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Here’s another recipe that I experimented with my dad to create–Vegan Kimbap! Kimbap (김밥) is a Korean dish, often eaten as a snack, or taken on picnics. It looks like sushi at first glance, but the ingredients and the flavour are distinctly different.
Kimbap fillings are usually cooked and seasoned veggies, never raw fish. Although the standard traditional kimbap is not vegan (as it contains egg and imitation crab stick, or beef), it can easily be made vegan. I actually love ordering it when I’m in Korea at the kimbap stalls, where they make it fresh right in front of you. All you have to do is ask for no meat, no eggs and you have your vegan kimbap.
Today, I’m going to share how you can make vegan kimbap at home, without having to take that trip to Korea. This recipe stays true to the ingredients used in a traditional kimbap, but of course, we’re omitting the non-vegan items. We are however, using a vegan egg substitute, but this is 100% optional. My dad and I had fun experimenting with it, and just thought it would make the vegan kimbap next level by adding it in. If you want to see us testing out the vegan egg, watch this video!
*August 2020 update: the vegan egg mix we initially used from the brand JUST has recently launched a folded vegan egg. This product is a lot easier to use in kimbap, and in my opinion, is seasoned just like Korean egg would be!
The rest of the ingredients are standard kimbap ingredients: pickled radish, or danmuji (단무지), carrots, spinach and burdock root. We use white, shortgrain rice (cooked in a rice cooker for best results), and unseasoned sheets of seaweed or gim (김).
Kimbap is naturally gluten-free, and this recipe CAN be made oil-free, but as mentioned in my Bibimbap recipe, sesame oil is a commonly used ingredient for flavour in Korean cuisine. Sesame oil is an ingredient I’ll use when making Korean food because the flavour is truly unique and completes the dish.
Vegan Kimbap (with vegan egg) | gluten free, oil free
- 3 cups cooked short grain white rice
- 5 sheets of dried seaweed unseasoned
- 5 cups spinach keep in mind, this will wilt down significantly!
- 1 large carrot cut into very thin, long strips
- 5-6 strips of pickled yellow radish
- 5-6 strips of cooked burdock root here's a photo I found of what it looks like--find it any Korean grocery store
- toasted sesame oil to taste
- salt to taste
- 1/2 bottle of vegan egg we used JUST egg
- Sauté carrots over medium heat until bright orange and slightly tender. Season with salt. Remove from pan and set aside on a plate.
- Blanch spinach in boiling water, strain and press down to remove excess water. Toss with 1-2 tsp of toasted sesame oil and a pinch of salt in a small bowl.
- If using vegan egg, pour JUST liquid egg batter onto the pan, and allow to cook like a pancake, following instructions on bottle. Remove from pan, and cut into thin, long strips. You can use the pickled yellow radish as a guide for length of the strips.
- Add your rice to a large mixing bowl and toss, using a spatula, adding a little bit of salt, and optional little toasted sesame oil (about 1/2 tbsp). This step primarily helps to cool down the rice and makes rolling much easier.
- Get ready to roll! Lay out a sheet of seaweed on a bamboo mat, or just a dry, flat surface. Seaweed should be rough side facing upwards. Spread a scoop of rice onto the seaweed, using the spatula to spread it evenly across the seaweed, leaving a bit of an edge exposed on one side. You should end up covering the sheet about 3/4 of the way.
- Lay your filling ingredients on top of the rice in a line, starting with pickled radish and burdock, and laying carrots and spinach across the top. Finally, lay the vegan egg on top if using.
- Tightly roll your kimbap, sealing the end with a little bit of water as needed. Traditionally, the outside of the roll is brushed with a little bit of toasted sesame oil and additional salt for flavour.
- Slice into 8-10 pieces per roll, and enjoy.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Love & kimbap,