Spicy stuffed cucumber kimchi

Oisobagi kimchi 오이소박이 김치

Cucumber kimchi (oi-sobagi) is made by turning a cucumber into a pocket and stuffing it with vegetables and kimchi paste. It’s delicious and refreshing and it’s a great kimchi to make when cucumbers are in season and you don’t feel like waiting for your kimchi to ferment. You can eat this right away: they’re cool, spicy, and crunchy and go well with beef and radish soup. Cucumber kimchi is a good example of a kimchi that doesn’t have to be fermented to be great.

It’s  been a very popular recipe on my website ever since I first posted it. However my original video used copyright-protected music (‘A Message to You, Rudy’ by The Specials), and the sound was recently removed by the copyright holder. Many people have been asking me to remake the video, so with cucumbers in season it’s a good time to do it. Enjoy the updated video!



  • 2 pounds kirby cucumbers (9 or 10 cucumbers) or 4 4½ inch long small, thin cucumbers.
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 cup buchu (Asian chives), chopped into ½ inch pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium carrot, cut into thin matchsticks (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup onion, sliced thinly
  • ½ cup hot pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds



  1. Wash the cucumbers. Make pockets out of them by slicing them twice lengthwise at right angles, ½ inch from one end so the cucumber quarters are still connected to each other at the end.oisobagioi-sobagi
  2. Put them in a big bowl, and sprinkle and rub them with salt inside and out. Let them sit for 10 minutes on the kitchen counter, and then turn them over so they’re evenly salted. Then turn them over and let them sit another 10 minutes.cucumber kimchi
  3. Rinse the cucumbers in cold water a couple of times to remove excess salt. Drain and set aside.
  4. Combine buchu (Asian chives), carrot, hot pepper flakes, fish sauce, sugar, and sesame seeds in a large bowl. Mix well with a wooden spoon.
  5. Stuff the seasoning paste into the cucumber pockets. If you have sensitive skin, you can wear rubber gloves for this because the paste might irritate your hands.oisobagioisobagi seasoningoisobagi stuffing
  6. Serve immediately as a side dish for rice, and keep the leftovers in the refrigerator. If you prefer it to be fermented a bit more, let the container sit at room temperature for a couple of days until it smells and tastes sour. Then put it into the fridge. Serve cold.



My original video shows how to make barley rice. Eventually I’ll make a videos for this, too, but in the meantime here’s the recipe:

Barley Rice


  • 1 cup short grain rice, 1 cup  barley


  1. Combine rice and barley rice in a heavy pot.
  2. Wash and drain a couple of times. Drain water as much as you can and add 2½ cups water.
  3. Cover and let it sit at least 30 minutes.
  4. Bring the pot to a boil over medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes.
  5. Open the lid and turn the rice over with a rice scoop or spoon.
  6. Simmer it over low heat for another 10 minutes.
  7. Fluff with a rice scoop to remove excess steam. Serve immediately with side dishes.



  1. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    You are absolutely right. I believe that the radish soup is helping your stomach settle down. : ) A huge bowl of hot radish soup with a little rice, that’s what you need when you feel like haivng a cold or upset stomach. cucumber kimchi, soybean side dish..all sound like healthy food.

  2. Lillian& has 2,263 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    I made the beef and radish soup for lunch today. I wasn’t feeling very well and I wanted something simple. It was the perfect thing to settle my stomach. I had it with white + brown rice (instead of barley rice) and the soybean side dish. Too bad my oiso bagi were gone! Thanks for the recipe. The chicken recipe you posted today looks AMAZING!

  3. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    hi, beansprout soup lover, : )
    Yes, kong na mool soup is good for hangover. I will make it some day.
    Thank you!!

  4. Anonymous& has 2,263 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    Could you teach us how to make bean sprout soup? I heard it is a very good soup when you have handover. Thanks

  5. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    tonight I’m going to make bulgogi, so I will post the picture on my blog for you. This bulgogi I will make is very easily made. Check out my blog later.

  6. jo*rose& has 2,263 comments

    Hi Maangchi!

    Another good tip which I may be putting into use after my housemate’s birthday party this weekend. Thank you!

    I don’t know if someone had already asked for you to cook bulgogi in your show but if no one has requested it yet, may I request for it? Bulgogi was the first Korean dish I was able to taste and it was delicious. I’d like to learn how to make it from you.

    Thanks in advance,
    Jo Rose

  7. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    I received the picture of your bibimbap the other day. It looks very colorful and delicious as well. Thank you very much!
    I may use the picture later for my blog.

    Radish soup is good, right? I recommend having it when you have hangover. : )

  8. jo*rose& has 2,263 comments


    I made the radish soup today. It was easy to make and it tasted good, too! Btw, I already sent you some pictures of the bibimbap on your email address. :)

  9. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    Now you can make “oi sobagi”!
    ok, I’m looking forward to your dduk bok kie update. : )
    Thanks a lot!

  10. Lillian& has 2,263 comments

    I went to my favorite Korean restaurant last night, which is part of a grocery store. At the check-out they had a tray full of containers of oisobagi kimchi! I asked the woman there about the kimchi and she said they just made it. I can’t wait to try it, but I am soooo full from my dinner (a hot stone bowl full of rice, veggies and egg–delicious!). I got the ingredients for duk bok kie this weekend–I’ll let you know how they turn out!

  11. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    Hi, Agasuka
    You are funny! Did you soak the beans for 8 hours? If it’s too hard for you, I suggest soaking 10 – 12 hours then. : )
    Best cucumbers for oi sobagi kimchi is cucumbers for pickles with thin skin. I showed the cucumber kimchi in jja jang myun video.

  12. Agasuka& has 2,263 comments

    The skin of the cucumber feels very waxy to me. I don’t want to eat any additives from the skin, so I peel the skins off.

    The black bean Kong Jang is very tiring to chew. It may be because of the one year old black bean, or it may be because of my old weak teeth. I am becoming an Oeo Meo Ni.

    By the way, it’s getting very warm here now it reaches 20 C in the day. Cucumber is on sale this week, only 50 cents each!

    Let’s have Oisobagi festival!

  13. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    oh, I forgot to answer your question! You can keep it in the refrigerator for about 1 week. Not like cabbage kimchi, we usually eat “oisobagi” within the first week. Good work!

  14. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,821 comments

    Kongjang looks terrific! Is there any reason for peeling the skin of the cucumbers? If you are ok, who would care! But I have never seen “Oi sobagi” without skin before. ; )

  15. Agasuka& has 2,263 comments


    I made both Oisobagi kimchi and Kong Jang.

    My Oisobagi is not as pretty as yours, since I peeled their skin off.

    How long can the oisobagi stay in the fridge?

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