strands at the ends. The 2nd time I defrosted it in just cool tap water but the same happened. It makes it really difficult for me to cook the rice cakes in the red pepper paste as it goes soggy and loses it’s cylinder shape the moment I defrost it. Can you advise me on that? Thanks!

    (0)
    • HyeNa New York joined 12/13
      Posted December 16th, 2013 at 11:00 am | # |

      I had that happen. I defrost the rice cakes in the refrigerator overnight (without water) and that solved the problem. It seems that the rice cake requires slow defrosting.

      (0)
  27. SUMIRA LOVE TO EAT malaysia joined 9/13
    Posted September 28th, 2013 at 3:56 am | # |

    hi maangchi…

    try to check out for ‘laksam’ in the web since i find the rice cake is quite similar to ‘laksam’ in our country…the ingredients to make them is quite similar, wow…this is amazing…that is why i really love to cook…..just by the dish we can learn everything including culture!!!!

    please cook more mangchi!!!!!!!! love your recipes

    (0)
  28. SUMIRA LOVE TO EAT malaysia joined 9/13
    Posted September 28th, 2013 at 3:24 am | # |

    owh , maangchi,

    can we fried the hard boiled egg first before putting in …and, can we grilled the rice cakes first to have a smoky taste?

    (0)
  29. SUMIRA LOVE TO EAT malaysia joined 9/13
    Posted September 28th, 2013 at 3:21 am | # |

    hi maangchi,
    can we use other dried fish since i am allergic to anchovies, ??? tuna maybe? or other dried things,…

    then, can we use dried fruits such as apricots too? just to add the texture ^.^

    (0)
  30. Zulumom Concord, CA joined 9/13
    Posted September 20th, 2013 at 2:08 am | # |

    Maangchi, this is the very first recipe I tried after I found your video on YouTube a few weeks ago. It was the best ddukbokkie I’ve ever tasted. I’ve made a lot of different ddukbokkie before, but never used anchovies or kelp (I’m a very bad Korean), and had no idea that made a world of difference. Also, I learned the proper cooking time in order to get that sticky and shiny consistency and the look by watching your video. You are inspirational. Thank you so much!!!

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted September 20th, 2013 at 1:26 pm | # |

      You got it! I don’t make ddeokbokki if my dried anchovies run out. Cheers!

      (0)
  31. Sterniii Germany joined 9/13
    Posted September 12th, 2013 at 9:53 am | # |

    Hey Maangchi!
    I love to cook your recipes and my Korean Teacher is always happy when I bring something I made to the lesson in a Dosirak haha.
    I also take care of the Korean exchange students and everytime they feel homesick, I cook for them. Last time I made Ddeokbokki and they were all so happy! They even said I need to marry a Korean man who can appreciate my cooking skills haha!
    Thank you for your videos :)

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted September 13th, 2013 at 3:07 pm | # |

      “they even said I need to marry a Korean man who can appreciate my cooking skills..” That’s right! : )
      I think the Korean exchange students are very lucky because you cook real hearty food for them.

      (0)
  32. maangchisyummyfood Vancouver joined 8/13
    Posted August 30th, 2013 at 1:17 am | # |

    I am going to try this soon! Just copied down the recipe. Thanks so much!

    (0)
  33. maangchisyummyfood Vancouver joined 8/13
    Posted August 29th, 2013 at 11:04 pm | # |

    Yummy! I love eating this!

    (0)
  34. ayukusuma Indonesia joined 8/13
    Posted August 19th, 2013 at 4:11 am | # |

    Hi, Maangchi.
    I’m using kelp in fiber instead of sheet shape.
    Than how much the dose I should add in for the fiber please?

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted August 30th, 2013 at 9:38 am | # |

      I think 1/2 cup will be good enough. Good luck.

      (0)
  35. RonnieLuvsKpop Oregon, WA joined 8/13
    Posted August 14th, 2013 at 5:44 pm | # |

    Hey Maangchi! I love your recipes! I was wondering if the ddukbokki would be could stored in the refrigerator and then reheated the next day. if so how should i rewheat it? in the microwave?-+

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted August 15th, 2013 at 10:59 am | # |

      I wish I could say, yes! ; ) But I don’t think ddeokbokki from the fridge is very tasty. Best thing is to make it right before serving, otherwise the rice cake will swell and it will lose its chewy texture.

      (0)
  36. chibi88 Melbourne joined 7/13
    Posted July 29th, 2013 at 8:48 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi.. i was just wondering how do you store dried kelp? can i put it in the fridge?
    Thanks.

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted July 31st, 2013 at 9:51 am | # |

      I keep it in my pantry. You won’t need to refrigerate or freeze it.

      (0)
  37. Devonie United States joined 7/13
    Posted July 17th, 2013 at 11:44 pm | # |

    Hello Maangchi! I’m going on a short trip soon and would like to know if this is still good when cold. Thanks!

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted July 18th, 2013 at 8:28 am | # |

      no, I never like cold ddeokbokki. When you are ready to eat it, start making ddeokbokki.

      (0)
  38. amiraegypt egypt joined 6/13
    Posted June 22nd, 2013 at 6:59 pm | # |

    haaaaay may i ask about something
    can i replace dried anchovies and dried kelp with fish suce?
    and about the rice cake what kind of rice flower is this is it egyption rice flower or another kind ?

    (0)
    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted July 18th, 2013 at 8:29 am | # |

      Fish sauce will make your ddeokbokki too salty. Use chicken or beef broth if anchovy stock is not available.

      (0)
  39. sara-hwang Canada joined 6/13
    Posted June 9th, 2013 at 10:50 pm | # |

    This recipe was the best I found so far for ddeokbokkie, but the first time I made this, it was so spicy!! So I made a few adjustments:
    -no kelp in the anchovie mixture
    -two tablespoon of honey instead of sugar
    -one tablespoon only of red pepper paste
    after that it came out sweet and spicy and was delicious! my whole family loved it, thank you Maangchi! ^^

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08
      Posted June 11th, 2013 at 6:50 pm | # |

      Your adjustment sounds awesome!

      (0)
  40. albacortez Fontana, CA joined 6/13
    Posted June 5th, 2013 at 10:49 pm | # |

    Thank you sooo much for showing how to make 떡볶이!! (^_^)
    It’s very delicious!! Thank you! 😃

    (0)
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