These gochugaru recipes will give your weeknight dinners a bright and fiery Korean kick!
With its well-balanced flavors, this exotic spice might just become your newest favorite.
Unlike other chili peppers whose only mission in life is to set your mouth on fire, gochugaru is different.
But despite its mildness, its complex flavors make it a great addition to dishes.
Not to mention, its bright red hue makes anything it touches a lot more exciting!
You can definitely experiment with gochugaru to spice up any dish.
Still, the best way to showcase its greatness is through Korean food.
From kimchi to tteokbokki to bulgogi, these gochugaru recipes will get you hooked on both the Korean spice and cuisine.
Hungry yet? I sure am! Let’s begin.
1. Dak Galbi
Let’s get the ball rolling with dak galbi, a chicken stir-fry with a twist.
Instead of the typical rice or noodles, this stir-fry features rice cakes, sweet potatoes, and cabbage.
Just imagine the textural combination of chewy rice cakes, starchy potatoes, and crunchy cabbage all in one bite!
While all those are great, of course it’s the chicken that steals the show.
Marinated in a special Korean sauce, the protein gets a mouthwatering combo of hot, sweet, and savory flavors.
While I admit there was a time in my life when I couldn’t stand kimchi, I now can’t live without it.
If you’re also a fan of this oddly delicious fermented condiment, then I highly suggest you make it at home.
It’s not as complicated as you think!
Sure, it requires several days to complete the process, but your participation will only take 30 minutes.
Plus, after the long wait, you’ll reap flavorful rewards.
Tofu on its own is very bland and boring. But the great thing about it is it absorbs flavors like a sponge.
All you’ll need to create this magnificent bowl is to cook tofu cubes in a sauce made of gochugaru, honey, sesame oil, soy sauce, and rice vinegar.
When combined with a bit of cornstarch, this mixture turns into a thick sauce bursting with sweet and spicy flavors.
By the time you’re done, you won’t even recognice the tofu!
Squid Game became a massive worldwide hit the moment it was released on Netflix.
These spicy squid rice bowls became a hit in my household much quicker.
Seriously, one bite, and my family fell head over heels in love. It’s since become a part of our meal rotation.
Called ojingeo deopbab, it’s a classic Korean dish of sauce-covered squid rings topped on rice.
Vegetables also join the party for extra color, flavor, and crunch.
This dish is very saucy, which is why it goes perfectly with rice. The rice absorbs the sauce beautifully, giving it sweet and spicy flavors.
If you enjoy dishes with a soft and chewy texture, tteokbokki is righ up your alley. These rice cakes are majorly addictive!
Aside from the texture, what makes tteokbokki impossible to resist is the sauce.
The combo of gochujang (red bean paste), gochugaru, anchovy broth, and sugar is simply phenomenal.
Also, it looks way too intriguing and inviting not to try. It’s one of those dishes you just have to take a bite of.
And once you have, you won’t be able to stop.
This next dish is exactly like tteokbokki, but eaten on a stick. It’s a fun and flavorful snack sold in the streets of Korea.
With this easy recipe, you can also enjoy these saucy rice cakes at home.
Serve the skewers as a party appetizer or a hearty afternoon snack.
If there’s anything good that came out of the Korean war, it’s budae jjigae.
Meaning “army stew” in English, it’s a noodle soup filled with American processed meats like ham, SPAM, & hot dogs.
The scarcity of food during the 3-year war forced people to resort to American processed food from US army bases.
A Korean restaurant owner then came up with the idea to combine all the meats into one stew. The rest is history.
To give the American meats a Korean flair, they’re tied together with a hot and savory broth flavored with kimchi and gochugari.
Dubu jorim is a simple yet scrumptious side dish of braised tofu.
All it takes to make it is to cut up the tofu into cubes and cook it in soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil.
To amp up its flavor, stir in a little (or a lot) of gochugaru to the sauce.
Its mild heat will complement the sweetness and savoriness of the sauce.
Dakgalbi is a delectable chicken stir-fry cooked in a sweet and spicy sauce. It’s made extra special with melted cheese on top.
Chicken, cheese, and sweet & spicy sauce: these three things together make magic happen.
This dish looks and tastes like it came straight out of a Korean restaurant. In reality, it only takes 20 minutes to make.
10. Chicken Bulgogi
While bulgogi usually uses thinly sliced beef or pork, this one features chicken. Because why not?
Think tender and juicy grilled BBQ chicken, but with a Korean kick. It’s sweet, smoky, spicy, and simply delicious.
These Korean pancakes are infused with scallions and an assortment of seafood such as squid, oysters, clams, and more.
They’re definitely not your average pancakes. They’re so much better.
Complete the dish with a dipping sauce made of soy sauce, vinegar, gochucgaru, and more scallions.
Spice up your chicken burgers with a quick and easy gochujang sauce!
Flavor your chicken patties with gochujang (red bean paste), gochugaru, rice wine, and soy sauce, and voila.
It’s a classic American dish with a spicy Korean flair.
Want to give the classic appetizer an Asian twist? Kimchi is the answer.
In this version, the egg yolk filling is mixed with kimchi brine and bits to give it a spicy kick.
Honestly, I didn’t think I was going to like this dish at all. I’m so glad I gave it a shot. You should, too!
You’d be surprised at how the eggs and kimchi paired so well together.
The complex flavors of the kimchi cut through the richness of the egg yolks wonderfully.
14. Chili Oil
If you’re the type who can down a bottle of chili oil a day, I urge you to make it yourself.
It’s cheaper, plus, you get to adjust the heat level according to your taste. Also, it’s easier to make than you think.
In this recipe, you’ll add gochugaru to your choice of pepper flakes to give the oil hints of sweet, smoky, and fruity flavors.
Forget the Caesar and Thousand Island dressings for a minute and give this one a try!
For this salad, you’ll use a delectable mix of honey, apple cider, sesame oil, and gochugaru to flavor lettuce.
The sweet, tangy, and spicy sauce is so good it’ll make you forget you’re eating vegetables.
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