Baek Kimchi (White Kimchi) Recipe (2024)

By Eric Kim

Baek Kimchi (White Kimchi) Recipe (1)

Total Time
2 hours, plus 2 days’ fermenting
Rating
4(80)
Notes
Read community notes

More prominent in the northern parts of the Korean peninsula, baek (meaning “white”) kimchi is considered the predecessor to today’s more commonly known red, spicy napa cabbage kimchi. (Red chile peppers didn’t arrive in Korea until the late 16th century.) Without any chile, this kimchi lets the sweet, natural flavors of the cabbage shine, with a briny pickled taste that is salty, refreshing and full of zingy ginger. If your daikon doesn’t come with any greens on top, then one bunch of Tuscan kale is a good substitute that offers wonderful bitterness and balance; just add chopped large pieces during Step 1.

Featured in: ‘If You Can Make a Salad, You Can Make Kimchi’

  • or to save this recipe.

  • Subscriber benefit: give recipes to anyone

    As a subscriber, you have

    10 gift recipes to give each month. Anyone can view them - even nonsubscribers.

    Learn more.

    Subscribe

  • Print Options

    Include recipe photo

Advertisem*nt

Ingredients

Yield:½ gallon

  • 1medium head napa cabbage (2 to 2½ pounds), any dirty outer leaves removed
  • 1medium daikon (6 to 8 ounces), plus green parts if available
  • 3tablespoons coarse kosher salt or 5 tablespoons kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
  • 1medium Asian pear, peeled, quartered and cored
  • 1small yellow onion, peeled and quartered
  • 10garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1(2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ½cup fish sauce
  • 3scallions, trimmed
  • 1small carrot, peeled (optional)

Ingredient Substitution Guide

Nutritional analysis per serving (8 servings)

60 calories; 0 grams fat; 0 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 0 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 grams polyunsaturated fat; 13 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams dietary fiber; 7 grams sugars; 4 grams protein; 1507 milligrams sodium

Note: The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Powered by

Baek Kimchi (White Kimchi) Recipe (2)

Preparation

Make the recipe with us

  1. Step

    1

    Dry-brine the cabbage: Rinse the head of cabbage under cold running water, making sure to get in between the leaves. Trim the root end off the cabbage and cut crosswise into 1-inch-thick slices, carving out the core if it’s especially big and tough. Transfer the cabbage strips to your largest bowl. If your daikon came with green tops, cut them off the daikon and add them to the bowl. Sprinkle over the salt and toss with your hands until evenly distributed. Set aside to brine at room temperature until the hard cabbage leaves shrink and become wet and limp (but are still crunchy), 1 to 1½ hours.

  2. Rinse the cabbage: Fill the bowl with cold water and swish the leaves around to rinse off the salt (and to clean off any remaining dirt). Lift the leaves out of the water and transfer to a colander. Repeat once or twice, until the cabbage leaves still taste discernibly salted, but not so salty that you can’t eat them like salad. Rinse out the bowl.

  3. Step

    3

    Make the sauce: To a food processor, add the pear, onion, garlic, ginger and sugar and process until the mixture is so finely chopped that it is almost puréed. Transfer the sauce to the empty bowl and stir in the fish sauce. Cut the scallions into 1-inch-long pieces and thinly slice the daikon and carrot, if using, into coins. Add the vegetables to the sauce. Stir to combine. Add the drained cabbage and toss with clean hands until well combined.

  4. Step

    4

    Transfer the sauced cabbage to a clean ½-gallon jar, using your hands to gently pack it down. (A few air gaps are fine; they’ll fill with liquid over time.) This amount of cabbage should fill the jar, leaving about an inch of room at the top. Top the jar with any sauce left in the bowl. Loosely close with a lid (see Tip). Wash your hands and rinse off the jar.

  5. Step

    5

    Let the jar of kimchi begin fermenting on the kitchen counter at room temperature for 2 to 3 days, “burping” it every 12 hours or so, which just means opening the lid to let out any excess build-up of gas. After this, the cabbage should have released even more of its liquid; it’s OK if the liquid doesn’t completely cover the cabbage at this point, though it may. Refrigerate the kimchi to finish fermenting until it’s sour, 2 to 3 weeks and up to 6 months, at which point it will be very, very sour and should be eaten or turned into jjigae. Check (and taste!) the kimchi every 2 to 3 days to familiarize yourself with the fermentation process.

Tip

  • Many containers work for kimchi, but some are better than others. Glass jars with plastic lids work beautifully, as do stainless steel containers with metal lids that lock into place. Plastic containers with locking plastic lids work just fine for this recipe as well. All of these can be found online or at Korean supermarkets and work well for kimchi since the lids aren’t airtight. Avoid using Mason jars with airtight lids since they can explode as gas builds up during the fermentation process.

Ratings

4

out of 5

80

user ratings

Your rating

or to rate this recipe.

Have you cooked this?

or to mark this recipe as cooked.

Private Notes

Leave a Private Note on this recipe and see it here.

Cooking Notes

cecilia

if you dont have asian pears, use any sweet apples (without the skin) or pears, kiwis and pineapples work well too. This applies to red (spicy) kimchi too.

Chris

Wide mouth mason jars are the best, and by far easiest to clean. Air tight lids? Not if you don't screw them down all the way. That way they let the gas out and keep contaminants on the outside where they belong.

Yuko

Fish sauce adds umami. Try kombu seaweed.

idontlikechickens

Absolutely! My Korean mom used to make white cabbage kimchi when we moved to United States all the time. https://www.koreanbapsang.com/yangbaechu-kimchi-green-cabbage-kimchi/

camassonia

I have made this using Maangachi's recipe. (She's on YouTube) I drain & chop the kimchee and eat it on a sandwich with mayo, melted cheese, and a over easy egg. Make sure the bread is a little toasted, and be ready for a delicious messy sandwhich. I also put the baek kimchi on rice, and also on a corn or flour quesadilla. I usually make about 4 quarts at a time, and they last a while. So incredibly worth it.

chris

Mason jars are actually the best. Tighten the lid, then back the ring off about half a turn or so. Makes a great airlock, allowing the pressure inside the jar to escape while keeping the outside air out.

Chuck

Sliced salad radishes would be a terrific substitute, plus they add a streak of color. Or perhaps pickling cucumber?

Jessie

Love how gingery this kimchi is—it was white kimchi that was my “gateway kimchi”. Hoping to make that happen for my kids, too (who like kimchi pancakes!)

Phil

Can I substitute green cabbage?

Mari Mac

How does one avoid spoiling this over the weeks of fermenting? Any tips or knowledge is appreciated.

Abby

The fermentation is itself the preservative. The "good" microbes are producing lactic acid over the weeks, and that acid prevents spoilage.

Amy

Diamond kosher salt is not a available where I live. Can someone please tell me what’s the equivalent amount using common table salt? My trials have resulted in either over salty or under salted results.

BT

Order online, but grocery stores usually stock pickling (pure) salt. Iodized table salt (with anti-caking agents too) can inhibit fermentation and isn't recommended. Quantity isn't all that important, as length of brining time and number of rinses also affect saltiness. In Step 2, the cabbage should be pleasantly salty, no more. Then taste your finished kimchi mixture before jarring it. You can add more fish sauce or salt if needed at that point.Taste as you go.

Katie

I loved how this kimchi came out. I made baek kimchi jiggae with it and I adored it. I also adore the spicy version, but this proves to me that spice doesn’t make kimchi great; it already has an amazing foundation - bright, gingery, and pleasantly sour.I’m thinking of trying a baek kimchijeon or kimchi pancake. I also saw a suggestion for eating it as a side to Korean bbq. Does anyone have other suggestions for using baek kimchi?

camassonia

I have made this using Maangachi's recipe. (She's on YouTube) I drain & chop the kimchee and eat it on a sandwich with mayo, melted cheese, and a over easy egg. Make sure the bread is a little toasted, and be ready for a delicious messy sandwhich. I also put the baek kimchi on rice, and also on a corn or flour quesadilla. I usually make about 4 quarts at a time, and they last a while. So incredibly worth it.

michelle

do you need to continue burping the kimchi when it's in the fridge? thanks!

BT

No. The frequent burping is needed in the first days of highly active fermentation at room temperature when a LOT of carbon dioxide is being produced. The fermentation then slows significantly, especially upon refrigeration.But open the refrigerated jar once or twice a week in the first weeks regardless to check the developing taste and degree of sourness. (Step 5: "Check (and taste!) the kimchi every 2 to 3 days to familiarize yourself with the fermentation process.")

chris

Mason jars are actually the best. Tighten the lid, then back the ring off about half a turn or so. Makes a great airlock, allowing the pressure inside the jar to escape while keeping the outside air out.

Chris

Wide mouth mason jars are the best, and by far easiest to clean. Air tight lids? Not if you don't screw them down all the way. That way they let the gas out and keep contaminants on the outside where they belong.

BT

You can also buy silicone Mason jar lid discs that have a "nipple" in the middle with a tiny hole in it. You use them in place of the regular metal lid disc. They allow the fermentation gas to escape without you having to worry if you put the lid on too tightly or too loosely. I use them all the time along with the glass weights you can buy to keep your fermenting vegetables submerged in brining liquid.

Faded elegance

Any preferred substitute for daikon? It’s impossible to find in my small summer resort grocery.

Chuck

Sliced salad radishes would be a terrific substitute, plus they add a streak of color. Or perhaps pickling cucumber?

Mary W

Any suggestions for fish sauce substitute? I'm allergic. Maybe just salted water?

Yuko

Fish sauce adds umami. Try kombu seaweed.

Peter L

There is also vegetarian fish sauce available

Melissa

I was wondering the same about white cabbage. Maybe we would just have to let it brine longer?

Chris

I have a garden full of white cabbage (not the Napa called for), can I use that in this recipe?

idontlikechickens

Absolutely! My Korean mom used to make white cabbage kimchi when we moved to United States all the time. https://www.koreanbapsang.com/yangbaechu-kimchi-green-cabbage-kimchi/

cecilia

if you dont have asian pears, use any sweet apples (without the skin) or pears, kiwis and pineapples work well too. This applies to red (spicy) kimchi too.

Private notes are only visible to you.

Baek Kimchi (White Kimchi) Recipe (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Pres. Lawanda Wiegand

Last Updated:

Views: 5457

Rating: 4 / 5 (51 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Pres. Lawanda Wiegand

Birthday: 1993-01-10

Address: Suite 391 6963 Ullrich Shore, Bellefort, WI 01350-7893

Phone: +6806610432415

Job: Dynamic Manufacturing Assistant

Hobby: amateur radio, Taekwondo, Wood carving, Parkour, Skateboarding, Running, Rafting

Introduction: My name is Pres. Lawanda Wiegand, I am a inquisitive, helpful, glamorous, cheerful, open, clever, innocent person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.