Homemade Ssamjang (Korean Dipping Sauce)
Ssamjang is an essential part of Korean BBQ, and you can easily make your own with basic Korean ingredients in under 5 minutes. This delicious dipping sauce adds a unique flavor to your meal and is a must-try for any fan of Korean cuisine.
Want to take your Korean BBQ to the next level? Look no further than ssamjang! This easy-to-make dipping sauce is a must-have condiment for any Korean BBQ feast or healthy Korean wraps.
You can whip up a delicious batch with this recipe in less than 5 minutes using basic Korean ingredients. Don’t miss out on this essential component of the Korean cuisine experience!
What is Ssamjang?
The name “ssamjang” literally means “wrapped condiment,” which refers to its common use as a dipping sauce for Korean wraps or lettuce wraps, known as ssam (쌈) and Ssambap (쌈밥).
Ssamjang is a must-have dipping sauce for Korean BBQ, especially samgyupsal (BBQ pork belly), adding a tasty and distinctive flavor to the meat and vegetables. Pa Muchim, a Korean green onion salad, is often served alongside ssamjang and completes the meal perfectly.
Without these condiments, the BBQ experience just wouldn’t be the same!
The flavor is complex and savory, with a balance of salty, sweet, and spicy notes. The fermented bean paste(doenjang, 된장) gives it a deep umami flavor, while the chili paste (gochujang, 고추장) provides heat and a slightly sweet taste. The addition of garlic and sesame oil gives the sauce a fragrant and nutty aroma.
The sauce is typically made by mixing together soybean paste (doenjang) and chili paste (gochujang), along with other ingredients such as garlic and sesame oil.
The ratio of doenjang to gochujang can vary depending on personal preference, but my favorite ratio is 2:1.
Why make it homemade?
While you can buy ssamjang in Korean grocery stores, it’s also easy to make at home with basic Korean ingredients, especially if you already have them on hand. Making it yourself allows you to customize the recipe to your taste and create a sauce that perfectly suits your palate.
So, if you’re looking to try something new or want a personalized sauce, making homemade ssamjang is definitely worth a try!
Ssamjang is a versatile sauce that has many uses. In addition to being a tasty ssam sauce for dipping, it can be used as a base for stew or a topping for grilled meats or vegetables.
It is also often used as a condiment for rice bowls, noodles, and other Korean dishes. It’s a tasty and handy sauce to have in your kitchen!
If you’re curious about what dishes pair well with ssamjang, here are a few options to consider:
- Korean pork belly (samgyupsal)
- Ssambap (Korean lettuce wrap)
- Galbi (Korean BBQ ribs)
- Classic bulgogi
- Dipping sauce for vegetables such as cucumber and fresh green chili.
- Doenjang jjigae (Korean soybean paste stew): try adding ssamjang to the stew. This will give it the same rich, complex flavor that you would find in jjigae served in a Korean restaurant.
- My cookbook, Korean cooking favorite, has a recipe for BBQ restaurant style doenjang jjigae.
- Korean soybean paste (doenjang)
- Korean chili paste (gochujang
- garlic: finely minced
- sweet rice wine (mirin)
- sugar: or honey
- sesame oil
- toasted sesame seeds
How to make ssamjang
In a small mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix well.
Recipe Note: To give your ssamjang an extra kick, you can add chopped green onions, green chilies, or even walnuts. This will add more flavor and texture to the sauce and make it even fancier. Give it a try and see how you like it!
Homemade ssamjang typically lasts 2-3 weeks in the fridge if kept in an airtight container. Store-bought ssamjang may have preservatives to extend its shelf life, so check the label for instructions and expiration dates.
Homemade Ssamjang (Korean Dipping Sauce)
- 3 tbsp Korean soybean paste (doenjang)
- 1 1/2 tbsp Korean chili paste (gochujang)
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp sweet rice wine (mirin)
- 1/2 tbsp sugar, or honey
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tsp toasted sesame seeds
- In a small mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix well.
- Homemade ssamjang typically lasts 2-3 weeks in the fridge if kept in an airtight container.
- Note: To give your ssamjang an extra kick, you can add chopped green onions, green chilies, or even walnuts. This will add more flavor and texture to the sauce and make it even fancier.
- Dishes that pair well with ssamjang: Bossam, Samgyupsal (Korean BBQ pork belly), Beef Bulgogi (Korean marinated beef), Ssambap (Korean lettuce wrap), Galbi (Korean BBQ ribs).