Soybean side dish

Kongjorim 콩조림

Kongjang (or kongjorim) is made with dried soybeans and Koreans eat it as a side dish for any meal. It’s sweet, chewy and sticky.



  1. Rinse the soy beans in cold running water. Drain and put them in a pan.
  2. Add 2 cups of water to the pan and soak the beans for 8 hours.
  3. Cover and boil the mixture of beans and water over medium high heat for 10 minutes. If it boils over, crack the lid.
  4. Add soy sauce, sugar, vegetable oil, and garlic. Stir a few times with a wooden spoon. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 30 minutes.
  5. Open the lid and turn up the heat to medium high heat, stirring with with wooden spoon until the beans turn shiny and a little wrinkly.
  6. Remove from the heat and sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Let cool and transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate up to 1 month.

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  1. dianeinhye MD joined 10/14 & has 1 comment

    Hello Maangchi! I used this recipe before and the black beans turned out wonderful!!! My family loved it. I would really like to rate this recipe but don’t know how to leave a rating.

    Thank you

  2. OklahomaKimChiLover Oklahoma, USA joined 2/14 & has 2 comments


    I love love LOVE your site, and I got one of your cookbooks for Christmas, so I’m trying to introduce all my family and friends to delicious Korean cuisine. I tried making this soybean side dish for the first time tonight. I couldn’t find dry soybeans, so I used a package of frozen, shelled edamame instead, which saved a lot of time. I also substituted sesame oil for the vegetable oil because I love the flavor so much. The only problem was that it turned out very salty, almost too salty to eat. The next time I make it, should I use less soy sauce and add water to make up the difference?

  3. UniChoi Miami joined 2/14 & has 1 comment

    I have been using your website for a very long time. However, this is the first time I’ve had a problem. I bought my soybeans from the local Whole Foods market because there isn’t a local Korean super market where I live. As I started rinsing the soybeans in running cold water, my soybeans began peeling. What does this mean? Please help.

  4. Sali joined 6/12 & has 12 comments

    Oh! I made this today without even knowing it was an actual recipe. :D
    I just had some cooked soybeans left over and thought “these would be really tasty in a thick sauce”. I didn’t use garlic and possibly used less sugar than here. I also used a little potato starch to thicken it because I was impatient and hungry, haha. Otherwise it’s the exact same thing. Amazing. I had it with rice and steamed vegetables. Delicious~

  5. cluvy Singapore joined 12/11 & has 7 comments

    I made half a recipe yesterday and I have none left today. These are so addictive. I think soaking for at least 12 hours or more is best so the soybeans are fully hydrated. Cooking not fully hydrated beans end up too crunchy for my preference. I did cook them longer as I like them a little soft. I shall be making more tonight!

  6. DominiqueEchard North Carolina joined 5/09 & has 36 comments

    Be careful not to make the same mistake as me – keep a close eye on the beans, not so much the cooking time. My instinct and nose told me that I needed to add some water to the pot since the beans weren’t quite done, but the sauce was about to burn. I caught it almost too late – was tending to my kimchijeon at the same time LOL So now this is a little sweet, little salty and a touch smoky! I’ll eat it all the same, it is great.

  7. crin Toronto joined 7/11 & has 1 comment

    i just wanted to know,
    if i leave the beans soaking for over 8 hours will it still be okay?

  8. Can I make a few more and leave it longer in the fridge? How long can I keep it in the fridge until it spoiled?

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

    This is such a great snack and side dish. I love it. Thanks so much Maangchi for divulging the recipe. It’s fantastic! I made some tonight and it tastes like what I remember long ago.

  10. mokpochica Michigan joined 1/09 & has 89 comments

    I can’t believe it has taken me so long to find this recipe and make these. It has been one of my favorite side dishes since I first tried them back when I lived in Korea. My family loves these kong so much that I made a double batch today.

  11. bo Hawaii joined 7/10 & has 49 comments

    Is there any Korean version of Natto?

  12. hi maangchi, tried this recipe, i did soaked the beans for 8hrs,and cooked it per recipe instruction, however i find it a little hard still, but the sauce is already reduced too the consistency same as video,but i like it still, though a little tough, should i instead soak it overnight? should the bean texture be like of those canned beans? which is mushy like boiled potatoes or should it have a little bite still?

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

      I think your kongjorim is well made. Kongjorim should never be mushy. Good kongjorim is a little chewy and soft at the same time. So if you feel your kongjorim is too tough, soak it longer or boil it longer (12 minutes instead of 10 minutes?). Soaking time of beans depends on the types of beans and how hard dried they are

  13. BxlSprout Brussels, Belgium joined 5/10 & has 46 comments

    Hi Maangchi, I’m making my third batch of these already :) you really have to watch the boiling down process like a hawk or the sugar solution will burn (that was my first batch). From eating the second batch, my husband will like it (ok, me!) better if I throw out the soaking water and add fresh water. Doing so gets rid of oligosaccarides, which cause gas…
    I too like them made from black beans, it’s a pity that the soaking water is full of the beautiful colour but it’s better this way.
    By the way, i’ve been eating delicious Korean food every day and I’m losing my baby weight! Thank you!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

      oh, you eventually made it!
      “I’m losing my baby weight!” awesome news!
      “it’s a pity that the soaking water is full of the beautiful colour but it’s better this way.”

      Use the beautiful purplish water when you make your rice! Add some soaked black beans to the rice. We call it kongbap. Kong is beans and bap is steamed rice.

      • BxlSprout Brussels, Belgium joined 5/10 & has 46 comments

        Oh, thanks for the tip on kongbap :) Now I understand why a lot of rice I ate in Korea had a tint to it.
        Last time I used it to water my basil seeds and they grew like wild overnight!
        It’s now the fifth consecutive week of slowly losing baby weight by eating lots of healthy Korean food and taking a gentle evening stroll with my daughter in the baby sling. Thanks Maangchi! You empowered me.

  14. slice79 joined 11/08 & has 4 comments

    Hi Maangchi.. I have tried this recipe two times and both times the kong comes out extremely dry in the center. Because it was dry the first time I made this I soaked the beans and extra day (more than 24 hours) and it still comes up pretty dry in the center.. not chewy at all. What am I doing wrong?

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

      OMG, are they real soy beans? : )

      Soaking time of beans depends on the types of beans and how hard dried they are.

      Check the step 3, and boil until your soy beans get tender (in the recipe, it says you boil 10 minutes before adding soy sauce…). If water evaporates, add more water and cook longer.

      step 3:
      Boil the beans on the stove over medium high heat for 10 minutes
      *Tip: about 5 minutes later, it may boil over, and then open the lid and turn down the heat over medium heat and cook another 5 minutes

      • slice79 joined 11/08 & has 4 comments

        The first time I tried it, I used soy beans. The second time I used black beans.. both times they were unedible! hahah. Thanks for the suggestion! I will try boiling it longer. I WILL try it again. :) I love your recipes! :)

  15. shaoen01 joined 6/10 & has 11 comments

    Hi Maangchi!,

    I tried cooking this dish, but seem to have encountered some problem. The output wasn’t very sticky and even after boiling for 30 minutes, it still seems a bit watery. Was the finishing product suppose to be sticky at the end of it? Thanks

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