Korean food

7 Must-Try Korean Foods In Seoul

Seoul is home to exciting nightlife, ancient temples, gorgeous scenery and most of all, incredible food. Korean food is rich and full of flavours ranging from spicy garlic and ginger, savoury sesame and a subtle sweetness.

If you are heading to the bustling South Korean capital and are looking for some food to try, we’ve got you covered. Take your pick from slow marinated pork, puffy sweet doughnuts, fermented cabbage and more with this list.

7 Must-Try Korean Foods In Seoul

1. Bulgogi

First up we have bulgogi. Literally translated to ‘fire meat’, bulgogi is a must-try when in Seoul. Paper-thin slices of marinated beef or pork are grilled to perfection resulting in a deliciously tender dish. Make your own Korean taco by filling a lettuce leaf with bulgogi and other toppings such as peppers and garlic. Eat your heart out at Maple Tree House for some of Seoul’s best bulgogi.

2. Kimchi

This Korean favourite has been around for at least 3,000 years and has been wowing tourists and locals ever since. Garlicky, sharp, tangy and fiery are just a few words to describe this classic dish. This ancient fermented vegetable fare can be found all over the capital, but Tosokchon does it best.

3. Hotteok

Next up we have a delicious dessert option. Perfectly crisp on the outside with a soft, sugary filling, hotteok is a Seoul favourite. A cross between a pancake a doughnut, they’re typically filled with a mix of brown sugar, honey, cinnamon and walnuts. You can find them at street vendors or in restaurants like Sammat Hotteok.

4. Pajeon

This scallion pancake is savoury, filling, and just the right amount of onion-y. With green onions as the main ingredient, you can also order it with kimchi, shellfish and other meats if you prefer. Chow down on one at Chebudong Janchijip, and don’t forget to make use of the delicious dipping sauce!

image: @babmokjja/instagram

5. Tteokbokki

Tteokbokki is stir-fried rice cakes tossed in a spicy sauce; they are perfectly chewy and loaded with fiery flavours. In addition to being found in food stalls, you can also enjoy them in a restaurant – head to Apple House to give them a try.

Korean food
Image: @qarleylisi/instagram

6. Kimchi Jiggae

You’ve heard of kimchi but have you heard of its cousin, kimchi jiggae? Essentially a stewed, soup version of the classic Korean dish, you can’t miss a chance to try it in Seoul. It’s chock full of kimchi, pork belly and vegetables though you can also order it with tofu – be sure to have a bowl (or five) at Hanokjib.

Korean food
Image: wensdelight/instagram

7. Japchae

Last but not least; glass noodles, thin strips of tender meat and rainbow vegetables come together to make this delicious Korean noodle bowl. Interestingly, japchae was once a royal side dish and was enjoyed by Korean dynasties such as Joseon and more. Dine like the kings at one of the nations oldest traditional markets, Gwangjang Market.

Korean food
Image: rcurhalek/instagram
Melanie Hamilton

Melanie is an avid traveller with a passion for history and global foods. She is currently based in Tbilisi, Georgia where most of her time is occupied with qvevri wine and Soviet history. Having do-si-do'd her way across Europe and Latin America, she's enjoyed some of the world's most exciting places firsthand and can't wait to tell you about them.

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