Hi everybody!

Today my doenjang (fermented soybean paste) project is done by releasing this video recipe: How to make one of the most popular and representative doenjang dishes: doenjang-jjigae aka fermented soybean paste stew!

Many Koreans say, “I never get tired of eating kimchi, doenjang-jjigae, and rice!”

When a Korean mom chooses the first real meal for her baby, she chooses doenjang-jjigae (or soup made with soybean paste, doenjang-guk) with fluffy white rice. To make it go down easy she mixes the stew with the rice and feeds it to her child. Years later, when the child is grown and living far away, she makes it for them whenever they come home again, because every child has ingrained memories of mom’s doenjang-jjigae. It’s something they know and love and are always comforted with.

When some Korean tourists travel to foreign countries, the first place they want to go is a Korean restaurant and eat doenjang-jjiage with rice. “Oh, airplane food upset my stomach, I need something to feel good!” And it works!

One of my friends who has been living in USA for more than 3 decades stashes a small jar of doenjang into her check-in bag when she travels, because her husband can’t keep eating non-Korean food for an extended period of time. She’ll makes a quick doenjang-jjigae for him in their hotel kitchen.

There are many types and versions of doenjang-jjigae (like the recipe I posted years ago, doenjang-jjigae geotjeori bibimbap), and this recipe I’m showing you today is my standard that I’ve been using for years. It’s one of my favorite styles of doenjang-jjigae and is in my cookbook, too. What makes me more excited about it today is that I made it with my homemade doenjang!

Most of you don’t have homemade doenjang, so you can use store-bought doenjang with the same recipe. It will still be delicious, I promise!


Serves 2-4

  • 1 medium potato, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
  • 1 medium onion, cut into ½-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 1 small zucchini, cut into ½-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 1 green Korean chili pepper (cheong-gochu), stemmed and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 large shrimp, shelled, deveined, washed, and coarsely chopped (about ⅓ cup)
  • 2½ cups water
  • 7 dried anchovies, guts removed
  • 5 tablespoons fermented soybean paste (doenjang)
  • 6 ounces medium-firm tofu, cut into ½-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
  • 2 green onions, chopped

homemade doenjang (집된장)


  1. Combine the potato, onion, zucchini, chili pepper, garlic, and shrimp in a 1½-quart (6 cups) earthenware pot or other heavy pot.
  2. Wrap the dried anchovies in cheesecloth (or a dashi bag, a pouch for stock-making sold at a Korean grocery store), and put them into the pot with other ingredients  Add water and cover.
  3. Cook over medium-high heat for 15 minutes until it starts boiling. If you use a stainless steel pot, it will take less than 15 minutes, about 7 to 8 minutes.
    doenjangjjigae ingredientsDoenjangjjigae (Korean fermented soybean paste stew: 된장찌개)
  4. Stir in the soybean paste, mixing well. Cover and cook for 20 minutes longer over medium heat.
  5. Add the tofu and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove the anchovy pouch and discard.
  6. Sprinkle with the green onions and serve as a side dish to rice. Serve it directly from the pot, or transfer to a serving bowl. Everybody can eat together out of the pot, or portions can be ladled out in individual bowls for each person.

Doenjangjjigae (Korean fermented soybean paste stew: 된장찌개)

Leave your rating:

So far this is rated 5/5 from 261 votes

Be the first to rate this.


  1. Aelonius The Netherlands joined 5/20 & has 2 comments

    So I decided to try and make the dish as well!

    I did change a few things:
    1) I skipped the shrimp; opted for chunky beef instead. That was delicious!
    2) I didn’t use anchovis; I might miss some flavour that way but I don’t currently do well with fish.
    3) I added about 0.5 to 1 tablespoon of brown rice vinegar to give it a slight bit of sour and make the flavour pop

    All in all this was a very tasty first try; I did have left overs so I will enjoy them tomorrow :D

    See full size image

  2. jsp73 joined 3/15 & has 32 comments

    My wife insists that I use small clams, not shrimp. With that in mind, do you think it would be okay if I made a huge quantity of this and froze most of it for later use? I don’t know if doenjang chiggae freezes well. Any idea?

    • yooniverse New York joined 9/19 & has 1 comment

      Your wife has good taste! :) I, too, prefer clams over shrimp. Shrimp creates a “sweet” taste to the broth which, with zucchini, creates a sweeter taste to the stew (or soup) that I do not particularly like in jigae, but to each his/her own. In regards to freezing, I don’t see why not, as long as you do it soon after you cook this, otherwise, all the ingredients will absorb too much of the salt and broth and will become mushy (even then, it’s still good–a good Korean never wastes food!). Just add a little bit of water to adjust for evaporation when you reheat.

    • Whalingaround Uk joined 10/19 & has 2 comments


      Would this work without adding the shrimp and anchovies?? I am vegetarian!

      • benjimin Minneapolis joined 4/23 & has 4 comments

        I would recommend getting your hands on some dasima or konbu (dried kelp). This seaweed helps impart an umami, oceany taste that you will be missing without the seafood. Use it in place of the anchovies. You can find it at any Korean or Japanese grocery.

  3. jsp73 joined 3/15 & has 32 comments

    Thank you for this. There aren’t many good Korean restaurants where I live. Recently, one of my favorites took doenjang chiggae off of the menu. I asked why and I was told it wasn’t very popular! WHAT????? I told the server that they must not be serving many Koreans! Ridiculous.

    Anyhow, thanks to you, I can now make it myself! My wife loves it, too. She requests it often and the ingredients aren’t hard to find. Her mom sends homemade doenjang to us every year around Christmas time.

    Would that apron be considered Hanbok?

  4. Vishenka Moscow, Russia joined 7/18 & has 2 comments

    Hello, Maangchi! This is my first recipe and I am delighted! This is the most awesome soup I ever tasted! Thank you sooooo much!)))

    See full size image

  5. Luckyseito13 Orlando, Fl joined 9/17 & has 4 comments

    Hello Maangchi. I plan to make this on the weekend. Can i substitute anchovy paste for the dried anchovies? I can only find the paste in my local supermarket. Please let me know, I would like to make it this weekend. I plan to serve it with Patbat 팥밥 and Wanja jeon. What do you think? Thank you again, I enjoy your recipes very much. I have made several already, and they all come out super great!! Love and blessings from FL

  6. girlofthemonth Brazil joined 3/19 & has 1 comment

    i live in a small town so i can’t get my hands on some doenjang, i wonder if i use japanese miso it’ll work?

  7. Rinpaka Australia joined 1/19 & has 2 comments

    Thank you so much for this recipe!
    I made it one time before using another recipe but it had a really weak and bland flavour, then luckily I found this and could modify it the next day!
    It had so much flavour, and my Korean boyfriend said it tastes just like his mom’s 된장찌개!
    I used the water I cleaned the rice in when cooking the soup, and it turned out so nice after a fair while of boiling. Can’t wait to make it again!

  8. ssssdavies@yahoo.com Seattle joined 1/19 & has 2 comments

    Love you and your recipes! Please add a print button to your recipe pages to give the option to print and/or save your recipes to our files! Thank you! :)

  9. clydedatastruct Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines joined 3/18 & has 8 comments

    Made this for lunch. I left out the zucchini and used pork instead of shrimp. For the anchovy stock I used the dashida (다시다) powder instead of actual dried anchovies since the strainer/infuser I ordered online has not arrived yet.
    I let my neighbors taste some and they said they love the flavor.

    See full size image

  10. Vishenka Moscow, Russia joined 7/18 & has 2 comments

    This recipe is so nice! *-*
    Maangchi, can I use some fish sauce instead of dried anchovies? Because it’s a little difficult to find them in my country ^^’

  11. Heidifromoz Perth joined 5/18 & has 6 comments

    As we can’t get fresh anchovies easily here, I would use “ikan bilis” – dried ones, or Korean dried anchovy powder – which I use in my Kim chi recipe. Also, my tendency would be to drop the raw prawns in at the last minute, once everything is cooked, then switch off the heat. This ensures they remain crunchy without being too tough. But this is just my personal take on what looks like a beautiful recipe – will try it soon!

  12. Heidifromoz Perth joined 5/18 & has 6 comments

    As we can’t get fresh anchovies here, I would substitute some ‘ikan bilis’ (dried anchovies sold in Asian stores) or a couple teaspoons of Korean dried anchovy powder (which I use when making kimchi). Also, my tendency would be to drop the prawns in once everything else is cooked, then switch off the heat, so that they don’t get too tough. But these are just my thoughts and a variation on the above theme!

  13. WildRose85 Oregon joined 10/13 & has 6 comments

    I love this stew. My only advice is to push the doenjang through a small sieve/strainer because I don’t like the pieces of beans and shells in my soup. Doenjang does have a natural sweetness so for more balance some gochugaru is a must. Seafood is very popular with this dish such as small clams. You could use canned clams but I prefer it without. Multigrain rice is my favorite with this soup.

  14. KpopFoodie New York joined 1/17 & has 2 comments

    I will be making this over the weekend. It is super cold in New York

  15. jscorpio87 Florida joined 12/17 & has 2 comments

    This was super delicious with chili pepper kimchi! Thank you Maangchi!

    See full size image

  16. eeb1009 Chicago, IL joined 10/17 & has 3 comments

    I’ve made this twice now! I just use anchovy-kelp stock for the liquid, and I add shrimps and scallops at the end. It wasn’t spicy enough for me the first time I made it, so the second time, I added a chopped serrano pepper along with the Korean green chilis. I had assumed that Korean chilis would be really hot…I was surprised to eat a slice of one and find that it was sweet and tasted kind of like a green bell pepper, not spicy! Delicious on its own though. The serrano gave the jjigae and really nice heat, but not too overwhelming.

  17. AidannGreenWolfe Tucson, Arizona USA joined 9/17 & has 1 comment

    I made this tonight with what i had on hand. only modifications were 1/2 pound beef instead of anchovies, Okra instead of Zucchini, and vegetable stock instead of water. This was amazing. I love it so much. Thanks Maangchi!

    See full size image

  18. Renaendel Seattle, WA joined 6/17 & has 1 comment

    Thank you for the recipe! It turned out great!

    See full size image

  19. Tobyrm New York city joined 4/17 & has 3 comments

    Got a wonderful dolsot for my birthday and the first thing I had to make in it was doenjangjjigae. Bibimbap is to follow. Thank you Maangchi for constantly inspiring me to cook.

    See full size image

  20. Brittanytala New Orleans joined 4/17 & has 1 comment

    Came out great!

    See full size image

  21. danahess1974 Davenport IA USA joined 4/14 & has 6 comments

    How spicy is this with the pepper? I like spicy things, but my son does not…

  22. Eer14 Columbus joined 1/17 & has 1 comment

    I’ve made this jigae many times (I’m Korean) but use clams sometimes too or what I have. Could you use the Korean pumpkin? Kobacha? And not add the seafood I think it would be good then? What do you guys think?

  23. ashrafzamry Malaysia joined 12/16 & has 1 comment

    I made this with chicken and it’s so good ! Really goes well with rice..

  24. kimmy.sjanie Singapore joined 12/16 & has 2 comments

    Hello there…am at Korean grocery store picking up all ingredients now. But!! Realised I’m not sure how many portions is this recipe for? :))

    Yet another big fan of Maangchi,

  25. samkim77 Toronto, Ontario joined 3/16 & has 2 comments

    This was so good and so easy! I left out the shrimp because I’m not a big seafood person and I added 4 dried shiitake mushrooms with all the veggies (and obviously I chopped them up once they were cooked), as well as an extra half a cup of water because it seemed kind of dry. I think I’ll add even more water next time and some additional doenjang, just because I like lots of broth for my rice to soak up :)

  26. healthycherry Seoul joined 6/16 & has 1 comment

    Hello Maangchi, I have always enjoyed your videos very much. I ate this soup when I first came to Korea and I did not get used to the taste. But now, I really like it. I would like to try to cook it myself and then cook for my family when I go back to Malaysia. I watched the video about making the soybean paste but I cannot try it since I am living in dormitory with other roommates. So, if I am to buy soybean paste, what brand or where can I buy tasty soybean paste? =D

    • lilyoungeun Malaysia joined 11/16 & has 2 comments

      I’m living in Sarawak right now and just made this. You can try any grocery store that has import products and if they have Korean goods, usually they have the basics. You can’t go too wrong with soy bean paste. Not too many choices of brands here so I was limited to the one in the photo, but it turned out great!

      See full size image

  27. Shaynene17 Philippines joined 5/16 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangchi
    Can i add egg on this soup?

  28. amcka30 Australia joined 5/16 & has 2 comments

    Where I live, we can’t get dried anchovies. However, I’m also allergic to shrimp. The only store-made fish stocks contain shrimp as well. I know this is a ridiculous question, but seeing as fish sauce is made from anchovies, would I be able to substitute the anchovies with that? And how many tablespoons would equate to 7 anchovies? (I know fish sauce is more more salty than anchovies).

  29. Stegzy United Kingdom joined 6/13 & has 2 comments

    Hi Maangchi, I’d like to start by thanking you for your fantastic recipes. Your website is amazing and inspiring and your cookbook is probably my most used over the last year. Me and my girlfriend are going to South Korea in June to just eat for two weeks!

    I’m making a HUGE Korean meal this weekend for my girlfriend’s birthday. I want to spread some of the work over the week. I was wondering, can you make doenjang jigae one or two days in advance and reheat it on the day? Or would the tastes and flavours diminish or change greatly?

    I’ll take some photos of the meal and share them on here.

  30. Minhato Spain joined 6/13 & has 4 comments

    I have made this soup so so many times! More than 40 probably kk Thanks for the recipe, Maangchi!

    Just a tip: If there are no dry anchovies where you live, you can use the heads and skin of the shrimp to make the stock. That’s what I do. I put water in the pot with the skin and heads of the shrimp and after 15 or 20 minutes I remove them and I follow Maangchi recipe. That way the stock has seafood flavour and no anchovies are needed. It tastes exactly the same as in the restaurants back in Korea. My boyfriend is Korean and also thinks so, that it tastes like the soup back home. ^^

  31. Espresso US joined 2/16 & has 1 comment

    Hi…I discovered your youtube channel about 2 weeks ago, … I was loving the videos and wishing I was your neighbor so that I could come by every day to taste your cooking. ..But tonight I made my first recipe…. this soup for my dinner at 6:30 and by 10:00 I ate the whole soup because it was so good that I had to keep going back to the refrigerator to eat more and more until it was gone. …. now I’m afraid to try more recipes …if they all taste as good as they look I’m in big trouble. ..I will never be able to leave my house ..I will just want to stay home and cook and eat all day … LOL LOL LOL. ..

  32. Trishavolution Manila, Philippines joined 2/16 & has 1 comment

    Hello I am a person that is allergic to seafood because I have a skin asthma (Atopic Dermatitis) that is allergic to seafood. I am a great huge fan of Korean food and I love all sorts of it like Tteokbokki and perhaps Jjajangmyeon. I would like to kindly ask what is a vegetarian version for Doenjang Jjigae for the broth and its ingredients?

    • StephanieL Wisconsin joined 2/16 & has 1 comment

      I am a vegan, so I don’t eat any kind of fish or meat. I used some dried kelp in the broth to give the broth the sea flavor and just removed it once the vegetables were cooked. You could make the kelp broth first, so I was short on time, so I made the broth while the vegetable were cooking. I used extra tofu to give the stew more protein and substance. It was fantastic.

  33. Chalky331 Kwajalein joined 2/16 & has 1 comment

    That looks so good and easy. Can you add the shrimp and cod to normal Kimchi recipe? Or do you need to add something to make sure the meat “cooks”.

  34. Mikura New Haven, CT joined 6/09 & has 8 comments

    I’m so curious as to what that doenjang jjigae with homemade doenjang tastes like. Must be really deep and fragrant. yum.

    My mom makes it almost exactly the same way, but she used to put some clams in her doenjang jjigae, and you seem to use shrimp. Do you like it better with shrimp?

  35. Anneyeong Maangchi-ssi

    Can I use meat or squid instead of shrimp? I’m allergic to shirmp..

More comments to read! Jump to page: 1 2

Leave a Reply

You must create a profile and be logged in to post a comment.