Everything You Can Do with a Jar of Kimchi

Fried rice, hot dogs, pancakes, cocktails, braises, and more get a spicy kimchi upgrade.

RECIPE0615-FT-bacon-and-kimchi-burgers.jpg
Photo: © Con Poulos

We love to whip up a big batch of kimchi. Though delicious right from the jar — or as part of a banchan spread — kimchi is also a phenomenal ingredient to work with. From savory pancakes to amazing burgers, here are 16 ways to incorporate kimchi into your cooking.

Fried Rice

When chef Rachel Yang finishes a long shift at her Seattle restaurant Joule, this fried rice is her go-to quick snack. It's a great use for all of that leftover takeout rice and relies mostly on pantry staples.

Kimchi-and-Kale Fried Rice
When chef Rachel Yang finishes a long shift at her Seattle restaurant Joule, this fried rice is her go-to quick snack. It’s a great use for all of that leftover takeout rice and relies mostly on pantry staples, as long as you have gochujang, a Korean chile paste, in your pantry. Abby Hocking

Hot Dogs

Kimchi is the perfect, spicy-tart counterpoint to sausages and hot dogs. San Diego-based chef Claudette Zepeda created this dish as an homage to the Sonoran hot dog.

Chorizo and Kimchi Hot Dogs
Victor Protasio

Stews

Grab some kimchi, pork belly, and tofu on the way home from work, and you can have this soothing, vibrant dish on the table in 30 minutes.

Spicy Kimchi Tofu Stew
Stop at a Korean market on the way home from work, and you can have this soothing, vibrant dish on the table in 30 minutes. Christopher Testani

Pancakes

One of chef Rachel Yang's favorite ways to use kimchi is in this irresistible pancake: the tangy, spicy ferment is balanced with plenty of creamy mozzarella and cheddar cheese.

Kimchi Cheese Pancake Recipe
Anna Stockwell

Braises

Cookbook author Julia Turshen uses only five main ingredients — chicken, kimchi, garlic, scallions, and oil — to make one of the tastiest and simplest braises.

Easy Braised Chicken with Kimchi
© Justin Chapple

Stir-Fries

New York's now-shuttered Izakaya Ten would rely on kimchi to temper the richness of stir-fried pork belly slices.

Stir-Fried Pork Belly with Kimchi
© Frances Janisch

French Fries (and Tots)

Jae Kim, chef-owner of Austin's Chi'Lantro, tops fries with caramelized kimchi, grilled Korean-style beef, and a sriracha-spiked mayonnaise.

French Fries with Bulgogi and Caramelized Kimchi
© Con Poulos

Congee

Kimchi is a great addition to a comforting bowl of this classic Chinese rice porridge.

Kimchi Congee
© Todd Porter & Diane Cu

Sauces and Glazes

For this Hawaiian-inspired summer cookout showstopper, 2016 BNC member Ravi Kapur combines kimchi with pineapple juice, ketchup, and brown sugar to glaze grilled hanger steaks.

Hanger Steak with Kimchi Glaze and Miso Butter Grilled Vegetables Recipe
Photo by Tara Donne / Food Styling by Chris Lanier / Prop Styling by Raina Kattelson

Lasagna

For this creative take on lasagna, chewy, tender Korean rice cakes are coated with a spicy sauce of sweet Italian sausage, fennel seeds, crushed red pepper flakes, gochujang, ssamjang, and kimchi. A caramelized, bubbly, stringy provolone topping helps temper the heat.

Crispy Rice Cake Lasagna
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen

Bloody Marys

This clever bloody Mary variation gets its heat and flavor from pureed kimchi, along with a dash of Sriracha chile sauce.

Kimchi Bloody Mary

Polenta

Creamy polenta is the perfect base for the bright and spicy flavors of kimchi.

Polenta with Kimchi
© Todd Porter & Diane Cu

Collard Greens

In 2018, Food & Wine named this recipe from chef Hugh Acheson as one of our 40 best. This savory side dish of collards simmered with onion, bacon, chicken stock, vinegar, and sorghum, is laced with a spicy kimchi cream sauce that gives the dish a funky kick.

Kimchi-Creamed Collard Greens
“I don't think a cuisine should ever stop growing,” says Hugh Acheson. And indeed, ever since he was named a Best New Chef in 2002, the chef has contributed dozens of super-tasty and smart updates on Southern classics to F&W. Among our favorites is this savory side dish of collards simmered with onion, bacon, chicken stock, vinegar, and sorghum, laced with a spicy kimchi cream sauce that gives the dish a funky kick. © Greg DuPree

Dumplings

Kimchi is a fantastic addition to the rich pork filling of these dumplings. San Francisco chef Corey Lee likes to add a batter at the end of pan-frying the dumplings, turning them into one round, crisp pancake.

Pork-Kimchi Dumpling Pancakes
© Con Poulos

Burgers

Korean American chef Edward Lee, of Whiskey Dry in Louisville, was inspired by the classic Korean pairing of pork and spicy fermented kimchi when he created this crunchy, pork-rind-topped burger. "The buttermilk sauce brings it all together and cools down the heat," he says.

Kimchi Pork Burgers
© John Kernick

Micheladas

Try a fun twist on the refreshing Mexican beverage using kimchi juice and kimchi skewers for a garnish.

Kimchi Micheladas
© Kay Chun
Was this page helpful?
Related Articles