Bibim Guksu (Korean Spicy Cold Noodles) is the perfect dish for the summertime that is refreshing, flavorful, and most of all takes less than 10 minutes to make! Made with delicious thin wheat noodles smothered in a sweet and spicy gochujang-based sauce, this cold noodle dish has a delightful texture and taste, best served with fresh cucumber and kimchi.
What is Bibim Guksu?
Cold noodles have always been my favorite dish to indulge in throughout the summer. Korean cold noodles come in many different kinds, with or without the broth. Bibim Guksu, which translates to mixed noodles, is one of the most popular dishes in Korea, especially in the summertime.
It is made with thin wheat flour noodles called somyeon (소면) that is light yet has an incredibly appetizing texture when served in a broth or coated in sauce. Due to its thin texture, these noodles are cooked in just 3 minutes, which is then cooled in a bowl of ice water, to be smothered in a rich spicy-sweet Gochujang sauce that is also very easy to make.
The simplicity of this dish makes it to be my go-to dish for the summer, and not to mention its incredibly delicious taste and texture. It is incredibly refreshing when served with a handful of julienned cucumber and kimchi. You can also add more vegetables to your liking, such as lettuce, cabbage, carrot, cherry tomatoes, etc.
Each bite of this dish is truly a burst of flavor with its perfectly seasoned noodles coupled with fresh vegetables. It can also be classified as a cold noodle salad when more vegetables are added, and I’m confident to say it is one of the most addictive dishes from Korean cuisine.
How to make Bibim Guksu
As mentioned earlier, the appeal of this dish is that it’s incredibly delicious yet so easy to make. The only cooking process is for the noodles, which can be simply prepared in less than 5 minutes (3 minutes being the actual cooking time). It also calls for a handful of ingredients that should be already in your kitchen. Here is a list of ingredients you will need:
- Somyeon (thin wheat flour noodles). A visual reference can be found here. It’s found in the noodle/rice aisle in Korean grocery stores, but you can also use the Japanese kind (somen) as well.
- Gochujang-based sauce, which is easily made from scratch with:
- Gochugaru (Korean red chili powder), sugar, sesame seeds, minced garlic, mirin, Gochujang (Korean red chili paste), soy sauce, Oligodang Syrup (or honey), vinegar, and sesame oil.
- Possible toppings include a soft-boiled egg, cucumber, kimchi, lettuce, cabbage, carrot, cherry tomatoes, and other vegetables of your choice. My personal favorite combination includes a soft-boiled egg, cucumber, and kimchi!
Essential tricks and techniques
Although this dish is delightfully simple to make, there are a few tips I can share to make the most perfect batch of Bibim Guksu:
- Prepare the base sauce in advance. This will allow the sauce to thoroughly together and maximize the flavor as the other ingredients are being prepared.
- Arrange a bowl of ice water before the noodles are fully cooked. This will ease the process and ensure the noodles have a perfect texture that is slightly chewy and delectable to your taste buds. It’s important to use very cold water (preferably with added ice) to quickly transfer the noodles in, after the cooking time.
- Prepare the soft-boiled egg in advance. You can also serve a hard-boiled egg as well, but I find that soft-boiled eggs which are boiled for 8 minutes (for large eggs) are the perfect addition to these noodles.
- Be creative with the fresh toppings! My personal favorite is cucumber and kimchi, but any fresh vegetables (ones you usually put in your cold salads) will complement the dish.
And that’s it! I hope you enjoy this easy and delicious recipe, and please leave me a comment below or message me on Instagram if you have any questions. Happy cooking!
Other Korean recipes you may like:
- Korean Marinated Eggs (Mayak Eggs)
- Kimchi Fried Rice with Tuna
- Korean Shrimp Burger
- Korean Egg Drop Sandwich
- Kimchi Udon Noodle Stir Fry
- Tteokbokki (Korean Spicy Rice Cakes)
Bibim Guksu (Korean Spicy Cold Noodles)
- 2 servings (200g) somyeon (thin wheat noodles)
- 4 tbsp Gochujang (red chili paste)
- 3 tbsp white vinegar
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp Oligodang Syrup, or honey
- 2 tbsp mirin (sweet rice wine) can be skipped if unavailable
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp Gochugaru (red chili powder)
- 2 tbsp white sugar
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 tbsp cucumber julienned
- 2 tbsp aged kimchi chopped
- 1 soft-boiled egg boiled for 8 minutes and cooled
- sesame seeds for garnishing
- In a small bowl, combine all sauce ingredients. Mix well and set aside.
- Prepare a bowl of ice water. Boil the noodles according to package instructions, about 3-4 minutes. Drain and transfer the noodles into the ice water. Rinse in cold water until cooked, drain, and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, add the noodles and pour the sauce on top. Mix well together to thoroughly coat the noodles. Garnish with vegetables of your choice, and finish with sesame seeds. Enjoy!