Celebrate Korean Lunar New Year (Seollal) with these traditional Korean food recipes. From main dishes to desserts, you will find a range of easy to more advanced recipes that are perfect for sharing moments of new beginnings with your family and friends.

A recipe roundup for traditional Korean lunar New Year (Seollal) Foods and Recipes

Seollal is the most important holiday in Korea. It’s New Year’s day! You could say that Koreans celebrate New Year’s day twice. The first is on January 1, and the exact date of the other changes each year depending on the lunar calendar. So when is 2022’s Lunar New Year’s day? It’s on February 1st, and it ushers in the year of tiger!

Just like other Asian countries that celebrate the Lunar New Year, Koreans also follow ancient traditions heralding the new year with lots of festive food and drinks.

We also gather with family and relatives. Seollal is the day we wish each family member prosperity and good health throughout the year.

Here are 14+ traditional Korean New Year foods that are among the most commonly enjoyed by many Korean people. They range from easy to more advanced level, but my step-by-step instructions make them accessible to all. I hope you will find something that you and your family can use to join the celebration of Lunar New Year – the Korean way!

This traditional Korean rice cake soup is topped with shredded beef, egg garnish in clear beef broth
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Korean Rice Cake Soup Recipe (Tteokguk)

Round rice cakes are served in a clear beef broth, then topped with seasoned shredded beef, and egg garnish. Using beef brisket makes this soup broth very authentic and delicious. This is a traditional must-eat New Year’s dish in Korea.

Mandu (Korean dumplings) is a traditional Lunar New Year dish in Korea
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Mandu (Korean Dumplings)

Learn how to make delicious homemade mandu (Korean dumplings) from scratch with these step-by-step instructions. Filled with pork, cabbage, chives, and Korean sweet potato noodles, these mandu couldn't be more delicious. Recipe makes 40 large dumplings.

Japchae is Korean glass noodle stir-fry with beef and vegetables
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Easy Japchae Recipe (Korean Glass Noodles)

Make classic Korean glass noodles, japchae, with this easy recipe. Korean glass noodles (Dangmyeon) are made from sweet potato starch, and this recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian adaptable

Korean Braised Beef Short Ribs (Galbijjim)
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Korean Braised Beef Short Ribs (Galbi-Jjim)

Well prepared Korean braised short ribs are so tender, they will fall-off the bone. But the secret is in the slightly sweet and savory sauce. This will become your family's favorite dish.

Korean meat tofu patties are served on a bamboo bastket with perilla leaves
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Korean Meat Tofu Patties (Wanja-jeon)

Korean meat tofu patties (wanja-jeon) are a traditional Korean Chuseok dish, but they are also great for a lunchbox as well. You can use ground pork, beef, chicken, or mixture of any. Makes 3 dozen mini patties.

Yakshik is traditional Korean sweet rice dessert with jujube, chestnut, and seeds.
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Korean Sweet Rice Dessert (Yakshik) – Instant Pot

Korean sweet rice dessert cooked with sweet rice, jujube, chestnut, and other nuts in instant pot makes this authentic recipe extremely easy and quick to prepare. It also serves as a good breakfast or snack.

Thin slices of Korean beef bulgogi is cooked to perfection and tender.
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Beef Bulgogi (Korean BBQ Beef)

Bulgogi is a classic Korean BBQ beef made with a flavorful marinade. This authentic beef bulgogi recipe cooks fast and so tender and juicy. No oil is needed to cook. It's the best!

Korean rice punch is served in glass bowls with jujube flower garnish
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Easy Korean Rice Punch Recipe (Sikhye) – Instant Pot

Sikhye is a mildly sweet Korean rice punch made of fermented barley malt and cooked rice. This easy recipe uses an instant pot or rice cooker and you can enjoy the authentic taste of Korean drink anytime at home.

Beef, rice cake, and green onion are skewered together and pan-fried.
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Beef and Rice Cake Skewers (Sanjeok)

Sanjeok is Korean beef and rice cake skewers and it's a traditional holiday food in Korea. Strips of beef are marinated with a quick and simple bulgogi sauce and cooked together with rice cakes and green onion.

Korean beef radish soup is served with rice and kimchi
10

Korean Beef Radish Soup (Sogogi Muguk)

Korean beef radish soup is a comforting soup that is often served in winter time in Korea. It's worth to look for Korean radish to get the mellow flavor of the soup. Gluten-free!

Honey glazed Korean beef patties are garnished with minced pine nuts are served with rice and kimchi on the side.
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Easy Korean Beef Patties (Tteokgalbi)

Celebrate a special occasion or holiday with Korean beef patties (Tteokgalbi). The patties are conveniently broiled in an oven, then brushed with soy honey glaze.

LA galbi, Korean bbq ribs
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LA Galbi (Korean BBQ Ribs)

LA galbi is exquisite Korean bbq ribs originated from Korean immigrants in L.A. With the two step marinating, you will taste the most succulent Korean bbq ribs.

Kimchi seasoning is kept inside of a linen cloth in the nabak kimchi.
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Nabak Kimchi (Korean Water Kimchi)

Nabak kimchi is a mild Korean water kimchi made with cabbage and other vegetables. It doesn't require fish sauce and uses very little chili flakes. It's a great vegan and vegetarian kimchi and refreshingly tasty.

This refreshing Korean Cinnamon Ginger Punch is often served after a big Korean meal
14

Korean Cinnamon Ginger Punch (Sujeonggwa)

Sujeongggwa is a tradition Korean cinnamon ginger punch that is often served after a big meal. Simmering fresh ginger and cinnamon stick separately will yield the best tasting punch.

And there you have it – 14+ Korean Lunar New Year Foods that you can enjoy with your loved ones! I hope this list brought you some inspiration for your Korean holiday celebration.

Yakshik is traditional Korean sweet rice dessert with jujube, chestnut, and seeds.

14+ Korean Lunar New Year Foods (Seollal): Korean Sweet Rice Dessert

Korean sweet rice dessert cooked with sweet rice, jujube, chestnut, and other nuts in instant pot makes this authentic recipe extremely easy and quick to prepare. Plus, 14+ more traditional Korean Lunar New Year foods to enjoy at home.
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Ingredients

Instructions 

  • Rinse sweet rice several times and soak the rice in water for 10 minutes. Drain the rice and set aside.
  • Cut the chestnut in halves or quarters depending on the size. Set them aside.
  • Cut the flesh off of dried jujube to separate it from the seeds. Set the flesh on the side and collect the seeds. Put the seeds in a small pot and pour in 2 cups of water. Bring it to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. The water will become dark amber. Discard the jujube seeds and reserve the stock.
  • Pour the jujube stock into an instant pot. Add soy sauce, dark soy sauce (if using), honey (or brown sugar), and cinnamon; stir well until combined.
  • Add the rice, chestnut, and jujube flesh to the stock and mix well. Close the lid and set the instant pot to a rice setting (or 12 minutes on manual setting). Make sure to seal the vent.
  • When cooking is done, move the vent to quick release and let the steam escape. Open the lid and add the pine nuts and pumpkin seeds (or other nuts and seeds of your choice). Drizzle sesame oil and gently toss everything well.
  • Grease a 9-inch squire pan (or similar in size) with sesame oil. Put the rice mixture into the pan and press down with spatula or rice scoop. Let it sit on a wired rack to cool.
  • When fully cooled, turn out the rice on a cutting board and cut into desired size bars. You can garnish with jujube flowers and more seeds as you wish.
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