Samgak-gimbap is a triangular shaped gimbap which is designed to keep the seaweed fresh by putting it between 2 thin sheets of plastic. So you can eat it hours later, and it will still be crispy. It was invented by a Japanese company. I think whoever thought of this was pretty clever!

To make this, you will have to buy seaweed (gim) that was made specially for samgak-gimbap. You should also get a mold for making the triangle shape, but if you can’t get one, watch the video to see how to do it without it, just using plastic wrap.

In my recipe I’m going to show you 2 kinds of filling: kimchi and tuna, but you can use your own favorite ingredients to make delicious fillings.


(for 3-4 servings, or 8-9 samgak-gimbap)

Ok, let’s start!


Prepare rice:

  1. Mix vinegar, white sugar, and kosher salt in a small bowl until the mixture looks clear.
  2. In a large bowl add the warm rice and pour the clear liquid over top. Mix it and let it cool down.

Make filling:

Make the tuna filling

  1. Open a can of tuna and squeeze out the water through a cheesecloth.
  2. In a heated pan, put 1 ts vegetable oil.
  3. Add garlic, tuna, soy sauce, and brown sugar into the pan and stir fry it for a few minutes.
  4. Turn the heat off and add 1 ts toasted sesame oil, 1 ts roasted sesame seeds, and black ground pepper.

Make the kimchi filling

  1. Chop the kimchi and put it in a small bowl.
  2. Add gochujang, 1 ts of toasted sesame oil, and 1 ts of roasted sesame seeds to the kimchi and mix it up.

Put the rice and filling in the mold:

  1. Fill ⅔ of the mold with cooked rice.
  2. Place your filling in the center, then top up the mold with rice, put on the lid, and press it down.

Wrap it up:

  1. Take out a piece of gim from the package. Don’t remove the plastic wrap, we need this! We’re going to wrap this sheet of gim with the plastic around your rice and fillings. The plastic will keep both rice and gim fresh until you are ready to eat the gimbap.
  2. Look for the numbers on the sheet. The numbers side of the sheet goes down, and #1 should be pointing away from you.
  3. Take the lid off your mold, and place the mold face down on the middle of your sheet, with the rice facing down. The tip of the triangle should be pointing away from you, towards #1. Let the rice packet gently slide out of the mold and land on the gim. Remove the mold.
  4. Fold the sheet over the rice, away from you and towards #1. Then fold up the sides. Keep the sides in place with the sticker that came with the gim.


  1. When you’re ready to eat it, look for #1 on the side of the packet. Pull that tab and the plastic will peel off.
  2. Gently remove #2 and then #3, putting the gim back into place each time.
  3. Take a bite. Crispy, isn’t it?

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  1. Texaspete363 Maryland joined 4/20 & has 8 comments

    I’m really excited to try this recipe for my kids lunchboxes! I think this definitely deserves an updated video!

  2. cherrychaerin South Korea joined 7/19 & has 2 comments

    Maangchi thank you for all of these recipes !!! Cooking these for my american friends is so much fun sometimes it is so hard to remember my mother’s recipes but you are always here to save the day!!!

  3. Adeline Adelaide, Australia joined 3/17 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi! I love Korean cooking and I just stumbled upon your cookbook and website. Love love love your recipes and video instructions! So easy to follow. This is my first time making samgak and it was very successful.Thank you and I look forward to trying your other recipes. ❤️ Keep cooking!

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    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,045 comments

      Wow, they look gorgeous! Congratulations!

      • Leaflife Canada joined 5/19 & has 1 comment

        Hi Maangchi,

        I love your recipes, so delicious and easy to follow! I haven’t fully committed to this particular recipe, have to get all my supplies;) I buy the already made gimbap from my local Korean store, and they have a couple of flavors. If you have time, could you share other flavors recipe? They have chicken, beef and a slightly spicy-sweet tuna one that I looove.

        Many thank!!! <3

  4. Valeria Ecuador joined 8/16 & has 3 comments

    If you don’t have the plastic triangle, how about making the triangular shape by bending sturdy cardboard into a triangle and the covering the cardboard with waxed paper, so rice wouldn’t stick. Just a thought.

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