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Korean Food Terms

A Guide to Korean Food and Cuisine

Bibimbap, pictured here as served on Korean Air, is one of Korean cuisine's signature dishes


Don't know banchan from doenjang? Need help navigating Korean menus? Whether you're having dukkbogki or all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ, GAYOT's guide to Korean food terms will arm you with the culinary vocabulary necessary to comfortably order at any Korean restaurant.

Banchan: side dishes

Bibimbap
: rice mixed with vegetables and beef

Bokbunjaju: raspberry wine


Bulgogi: grilled marinated beef

Cha: tea

Dak: chicken

Doenjang: soybean paste

Doenjang jjigae: soybean paste stew

Dukkbogki: spicy rice cakes

Galbi (kalbi): short ribs

Ganjang: soy sauce

Gejang: shelled crabs salted in soy sauce

Gochujang: red pepper paste

Guk: soup

Hanjeongsik: a full-course Korean meal with an array of savory side dishes

Hobakjuk: pumpkin porridge

Hoe: raw fish sliced and served with soy sauce or Korean chili paste mixed with vinegar and sugar

Insam: ginseng

Jang-eo gui: broiled eel

Japchae: glass noodles with sautéed vegetables

Jogaetang: clam soup

Kimchi (kimchee): the most common side dish in Korea, typically made of fermented napa cabbage or radishes and spiced with chiles and garlic

Naengmyeon: cold noodles, typically made of buckwheat

Pajeon: green onion pancakes

Ramyeon: ramen noodles

Samgyeopsal: pork belly


Seolleongtang: ox bone soup

Sikhye: sweet rice punch

Sinseollo: royal casserole

Soju: clear, distilled potato spirit, like vodka, but weaker

Topokki: stir-fried rice cake

Twigim: fried dishes

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