Vegan Korean Food: The Ultimate Guide

Korean food has captured the attention of foodies worldwide. Here's how to try K-Veganism.

History of Korean food

When we look back at the history of this cuisine, it has largely been developed around plant-based ingredients, with meat and dairy used sparsely or left out entirely. 

What is Korean temple food?

Tofu stews, rice soups and preserved vegetable dishes - classic temple food recipes - have had a significant influence on mainstream Korean cuisine.

Vegan everyday Korean food

Image & Recipe Credit: Okonomi Kitchen

Side dishes

Traditionally, a Korean meal isn't complete without side dishes like stir-fried or pickled veggies. Perfect for vegans!

Quick vegan dishes

Try kimbap (seaweed and rice rolls) with fillings like carrot, spinach and pickled radish. Most cafes and food stalls will offer these.

Image & Recipe Credit: My Eclectic Bites

Tips for vegan travel in Korea

While you may not always see vegan options on the menu, restaurants are usually happy to adjust their dishes if you let them know in advance.

Useful phrases for vegan tourists

 “(고기)를 빼주세요/(gogi)reul bbaejuseyo”  means “please leave out (the meat)” – depending on the dish you can replace “gogi” with seafood (해산물/hye-san mul), egg (계란/gye-ran) or any ingredient(s) you prefer not to eat.