Kimchi Bokumbap: Kimchi Fried Rice

Kimchi Bokumbap: Kimchi Fried Rice

The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
418 Calories
19g Fat
43g Carbs
18g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 418
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 8g 38%
Cholesterol 220mg 73%
Sodium 605mg 26%
Total Carbohydrate 43g 16%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 18g
Vitamin C 6mg 30%
Calcium 84mg 6%
Iron 5mg 25%
Potassium 418mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Quick, easy, and cheap to make, kimchi bokumbap is simple Korean home cooking at its best. Kimchi fried rice (bokumbap or bokkeumbap) makes for a simple meal that helps you use two items commonly found in Korean pantries and refrigerators—rice and kimchi. This recipe is humble food that is mostly enjoyed at home, but you might also see it in some casual Korean eateries.

Using kimchi that's made with Napa cabbage is a good choice for this recipe, and making kimchi fried rice is a great way to use leftover kimchi that's a bit past its prime and more sour than fresh kimchi. It is actually what helps make this dish special. Most Koreans enjoy kimchi every day of the year.


Click Play to See This Kimchi Bokumbap: Kimchi Fried Rice Recipe Come Together


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, or oil, divided

  • 1 cup kimchi, preferably made with napa cabbage, drained and chopped

  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped

  • 3 large cloves garlic, chopped (about 1 tablespoon)

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • 4 ounces thinly sliced beef, such as tenderloin

  • 3 cups cooked rice, cold

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • 4 large fried eggs

  • 1 scallion, chopped

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Gather ingredients for kimchi fried rice

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter or oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the kimchi and onion and sauté for a few minutes until onion is tender.

    Kimchi in frying pan

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  3. When vegetables begin to look transparent, add garlic and soy sauce; sauté for another 2 to 3 minutes.

    add garlic and soy sauce to the kimchi in the pan

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  4. Add the meat and continue to sauté until meat is cooked.

    Add the meat to the kimchi mixture and continue to sauté

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  5. Add the cooked rice and the rest of the oil or butter, mixing to combine until heated through.

    add rice to the kimchi mixture

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

  6. Salt to taste and top each serving with a fried egg and scallions. Enjoy!

    Kimchi Bokumbap: Kimchi Fried Rice with a fried egg on top

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Raw Egg Warning

Consuming raw and lightly-cooked eggs poses a risk of food-borne illness.


  • This recipe works with any kind of cooked rice, but the most common type to use would be a short to medium grain Korean or Japanese-style rice, which lends the dish a pleasant, chewy texture.
  • Use a non-stick skillet to avoid anything sticking to the pan, especially since the kimchi is cooked first, which could cause the rice to stick to the bottom.

Recipe Variations

  • Instead of beef, you can use pork, ham, bacon, Canadian bacon, or even Spam. If using American bacon, first sauté briefly in a large un-greased pan and omit the butter when adding the garlic and soy sauce.
  • Some recipes for kimchi fried rice use chicken or baby shrimp as the protein source, so don't be afraid to experiment once you've got the basic recipe mastered.
  • Kimchi fried rice can also be made vegetarian by substituting tofu squares for the pork, beef, chicken, or shrimp.
  • If you like more spice, try adding Korean pepper flakes (gochugaru) and Korean chili paste (gochujang).
  • For even more kimchi flavor, add some of the kimchi liquid to the rice.
  • Serve the rice topped with shredded nori or torn seasoned seaweed snack sheets and some toasted sesame seeds.
  • Instead of finishing the rice with butter at the end, drizzle in a little toasted sesame oil.
  • Marinate the sliced beef first with a little soy sauce, sugar and toasted sesame oil.
  • At the end, once the rice is hot, don't stir for a few minutes to allow it to develop some crispy, toasted bits at the bottom. Just check periodically to make sure it's not burning.