Doenjang Jjigae (Healthy Korean Soybean Paste Soup)
Doenjang jjigae is a healthy and hearty stew made with Korean fermented soybean paste. It’s a definite go-to if you’re craving comfort food with little prep time.
Doenjang jjigae (된장찌개) is made with a fermented soy bean paste called doenjang (된장). This paste is one of the staple condiments found in almost every Korean household. It is healthy and rich in minerals, vitamins, and gut-healthy probiotics. The Japanese miso paste is similar, but a bit sweeter and milder in taste.
Doenjang jjigae can be prepared in many different ways depending on your preferred taste. I tried to make this recipe to recreate the flavors of my favorite doenjang jjigae back in Korea. It’s something I often cook during the cold fall and winter months or when I’m in the mood for some quick, warm and hearty soup.
You could prepare this soup with a seafood, beef, or pork based broth. To make things more convenient, I simply use a dried kelp (dashima, 다시마) and dried anchovy broth in my recipe. However, if I do plan ahead, I like to add a couple littleneck clams.
More traditional recipes use rice water (ssalddeumul, 쌀뜨물) as a soup base. If you rinse uncooked rice in water, you will notice the water turn cloudy from the starch released from the rice. This starchy rice water keeps the doenjang from separating from the broth, and adds to the doenjang flavor.
Doenjang Jjigae Ingredients
Adding Korean radish (moo, 무) and potato are particularly important in creating a deeper soup flavor. I also find that adding mushrooms (enoki and/or shiitake) enhances the dashi broth with its earthy flavor. Adding sliced jalapeno pepper is definitely something I only do. I find it adds another a kick of spice along with the gochugaru (Korean red chili pepper flakes).
MISE EN PLACE
PAIRS WELL WITH:
If you make this Doenjang Jjigae, I would love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to leave a comment and/or recipe rating at the bottom of this page. And if you have a photo of your food, be sure to tag me on Instagram!
Doenjang Jjigae (Fermented Soybean Paste Stew)
- 1 ¼ cup dried anchovy and dashima broth (see notes for prep instructions)
- 90 g daikon radish, cut into 1" slices (~4 slices)
- 100 g russet potato, cut into ½" slices (~½ medium sized potato)
- 50 g onion (about ¼ onion)
- 50 g zucchini (about ½ zucchini)
- 1 tbsp doenjang paste
- 1 tsp gochugaru
- 1 tbsp garlic, crushed
- 25 g enoki mushrooms
- 12 g jalapeño, cut thinly (~3 slices)
- 3 green onions, cut thinly (makes about ⅓ cup)
- 100 g extra firm tofu, cubed (~¼ of a pack)
- Bring the dried anchovy and dashi broth to a simmer in a small pot over medium heat.
- Add the radish and potato and let it simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Add the onion and zucchini and let it simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Stir in the jalapeño, doenjang paste, gochugaru, and garlic.
- Top the soup with the enoki mushrooms and green onions.
- Let it simmer for another minute, and serve immediately.