Vegetarian Soon Tofu Jjigae (Korean Silken Tofu Stew)

September 17, 2015

Author Notes:

Though the list of ingredients may be foreign to some, they're essentially all "pantry" ingredients so this is a staple recipe in our house. The best part? You only need to dirty up one little pot.

Rach Kim

Serves: 2
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 40 min


  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil (canola, vegetable, avocado)
  • 1 tablespoon Korean hot pepper flakes (gochugaru)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cabbage kimchi
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 3 Thai chili peppers (optional)
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 teaspoons Korean hot pepper paste (gochujang)
  • 2 teaspoons Korean bean paste (dwenjang)
  • 8 ounces silken tofu
  • 4 ounces enoki mushrooms (half package)
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 1 egg (room temperature)
  • 1 stone pot or heavy-bottom pot
In This Recipe


  1. Heat up the stone pot over medium with oil. Add hot pepper flakes, stirring until oil turns red.
  2. Add kimchi, garlic, and hot peppers. Stir to coat in oil and let cook for 1 minute.
  3. Add in stock. Stir in hot pepper paste and bean paste. Bring to a boil.
  4. Once the kimchi is tender (and slightly translucent), add in the tofu. Break up larger chunks gently with a spoon. Let the stew boil for 10 to 15 minutes to allow flavors to develop and penetrate the tofu.
  5. Just before serving, top the stew with the enoki mushrooms and scallions. Turn up the heat to bring to a rapid and vigorous boil.
  6. Bring the pot to the table, still bubbling hot, and crack in the egg.
  7. Serve family-style with rice and other Korean side dishes (banchan). Stir in the egg gently as you eat.

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Reviews (13) Questions (0)

13 Reviews

Taylorjean07 September 9, 2018
How would you suggest making this if you don't have a stone pot? Could you make it in a cast iron dutch oven? Or would just a smaller stainless steel sauce pan work better?
Author Comment
Rach K. September 9, 2018
I’d just go with a small saucepan (that’s how I used to make this in university) and just crack in the egg (if you want egg) while it’s still on the hob. The stone pot retains heat well so you can crack an egg in at the table and still have it cook through but I don’t think you get quite the same effect with a saucepan.<br /><br />Let me know how it works out!
Ian February 19, 2018
Just made this yesterday afternoon. I upped the number of Thai chilis, and the amount of gochujang, and went really heavy on the shiitakes in my vegetable stock. This came out beautifully! Thanks so much.
Cass June 22, 2017
Typically the kimchi you buy in the supermarket has anchovies in it. Not all, but some, vegetarians do not eat kimchi because of this. Perhaps you should put a disclaimer about that, just in case? :)
Summer O. February 26, 2016
I made this last night and we really enjoyed it. I will be making it again. It was great for a cold night and simple for a weekday meal. I didn't have any enoki mushrooms so I threw in some collard greens for some vegetable matter, they worked great. Thanks for this recipe!
Author Comment
Rach K. February 26, 2016
I'm glad you liked it! It's definitely a flexible dish - sometimes I'll throw in some squash or oyster mushrooms or even baby kale. It really is perfect for warming up in the winter.
stephanieRD October 9, 2015
I can't wait to make this! One of my favorite Korean dishes. :)
Author Comment
Rach K. October 9, 2015
Let me know what you think!! :)
stephanieRD October 13, 2015
Made it this weekend! Loved it and will definitely be making this on a regular basis! I added some zucchini to mine to bulk it up a bit. Thanks for sharing this!
Author Comment
Rach K. October 13, 2015
Yay! So glad you liked it :) Since we're heading straight into soup season now, it's definitely become a regular again in our house too (always take a pause on hot soups in the summer). It's definitely a flexible dish - sometimes I add zucchini, peppers, or I even wilt some spinach or watercress into the soup at the end.
boulangere September 18, 2015
I love, love, love the hot flavors here, and I'm with you right up until the tofu. I have a serious soy allergy, but would gladly substitute chicken and savor every heavenly drop. Beautiful recipe.
Author Comment
Rach K. September 20, 2015
Oh no! Soy allergies are tough. But yes, you could substitute in almost any other protein (chicken, beef, pork, or my favorite, fish).
Christine L. September 17, 2017
Chickpea tofu is another option if you're avoiding meat. Pretty easy to make and tasty!