Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (2024)

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Budae jjigae, also known as Korean army stew, is a flavorful and savory hot pot dish that has a unique taste due to the combination of Korean and American ingredients. The broth is typically spicy and slightly sweet, with a complex umami flavor that comes from kimchi, gochujang (Korean red pepper paste), fish sauce and sausages.

Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (1)

What is budae jjigae (부대찌개)?

Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (2)

Budae jjigae, is a popular Korean hot pot dish that originated during the Korean War. It is a fusion dish that combines Korean ingredients like kimchi and gochujang with American ingredients like spam and hot dogs. American soldiers brought spam, baked beans and hot dogs to Korea during the war and Koreans use them in the spicy broth along with tofu, cabbage, rice cakes and scallions. The spicy broth is made with gochujang, soy sauce, and other seasonings. It is usually served hot and accompanied by a bowl of rice.

Traditionally, budae jjigae is enjoyed on a portable stove as a communal dish, so you can cook the and eat together.

Ingredients you need for your budae jjigae:

The ingredients for budae jjigae can be found at H-mart (korean grocery store). There’s a variety of different toppings that you can add in your korean army stew such as starch noodles, baked beans and mushrooms. Below, you will find ingredients that I like to use for my recipe:

  • soft tofu
  • spam
  • smoke sausage, you can substitute with hot dogs
  • kimchi, sour kimchi works best for this as this adds a little bit of acidity and
  • unsalted chicken broth (add half cup to 1 cup of water more if you like more soup), or can substitute with anchovy broth (traditional), beef or vegetable broth
  • rice cakes
  • instant ramen (must have!)
  • sliced cheddar cheese, optional
  • green onion – use for the broth and save some for garnish

Seasoning Sauce

Steps to make the budae jjigae:

Slice ingredients & soak rice cakes:

Soak rice cakes in water while preparing your seasoning sauce. Mince garlic and slice green onions. Slice tofu and sausage.

Seasoning sauce:

Mix sauce by adding ingredients in a bowl: 1 tablespoon gochugaru, 1 tablespoon gochujang, ½ tablespoon soy sauce, ½ tablespoon fish sauce, ½ tablespoon sugar, 1 tablespoon minced garlic and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Mix until well combined.

Cook in broth:

Add 2.5 cups of chicken broth to the pot and add seasoning sauce, sliced soft tofu, sliced spam, sliced smoked sausage, ¼ cup kimchi, and ½ cup rice cakes to the chicken broth. Once the pot starts to boil, add your instant ramen and cheese on top of all the ingredients.

Garnish with green onions and enjoy while hot!

Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (3)

Expert Tips:

  • Serve this stew with rice or more instant ramen noodles. The rice will soak up the delicious broth and it will be a very comforting meal!
  • Eat the noodles first because the longer it sits in the broth, the more soggy it is (unless you like those type of noodles 😅)
  • Put pot on a portable stove so your stew can stay warm at all times when you’re eating. This dish is meant to be eaten really hot.

Check Out More Delicious Soups

  • Tuna Kimchi Jjigae (Kimchi Stew) – a delicious stew that uses your extra fermented kimchi for a funky (in a good way!) soup!
  • Soon Dubu (Korean Soft Tofu Soup) – super soft tofu in a spicy seafood broth is perfect with rice and korean bbq
  • Easy Seolleongtang (Ox Bone Soup)
  • Easy Udon Soup
  • 20 Minute Thai Curry Noodle Soup
  • Hong Kong Style Macaroni Soup

Did you try this recipe?Leave a ⭐️ rating belowandshare it onInstagram,Facebook, andPinterest!

Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (8)

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5 from 2 votes

Budae Jjigae

Budae Jjigae is a spicy stew wil spam, sausage, tofu and instant ramen!

Prep Time5 minutes mins

Cook Time10 minutes mins

Total Time15 minutes mins

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: korean

Servings: 2 people

Calories: 437kcal


  • ¼ tofu sliced
  • spam sliced
  • 1 smoked sausage sliced
  • ¼ cup kimchi
  • 4 cups chicken or anchovy broth unsalted
  • ½ rice cakes
  • 1 instant ramen without seasoning
  • 1 slice of cheddar cheese
  • 1 green onion sliced


  • 1 tablespoon red pepper powder gochugaru
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper paste gochujang
  • ½ tablespoon soy sauce
  • ½ tablespoon fish sauce
  • ½ tablespoon sugar
  • ½ tablespoon cooking plum extract optional
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper


  • Mix sauce by adding all sauce ingredients: gochugaru, gochujang, soy sauce, fish sauce, sugar, cooking plum extract, minced garlic and black pepper) until well combined.

  • Add sliced soft tofu, sliced spam, sliced smoked sausage, ¼ cup kimchi, 2.5 cups of chicken broth, and ½ cup rice cakes in the pot. Try to organize the ingredients in sections for the aesthetic.

  • Add instant ramen, sauce and cheese on top of all the ingredients. Turn heat to medium and cook for 10-15 minutes until instant ramen has cooked to your desired texture. Hope you enjoy!



make this 15 min budae jjigae (korean army stew) recipe before bed 🤣 full recipe on IG: cookwithdanaa 💕 #simplerecipe #koreanfoodie #instantramen

♬ original sound – Henry Honkonen


  • Add half cup to 1 cup of water if you like more soup


Calories: 437kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 3596mg | Potassium: 562mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1230IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 171mg | Iron: 3mg

Did you make this?Please give it a 5-star rating, or leave a comment to share your experience! Tag @cookwithdanaa on Instagram to show me your beautiful creations! 😊

More Authentic Asian Main Dishes

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  • One Pot Coconut Curry Chicken and Rice
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Reader Interactions


    Leave a Reply

  1. Josephine says

    Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (13)
    Such a warm comforting meal and so quick to prep and cook. A definite winter mealtime staple


  2. Emmy says

    Just made this for dinner 🥘 so good! Thanks Dana 💕


    • Cook With Dana says

      Thank you Emmy ◡̈ Hehe so happy you enjoyed a yummy dinner!


Budae-Jjigae (Korean Army Stew) - Cook With Dana (2024)


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