Whether you’re a K-Drama fan or just someone who loves food, you’ll definitely enjoy the South Korea street food because aside from being oh-so-yummy, they are also so affordable. Here’s a list of the must-try Korean food for an unforgettable gastronomical adventure.
1. Tteokbokki & Soondae
– The Korean street food known as spicy rice cake
Many people are familiar with the dish tteokbokki, especially those interested in Korean culture or who watch Korean movies or dramas. These spicy rice cakes mixed with various ingredients are always ranked in the top 5 of Koreans’ most loved street food.
Have you already tried the classic tteokbokki? Well, now you can now try fusion tteokbokki, a delicious twist on the classic such as Carbonara tteokbokki, Curry tteokbokki, and Bacon tteokbokki on the street. Does it sound a bit off beat? Well, these creative dishes will sparkle your taste buds and you will be pleasantly surprised at how well the flavors mesh together!
Soondae is known as tteokbboki’s best friend. Yes, it goes so well with tteokbokki. You can easily find street vendors even selling the combo tteoksoon (tteok from tteokbokki, soon from soondae).
2. Odeng or Eomuk: Korean Fish Cake
– Also known as Fish cake, this is one of the most popular Korean street foods.
Eomuk is a popular dish made with dough and powdered fish. Fish cakes are usually dipped in salty soy sauce seasoned with green onions and sesame oil. Depending on the size, skewers of fish cake cost 50 cents to 1 dollar, which is often the cheapest food on the street.
There are two types of fish cakes, folded and zigzagged, and a long fish cake. The taste and amount are similar, but the long fish cake has the advantage of maintaining a hot and bouncy texture for a longer time, and the folded and zigzagged fish cake is well simmered in broth and has a soy sauce taste.
3. Gyeranppang(Egg buns, Egg puns)
– This Korean street food is called Egg bread in English.
Gyeran mean eggs in Korean and ppang means bread. Egg bread sounds as simple as the recipe, but the taste is anything but, as yet you can taste both sweet and savory at once.
The dough is made with mixing flour, baking powder, milk, eggs, butter, sugar, and salt. Then, it is put in the Gyeran-ppang machine and a whole egg is cracked onto the bread batter. It is cooked until golden brown. This snack is particularly popular during winter as it is warm and steamy.
4. Corn dog
– A Seoul street food that originated from America but Koreans have a unique take on it.
This is a fun Korean street food: a hot dog on a stick covered with French fries! Gamja means potatoes in Korean so its name, gamja-hotdog, pretty much covers it.
Many foreigners who have visited Korea recommend gamja-hotdog as the must-try Korean street food. They can be filled with either sausage or cheese and rolled in sugar or covered with a sauce such as ketchup and mayonnaise. It depends on your taste.
– This South Korean street food is called the stuffed pancake.
Hotteok is a dessert snack that is filled with a sweet syrup made from cinnamon, brown sugar, and peanuts. Nowadays, you can enjoy various types of hotteok as the original filling can be replaced with ice cream or cheese.
– This fish-shaped bread is a popular Korean street food.
Bungeo-ppang is very similar to gukhwa-ppang. While gukhwa-ppang is put in a chrysanthemum-shaped mold, bungeo-ppang is fish shaped. There is one more thing in terms of difference between them: the texture. Bungeo-ppang is crispier than gukhwa-ppang, which has a thicker and softer dough.
It is also regarded as a winter snack in Korea, so it can be hard to find a street vendor selling bungeo-ppang. However, you can also enjoy a variation of bungeo-ppang in the heat of summer. There is a vanilla ice-cream version of bungeo-ppang called bungeo samanco (붕어 싸만코), which you can find at any convenience store 24/7.
– This savory pancake street food in Korea is a hit not just only to Koreans but also to tourists.
Another mind-blowing street food in Korea is Pajeon. Far from the usual sweet pancakes, pajeon is a crispy savory Korean pancake where the batter consists of wheat flour, rice flour, eggs, and scallions. There are other varieties of pajeon that you can try as well, like bindaetteok (mung bean pancake), haemuljeon (seafood pancake), soegogi-jeon (beef pancake), gochujeon (green chili pepper pancake), and kimchi-jeon (kimchi pancake). This street food in Seoul is definitely a must-try!
– This is the Koreans’ take on Japan’s rice rolls. Kimbap is a street food in Korea that is known as seaweed rice rolls.
Kimbap, or seaweed rice roll, is another famous street food in Korea. It’s like Japan’s sushi, a sheet of roasted seaweed wrapping steamed rice, vegetables, and meat fillings. You can find lots of this in Korean street and stores
– Chrysanthemum Bread
Bread with chrysanthemum? It sounds a bit awkward, but don’t worry! Gukhwa-ppang does not have any flower inside at all! It is the bread baked in a chrysanthemum-shaped mold using dough and red bean paste.
It is called chrysanthemum because the pattern on the bread resembles that flower. Originally, only red beans were added, but now a greater variety of ingredients are used such as honey, peanuts, and walnuts.
– Twisted Korean Doughnuts
Kkwabaegi is a sweet snack that is fluffy, spongy, and twisted. It is made with glutinous rice flour and melted butter. The dough is deep-fried in oil and tossed in sugar and cinnamon powder.
Like most fried breads, it tastes a lot better when it’s just come out of the oil. If you are too full to eat it right away, then take it home for later. But please remember to heat it up in a microwave or oven!