Best Food Pairings with Kimchi

As South Korea takes center stage with its world-renowned groups like BTS and Blackpink, it’s no surprise that the country’s food culture is also gaining attention across the globe. And if there is one dish most of you will think of first when you hear South Korea, it would probably be none other than kimchi!

Kimchi is a type of fermented spicy condiment that not only makes dishes more flavorful but also makes them extra nutritious. This spicy fermentation made up of cabbage, chili peppers, onions, and garlic had its roots in Korea. Most of the time, this is served as a form of side dish. It is also commonly used in different traditional dishes of the country.

But while kimchi tastes great when enjoyed on its own, the secret to fully experiencing its texture and taste is to pair it with the right foods. Mind you, not all dishes go well with kimchi.

To ensure that you don’t make any gastronomical mishaps, the following are some of the top picks that go best with kimchi:


The savory and rich taste of eggs and the bold flavors of kimchi are like a match made in heaven. To give it a twist, you can try adding some kimchi to your usual scrambled eggs, omelet, or frittata to relish a more palatable breakfast or even snack.

Grilled or Fried Chicken

Chicken is one of the most versatile proteins you can pair well with your kimchi. It doesn’t matter if you plan to grill some drumsticks you can eat for dinner or if you want to fry up chicken tenders to munch on while watching your favorite ball game, kimchi will surely make your chicken dishes extra exciting. Of course, if you’re not that fond of spices, make sure you opt for a milder kimchi variety.

Barbecued or Grilled Meats

Barbecued or grilled meats are the most natural and popular partner that kimchi can ever have. The savory and smoky flavors of meat BBQs go well with the spicy and tangy condiment. Why not add some kimchi to your barbecue spread to experience the difference in flavor that is nothing like anything you’ve tried before?


Noodles are an ideal neutral base that allows kimchi to truly shine and stand out. Kimchi is an amazing addition to all types of noodle dishes, from the heartier choices including soba and udon to the usual wheat-based thin noodles.


Rounding up this list of the best food pairings with kimchi is none other than rice, a classic accompaniment for the condiment for all the good reasons. The starchy texture and the neutral flavor of kimchi balance out the tanginess and spiciness.

This kind of combination is guaranteed to be a big hit, whether you mix kimchi with rice in a stir-fry or just add the condiment as a topping for a steaming bowl of rice.

The Bottom Line

Always consider the complementary textures and flavors to identify the best food pairings with kimchi. This way, you can delight in the fullest potential of this unique condiment.

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