Quick Kimchi

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I am going to preface this recipe right off the top! THIS IS NOT TRADITIONAL KIMCHI AND I KNOW IT. This recipe is ready in a few hours as apposed to a few days, though it does get better with each passing day. My recipe for Quick Kimchi, is what you may consider a cheater recipe or a life hack type recipe. But whatever you might want to categorize it as, I am here to tell you it is tasty!

Quick Kimchi

Kimchi is a Korean dish called a Banchan – or side dish. It is sort of somewhere in the condiment world between a sauce and a veggie dish. It is used much in the same way Sauerkraut, it can be eaten on it’s own or used to enhance another meal. It is a fermented dish that brings a lot of – pungent – flavor to a meal. There are about as many Kimchi recipes out there as there are people who make it. Many Korean families hand down their recipe generation to generation. Fermented foods are very good for your gut health, as they are full of probiotics and Kimichi is packed with them.

Quick Kimchi

It is important that you use Napa cabbage for this recipe. It’s is not just for the desired flavor but also because Napa cabbage has different qualities than green cabbage. Specifically the tenderness that allows it to stand up to the acidity of fermentation and gives Kimchi the texture you are expecting.

Quick Kimchi

This particular recipe will make around a gallon of kimchi. I like to use two 64oz mason jars. If you do not have jars this size, you could use four Quart jars instead, though it’s better to use the bigger ones if you can. The more space it has to worth together and build up the fermentation liquids.

Quick Kimchi

You can eat this all sorts of ways. We really enjoyed it on a Korean version of a Rueben. I used rye bread, cheddar cheese, pastrami, kimchi, and spicy mayo to make the layers. It was really quite tasty.

Now Let’s Get Cookin’!


Quick Kimchi

A shortcut to the classic and simple napa cabbage Kimchi that is ready in a few hours instead of a few days or longer.
Course Condiment, Side Dish
Cuisine American, Korean
Keyword cabbage, carrots, fermented, kimchi, napa cabbage, quick kimchi, red bell peppers, sambol
Prep Time 10 minutes
Resting Time 5 hours
Servings 1 gallon



  • 4 cups Napa Cabbage cut into 1inch ribbons
  • ½ Coarse Salt
  • 2 cup Carrots julienned
  • 1 cup Red Bell Pepper juilienned
  • 1 cup Green Onion chopped
  • 1 tbsp Fresh Garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp Fresh Ginger grated
  • 2 tbsp Sambol
  • 1 tbsp Dried Minced Onion
  • ¼ cup Brown Sugar
  • ¼ cup Rice Wine Vinegar
  • ¼ cup Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Fish Sauce


  • Add cabbage to colander in a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and add enough water to cover cabbage. Let sit for one hour.
  • Drain water and rinse cabbage. Transfer to bowl. Add carrots, bell pepper and green onions. Toss to combine
  • In a food processer, add remaining ingredients. Puree until mostly smooth. Pour over mixed veggies. Use your hands to massage into the veggies.
  • Begin to pack the coated veggies into the mason jars. Pressing it all in as tightly as you can. Secure lid. Let sit in a cool dry place for at least 4 hours before eating. Once you open the lid, store in the refrigerator (up to 30 days).

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Estelle Forrest self-published this cookbook after a lot of playing around in the kitchen. You can purchase your own copy here:


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6 thoughts on “Quick Kimchi

  1. I love this quick idea. I’m always nervous about “fermenting food” for days or weeks. I never know if it’s really safe. As soon as I find out what symbol is , I’m trying this. Looks beautiful too.

  2. I do like kimchi but I’ve always thought it would be a faff to make. This sounds easier, although I did have to google some of the ingredients.

  3. Estelle, this sounds interesting. I do remember reading that fermented foods are good for gut health. I’m a sour crout girl.
    Visiting today from SSPS 280 #23

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