Spicy Korean Chicken Stew (DakDoriTang or Dakbokkeumtang)

Difficulty Easy

When the weather gets cold, it’s time to make Spicy Korean Chicken Stew! Also known as Dak Dori Tang or Dak Bokkeum Tang, it stars bone-in chicken pieces that are cooked until tender with a mouthwatering, spicy sauce. A one-pot meal that’s simple to make. So cozy and delicious, you’ll be craving it often!

Spicy Korean Chicken Stew (DakDoriTang or DakBokkeumTang)

Wintertime in my home means it’s time for Spicy Korean Chicken Stew. Also known as Dak Dori Tang or Dak Bokkeum Tang, it’s a hearty Korean dish that stars humble chicken drumsticks and thighs. Perfect for cold days!

To make this easy chicken stew, combine bone-in chicken with spicy Gochujang paste, soy sauce, Korean chili flakes (or Gochukaru), and diced onion and garlic. The cooking process transforms humble ingredients into a truly addictive, deliciously spicy stew.

Hearty and cozy, this spicy chicken stew features tender chicken and fluffy potato chunks. But the best part is the spicy sauce. It begs to be paired with plenty of white rice. Pure Korean comfort food!

Make this one-pot spicy chicken stew recipe that’s satisfying — and easy to make! No more boring stews here!

Out of all the Korean stews, this one is very meaty with savory flavors. A great way to enjoy chicken.

FYI, in Korean cuisine, this dish goes by two names. The more common name is Dak Dori Tang. It refers to the Japanese word for chicken (dori), as this was a popular dish during the Japanese occupation.

But today, you’ll most likely hear it being referred to as Dak Bokkeum Tang. Replacing the hybrid Japanese name with a Korean one is an act of reclaiming its cultural roots and identity. That’s why you’ll hear it called both names.

black bowl filled with rice and dak dori tang with black chopsticks and bigger pot in the background

Ingredients:

  • Bone-in, Skin-on Chicken. For best flavor, use bone-in chicken with the skin. They add amazing flavor and depth to the sauce. They will also stay tender when cooked. I recommend a mixture of drumsticks and thighs. You can also use a whole chicken, cut into parts. *I do not recommend boneless chicken thighs or chicken breast.
  • Yellow Onion + Garlic. Yellow onion and lots of fresh garlic make the flavor base of this dish. They also add wonderful exture to the sauce.
  • Jalapeno. Adds another layer of flavor and spice. Can be swapped with green chili peppers.
  • Gochukaru. Korean dried chili flakes add heat, intensity, and depth. A key ingredient for a luscious, thick sauce that’s earthy with good texture. Look for coarse ground Gochukaru at Korean markets. Store a small amount in a small jar in the pantry — the rest can be stashed in the freezer for longer storage.
  • Gochujang. Korean hot pepper paste adds rich, deep, umami flavor that’s also spicy-sweet. Also helps to thicken the sauce. Can be found at the Asian grocery store.
  • Mirin. Korean sweet cooking rice wine. Adds flavor and depth. Swap with sake, vermouth, or sherry if you don’t have it.
  • Soy Sauce. Do not use the low-sodium kind! Adds richness and umami to the sauce.
  • Potatoes + Carrots. They soak up all the rich sauce and braised chicken flavor. So good!

Instructions:

  1. Make spicy paste. In a food processor, add sauce ingredients: onion, jalapeno, garlic, gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin. Pulse until a rough paste forms. (Or, finely mince all the vegetables and mix in a bowl with gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin).
  2. Combine chicken + spicy paste. In a large pot, add the pieces of chicken. Scrape spicy seasoning paste over the chicken. Add cold water.
  3. Cook. Bring to a boil then lower heat. The heat should range from medium heat to medium-low heat. Simmer, uncovered, until the chicken is cooked through and tender, about 25-30 min. *The cooking time may vary so keep an eye on it!
  4. Add potatoes + carrots. Add large chunks of potato and carrot. Cook until soft, another 10 min.
  5. Garnish and serve. Add green onion and sesame seed to the Korean spicy chicken stew. Serve with white rice or multigrain rice to sop up the sauce. Kimchi and other Korean side dishes are nice additions.

PRO Tips:

  • Do not add more Gochujang. Most people do not have Gochukaru (Korean chili flakes) and will be tempted to double up on the Gochujang (Korean chili paste). But I don’t recommend it, as more paste will thicken the sauce too much.
  • Watch carefully. While it cooks, the sauce and chicken can stick to the bottom of the pot. Simmer on medium-low and stir from time to time, making sure there’s no burning. Add up to 1 cup of water if the sauce reduces too much.
  • Reduce sauce. Feel free to reduce the sauce at the end, if it’s too watery.
  • Adjust spice level. Check the label of your Gochujang paste, as it can range from mild to very spicy. Other suggestions to customize the spice level:
    • De-seed the jalapeno (or don’t include it at all)
    • Add 2 Tbsp Gochukaru (instead of 1/4 cup)
    • Add 1-2 tsp more sugar (sweetness cancels out spice)
black pot of dak dori tang aka korean spicy braised chicken

Variations:

  • Add Tteokbokki rice cakes. To add chewy deliciousness, add a handful or two of Korean rice cakes. Cook until soft and chewy in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Add glass noodles (Dangmyeon). To add a slurpy element, add a handful of glass noodles or Dangmyeon. Cook until the noodles are soft and pliable, about 5-10 minutes. You may need to add more water, as the noodles will soak up the sauce.
  • Swap with sweet potatoes. Instead of regular potatoes, add chunks of sweet potatoes. They will add sweetness.

FAQ:

Can I substitute the Gochukaru with something else?

Unfortunately, no — there’s no substitute for Gochukaru.

Gochukaru is dried Korean chili flakes. The taste is smoky, floral, spicy, slightly sweet. The texture is coarse and powdery. When it cooks in a stew, the liquid becomes thick and textured.

I’ve seen recipes that substitute Gochukaru with Italian dried chili flakes, paprika, cayenne, chili powder, etc. They are NOT the same.

Gochukaru is truly its own unique ingredient. If you don’t have any, leave it out. However, the recipe will not taste the same.

How do I store leftovers?

Leftover spicy chicken stew can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Good for meal prep, this braised chicken recipe is very easy to reheat in the microwave.

More chicken dishes:

More Korean braised dishes:

dak dori tang (korean spicy braised chicken) in large dark bowl

Korean Spicy Chicken Stew (Dak Dori Tang or Dak Bokkeum Tang)

The Subversive Table | Lis Lam
When the weather gets cold, it's time to make Spicy Korean Chicken Stew! Also known as Dak Dori Tang or Dak Bokkeum Tang, it stars bone-in chicken pieces that are cooked until tender with a mouthwatering, spicy sauce. A one-pot meal that's simple to make. So cozy and delicious, you'll be craving it often!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Korean
Servings 4
Calories 568 kcal

Equipment

  • Large stock pot
  • Food processor optional but very helpful

Ingredients
  

  • 3 lbs chicken drumsticks or thighs (with skin + bone) about 10-12 drumsticks OR 8-10 thighs
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 1 jalapeno, cut into chunks deseeded
  • 12 cloves garlic 1 entire head
  • 1/4 cup Gochujang Korean chili paste
  • 1/4 cup Gochukaru Korean chili flakes/powder
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Mirin Korean cooking wine, can be subbed with rice wine, Shaoxing wine, sherry, or vermouth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lb yellow Golden Yukon potatoes, cut into 2 inch chunks
  • 2-3 carrots, peeled and cut into 2 inch chunks

Instructions
 

  • Make spicy paste. Add onion, jalapeno, garlic, gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin to a food processor. Pulse until a rough paste forms. (Or, mince all the vegetables finely and add to a large bowl with gochujang, gochukaru, soy sauce, and mirin.
  • Combine chicken + spicy paste. Add chicken to a large pot. Scrape spicy paste over the chicken. Add 1 cup water.
  • Cook. Heat pot to medium high heat and bring to boil. Lower heat, cover with a lid, and simmer on low until chicken is cooked through and tender, about 25-30 minutes. Keep an eye on the chicken, and scrape the bottom with a spatula from time to time, as the bottom can burn.
  • Add potatoes and carrots. Remove lid and add potatoes and carrots. Using a spoon, mix the potatoes into the braising liquid so that the potatoes are mostly submerged. Cover and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 10 more minutes.
  • Reduce sauce. Remove lid and check the braising liquid. If it looks watery, simmer with the lid off for a few more minutes until thickened. If it looks too thick, add a little water (2-4 Tbsp). The consistency should be similar to a thick gravy.
  • Serve. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onion. Serve hot with rice and kimchi.

Notes

  • Do not add more Gochujang. Most people do not have Gochukaru (Korean chili flakes) and will be tempted to double up on the Gochujang (Korean chili paste). But I don’t recommend it, as more paste will thicken the sauce too much.
  • Watch carefully. While it cooks, the sauce and chicken can stick to the bottom of the pot. Simmer on medium low and stir from time to time, making sure there’s no burning.
  • Reduce sauce. Feel free to reduce the sauce at the end, if it’s too watery.
  • Adjust spice level. Feel free to adjust heat level. Also, check the label of your Gochujang paste, as it can range from mild to very spicy. Other suggestions to customize the spice level:
      • De-seed the jalapeno (or don’t include it at all)
      • Add 2 Tbsp Gochukaru (instead of 1/4 cup)
      • Add 1-2 tsp more sugar (sweetness cancels out spice)
  •  
  •  
Variations:
  • Add Tteokbokki rice cakes. To add chewy deliciousness, add a handful or two of Korean rice cakes. Cook until soft and chewy in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Add glass noodles (Dangmyeon). To add a slurpy element, add a handful of glass noodles or Dangmyeon. Cook until the noodles are soft and pliable, about 5-10 minutes. You may need to add more water, as the noodles will soak up the sauce.
  • Swap with sweet potatoes. Instead of regular potatoes, add chunks of sweet potatoes. They will add sweetness.

Nutrition

Calories: 568kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 48gFat: 24gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 210mgSodium: 1392mgPotassium: 1550mgFiber: 9gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 9660IUVitamin C: 36mgCalcium: 126mgIron: 6mg
Keyword Braised, chicken, Dak Dori Tang, Spicy
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
All Recipes, Braised, Chicken, Dinner with Friends, Gochujang, Korean, Main, Potluck

One Comment

  1. Fantastic recipe. I didn’t have the Korean Chilly flakes but used indian chilly powder. Also, added sweet potatoes, carrots and raddish to the mix. It was superb! Thanks.

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