Korean Soybean Sprout Soup

Yield: 4–6 servings

Cook Time: 40 minutes

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This refreshing soup is good for everyday meals, also if you’re not feeling well, or in the winter. I love eating it with other 반찬 banchan (side dishes) like 김 seaweed and 김치 kimchi.



1 lb 콩나물 kongnamul (soybean sprouts)
1 packet 다시마 Korean dashi* to taste
or: 3–5 dried anchovies
1 tbsp fish sauce
2–3 stalks of fresh 파 green onions (scallions)
2 마늘 garlic cloves
7–9 cups 물 water (about 1½ L)
소금 salt to taste
고춧가루 red pepper flakes to taste

*dashi includes dried anchovies and dried kelp


1. Prep your ingredients. Wash and rinse the soybean sprouts 3 or 4 times to get the skin off the soybeans.

2. Mince the garlic and dice the scallions.

3. Pour 7–9 cups of water into the pot and add the garlic and dashi. If you are using anchovies instead, add them now.

4. Bring the water to a boil, then add the soybean sprouts to the water. Add salt and cover the pot (leaving it a little open to prevent it from overflowing).

5. Cook for 20 minutes, or until the sprouts turn more translucent. Towards the end of the 20 minutes add green onions, red pepper, and fish sauce (if you are using that instead of dashi).

6. Taste and add more salt if needed. Cook for a couple more minutes, then serve. Delicious with bowls of rice and kimchi on the side!

Recipe by Gi (Ginny) Huo

“콩나물국 Kongnamulguk reminds me of the everyday meals that my mom used to make when I was growing up. 시원하다! I chose this refreshing recipe because since the pandemic, I’ve been missing my mom’s Korean cooking. I miss eating the things you eat everyday that aren’t really sold in restaurants. This is one the most frequently eaten soup and is easy to make.

I started cooking different types of Korean soups for the first time during the quarantine. I never used to make these meals because I thought it was going to be too hard but I found myself missing it so much. It was much easier than I thought and while I cook, it brings back happy memories of my mom cooking and eating together with my family.”

GI (GINNY) HUO is a Korean American artist and educator exploring the intentions of what people believe and the legacies of religious systems. She believes in art and education as powerful tools of liberation. Learn more at her website.

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