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Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon)

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Easy Jajangmyeon (Korean noodles in black bean sauce) recipe!

Have you ever tried Korean black bean sauce noodles (Jajangmyeon, 자장면 or Jjajangmyeon, 짜장면) before?

What is Jajangmyeon

It is a popular noodle dish served with black bean sauce, which consists of chunjang (춘장, a salty black soybean paste), diced pork (or other kinds of meat) and vegetables. You can find it easily at a Korean Chinese restaurant.

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

While there are many theories about when it was first introduced to Korea, officially the first known Jajangmyeon is from a restaurant called Gonghwachun (공화춘) in Chinatown of Incheon, Korea back in 1905. It was introduced by Chinese merchants but the flavor evolved to suit Korean’s taste buds over time.

It is a very common and easily accessible dish now. But when I was a child I only ate this on special occasions such as school carnival day or school entrance and graduation ceremony day. So you’ll understand how special this Jajangmyeon is to me and also to most Koreans.

What is Korean Black Day

On a side note, Korean black day (블랙데이) is also approaching.

Korean black day (14th April) is a special day where single people who didn’t get any gifts/presents on Valentine’s day (14th February) and White day (14th March) get together and have these Korean black bean sauce noodles (Jajangmyeon) and commiserate with each other.

So here is a good excuse for making this delicious noodle dish and giving you an opportunity to participate in this Korean food culture! 😉

Anyway, I hope you get to try my recipe soon!

Watch How to make Jajangmyeon (video tutorial)

 

Ingredients for Jajangmyeon, 6 servings

Main

  • 1kg (35 ounces), fresh jajangmyeon noodles (Or you can use fresh udon or ramen noodles)
  • 1 large onion (150g / 5.3 ounces)
  • 1 medium zucchini (110g / 3.9 ounces)
  • 2 large potatoes (470g / 1 pound)
  • 7 large button mushrooms (240g / 0.5 pounds)
  • 1/4 small cabbage (160g / 5.6 ounces)
  • 600g / 1.3 pounds diced pork

Pork marinade sauce

  • 1 Tbsp rice wine  (mirin)
  • 5 sprinkles ground salt
  • 5 sprinkles ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ginger powder

Korean black bean sauce

  • 6 Tbsp Korean black bean paste (Chunjang, 춘장)
  • 90g / 3.2 ounces lard (or 6 Tbsp cooking oil – e.g. rice bran oil)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 4 Tbsp rice wine (or mirin)
  • 1 cup chicken stock (as natural as possible)
  • 1 cup water
  • Slurry (potato starch 5 Tbsp + water 4 Tbsp)

Toppings

  • 1 large cucumber (150g / 5.3 ounces)
  • Peas or sweet corn (from a tin, alternative)
  • Hard boiled egg (alternative)

*1 Tbsp = 15ml, 1 Cup = 250ml

**If you want to learn more about Korean ingredients, check my Essential Korean Cooking Ingredients list!

Preparations

1. Rinse the pork in cold water and pat it dry with kitchen paper. Add the pork marinade sauce onto the pork. Mix them well and leave it for 15 mins. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 2. Cut the onion, zucchini, and potato into small cubes. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 3. Thin slice the mushrooms.

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

4. Cut the cabbage into small to medium size pieces. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 5. Julienne cut the cucumber.

How to Make Jajangmyeon

1. Pre heat the wok until the bottom is heated well. Add the lard (or cooking oil) and melt it in the wok. Add the black bean paste and stir it constantly on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. (Try not to burn it.) Add the brown sugar and stir it for an additional 2 to 3 mins. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 2. Scoop out the black bean paste (without the oil) and set it aside. Leave the oil in the wok to use in the next step. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 3. Add the pork into the wok and stir until the pork is half cooked. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 4. Add the onion, zucchini, and potato and stir until all are 1/3 cooked (for 3 to 5 mins). Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 5. Add the mushrooms and cabbages and stir for 2-3 mins. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 6. Add the black bean paste (from step 2) into the wok and mix it in with vegetables. Stir for 1 to 2 mins. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 7. Add the chicken stock, water and rice wine then simmer it for 5 to 7 mins on medium heat. (Cover the wok with a lid if possible. This will make the cooking process faster.) Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 8. Add the slurry into the wok then stir it. (This will thicken the black sauce. It is the final stage of making the black bean sauce.) Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 9. (While working on step 7) Boil some water in a pot and add the noodles when it starts to boil. Boil them until the noodles are cooked (for 3 to 5 mins). Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 10. Rinse the noodles in cold water and drain. Put them into a serving bowl/plate. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 11. Add the black bean sauce (from the step 8) on top of the noodles. You can serve it as it is or decorate it with some cucumber slices, green peas or sweet corn or hardboiled egg. Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com 12.Mix the sauce and the noodles well with chopsticks. Dig in. (It is ideal to have them with some (yellow) pickled radish. Apparently, it helps digestion. Also, eat it up quickly before the noodles get swollen.)

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Note

  • (Update August 26, 2015) I tried using lard instead of cooking oil for the first time and I am really liking the result it gives. It gives a much deeper flavour. I know I might be biased, but it tastes as good as a restaurant version. 😉
  • The black bean sauce can last for 2 to 3 days in the fridge if you have leftover sauce. Use an air tight container, preferably made with glass or BPA-free material to store.
  • You can also have this black bean sauce with rice instead of with noodles. In that case, it will be called Jajangbap (자장밥).

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

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Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon) | MyKoreanKitchen.com

Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon)

Jajangmyeon is a popular Korean noodle dish mixed in with black bean sauce. Learn how to make it at home!
4.89 from 53 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Noodles
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: black bean noodles, jajangmyeon, jjajangmyeon
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 522kcal
Author: Sue

Ingredients

Main

  • 1 kg fresh jajangmyeon noodles (Or you can use udon noodles or Kalguksu noodles) (35 ounces)
  • 1 large onion (150g / 5.3 ounces)
  • 1 medium zucchini (110g / 3.9 ounces)
  • 2 large potatoes (470g / 1 pound)
  • 7 large button mushrooms (240g / 0.5 pounds)
  • 1/4 small cabbage (160g / 5.6 ounces)
  • 600 g diced pork (1.3 pounds)

Pork marinade sauce

  • 1 Tbsp rice wine (or mirin)
  • 5 sprinkles ground salt
  • 5 sprinkles ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ginger powder

Korean black bean sauce

  • 6 Tbsp Korean black bean paste (Chunjang)
  • 90 g Lard (or 6 Tbsp cooking oil – e.g. rice bran oil)
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 4 Tbsp rice wine (or mirin)
  • 1 cup chicken stock (as pure and natural as possible)
  • 1 cup water
  • slurry (potato starch 5 Tbsp + water 4 Tbsp)

Toppings

  • 1 large cucumber (150g / 5.3 ounces)
  • Peas or sweet corn (from a tin, optional)
  • Hard boiled egg (optional)

Instructions

Preparation

  • Rinse the pork in cold water and pat it dry with kitchen paper. Add the pork marinade sauce onto the pork. Mix them well and leave it for 15 mins.
  • Cut the onion, zucchini and potato into small cubes.
  • Thin slice the mushrooms.
  • Cut the cabbage into small to medium size pieces.
  • Julienne cut the cucumber.

Cooking

  • Pre heat the wok until the bottom is heated well. Add the lard (or cooking oil) and melts it in the wok. Add the black bean paste and stir it constantly on medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. (Try not to burn it.) Add the brown sugar and stir it for an additional 2 to 3 mins.
  • Scoop out the black bean paste (without the oil) and set it aside. Leave the oil in the wok to use in the next step.
  • Add the pork into the wok and stir until the pork is half cooked.
  • Add the onion, zucchini, and potato and stir until all are 1/3 cooked (for 3 to 5 mins).
  • Add the mushrooms and cabbages and stir for 2-3 mins.
  • Add the black bean paste (from step 2) into the wok and mix it in with vegetables. Stir for 1 to 2 mins.
  • Add the chicken stock, water and rice wine then simmer it for 5 to 7 mins on medium heat. (Cover the wok with a lid if possible. This will make the cooking process faster.)
  • Add the slurry into the wok then stir it. (This will thicken the black sauce. It is the final stage of making the black bean sauce.)
  • (While working on step 7) Boil some water in a pot and add the noodles when it starts to boil. Boil them until the noodles are cooked (for 3 to 5 mins).
  • Rinse the noodles in cold water and drain. Put them into a serving bowl/plate.
  • Add the black bean sauce (from the step 8) on top of the noodles. You can serve it as it is or decorate it with some cucumber slices, green peas or sweet corn or hardboiled egg.
  • Mix the sauce and the noodles well with chopsticks. Dig in. (It is ideal to have them with some (yellow) pickled radish. Apparently it helps digestion. Also eat it up quickly before the noodles get swollen.)

Notes

* 1 Tbsp = 15ml, 1 Cup = 250ml

Nutrition Info (per serving)

Calories: 522kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 471mg | Potassium: 951mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 140IU | Vitamin C: 31.9mg | Calcium: 74mg | Iron: 3.9mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Tried this recipe?I love hearing how you went with my recipes! Rate this recipe with a comment below and tag me on Instagram @MyKoreanKitchen.

 

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Written by: Sue

Last Updated: June 21, 2020
Sue and My Korean Kitchen Profile

Welcome to my Korean kitchen! I’m so happy that you're here. I am Sue, the creator behind My Korean Kitchen (since 2006). I love good food and simplifying recipes. Here you will find my best and family approved recipes. Thanks for stopping by!

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180 thoughts on “Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodles (Jajangmyeon)”

  1. Just finished making it – so yummy!
    Tried other websites but this one is definitely the most delicious. Thank you Sue!

    Sydney, Australia

    Reply
  2. Perfect!!! Made it exactly as written. No changes. My entire family was silent at dinner and had second helpings! Thank you!

    Reply
  3. Thank you for this recipe. I found a Korean black bean paste at my local Asian supermarket, here in Italy. I made Jajangmyeon with a small portion of fresh ramen noodles I had left over, so I guessed at the quantities for 1 serving if the sauce. I didn’t have time to shop for the pork, so I used the Italian unsmoked lean pancetta I had in the fridge. Overall, I think it turned out really well, but I was surprised at the delicate flavour, I was expecting it to be saltier, like the Chinese black bean dishes I remember eating with my family in Australia. But I have never tasted the authentic dish in Korea, so I have nothing to compare my (your) version too. Btw..it was well liked by the Italian branch of my family.

    Reply
  4. Hi! I rushed to buy Korean products online since I am craving for noodles. I bought Nongshim black bean noodles and Shin ramyun along with the seasonings. There’s four seasons ssamjang, Sunchanggung ssamjang, Denjjang soybean paste and Gochuggang chili paste. So its not black but hell I care it tastes really good. No noodles, no problem. I made udon instead. Its a lot different taste from Black bean noodle instant noodle. My family likes the one I made. Making Kimchi Udon and Doenjang Jjigae tomorrow. Thank u much your website is really helpful.

    Reply
    • You can use pan fried tofu instead of meat or add more mushrooms instead. I’ve seen other readers doing that. It will lack depth of flavor coming from the meat, but it should still be good. Enjoy! 🙂

      Reply
  5. 안녕 Sue! 👋

    I want to make this so badly 😭 but I can’t seem to find black bean paste anywhere?! 😩

    Is it possible for me to make the paste on my own? Using tinned black beans?

    Let me know.

    감사합니다 ♡

    Reply
  6. When my was diagnosed with cancer in 2016, I began cooking for her. It took a year for me to realize how unfair it was of me to feed her the food I was comfortable preparing. That happened to be American because that is my heritage. One day she said to me “I really didn’t know I could go so long without kimchi and rice. I felt smaller than an ant. I began searching the web for Korean recipes. The first thing I made was a cucumber salad you had posted on your site. I dare say my wife was impressed asking where I bought it. This also truly increased my ego. Since then (about 3 years now) I have tried my hand at many different meals both American and Korean. This week in your email you had a Jajangmyeon recipe with its’ instructions complete with color pictures. I first went to Korea in 1977. When I tasted it then I totally despised it and had refused to eat it since. I had all the ingredients for the black noodle sauce in the house except the sauce itself. I knew my love liked it so I bought a package of the sauce from a local korean market and made it. The package said it was enough for seven servings and I think eight would have been closer to correct. I did take a little liberty to prepare for her tastes. (Less salt, less sugar, and used udon noodles).  Her critique was not enough salt, not as sweet as the restaurant’s and the jajang noodles would have been better than the udon noodles. By the time we finished eating only 2 servings (about a pint) was left. Yes, I did eat it an found no fault except perhaps there won’t be enough sauce left for both of US. Thank you for posting this recipe.  Additionally she doesn’t eat pork so I substituted shrimp.
    Rick Savacool, Washington State USA

    Reply
  7. I just made the black bean noodles using lard and it was delicious. Loved it! I used Udon noodles as it was hard to find Jajangmyeon noodles. 🇨🇦❤️

    Reply
  8. This recipe is awesome! During lockdown, I watched a lot of Korean serials on Netflix and all the food they show in the film makes me want to try Korean food, tho’ I have never eaten in a proper Korean restaurant before.
    So I decided to cook it myself. And I manage it thanks to your recipe. Now, Jajangmyeon and Jajangbap became a new favourite in our family dinner menu. It is very tasty, very filling and quite heavy!!

    Reply
    • Yeah, Jajangmyeon is often featured in K-dramas. 🙂 I’m pleased to hear your family enjoyed my recipe. Thanks for your feedback. 🙂

      Reply
  9. I really wanted to taste jjajanmyeon because I watch a lot of kdrama and I just thought”this food looks delicious” and it’s so good👍

    Reply
  10. I didn’t use mushrooms but followed the rest of the recipe and it was spot on! So so tasty and the whole family gobbled it up!

    Reply
  11. Hi Sue,

    I’ve tried some of your recipes and all taste great, especially the kimchi jjigae. For the jajangmyeon what can I substitute it with? Can I use red Chinese cooking wine? Or is it better to use apple vinegar+sugar? What is the proportion for every tablespoon of mirin?

    Thanks!

    Reply
  12. Dear Sue,

    Your recipe is really great!
    I’d like to know the 522kcal are for 100g of Jajangmyeon or for one serving?

    Thanks a lot!

    Reply
    • It’s per serving. But please also know that it’s only an estimate based on the generic information available on the internet. If you want to improve accuracy, you should calculate it based on the actual products you use. 🙂

      Reply
  13. Oh my word, this recipe was awesome! It tastes much better than restaurants and without all the salt and MSG. Thank you Sue!! I would always resort to the package Jajangmyeon when I was craving this but not anymore, this is my go-to recipe.

    Reply
  14. Hi sue,
    Is there any possible way to cook with black bean garlic sauce instead of chunjang/black bean paste ? Would we need to modify the recipe?Due to covid-19 it’s hard to go to the grocery store and having limited ingredients.

    Reply
    • Hi Casey, I’d suggest just loosely follow this recipe with what you’ve got. I wouldn’t know what to change without further testing it myself. I’ve seen many of my readers doing the similar thing as you. For instance, someone tried my rice cake recipe (tteokbokki) using gnocchi instead of Korean rice cakes! Just be creative and enjoy the outcome in this uncertain time. 🙂

      Reply
  15. Awesome recipe. I have many dietary issues and have to eat at home most of the time. Been fanging for it and your recipe hit the spot. Thankyou 🙂

    Reply
    • I would add some Korean chili flakes (gochugaru) between step 5 and 6. You could use more spicier chili powder variety such as cayenne chili powder instead.
      Lastly, you could also add thinly sliced fresh green chilies or jalapeno in addition to/ or instead of the chili flakes / powder.

      Reply
    • She can use “NAVER” – a Korean search engine, to find a Korean recipe. Though many home cook’s recipes appear on there are not tested and/or use vague measurement. Good luck!

      Reply
    • My reply is late, but I figured I’d leave it in case it helps. If you put the web address into Google Translate, select English->Korean, then click the web address given on the Korean side, it should give you a translated version of a page if you find a recipe in English that you really want your wife to try. If you want the translation of the printable page, you’ll probably have to translate the web address for the printable page. Otherwise you’ll still probably get the English version if you try to click to print from the main page.

      Reply
  16. Hi Sue
    We don’t have black bean paste here in our area but the Korean grocer has black bean powder. Can you kindly help me with how to use powder? Unfortunately the instruction on the packaging does not have an English Translation. Hope you can help. Thanks!!!

    Reply
    • You will have to dissolve the powder with some water. Quantity of the water should be written on the packet.
      Also, you might want to follow the remainder instruction from the packet for the rest of the ingredients as well. As my recipe might not work well with the powder. (From the sauce volume & thickness perspective.)

      Reply
  17. This recipe is amazing! Yours was much, MUCH better than any other recipes I’ve looked at. The addition of the lard is perfect — the big missing key in other recipes. As I have picky eaters in my family, I made the vegetables separately from the sauce so that they could pick only the vegetables they wanted. I also slicked down the noodles with sesame oil so that they wouldn’t stick together before the sauce went on (since the timing was slightly off, as I was cooking things separately!) Thank you so much for posting, Sue — this is my favorite Korean blog and your jajangmyeon is the best I’ve ever seen. I’m definitely making your version again.

    Reply
  18. Thank you for this recipe! I’m looking forward to trying it. I appreciate the story about Black Day, I did not know about that and am half korean. I always knew my people were really cool!

    Reply
  19. Hi Sue, I made this for dinner tonight and it was delicious! I searched through several Korean cooking websites and looked at the different variations but I liked your recipe the best and I definitely picked a winner! Do you have a preference between the pre-fried black bean paste or the one you need to fry in lard yourself? I used the pre-fried but I’m wondering if I would get an even better flavor with the other one? Thanks again, Sue!!

    Reply
  20. I followed this recipe for my Dad’s birthday and he loved it! I definitely know I’ll be making this again for my family in the future!

    Reply
  21. I couldn’t help but leave a comment. I was basically on a search for the best jajangmyeon recipe. I have already tried recipes from Maangchi and Asian at Home, i love them both, but your recipe truly is the best for me. I just finished making it. I dont have noodles but I have rice. I’m enjoying my jajjangbap right at this moment. I just love this so much! Thanks a lot! This bowl of jajangbap just makes me happy.

    Reply
  22. Hi Sue,
    When I first heard this recipe, I thought it was talking about black bean noodles, which are low carb and gluten-free. Since the noodles tend to absorb all liquids without getting soggy or plump, I thought to try it with this recipe. WOW! I think the few things different I did besides using different noodles, was chicken instead of pork and adding some green onion as a garnish with the cucumbers.
    My family is still raving how delicious it was!! I also used lard in place of oil which seemed to prevent any sticking on the sauce and ingredients to the pan. Extra kudos for that too! Thanks for sharing this amazing recipe. I look forward to trying other of your dishes soon.

    Reply
  23. Hello. I would really like to use this recipe but i need a completely non-alcoholic (like 100% non-alcoholic) substitute for rice wine. Do you have any suggestions?

    Reply
    • Some people use rice vinegar + water + sugar (little) combination as an alternative. Also, otheres use apple juice or white grape juice. Hope this helps!

      Reply
  24. I made this for my husband’s Birthday. He is Korean. He LOVED it. It took him back home. He hadn’t eaten this dish since he left Korea 35 years ago. He loved every bite! He said it tasted just like he remembered. Thank You!

    Reply
  25. I am a Malaysian. Just of late my family & I got hooked on Korean Drama’s.
    In ” Liver or die” several episodes they were mentioning about this, Black bean noodles. Lookef so tasty.
    Thanx Sue for the recipe. I wl try with chicken or beef. I dnt know if I can get black bean paste in Malaysia. But I shall look around.
    Tq again Sue

    Reply
  26. Hi Sue! I am making your recipe for a class banquet for my culture class at my university. We are suppose to use a recipe from our family background but since I resonate with Korean culture so much my professor gave me the okay to make a Korean recipe. I had to triple your recipe to make enough for the banquet. I was wondering if I can use your photo to use in my assignment to put in the cookbook for my assignment. I will make sure to site your website for your recipe and your photo. I am going to put your original recipe and the my triple version. Is this okay with you? 🙂

    Reply
  27. Hi Sue..so reading your post just made me realize how much I wish am from Korea..Am from Africa and unfortunately we don’t have any Asia market here where I could get all those ingredients..
    Hoping you can help with ways I can make them..
    please I really wanna try any Korea food at all cost!!

    Reply
    • Have you tried eBay? If the seller is based in Korea, they often ship to anywhere in the world. It’s quite pricy but since you’re willing to pay… 😉 Good luck hunting!

      Reply
      • I was just wonder why you needed to cook the black bean paste in oil?
        I just made this for dinner and everyone loved it! My boyfriend is korean and said it tastes amazing and my family loved it as well.

        Reply
        • It’s to enhance the flavor of the black bean paste. Even all the top chefs cook it the same way. Beyond that I do not know. 😉 Anyway, glad to hear your family enjoyed it!

          Reply
  28. This recipe was so easy to make and it tastes great! I bought black bean paste at a Korean grocery store on a whim and I am so happy I did.

    Reply
  29. Hi! I have a question.. how long does it last the black bean paste in refrigerator once opened? I opened it like 3 month ago.. I can still use it?
    Thank you, I really need the answer because I don’t want to throw it away..:(

    Reply
    • Hi Silvia, The paste should have the expiry date on it. Just follow what it says. Normally it lasts for a while like 6 to 12 months depending on when you purchased it. Enjoy my recipe! 🙂

      Reply
  30. Hi Sue, all thru my life I am a lover of Thai and Chinese food but lately (for the last 6 or 7 years) I have fallen in love with Korean food which I devour whenever I can make the opportunity but mostly in Korean eat houses. I love cooking and enjoy making my own dishes experimenting since I believe that for a life loving man the bed and the kitchen are the best places for experimenting. Recently in our town a Korean shop is opened selling various food products of Korea. I shall highly appreciate if you kindly help me choose the ingredients (sauces, pastes, wines, noodles etc) I need to have in my shelf so that I can cook a dish of my taste whenever I want. I love hot foods so hot chilli is no problem for me.
    Thanks in advance for you kind and valuable help.
    Shankar Mazumder

    Reply
  31. Hello
    As i am single as hell I obvious wish to eat this
    But together with some friends
    Unfortunalty one cant handle gluten and the Korean black bean sauce option I can find in my country is in a powder form. (So the actual black bean paste is nowhere to be found)

    I was wondering I have seen two versions of Chinese black bean sauce
    One is from Lee Kum Kee
    https://www.orientalwebshop.nl/lee-kum-kee-black-bean-sauce-226g
    Another one from Lee Kum Kee https://www.orientalwebshop.nl/lee-kum-kee-black-bean-garlic-sauce-368g
    AND this one from Taiwan
    https://www.orientalwebshop.nl/en/msl-taiwan-jah-jan-sauce-240gr

    So do you think that either of the two could be the alternative?

    Reply
    • Hi JJ, I haven’t tried those sauces, so I can’t tell you with certainty. But some of my readers have tried similar sauces (could be the same ones) and they said it turned out OK. Just it didn’t taste authentic – Korean.

      Also, make sure you check ingredients in those bottles too. Lee Kum Kee black bean sauce has wheat in it (from soy sauce).

      Reply
  32. Sue, I’ve never tried my hand at Korean Cooking, but now I have my list made out and fortunately there is a Korean market not too far away. Don’t know what I will try first, but I will be experimenting soon. Love your site and the explicit directions.

    Reply
  33. Hi,

    Regarding the starch water… is the ratio of potato starch to water really 5:4? I couldn’t get it to dissolve, haha. I made this without meat and it turned out great!

    Reply
    • Hi Rachel, Yes the ratio is right. You need to dig in the starch a little bit with a spoon or fork to dissolve, but I didn’t think it was a problem.

      The sauce will still taste good without the thickening agent, but it is very runny. Regardless, glad to hear you enjoyed it! 🙂

      Reply
  34. Thank you Sue! I spent a year on the Demilitarized Zone in Korea and this dish was a huge favorite of mine. Your recipe really brings out the best of this dish and now I can make it!

    Reply
    • Hi Marianne, I just buy pre-diced pork and it doesn’t specify which pork cut it is. It just says for stir fry.
      You can perhaps use pork butt or pork tenderloin as they are popular stir fry cuts. Hope this helps!

      Reply
    • I believe that jjajangmyeon is traditionally made with pork belly. But pork belly is kind of expensive here in the states (if that’s where you are) as it has become a chef-y ingredient in recent years. Pork shoulder works well (something with quite a bit of fat). And although tenderloin or loin would be fine, I think they might be a bit too lean and not impart as much flavor. The fat is where all the flavor is.

      If you do buy a fattier piece of mean than what Sue has used here, I would suggest cooking it longer than she says in step 3. At least let the fat brown up and render off a bit before moving on to step 4.

      Reply
  35. This recipe is great! Thanks for doing this!

    One question though — when i tried making this the potatoes didnt cook very well and were still hard and i had to leave the whole dish to simmer for ages before they were edible. How did you solve this, or am i doing something wrong?

    Reply
    • Hi Ilyeh, It’s great to hear you liked my recipe.
      The potatoes should cook completely between the step 4 to 7. These steps can take between 11 mins to 17 mins (as indicated in the recipe). Is this how long it took for you?

      But, cooking time will vary depending on your stove, fire power and the size of pot / wok you used too. Also, if you cooked more food than what the recipe calls for, it can take longer. Hope this helps!

      Reply
  36. The Gonghwachun (공화춘) restaurant in Chinatown of Incheon is now a noodle museum. The feel of the restaurant has been kept and the exhibits are amazing, makes you want to eat right away! If anyone visits Korea, a visit to the foreign concessions, including Chinatown, in Incheon is a must.

    Reply
  37. Hi there!! I came across your recipe and I Can’t wait till I do it! I had a small question/concern , is the chicken stock very important or can skip it? Because I’m not really sure if I can be able to do it

    Reply
      • Thank you! Hopefully, I will be making it soon <3 cant wait!
        Also, I had another question. Sadly, I could only find a 2.2 pound Black bean paste. How long does it last after it has been opened?

        Reply
  38. Sue, I just came across your Instagram actually and I want to post about Black Day. So can i use your jjajangmyeon photo? If not, it’s okay. I really love your photography anyway ❤

    Reply
    • Nur, Where are you going to share my photo? If it’s on a social media, please tag me (@mykoreankitchen) in the caption. (You can only use one image and leave my watermark.) If it’s on a website, please link back to this page. You can use a photo or a short excerpt of the content but you have to reference it back to the post you got it from with a link.

      Reply
  39. I am thinking of making this recipe for dinner tomorrow. Do you know if Chinese black bean sauce is similar to Korean black bean paste? It’s all I have right now 🙁

    Reply
    • I’m pretty certain that Korean black bean sauce is different to Chinese one. But one of my reader tried it a while ago and he said it turned out OK. (I don’t know whether it was even close to Korean taste or not.) I suppose you will only find out when you try both. 🙂

      Reply
    • 1) Chinese black bean paste could be sweet and not fermented. It was used for sweets and desserts.
      2) If you got Korean black bean paste aka chunjang, it will not taste the same as Chinese black bean sauce.
      3) If you got Chinese fermented black soy bean paste, then you’re in luck. The taste will be very close but not as potent. The final results won’t be identical but it will be pretty close.

      Reply
  40. Thank you alot for the recipe, but can we use another meat type instead of pork meat or is it nessecary? Because in my country they don’t sell it T-T
    (Sorry for my bad english)

    Reply
  41. Your photography is beautiful, and your explanation is very clear and easy to understand. I haven’t made any of your recipes yet, but this black bean noodle will be the first that I will try. I have access to a few really good Korean markets, and will look for this dish in the local restaurants as well.

    Thank you for sharing so much!

    Reply
  42. I know that this is probably totally morally wrong (when it comes to black bean paste noodles ????) but can we substitute with bacon instead?

    Reply
  43. My son is asking me to make this for him. We had it at a restaurant and he loves it. I can go to a local H Mart and pick up ingredients…..What kind of pork cut should I get …and for rice wine can I use Shogo or Sake… or som maggollei.?

    Reply
    • For pork, I just buy some diced pork. I don’t know which cut as it’s only labelled as diced pork, but you could try fat trimmed pork collar butt. For rice wine, you can use something like this or this.
      Makgeolli is big NO. 🙂

      Reply
    • Hi Rachel, Is your question relating to this recipe? Because, I didn’t use any soybean paste in this recipe. A black bean paste (chunjang) is used instead. 🙂 However, if your question is just a general question, yes, you can use Japanese miso instead of Korean soybean paste. Though, Japanese miso has less pungent taste than Korean ones.

      Reply
  44. Dear Sue, I read recipe jajangmyeong and I would cook it but unfortunately in my city I found only korean soybean pastes bibigo and not the chunjang black paste. I can use it anyway? what’s the difference? I can get by adding dark soy sauce? thank you very much and congratulations for your wonderful blog !!

    Reply
    • Hi Grazia, Korean soybean paste is very different to black bean paste sauce. It tastes very similar to Japanese miso paste, but it’s more pungent. You wouldn’t want to use it for this recipe! Some people told me that they have tried Jajangmyeon with Chinese black bean sauce and they told me it was good. Though I’m pretty sure they are not the same thing and it doesn’t taste similar.

      Reply
      • Thank you very much for your reply!
        I wanted to ask also if there are some ingredients that could make it saltier because I thinks it is too sweet…
        Maybe soy sauce could be ok?

        Reply
        • Did you already make it? I’ve never added soy sauce so you will have to experiment with it I think. Also, if you think it’s too sweet for your taste, reduce the sugar next time in step 1. Maybe your black bean paste already has quite a bit of sugar.

          Reply
          • Yup, maybe!
            I’ll do so, thank you 🙂
            Btw I’m gonna freeze it so I’ll tell you if it is still edible hahah

  45. so glad i am a chef. i can relate to those tht just love to make thinhs and even improve.. i hate wen u just have to at the same thing.. expereoment and enjoy it!!1 i just have thw right eeys for good flavor.s. im not thoguh into any other counry food as its not my taste but i rcently made tht blak bean sauce and amazing how u need to hae the right and autrhtnic ingredneit for that fkavor.. i am going to find and make this.. im such a goos chf having made creamy eggs and homeade racnh!! thats hw u leanr!! woot

    Reply
    • Yes, I agree that you absolutely need to have the right and authentic ingredients to create one country’s authentic flavour! I hope you enjoy making this noodles!

      Reply
  46. I tried this recipe tonight. I subbed organic ground pork (since that’s the only kind of pork I can find at the grocery store that is organic) and vegetable oil instead of the lard. I also picked up some fresh Korean spinach noodles instead of the Chinese noodles that I saw at the Korean store. I thought this dish lacked a bit of flavor, but it may be because I didn’t use the LARD! I think that is essential or something! I also could only find one kind of black bean sauce and now I am stuck with it! BOO! I know Maangchi uses pork belly in her recipe.. I think I need to try to make it EXACTLY like how you made it with the EXACT ingredients. Thank you for your post! I was really craving this and it did hit the spot even though mine wasn’t comparable to yours or my Korean friend’s cooking!

    Reply
    • Yeah, I think my original recipe lacked a bit of flavour and that’s when I decided to go the real way! Aka Korean Chinese restaurants way by using LARD! 🙂 Seriously it really added the extra flavour that was missing! 🙂

      Reply
  47. Is it okay to use black bean sauce instead of paste? I can’t seem to find black bean paste in any of the Asian markets that we got here.

    Reply
    • Can you take a picture and send to me? (sue at mykoreankitchen.com) Korean black bean paste is quite different to Chinese or any other fusion version of black bean sauce. 🙂

      Reply
  48. This looks so wonderful! Do you think it could be made vegetarian and still have good flavor? I was thinking of using tofu in place of pork and vegetable stock instead of chicken stock. Any other suggestions?

    Reply
  49. Thanks so much for the recipe!! I’ve tried another version but found the taste rather lacking, while this one hits the spot on many levels!

    Reply
  50. I tried this tonight, and it turned out pretty well. The sauce wasn’t as dark as in your photos, but most of the family (and one incredibly picky guest) enjoyed it. This is definitely something we’ll give another go.

    We did use udon noodles instead of the Chinese noodles; I’ll have to keep looking for those, or use dry noodles instead of fresh noodles, unless I can find a market that carries them.

    An article about using dry noodles instead of fresh would be welcome, and may be easier shopping for some people.

    -Fred

    Reply
  51. Hi! I want to try this out over the weekend, but the ingredient listing serves for 6, is there any way you can adjust the measurements of the ingredients that will serve for 3 people instead? I want to assume to just divide all your measurements by half, but I wanted to ask you first! 🙂

    And thank you ahead of time for the detailed cooking instructions!

    -KevinQ

    Reply
    • Hi Kevin, That would be my approach too. Though I suggest you do it with caution because making sauce proportionately can be tricky – it’s not a straight forward math calculation. This applies to any sauce or marinade making not just this recipe. Does this make sense? 🙂

      Reply
      • Yes it does for the most part 🙂 but looking it over again, I think I don’t mind doing the serving suggestion since i didn’t realize my gf and I might want to have another bowl 😀

        I do have another question though; instead of lard or regular cooking oil, can I use olive oil instead? You had mentioned that using lard was preferred over regular oil because of a deeper flavor, so i’m thinking if using olive oil would change the flavor as well.

        Thank you!

        Reply
        • Hi Kevin, Good choice. The sauce keeps well in the fridge for a few days as well. So you can heat the leftover up and serve with some steamed or fried rice . It’s really good that way.

          In terms of cooking oil, what type of olive oil are you thinking of using? I don’t recommend using olive oil for two reasons. It has too strong flavour on its own, so you will notice it in the sauce. Second, olive oil has lower smoke point (particularly extra virgin kind) than lard or general cooking oil. For cooking oil, I use rice bran oil day to day basis. Here’s information on smoke point if you’re interested in. 🙂 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smoke_point
          I hope you enjoy it!

          Reply
  52. I want to say that this is the best version I have found. My daughter had seconds!!!! She has not had seconds of any other that I have made. The only thing I did different was I add a carrot. Thank you so much!

    Reply
  53. Hey, Sue,
    Love Korean food and was experimenting my hands on cooking them. The problem is I live in India where Korean food is not that popular and finding the right ingredients is really hard. As for the black bean paste have been searching the whole city but to my despair haven’t been able to find it, so finally I’ve decided to make my own. If you have any pointers and recipes on how I can make the black bean paste, how long I can store it, that would be a great help. Thank you.
    P.S. I did finally manage to find dried salted Black beans. (Chinese, fermented) and am looking at various recipe’s to make chunjang.

    Reply
    • Hi Saugat, I understand how frustrating you might feel for not being able to find the right Korean ingredients! Unfortunately though, I haven’t seen any homemade chunjang recipe yet. Some people mentioned that the process is same as making Korean soybean paste (which takes at least a few months of fermentation), but I can’t verify the information as I haven’t tried that either. Though, I will definitely let you know when I find the method! I’m sorry that I can’t help you much.

      Reply
  54. Hi! 감사합니다 for the recipe, I love cooking Korean food, it’s delicious and I think often a lot healthier than American food. I have a question, when I made the 짜장면 it came VERY salty, I know that black bean paste is salty but I was wondering if I did something wrong. I did use chicken BASE instead of chicken STOCK because I didn’t have any. Do you have any suggestions for me for next time? ㅅ.ㅅ

    Reply
    • Hi Zoe, Sorry for the late reply. I don’t know how I missed your comment earlier. Anyway, naturally the black bean paste is salty and also slightly bitter that’s why it has to be cooked with some oil and sugar. You didn’t skip this process (step 1), did you?
      Also I’m not sure whether chicken base is same as chicken stock. In case you’re wondering, I used this brand regular chicken stock. http://www.campbellskitchen.com.au/our-products/campbells-real-stock/
      Did you taste your chicken base before you use them? I don’t think my chicken stock was much salty – it was quite mildly flavoured.

      Reply
  55. Is the potatoe starch necessary in this recipe im asking because i have a hard time finding a store that has it

    Reply
    • Hi Shantel, Starch is used as a sauce thickener. It is necessary as otherwise the sauce will be very runny and the taste would be diluted. You can try other starch powder (e.g. corn) if that’s easier to find. Hope you can find it!

      Reply
        • Is your black bean sauce Korean brand? I don’t think I’m familiar with it. I think Korean black bean paste is different to typical black bean sauce. (Though I’ve never tried it).

          Reply
        • I used a Chinese black bean sauce the first time I made this, and it turned out pretty well, though I should have used more. Eventually I found Korean black bean paste; that was a little better, but the sauce was serviceable. It’s not quite as thick as the paste, but I don’t think that made a lot of difference.

          Here’s what I used the first time:
          https://goo.gl/photos/osthRpFTmmf8XsVA7

          -Fred

          Reply
          • Thanks for sharing your experience. I get asked a lot about this (whether they can use other black bean sauce other than Korean ones.) I’m sure this info will be valuable for those people. 🙂

  56. Can you substitute the pork some other kind of meat or can you take out meat all together cause I really dislike meat but I’m afraid that it might change the flavor to much? Do you have any recommendation on any more vegetables I could use in substitute for meat? Thank you for this recipe btw! And I also wanted to try jajangmyeon (I watch a lot of Korean shows and always see them eating it, it looks good) and yours (how you make it) looks delicious! ^^

    Reply
    • Hi Netta, Do you eat seafood? You can make it with seafood instead of meat. You can get the idea from this recipe for the seafood cooking and use of its broth. https://mykoreankitchen.com/seafood-jajangmyeon/
      However, the recipe posted on this page is a newer version for the sauce and other instructions.
      I haven’t tried it without meat, so I don’t know what it will be like. But you can always give it a try without meat. 🙂 If I don’t add any meat, I would just add more mushrooms (shiitake or button mushrooms.) Hope you give this a try!

      Reply
  57. So…looking for places to get the best jajangmyeon in Seoul? Here are my picks. Which is just in time for black day (April 14th). For those that don’t know, Black Day is the holiday for singles in Korea. It is celebrated on April 14th by wearing all black and eating black noodles and other black foods. I guess it’s supposed to reflect the doom and gloom of being single in Korea.
    http://www.seouleats.com/2015/04/5-of-best-jajangmyeon-in-city-of-seoul.html

    Reply
  58. I was looking through the recipe and realized I am allergic to some of the vegetables used. Is it ok to just not add them? Or would that change flavor dramatically?
    Thanks

    Reply
    • Hi Anita, What specific ingredients are you allergic to? I think it’s better to substitute them with something else instead of omitting them completely. Otherwise the sauce might taste too strong (e.g. too salty) or the consistency might be different (e.g. too runny).

      Reply
  59. I’ve been reading your blog for about three or four years now (?) long time! I’m so happy to see when you refresh the old recipes, actually it’s helpful so I don’t have to go all the way back in the archives
    ^-^ I love jajangmyun and I haven’t made it in a loooong time! But now the weather is getting cold where I live, so it’s perfect for the fall when you need a full meal. I’m gonna try it again! Thank you thank you ♥ ♥ ♥

    Reply
  60. Hello, a few years ago I decided that I will start to learn some Asian language.. I chose Korean because it had the easiest alphabet (grammar is a different story 🙂 ). Finally came time to cook something Korean. Today I made 짜장면 and it’s delicious. ( couple days ago i also made pumpkin spice latte and it was also very very good. ). As you know there’re many people in web “offering” recipes for same dishes as yours., but yours are more refined, well prepared etc. Definitely i’m going to try your other recipes.
    Sorry for my english

    Reply
  61. Hi this is the first time I’ve stranded in your blog LoL because I was randomly googling for korean food recipe and luckily I hit on your blog, well about the black bean paste noodle or 자장면
    I’m having difficulties found it on my town where I’m living right now (I’m living in the 2nd largest city in Indonesia known as ‘City of Heroes’) okay…okay back to topic 🙂

    here in my town there’s many K-Culture happening everywhere from schoolgirls and boys to middle aged woman or 아쭈마 heheh you can see it for yourself when you had a chance to visit my city 😀
    but unfortunately I still didn’t found the black bean paste sauce displayed on well known supermarket in my city, I tried to search it on “imported goods” section but still can’t find it, I guess that made them precious enough to acquire, I’ve already tried the instant noodles version of this gourmet but it didn’t good enough to pleasure my taste buds, well if you can help me with the recipe for making the black bean sauce it would be helpful

    Reply
  62. Jjajang is so good! I’ve only tried making it about twice… both times only mildly successful. Will give it another go, soon.

    “This may not be a good first date meal, as it can get a bit messy when eating.” <– this made me giggle quite a bit.

    Reply
    • Thanks Rosa for trying this recipe. I’m wondering why you were only mildly successful? Let me know if you have any questions! I hope your next try goes well. 🙂

      Reply
  63. Oh Sue..My God! You made my mouth water….Love jajangmyeon and yours look amazingly delicious!!! YUM! Big Congrats on Drama Fever…recently I finished watching “let’s eat” and I am still thinking about that drama…really dangerous watching it late at night hehehe
    Have a great week!

    Reply
    • Thanks Sandra! I didn’t know you are a fan of Drama Fever. 🙂 Definitely late night watching of any TV shows is dangerous when it contains food. lol 🙂

      Reply
  64. Wow! This looks great! I can’t wait to make it 🙂 Thanks for posting such beautiful photos to go along with the recipe. Now if I can only get my hands on some black bean paste…

    Reply

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