Vegan Kimchi: A Delicious & Natural Probiotic

Posted by Kind Grocer on

Who else loves kimchi as much as we do?! It's not only delicious but healthy too, providing lots of good bacteria to support gut health. Kimchi is also a great way to get a natural and vegan source of probiotics.

This versatile dish can be added to salads, eaten with rice and added to soups and stews.

In many Korean restaurants, kimchi is traditionally made with fish sauce or shrimp. So, to make it vegan, you simply omit or substitute these ingredients. 

Does this compromise on flavour, you might ask? Nope!

Here are three variations we found on how to make vegan kimchi at home. We've only tested one of these recipes, but we CAN'T WAIT to experiment with the rest.

The great thing about making kimchi is that it's fairly simple (once you've gathered all the necessary ingredients!). But with anything that you have to ferment, the process does take a bit of time.

1. Homemade Vegan Kimchi Recipe by J. KENJI LÓPEZ-ALT at Serious Eats:
We used this recipe to make our very first kimchi. The verdict? A huge thumbs up! It tasted fresh and authentic, although it did turn out more sour than we expected. Some people may actually like this, while others may find it a bit sharp. This recipe is also the simplest of the three and requires the least ingredients.

2. Traditional Kimchi Recipe by Maangchi:

Doesn't this look amazing? While the recipe features shrimps and actual fish sauce, you can either omit both ingredients entirely, or omit the shrimp and incorporate Miyoko Schinner's Vegan Fish Sauce instead. We're going to try the latter. If you beat us to this first, please let us know how it goes!

3. Vegan Kimchi by Seonkyoung Longest: 

We love that she uses persimmon, kombu and shiitake mushrooms in her recipe. Can't wait to try this combination. Such a great idea. (Ok, we are 100% drooling all over our laptops right now.)

We will post a photo of these last two recipes once we've made them and let you know which recipe works for us the most.

As you can see, there are several ways to make vegan kimchi. You can play around with different recipes to see what works for you.

Most of the ingredients that you need can be found at the supermarket. The miso and gochugaru can be found in Asian/Korean supermarkets (we sell a white miso), or you can buy them online, i.e. Amazon.

The basics of what you'll need:
Napa Cabbage
Scallions/green onions
Gochugaru* (Korean chilli powder)
Sugar** (or Persimmon)

Additional ingredients depending on the recipe:
White miso or red miso paste
Sweet Rice Flour
Shiitake mushrooms
Sesame seeds
Vegan Fish Sauce

And, that's it!

We hope you enjoyed this post.
(It was brought to you specially by a kimchi fan!)

P.S. Don't make the same mistake we did and mix it using your hands after adding the chilli powder! Unless you're used to it... the chilli pepper is strong and the burn will last for a good 15-20 minutes. Use a spoon or some gloves to prevent sore hands afterwards :)

*We bought this at Shine Korea Supermarket in Far East Plaza, Singapore. Gochugaru can also be found on Amazon.
**We replace sugar with xylitol for health purposes.

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