Easy Korean Fish Cake (Eomuk Bokkeum)

Difficulty Easy

Another Korean side dish to love is Eomuk Bokkeum, or Korean Fish Cake. This easy, stir-fried dish comes together in 15 minutes. It’s savory, spicy, and so tasty! Enjoy this delicious side dish!

Easy Korean Fish Cake (Eomuk Bokkeum)

Korean Fish Cake, also called Eomuk Bokkeum, is a popular side dish in South Korea. Stir-fried fish cakes are cooked with a savory umami sauce or a spicy sauce. For typical Korean meals, it’s an everyday side dish that’s filling, nutritious, and lasts for several days. It doesn’t take a lot of work to make this fish cake recipe!

In Korean cuisine, fish cakes are a cooking staple. They are added to many dishes like Tteokbokki, Soba Noodle Soup, Fish Cake Soup, or even Gimbap. They have a meaty texture with a savory umami flavor.

Korean stir-fried fish cakes are especially easy and quick to make. The fish cakes are pre-cooked and absorb sauce well. Full of protein and very filling, they are an inexpensive way to feed a lot of people. They also freeze and defrost well.

That’s why it’s such an everyday staple at Korean restaurants and in Korean home cooking. It’s one of those delicious recipes that’s also budget-friendly and easy to make.

In Korean, fish cakes are called Eomuk. Sometimes, they are also referred to as Odeng. Generally, there are two different shapes: thin flat sheets OR round balls/rectangles/various shapes. You can use either kind for Eomuk Bokkeum or a combination. For this recipe, I’m using thin sheets.

Ingredients:

  • Korean Fish Cake (Eomuk). Made from processed white fish fillets, vegetables, and seasonings. Korean fish Cakes are found in two forms: thin flat sheets or pressed balls or shapes. For this recipe, use thin sheets. Look for them in the freezer section at the Korean grocery store. They last a long time in the freezer, up to 1 year. The fish cake sheets defrost quickly at room temperature. Or, defrost in the microwave for 1 minute.
  • Onion + Garlic. The onion and garlic are sauteed until soft and sweet. Make sure the onion is not overcooked — they should be tender but still have a little bite. For more vegetables, add thinly sliced carrots or bell peppers.
  • Sauce. Combine soy sauce, sugar, gochukaru (Korean red pepper flakes), mirin (sweet cooking wine or rice wine), and sesame seeds.
  • Black Pepper. An underrated ingredient that adds earthy depth and subtle spice.
  • Corn Syrup (Mulyeot). Optional. Add a drizzle at the end for a glossy finish.
  • Green onions. Add at the end, right before serving.
  • Sesame Oil. A drizzle adds nutty aroma and flavor.
ingredients for Korean fish cake or eomuk bokkeum

Instructions:

  1. Defrost fish cakes. Leave the frozen fish cakes on a plate at room temperature until softened, about 10-15 minutes. Or defrost in the microwave until slightly soft, about 1 minute. Slice into 1/2-inch long pieces.
  2. Make sauce. In a small bowl, combine the sauce ingredients: soy sauce, mirin, Gochukaru, sugar, sesame seeds, and water. Stir until mixed.
  3. Cook. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add a little cooking oil and fry the onions until slightly soft, about 1 minute. Add the sliced fish cake and garlic. Stir fry until the fish cakes are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes. Add sauce and water. Cook, stirring often, until the liquid is thick and reduced — about 2-3 minutes. Add a drizzle of corn syrup and stir until glossy and thick, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and add a drizzle of sesame oil and green onion. Add freshly cracked black pepper. Toss everything together one last time.
  4. Serve. Transfer to a serving dish. Enjoy with rice and a fried egg. Also tastes good with soup and other Korean banchan.

PRO Tips:

  • Look for Busan Fishcakes. At the Korean market, look for fish cakes from Busan, South Korea. Busan is a port city and is famous for its fish cakes. If you look at the packaging, there is usually one or more brands from Busan.
  • Use a large skillet. You’ll need room to stir fry and push the ingredients around.
  • Prep ingredients in advance. The cooking time goes fast. Chop everything beforehand and arrange in small bowls (mise en place).
  • Store in the fridge. As with most Korean side dishes, Eomuk Bokkeum keeps well in the fridge and can be eaten over several days. To make it easy to serve, store in an airtight container.

Serve with:

For an easy meal, serve Korean stir-fried fish cake with rice and a fried egg. Deliciously savory and full of satisfying protein.

You can also enjoy with a variety of side dishes. Potato Gamja Salad, Korean Cucumber Salad, and Sesame Broccoli make nice additions.

Or serve with a soup: Doenjang Jjigae (Soybean Paste Stew), Tuna Kimchi Stew, or Soondubu Jjigae (Soft Tofu Soup).

FAQ:

Are Korean fish cakes gluten-free?

No, fish cakes are not gluten-free. Korean fish cakes are made from fish filets, vegetables, seasonings, and wheat flour. Look at the ingredient list on the back, as some are made with gluten-free potato starch.

Can I double the recipe?

Yes, this recipe easily doubles.

More easy recipes:

stir fried korean fish cake or eomuk bokkeum in a grey bowl

Easy Korean Fish Cake (Eomuk Bokkeum)

Lis Lam
Another Korean side dish to love: Eomuk Bokkeum or Korean Fish Cake. An easy, stir-fried dish that comes together in 15-minutes. Savory, spicy, and so tasty! Enjoy this delicious side dish that's simple and flavorful.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Course Side
Cuisine Korean
Servings 4 as side
Calories 34 kcal

Equipment

  • Large skillet

Ingredients
  

  • 4 sheets Korean fish cake
  • 1/2 onion
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp mirin
  • 1 Tbsp Gochukaru *or less
  • 1/2 Tbsp Sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • drizzle corn syrup
  • drizzle sesame oil
  • Black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Defrost fish cakes. Leave the frozen fish cakes on a plate at room temperature until softened, about 10-15 minutes. Or defrost in the microwave until slightly soft, about 1 minute. Slice into 1/2-inch long pieces.
  • Make sauce. In a small bowl, combine the sauce ingredients: soy sauce, mirin, Gochukaru, sugar, sesame seeds, and water. Stir until mixed.
  • Cook. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add a little cooking oil and fry the onions until slightly soft, about 1 minute. Add the sliced fish cake and garlic. Stir fry until the fish cakes are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes. Add sauce and water. Cook, stirring often, until the liquid is thick and reduced — about 2-3 minutes. Add a drizzle of corn syrup and stir until glossy and thick, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and add a drizzle of sesame oil and green onion. Add some freshly cracked black pepper. Toss everything together one last time.
  • Serve. Transfer to a serving dish. Enjoy with rice and a fried egg. Also tastes good with soup and other Korean banchan.

Video

Notes

Tips:
  • Look for Busan Fishcakes. At the Korean market, look for fish cakes from Busan, South Korea. Busan is a port city and is famous for its fish cakes. If you look at the packaging, there is usually one or more brands from Busan.
  • Use a large skillet. You’ll need room to stir fry and push the ingredients around.
  • Prep ingredients in advance. The cooking time goes fast. Chop everything beforehand and arrange in small bowls (mise en place).
  • Store in the fridge. As with most Korean side dishes, Eomuk Bokkeum keeps well in the fridge and can be eaten over several days. To make it easy to serve, store in an airtight container.
  •  
  •  
  •  

Nutrition

Calories: 34kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 2gFat: 0.3gSaturated Fat: 0.1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 570mgPotassium: 104mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 653IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Bokkeum, Eomuk, Fish cake, Korean, Stir Fry
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
15 minutes, All Recipes, Korean, Potluck, Seafood, Side, Snacks, Weeknight Meals

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating