A Guide to Bi Bim Bop – Korean Mixed Rice

Alternate spellings: Bibimbap, Bibimbop, Bibimpap, Bi bim bap, Bi bim pap, bee beem bop, bi bim bahp

One of the most popular Korean dishes, bibimbap can be found in most Korean Restaurants around the world. As it is a “constructed” dish, there is no real “recipe”, rather it is a compilation of “mini-recipes” for each ingredient that is included in the dish. There are many versions of this dish and almost anything can be a candidate for inclusion, as long the flavors of each item compliment the others used to make the dish.

The two primary types of Bibimbap are cold (room temperature), referred to as bibimbap and most often served as a warm weather dish, and hot (hot pot), called dolsot bibimbap and usually served in cold weather.

Common Inclusions

These components can be prepared up to two days prior if kept refrigerated. When planning the amounts needed, figure on 1 to 2 ounces of each component per serving of bibimbap. The amounts on this page assume bibimbap for four.

Gochujang for Bibimbap


5 tablespoons gochujang paste
2 tablespoons mul yeut (Korean malt syrup)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
3 cloves minced garlic
1 small green onion, fine chopped
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons white (untoasted) sesame seed
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
water as needed


Mix all ingredients and thin with water until you have a thick but pourable paste. Let stand at room temperature for one hour to let the flavors blend.

Kkaesogeum (sesame salt)


1 cup sesame seeds
1 teaspoon (more or less to taste) salt


Heat a pan over low to medium heat.
Add sesame seeds and slowly toast, stirring often, until golden brown.
Remove from heat and let cool.
Place seeds in a grinder (or use a mortar and pestle), sprinkle with salt, and grind.
Place in a storage container (glass or ceramic is best).

Kong Namul (Seasoned Soy Bean Sprouts)


8 ounces fresh soy bean sprouts
1 small green onion, chopped
1/2 small carrot, shredded
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seed
salt to taste

Optional Ingredients

1/2 teaspoon coarse ground red chile pepper
1/2 teaspoon Pure roasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar or rice wine


Bring 1 quart of water to a full boil.
Add bean sprouts and return to full boil.
Cook for 1 minute then remove from heat.
Rinse immediately in cold water, drain, and then place in a medium mixing bowl.
Add all other ingredients and toss until well mixed.

Adding Optional Ingredients:

Sprinkle red chile pepper over sprouts and toss
Whisk sesame oil and vinegar/wine together then pour over sprouts and toss well.

Shigimchi Namul (Seasoned Bunch Spinach)


8 ounces bunches fresh bunch spinach(stem & leaf, not the bagged leaves)
2 small green onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon kkaesoogeum (sesame salt)
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seed


1 teaspoon sesame oil (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon Sogogi Dashida (powdered beef soup stock) instead of salt*
*(or substitute your favorite powdered soup mix or bullion)
1 teaspoon Coarse ground chili pepper (Chili flakes)


Wash spinach thoroughly in cold water.
Peel garlic.
Mince one of the garlic cloves
Sliver the other cloves
In a soup pot, bring 4 cups of water to full boil.
Completely immerse spinach in the boiling water. Remove from heat after about 30 seconds and rinse immediately in cold water.
Squeeze excess water from spinach.
Place spinach in a medium mixing bowl then add all ingredients and mix well.

Sukju Namul (Seasoned Mung Bean Sprouts)


8 ounces mung bean sprouts
1 small green onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seed
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon coarse ground red chili pepper
1/2 teaspoon rice wine or rice vinegar


Wash the mung bean sprouts in cold water.
Bring two cups of water to a full boil over high heat.
Place the sprouts into the boiling water and par boil for one to two minutes.
Remove from heat, drain, and rinse in cold water.
Place sprouts into a mixing bowl, add all other ingredients, and mix well.

Muchae Muchim or Mu-Saengchae (Shredded Radish Salad)


1 small Daikon Radish (8 to 10 ounces)
1 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Fine ground red chili pepper


Fine shred the daikon into a mixing bowl.
Sprinkle with salt, mix well, and let stand 10 to 15 minutes.
Rinse in cold water then let drain.
Add all other ingredients and mix well.

Gamja Bokkeum (Shredded and sauteed potato)


1 potato (8 to 10 ounces)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon vegetable oil for frying


Peel and shred the potato into a sieve.
Rinse shredded potato in cold water, drain, and press out excess water.
Transfer to a mixing bowl, add salt, and mix well.
Coat a pan with oil and heat over medium heat.
Add potato and stir fry about two to five minutes (until potato is just beginning to go limp, but not browned – similar to “al dente” for pasta).
Remove from heat and cool.
Note: Be careful not to overcook the potato – the shreds should be only slightly limp

Danggeun Bokkeum 당근 볶음 (Shredded and sauteed carrot)


1 or 2 small carrot (about 8 ounces)
Vegetable cooking oil

Seasoning Mix:

1 teaspoon beef broth
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce


Wash carrot in cold water and peel if needed.
Fine shred the carrot.
Mix all seasoning ingredients in a small bowl.
Very lightly oil a cooking pan and heat over medium high heat.
Add shredded carrot to pan and stir fry about 30 seconds.
Add the seasoning mix and saute about 30 seconds to one minute.
Remove from heat and let cool.

Gosari Namul (Brakken/Fernbrake/Fern Sprouts)


6 ounces (liquid packed) or 2 ounces (dried) fern sprouts

Seasoning Mix

2 teaspoons Soy Sauce
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 medium Green Onion, chopped
3 cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 teaspoon kkaesoogeum (sesame salt)
1 tablespoon Sesame Oil


For dried fern sprouts, completely cover with water and soak for 1 hour.
Drain fern sprouts and press out any excess liquid.
Mix all ingredients well and let stand about 15 minutes.
Heat a pan over medium high heat, add seasoned fern sprouts, and stir fry for three minutes

Sogogi (Seasoned Beef)


6 ounces lean beef

Seasoning Mix:

2 teaspoons Soy Sauce
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 medium Green Onion, chopped
3 cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 teaspoon kkaesoogeum (sesame salt)
1 tablespoon Sesame Oil


Slice beef into roughly 1/8 inch thick slices.
Cut the slices into strips about 1/8 inch thick by 1 1/2 inch in length.
Mix all ingredients well and let stand about 15 minutes.
Heat a pan over medium high heat, add seasoned beef, and stir fry until lightly browned (2 to 3 minutes)

Doragi Namul(Seasoned Balloon flower/Korean Bellflower)


6 ounces dried pre-cut doragi (Bellflower root)
4 tablespoons beef or chicken broth
2 medium Green or Spring onion
1 teaspoon kkaesoogeum (sesame salt)
1 teaspoon sesame oil


Soak dried doragi for one hour in cold water.
Rinse soaked doragi in cold water, then drain.
Place into a pot of boiling water and cook for ten to twenty minutes, until slightly softened.
Drain and rinse in cold water.
Place oil into a pan over medium to high heat, heat for thirty seconds.
Add doragi and stir fry three to four minutes.
Add broth and stir fry 1 additional minute.
Add cut green onion and stir fry thirty(30) seconds.
Remove from heat, cool.



1 egg per serving
1 dash salt per egg
1 dash pepper per egg


The most common version of bibimbap is topped with egg, usually poached or fried “sunny side up”, in other words the white is set but the yolk is runny.
One variation is to boil the eggs medium or hard, then peel and cut into quarters, placing the egg sections at the 12, 3, 6, and 9 o’clock positions of the serving bowl.
Another common variation is to separate the yolks from the whites, and cook each in a yellow or white “sheet” , then slicing the sheet into strips.
Cook the egg to your desire – sunny side up, over easy, medium, or hard, etc.

Building the Dish

The Rice

The most common rice preparation is simple steamed white rice. A short or medium grain calrose style white rice is the best choice.

Steamed White Rice


short or medium grain white rice
1 1/4 cups water or broth per 1 cup of rice (1 cup uncooked rice yields approximately 2 cups cooked rice)

Optional Additions:

1 tablespoon Dried peas (per cup of white rice)
1 tablespoon Beans (per cup of white rice)
2 teaspoons Barley (per cup of white rice)
2 teaspoons Oats (per cup of white rice)
1 teaspoon Black Rice (per cup of white rice)
1 tablespoon Gingko Nuts (per cup of white rice)


Choose Rice:

Use a Calrose style Short or Medium Grain white rice, although any uncooked short or medium grain plain (unflavored) white rice will work. Some types of rice are covered with talc and will need to be rinsed thoroughly prior to use. Others are vitamin enriched and do not require rinsing. Be sure to read the manufacturers label.

Prepare Rice:

If dried beans or peas will be added, soak them overnight, rinse well, and drain. Place the beans/peas into a pot of boiling water and pre-cook for about fifteen minutes. If adding gingko nuts, boil for about twenty minutes.
If adding black rice, rinse and soak this separate from the white rice to avoid turning the white rice purple. Black rice should be soaked for 2 hours, changing water every 20 minutes, then rinsed until water runs clear.
Rinse white rice thoroughly.
Place rice in a large pot or bowl and completely cover with cold water. Water level should be about 3 inches higher than the rice level.
If adding barley or oats, add and mix with rice.
Soak for 1/2 to one hour, then drain.
Add partially cooked beans/peas (if used) and mix.


Rice Cooker:

Follow manufacturers instructions.

Stove Top:

Place soaked rice in a non stick cooking pot.
Add water (1 1/4 cup water per 1 cup rice).
Bring to a full boil over high heat and cook for about 8 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium low (drop to a simmer), cover, and cook about 10 more minutes. Do not remove cover or otherwise disturb the rice.
Remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes with the cover on, then fluff gently(stir from bottom to top) just prior to serving.

Assemble and Serve


Once the rice and the desired components are prepped and ready to go, you need to assemble your dish. For bibimbap you can serve the dish with rice in the same bowl as the assorted vegetables/meats, or with the rice in a separate, smaller bowl. For the rice in version, mound the rice in the center of the serving bowl and arrange a small portion of each component in wedges pointing in to the center. Place them in alternating light and dark colors, reserving the center for meat/fish/egg. When serving rice in a separate bowl, use the same method of arranging the various components.

Dolsot Bibimbap

For dolsot bibimbap, each serving is placed in a stoneware bowl, covered, and cooked on the stove top.
Spread oil (a soybean/sesame blend is best) over the lower portion of the bowls, then place one serving of rice in each. Arrange the various components on top of the rice in the same manner as for bibimbap. Drizzle each with sesame oil, and crack a raw egg into the center of each dish. Cover and place on the stove over high heat. When you hear the rice begin to crackle (2 to 5 minutes) reduce the heat to medium and cook for another five to ten minutes, or until the egg reaches your desired “done ness”. Place the hot bowls on a protective tray and serve.