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.


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!




  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.




  1. Dennisboon82 Malaysia joined 12/17 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangchi, I love you recipe. So far I did try 2 of your fantastic recipe recently. 1st time I try to make some kimchi & it really good. All the kimchi that I made finished eating within 2 months. I thought it will be fermented for some times. But I just can’t stop eating that. Hahahahaha. & now I cooked rice cake during Christmas Eve but I did modified your recipe a bit & it turn out very tasty. My friend & i enjoy it very much. Thank you so much of your idea recipe. It really taste of Korean food. Hope in future I can keep trying to cook some of the other delicious food & see more often of your post. Thank you maangchi.

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  2. Raisednice Indiana joined 12/17 & has 2 comments

    So I used 5 tablespoons of the fish sauce and it is great! Thank you so much for all your recipes. My mom doesnt have time to show me when I ask for dishes, she just makes them for me. I dread thinking that when she passes, my one connection I have to my Korean roots will be gone……but then Maangchi I found your site! Thank you so much it means a lot!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,947 comments

      “my one connection I have to my Korean roots will be gone……but then Maangchi I found your site! ” I am very touched by your words. Thank you very much!

  3. Raisednice Indiana joined 12/17 & has 2 comments

    My mom does not make it this way but I am going to try it because this is my favorite dish. I wonder if fish sauce will give the same results. I am learning different uses for it. My mom uses it in everything just about! I am doing it now so we will see!

  4. Danniarr Masan, South Korea. joined 11/17 & has 1 comment

    Is it really necessary to take the heads and intestines out of the anchovies? Seems like I can just use the whole fish if I want, right? Thanks for this recipe!

  5. Briii1234 USA joined 11/17 & has 1 comment

    Hey Maangchi, is it okay to use canned anchovies instead of dried? Would the broth be the same?

  6. MochaMocha The Bahamas joined 10/17 & has 1 comment

    Maangchi it’s my first time making 떡볶이. Well, it’s my first time making anything Korean. I usually just watch your videos but now I can finally cook something. My Korean friend sent the frozen 떡 to me. I’m so excited to try this recipe!! Wish me luck I hope I do well and make you proud ^^

  7. bertman4 Seattle, WA joined 10/17 & has 9 comments

    This recipe has become a staple for me and my friends. Always delicious!

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  8. Lea New Zealand joined 9/14 & has 4 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    I’ve done your tteokbokki recipe a lot of times and always love it. But I am pregnant right now and can’t have spicy food.. how much brown sugar should I add if I were to make this? Or should I lessen the chilli paste too? But I’m afraid the taste might differ if I do.. (I don’t normally put in pepper flakes so this is out of the question)

    Hope you read this and reply.. just saw some tteokbokki photos on facebook and craving right now!

    Thank you so much!

  9. ataezing Toronto joined 9/17 & has 1 comment

    I’m interested in trying this recipe and I’m wondering how long the prep time is. Also how many servings is this recipe?? Much Thanks!

  10. Sio lover Ksa joined 12/16 & has 46 comments

    Can I use beef broth cubes instead of the anchovies ?

  11. JessicaG Quezon City, Philippines joined 9/17 & has 2 comments

    I made and ate my first Tteokbokki today and I liked it! Thanks for the recipe Maangchi! I just made some revisions – didn’t add pepper flakes anymore, added more sugar and added a little white vinegar since the gochujang was hotter than my family can tolerate. I used fresh garatteok from our local Korean store. I will try to make my own garatteok next time.

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  12. Akvile Norway joined 9/17 & has 3 comments

    Hi, Maangchi. its my first time making tteokbokki. Are they suposed to taste spisy and sweet or I can ad salt? :) I didnt use the fish cakes in the recipe as I didnt have them.

    • jseolhee bali joined 9/17 & has 1 comment

      It supposed to sweet and spicy.. But gochujang(hot pepper paste) already taste salty..
      I usually add soy sauce if want to be abit salty, and its smell really good..
      Try to change the fish cake with fried thin ham.. its also good.. ;)

  13. Colowly Philippines joined 8/17 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi! I need your help! I bought frozen rice cakes few months ago from korean grocery store and I decided to make this today. But when I got it from the freezer, I saw the 2017.7.28 expiration date on the bag. It’s already August 21, 2017 and almost a month sinice it ‘expired’. Can’t I use it anymore? Pls help me! Thankyou!

  14. jwilli1994 Louisiana joined 8/17 & has 1 comment


    I tried your recipe and it was very good!! The only question I have is how to make the rice cake absorb the sauce better? It did not feel like the rice cake absorbed any of the sauce.

    Thanks you!

    • adamjbc U.S. joined 8/17 & has 1 comment

      You won’t have much luck getting the rice cakes to absorb the sauce since they are so solid, but you can maybe try making the sauce thicker so that more of it stays on the rice cake instead. Just a thought.

  15. Bflobear Buffalo, ny joined 8/17 & has 1 comment

    I have found some dried rice stick that recommends soaking overnight. I’m curious if this can be skipped by using a pressure cooker? I haven’t been able to find any advice for or against. Any help would be appreciated!

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