Easy Korean Oxtail Soup (Kkori Gomtang)

Difficulty Easy

Soup season means it’s time to make Korean Oxtail Soup! Also called Kkori Gomtang, it’s a delicious soup made from beef oxtail bones. Clear broth, chewy oxtails, tender radish, and slurpy sweet potato noodles — so delicious! Serve with rice, kimchi, and a shower of green onion.

**Thank you to Bessie Box for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own.**

What is Korean Oxtail Soup or Kkori Gomtang?

Korean Oxtail Soup, or Kkori Gomtang, is a simple yet hearty Korean soup made from oxtail beef bones. Beef oxtails are cooked over medium low heat until fall-off-the-bone tender. The milky broth is full of rich flavor and a high amount of collagen. Served with plenty of green onion, it’s a delicious Korean soup that’s pure comfort!

Kkori Gomtang roughly translates to, “Tail Bone Soup.” Oxtail bones have long been considered a cheap and inexpensive cut of beef. Boney, without much meat, they are full of connective tissue, tendon, marrow, and cartilage. The tough, sinewy meat requires long, slow cooking to make it tender. Oxtails are also FULL of flavor! And make a fabulous, nutrient-rich bone broth.

As a child, my favorite soup — made by my Korean Grandma — was ox tail soup. The long process involved parboiling the oxtail bones first. An extra step in Korean cuisine that’s necessary for a clear, flavorful, rich broth.

It took several hours to transform the beef bones into a milky soup with tender chunks of oxtail meat and chewy bits of tendon. But it was very much worth it!

Make this Korean oxtail soup recipe for your family and friends. Delicious and heart-warming, it’s a big bowl of cozy that will point you toward home!

Ingredients:

  • Beef Oxtail Bones. A chunky cut of meat that comes from the tailbone of cows. Look for meaty, thick oxtails. For faster cooking, look for larger bones that are cut in half. Or, ask your butcher to cut the larger oxtails in half. They can be found at Asian grocery stores and sometimes, conventional markets or boutique-style butcher shops.
  • Onion. One large whole onion gives lots of flavor to the broth and is easier to remove than small chunks.
  • Daikon or Korean Radish (Mu). Korean radish is large with light green coloring. Adds depth of flavor and body. Doesn’t taste the same without this Asian vegetable!
  • Beef Bouillon Powder (Dasida). My Korean grandma’s secret ingredient for beefy flavored stock or soup. Adds lots of flavor to the oxtail broth.
  • Dashima. Dried edible kelp commonly used in Korean cooking. Comes in a large square or rectangle. Optional ingredient but makes the broth extra tasty.
  • Green Onion. Add a small bowl of chopped green onion when serving. People can add how much they like at the table.
  • Noodles (optional). Koreans like to add Dang Myeon (sweet potato noodle) or Somyeon/Somen noodles (thin wheat noodle) to this dish.
ingredients for Korean Oxtail Soup or Kkori Gomtang

Instructions:

  1. Remove blood. In a large stock pot, add the oxtail pieces. Add enough cold water to cover.  Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours until the blood drains from the meat and bones.  The water will be red.
  2. Drain. Drain the bloody water.  Return bones to the pot.  Rinse and add enough water to cover.
  3. Parboil. Bring the contents of the pot to a rolling boil over medium-high heat.  Simmer furiously for 3-5 minutes until the water looks dirty and scum rises to the surface. Drain the bones in a colander. Rinse thoroughly, making sure to rub off any debris or fatty bits.  Wash the pot.  Return parboiled bones to the clean pot.  Add 8 cups of water, onion, and dashima.
  4. Cook. Bring to a boil then lower heat and simmer until the meat is tender and the broth is milky-looking, about 1 1/2 – 2 hours. The meat should be soft when poked with a chopstick but not falling off the bone just yet. Add radish and cook until soft, about 30 minutes. Remove the onion pieces and dashima with tongs or a slotted spoon.
  5. Add noodles. While the radish cooks, soak the sweet potato noodles in cold water for 15 minutes. Drain the noodles and add to the soup pot. Cook until soft and pliant, about 3-4 minutes. Season with beef bouillon, salt, and pepper.
  6. Serve. Serve in separate bowls, making sure to divide the oxtail, radish, and noodles evenly. Ladle plenty of hot broth on top. Serve with rice, kimchi, and a bowl of green onion. Sea salt and black pepper is essential! Enjoy!

PRO Tips:

  • Make in advance. The soup can be made a day or two beforehand and refrigerated. Easily reheats on the stovetop. Do not cook the noodles until right before serving.
  • Parboil the bones. In Korean cooking, the secret to great soup is to parboil the meat bones.  Although it can seem like a hassle, it removes the soup of any impurities. And results in a clear, rich, intensely flavored, clear broth.
  • Clean the parboiled bones and cooking pot. After parboiling, clean the bones and stock pot. For the bones, drain and rinse under cold water. Rub with your hands to remove any grimy particles that are stuck to the meat. For the large stock pot, wash thoroughly with soap and water to remove the grimy particles stuck to the side.
  • Remove fat. For a less oily soup, place the broth in the fridge overnight. The fat will harden and be easier to remove.
  • Add water. As the soup cooks, the liquid will evaporate. Make sure to keep adding enough water to match the original water line.

How to serve:

  • Serve with green onions and salt + pepper. People can help themselves at the table.
  • Easy sides: rice and kimchi. A classic addition to this hearty Korean soup! Cubed radish Kimchi (Kkakduggi) is a spicy, crunchy addition that complements the soup’s mild flavors perfectly.

FAQ:

Can I make this in advance?

Yes, Kkori Gomtang can be made up to 2 days beforehand. Cool completely and store in the fridge, tightly covered, until ready to serve. Remove the hardened fat before reheating on the stovetop. Add noodles (if using) right before serving.

How do I store leftovers?

Leftover soup can be stored in the fridge or freezer. The stock freezes beautifully. Make sure it’s completely cool and tightly sealed. In the fridge, it will store safely for 3-5 days. In the freezer, it will keep for up to 1 month. Note: do not add noodles until right before serving or they will absorb the liquid and bloat enormously! Leftover noodles should be stored in a separate container to prevent this.

Is Kkori Gomtang the same as Galbitang?

Kkori Gomtang and Galbitang are not the same. They are similar because they both contain a clear, beef-flavored soup base. Green onion, rice, and kimchi are also commonly served with both soups. And noodles (either somen or dangmyeon).

Galbitang — made with expensive beef short ribs — is much more meaty. And expensive! By contrast, Kkori Gomtang is less meaty with more texture from the chewy oxtail pieces. It is also more affordable for the average home cook.

How can I make a less oily final soup?

For a less oily soup, trim the oxtails before cooking. You can also refrigerate the finished soup (before adding the noodles). As the fat floats on the top of the soup. it will harden and make it easier to remove.

More Soup Recipes:

korean oxtail soup in black bowl with spoon on grey background

Easy Korean Oxtail Soup (Kkori Gomtang)

The Subversive Table | Lis Lam
Soup season means it's time to make Korean Oxtail Soup! Also called Kkori Gomtang, it's a delicious soup made from beef oxtail bones. Clear broth, chewy oxtails, tender radish, and slurpy sweet potato noodles — so delicious! Serve with rice, kimchi, and a shower of green onion.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Drain Blood 1 hour
Course Soup
Cuisine Korean
Servings 4
Calories 974 kcal

Equipment

  • Large stock pot
  • Colander

Ingredients
  

  • 3 lbs fresh beef oxtails *cut in half, for faster cooking
  • 1 lb radish peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1 large onion peeled but kept whole (for easier removal)
  • 1 piece dashima (dried kelp)
  • 8 cups cold water (plus more to add when liquid reduces)
  • 1-2 tsps salt (or to taste)
  • 1 Tbsp Dasida (beef bouillon powder)
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 4 oz Dangmyeon (Korean sweet potato noodle) *large handful, optional

Instructions
 

  • Remove blood. In a large pot, add the oxtail pieces. Add enough cold water to cover.  Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours until the blood drains from the meat and bones.  The water will be red.
  • Drain. Drain the bloody water.  Return bones to the pot.  Rinse and cover with cold water. kimchi, and a bowl of green onion. Enjoy!
  • Parboil. Bring the contents of the pot to a boil over medium-high heat.  Simmer furiously for 3-5 minutes until the water looks dirty and scum rises to the surface. Drain the bones in a colander. Rinse thoroughly, making sure to rub off any debris or fatty bits.  Wash the pot.  Return parboiled bones to the clean pot.  Add 8 cups of cold water, onion, and dashima.
  • Cook. Bring to a boil then lower heat and simmer until the meat is tender and the broth is milky-looking, about 1 1/2 – 2 hours. The meat should be soft when poked with a chopstick but not falling off the bone just yet. Add radish and cook until soft, about 30 minutes. Remove the onion pieces and dashima.
  • Add noodles. While the radish cooks, soak the sweet potato noodles in cold water for 15 minutes. Drain the noodles and add to the soup pot. Cook until soft and pliant, about 3-4 minutes. Season the soup with beef bouillon, salt, and pepper.
  • Serve. Serve in separate bowls, making sure to divide the oxtail, radish, and noodles evenly. Ladle plenty of hot broth on top. Serve with rice, kimchi, and a small bowl of green onion.

Video

Notes

Tips:
  • Make in advance. The soup can be made a day or two beforehand and refrigerated. Easily reheats on the stovetop. Do not cook the noodles until right before serving.
  • Parboil the bones. In Korean cooking, the secret to great soup is to parboil the meat bones.  Although it can seem like a hassle, it removes the soup of any impurities. And results in a clear, rich, intensely flavored, clear broth.
  • Clean the parboiled bones and cooking pot. After parboiling, clean the bones and stock pot. For the bones, drain and rinse under cold water. Rub with your hands to remove any grimy particles that are stuck to the meat. For the large stock pot, wash thoroughly with soap and water to remove the grimy particles stuck to the side.
  • Remove fat. For a less oily soup, place the broth in the fridge overnight. The fat will harden and be easier to remove.
  • Add water. As the soup cooks, the liquid will evaporate. Make sure to keep adding enough water to match the original water line. 

Nutrition

Calories: 974kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 106gFat: 45gSaturated Fat: 18gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 374mgSodium: 1645mgPotassium: 362mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 128IUVitamin C: 21mgCalcium: 134mgIron: 14mg
Keyword Korean, Oxtail, Soup
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All Recipes, Beef, Korean, Soup

3 Comments

  1. What if I have frozen ox tail? Should I thaw and parboil still?

    • You can thaw by putting in a pot and covering with cold water. Let it sit overnight and all the blood will come out. In the morning, drain and rinse – making sure to wash the pot. Then you can parboil!

  2. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for these clear instructions! This is one of my husband and my favorite soups. You made it simple and the soup was so satisfying.

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