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Japchae made Easy

Definitely not your ordinary glass noodle! What I find unique with Japchae and what I like most about it, is the translucent, slippery and elastic-like noodles made from sweet potato starch.  It is definitely nothing like other noodles I’ve had before and I am loving it! 

Japchae served in a bowl

What is Japchae?

Japchae is a beloved Korean dish made of sweet potato starch noodle called Dangmyeon. It is stir-fried in sesame oil with vegetables, meat, and a sweet-savory sauce.

It is a commonly served side dish at holidays and special occasions but is also enjoyed as much on any ordinary day.

The process involved in preparing traditional Japchae means each of the ingredients will have to be stir fried separately then mixed together at the end which could be a lot of work. Stir-frying the ingredient separately is believed to give each ingredient an enhanced individual flavor and texture.

Japchae in a hurry

What they say about the traditional way is probably true. But of course, if you are as running out of time or simply in a hurry, you probably would like to cut through the long individual process.

It is really not much different. Only, you add each ingredient to the pan in order and with some intervals to allow them to slightly cook first and finish all together in the end.

And from the outcome of this dish, I could not really complain. It is almost if not exactly the same as the one I have at Korean restaurants. So it is either they are also doing some shortcuts or the difference between the methods are subtle that it can be ignored because it tastes so good anyway.

Japchae served on a plate with chopstick


Ingredients for Japchae

The main ingredient is sweet potato starch noodles or dangmyeon. 

Beef is commonly used as meat and should be marinated for at least a couple of minutes before cooking. A tender cut of beef like rib eye fillet is ideal.

For making the sauce and marinade, you will need soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, garlic, ground pepper, and rice wine (mirin).

To add color and flavor, you will need some vegetables like carrots, bell pepper, shiitake mushroom, spinach, and green onions.

Lastly, you may add some toasted sesame seeds and strips of fried egg white and yolk to top it off.

Ingredients for Japchae each placed in a bowl

Additional Tips for making Japchae

  • You may consider serving Japchae with Bulgogi, because that would be practical. They use almost the same marinade so you can easily make two dishes in one prep.
  • You can also use dried shiitake mushroom. Just soak them in water for a few hours beforehand. Oyster mushroom can also be used as an alternative.
  • This recipe makes enough for 6-8 servings as a side dish. It can be eaten on its own and is good for 3-4 people then. For leftovers, store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days. It usually lasts longer than that but the texture and flavor may not be the same.
  • You can have Japchae hot or cold. You can also easily warm it up in the microwave.
  • If using the traditionally long noodles, cut them a little with kitchen scissors for easy mixing and eating.


Other Korean Food to serve with Japchae

  • Bulgogi – grilled or stir-fried beef
  • Kimchi – homemade, fermented or pickled, spicy napa cabbage and daikon radish
  • Gyeran Mari – Korean-style egg rolls


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Japchae Recipe made easy
5 from 1 vote

Japchae made Easy

Try this easy Japchae recipe, a popular Korean dish of sweet potato noodle, stir-fried in sesame oil with vegetables, meat and sweet-savory sauce.
Print Rate
Course: Main Course,Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian,Korean
Keyword: japchae,japchae recipe
Servings: 6
Calories: 689kcal
Author: Bebs
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Marinating Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 30 minutes




  • 100 grams beef (rib eye fillet) - - sliced very thinly
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 cloves garlic - - minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine (mirin)


  • 2 big mushrooms - (shitake or champignon or wood ear)
  • 1 medium carrot - - julienned
  • 1 small red bell pepper - - julienned
  • 1 medium yellow onion - - sliced
  • 2 stalks green onion - - cut into 1 inch length
  • 2 cups fresh spinach


  • 1 tablespoon sesame seed
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg - - white and yolk separated


  • Combine all ingredients for beef and marinate in a bowl. Mix using spoon or hand and let it marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, cook the noodles in a pot of boiling water for 5 minutes. Do not overcook. Strain and rinse with cold water. Remove excess water and place in a big bowl. Combine soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil in a small bowl and mix until sugar is dissolved. Add to the noodles and toss well. Set aside.
  • Heat up the non-stick pan over medium-high. Add the sesame seed and stir for a minute or two until toasted. Remove from pan and transfer to a small bowl.
  • Pour the egg white on the pan and cook for a few seconds until it turns opaque and firm enough to turn. Cook the other side as well just until cooked but not browned. Transfer to a small plate. Beat the egg yolk and cook the same way. 
  • Heat vegetable oil in the pan over high heat. Squeeze out the marinade from the beef using your hands. Add the beef and stir-fry for a minute. 
  • Add the carrots and mushrooms and stir-fry for another minute. Add the onions and bell peppers and cook for another minute. Lastly, add the spinach, green onions and the remaining beef marinate (if any).  Cook for 30 seconds and then add the cooked noodles. Toss with the rest of the ingredients for 2-3 minutes until noodles are fully cooked.
  • Transfer to a large bowl or serving dish. Cut the cooked egg white and yolk into thin strips and add on top of the noodles. Sprinkle with sesame seed and serve.



  • You may use presoaked dried shiitake mushroom or oyster mushroom.
  • Serve either warm after cooking or cold. 
  • Store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-5 days.
  • Reheat in the microwave, if desired.
Nutrition Facts
Japchae made Easy
Amount Per Serving
Calories 689 Calories from Fat 324
% Daily Value*
Fat 36g55%
Saturated Fat 14g70%
Cholesterol 46mg15%
Sodium 1306mg54%
Potassium 481mg14%
Carbohydrates 76g25%
Fiber 3g12%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 15g30%
Vitamin A 5350IU107%
Vitamin C 11.6mg14%
Calcium 101mg10%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe? Tell us how it went. Tag us at @foxyfolksy or leave a comment and rating below.

This Japchae recipe was originally published in August 2015. Updated in 2019 to include new photos and additional tips. The recipe remains the same.




Bebs here! I love to cook and try new things and DIY projects! And although I think of myself as a homebody, I like seeing other places from time to time.
If you are looking for a recipe and it ain't here, make a request and I will try my best to make it for you!

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  1. Are the kcal that you include for the whole serving or is it per serving. If it says 6 servings and 689 kcal, is 689 every 1 serving? Thanks 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    Super love this recipe! Just did it today and it was a hit. Actually tastes like the japchae we ordered in one Korean restaurant we went to. Can’t wait to try your other recipes Chef Bebs. Thanks!

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