Army base soup, budae jjigae was originated during and after the Korean War, when Koreans had very little to eat. People made this dish by combining leftover Spam and hot dogs from U.S. Army facilities, and mixed it with whatever else was available. All of the leftovers were combined with water in a large pot and boiled. Nowadays, most Koreans have enough to eat, but this soup is still very popular with more varied ingredients added to it. Try it someday.
Yield: 2-3 Servings
Short Korean Lesson
- BuDae (부대) = Army Base
- GunIn (군인) = Soldier
- 1 Cup Oval Rice Cakes
- ½ Cup Well Fermented Kimchi
- ½ Cup Onion
- ½ Cup Button Mushrooms
- ½ Pack Ramyeon Noodles
- ¼ Pack Tofu
- ¼ Cup Canned Beans
- ¼ Cup Ground Beef or Pork
- ½ Can Spam
- 3 Hotdogs or Sausages
- 1 Slice American Cheese (Optional)
- 2 Green Onions
- 1 Hot Pepper (Optional)
- 6 Cups Water
- 1 Dried Anchovy Pack (or 6 Pieces Dried Anchovies)
- 3-4 Pieces Kelp (1×1 inch)
- 2 Tbsp Red Pepper Powder
- 1 Tbsp Red Pepper Paste
- 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 Tbsp Minced Garlic
- 1 Tbsp Cooking Wine (or Water)
- ⅛ tsp Black Pepper
Add 1 pack of dried anchovies (or 6 pieces of dried anchovies), 3-4 pieces of kelp, and 6 cups of water in a pot. Boil it on medium-high.
Meanwhile, combine all of the ingredients for the sauce: 2 Tbsp red pepper powder, 1 Tbsp red pepper paste, 1 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp minced garlic, 1 Tbsp cooking wine (or water), and ⅛ tsp black pepper.
Once the broth starts to boil, cook for 5 minutes, and then remove the kelp.
Boil it for another 5 minutes and take out the anchovy pack.
Break one pack of ramyeon noodles in half, slice half a can of spam into ¼ inch pieces, and slice 3 hotdogs or sausages diagonally. Prepare ¼ cup of drained beans from a can, ¼ cup of ground beef or pork, and 1 slice of American cheese.
Soak 1 cup of oval rice cakes in water and chop ½ cup of well-fermented kimchi into bite-sized pieces.
Cut the vegetables and tofu. Slice ¼ pack of tofu, ½ cup worth of button mushrooms, and ½ cup worth of onion into ¼ inch pieces. Chop 2 green onions into 1-inch pieces and 1 hot pepper thinly.
Place the hot dogs, onion, kimchi, spam, tofu, mushrooms, and beans into the broth in clumps. Place the ground beef in the center of the pot.
Spread the rice cakes over everything and pour the sauce on top of the ground beef.
Once the soup starts to boil, mix the sauce into the broth. In this step, stir the center with a spoon so that the beef does not cook into a solid chunk. Cook for 10 minutes on high.
After 10 minutes, place the ramyeon noodles, green onions, and hot peppers on top of the soup. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes on high, or until the noodles are cooked.
Place 1 slice of cheese on top of the soup and turn off the heat. Cover the lid and let it set a little until the cheese melts. I personally prefer my Budae Jjigae without cheese; however, I wanted to show you how some people add cheese to it, so the choice is yours. 🙂
Today, I just showed you a common way to make this soup, so depending on your tastes, you be creative and add other ingredients. Enjoy!
Man, I love this soup cuz everyone makes it differently and no one is doing it wrong!! 🙂
Katharine in Brussels says
Me too, I prefere budae chigaie without cheese. It’s a nice dish for that nostalgic feeling, and it’s actually a very good dish to make vegetarian with vegetarian ‘meats’ because it’s meant to be eaten with artificial meats that don’t taste like the real thing. Thanks Aeri!
Melissa B. says
YAY!!!!! I’ve been waiting for this!! It’s my fav childhood dish!!!
made it tonight.. it was great!! it turned out great even without the beans and mushrooms(couldn’t find them in our area :sad:) I love it, but 😛 my husband and his coworkers loved it more~~~!!!!!
thank you aeri^^ can’t wait to make this!
Hi Aeri, This is my husband’s most favorite korean foods! He ate this a lot when he used to go on his yearly deployments to Korea for Team Spirit. He used to call it Hot Dog jige. thanks for posting this recipe–now I don’t have to try and figure out how to make it!! Corliss 😀
I made this tonight..so delicious!! I’ve wanted to make this since I saw it on Running Man (Kim Jong Kook…!! hehe..>w<).
I'm going to study in Korea next year, so I want to learn a lot about Korean food!!
Thank you!! 😀
We tried this recipe over the weekend and it was really authentic! We used to have this in Korea all the time and have always wanted to recreate it at home. Thanks so much for the recipe! 😀
I’ll try making this soon too! I’ve just made the beef patty kalbi and that was so delicious! ^^ Thank you for your hard work Aeri unni!
I’ve been waiting for this recipe… Thanks 🙂
많이 기다린 레시피이에요.감사합니다^^ 잘 만들어볼께요^^
every time I see a budae jigae recipe I get pissed at being charge $20 at a pochan macha for this.
This stew is definitely very filling and good! I think it’ll be my go to food for when I know I have to go a long time before my next meal. I really liked it mixed w/american cheese. It made it really smooth w/o being too cheesy. Instead of spam I used vietnamese cha lua. It’s a good substitute for anyone looking for a lunch meat kind of consistency w/o the extra processing.
I just made this today^^ Soo yummy! Thank you for always posting delicious recipes.
Thank you for posting the recipe, I just made it and it came out really good !!
First off, I want to say I love your recipes! This is first place I look when I’m trying to think of something to cook for my husband.
Can you please specify exactly what kind of soy sauce to use with your recipes? For example, I used regular soy sauce with this recipe and it came out really bland. 🙁 I had to put twice the amount of sauce ingredients to make up for the blandness. I think I was supposed to use the jin gan jang? 😯
Anyway, it would be really helpful if you could specify exactly which kind of soy sauce to use with your recipes because it really makes a difference! Thanks! 😀
Aeri Lee says
Well, I don’t think that saltness of Korean soy sauce is that much different each other. As you did, you can adjust the saltness with salt or soy sauce. I use 2 typs of soy sauce. Normal soy sauce and soup soy sauce for my recipes..and each time I add link for them in the ingredient section…so you know what I use. Thanks for the suggestion. 🙂
Hi Aeri, How many people does this recipe feed? I am trying to make it for about 10 people so I wanted to know approximately how much I needed to change the recipe. 🙂
Aeri Lee says
This is for 2-3 people..so you can change the recipe … 4-5times.. thanks
Certainly one of my favourite Korean dishes, Going to make it tonight.
Thanks for the Recipe! 🙂
Greetings from Durban, South Africa.
Aeri Lee says
Nice to meet you. 🙂
That is a great choice for supper tonight. Hope you enjoy this recipe. thanks
Estrella Kim says
I just love your recipes. They are so simple and easy to follow. Thank you so much! Keep it up!^^
Aeri Lee says
Thank you very much for your comment. It gives me more energy to keep my work. 🙂