HOW TO : homemade vegan kimchi

comments 28


so i’m finally sharing my kimchi recipe – feels like i’ve been waiting forever to share it with you !
it’s one of the recipes in my cookbook, so i thought it best to wait with the recipe until the book came out.

this might be the best recipe ever in my humble opinion, since no fish or other sea creatures have had to say bye bye to life for this to be made. instead i’m using nori seaweed (you know the one you use for sushi rolls) to get a slight oceany flavour.
i’m using the korean chili powder gochugaru, which is used in traditional kimchi, but if you can’t find that where you live – just use your favourite type of chili. i think paprika works quite well as a replacement.

kimchi can be used for so many things. i like it on rice, as a soup base, with my pasta, as topping on salads, and in grilled sandwiches. and i can’t wait to find new ways to use it – experimentation game on !

watch the video for more info !

here with best friend – miss sauerkraut.


vegan kimchi
1 napa cabbage head
2 000 ml / 8.5 cups water
200 ml / 0.8 cups salt (iodine free)
2 tbsp gochugaru (korean chili powder, find it in asian supermarkets, or use other chili powder)
6-8 garlic cloves, minced
5 cm / 2 in ginger, grated
1 nori sheet, finely chopped (optional, but recommended)
1 tsp agave syrup
1/2 carrot, julienned
3 cm / 1.25 in daikon radish, julienned
3 spring onions, sliced

– wash your hands and equipment thoroughly.
– make a 5-7 cm / 2-2.75 in long cut in the napa cabbage root. gently pull apart. repeat on both halves, making the head split in 4 pieces.
– place the pieces in a large bowl. mix the salt (iodine-free, since iodine is anti-bacterial and hence can mess up the process) with the water and pour over the cabbage pieces, so that the cabbage is covered by water.
– cover with tin foil and place something heavy on to top to keep the cabbage submerged. let sit in room temperature for 2-3 hours.
– mix the gochugaru with garlic, ginger, nori and agave syrup. fold in the carrot, daikon, and spring onions.
– remove the cabbage from the water, discard the salt water, and rinse the bowl. put the cabbage back in the bowl and add the chili mix. gently massage the cabbage with the chili, making sure that all cabbage leaves are covered.
– carefully roll the cabbage as tightly as possible and place in one big, or a couple of smaller, glass jars. make sure the jars are completely clean. leave in room temperature, without closing the lid completely (gas needs to be able to escape). after 2 days the kimchi is ready, but it’s of course possible to ferment it longer in room temperature for a stronger flavour.
– it should smell sour, not dank when ready. keep in fridge for up to… well months and months. i’ve never had mine long enough to go bad. the longest i’ve kept a batch is probably 6 months.


me and my kimchi.

do you like these how to recipes ? let me know if you want to see more of these from scratch recipes !
and don’t forget to follow me on bloglovin’ – if you want to make sure to never miss one of my posts again ^^

love // jenny


  1. Margaret Webb

    Hi Jenny,
    As always ~ enjoyed your How To video and I love your background music on your videos too! Can’t wait to try making the kimchi and sauerkraut. Just finished having my lunch- Lemon Pepper Alfredo Pasta…YUM. Thanks again for your inspiring website.

    best regards,

    • hmmm i’ve never tried those, do you know what species they are ?
      but hey go for it ! if they taste like the sea, you should be fine :D
      hope you’ll like my kimchi, i’m addicted ^^

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  3. Why iodine free salt? Thought iodised salt is the healthier option? And is there a healthy natural iodine free salt?

    • iodine is antibacterial and we want those good probiotic bacteria to be happy and ferment the kimchi, so that’s why it’s best to use iodine free salt :) all salt is naturally iodine free i believe. the salt you can buy with iodine has been enriched. which is great for us vegans, because there aren’t that much iodine in vegan food. but for fermenting purposes – use iodine free (i use a additive-free himalayan salt)

  4. Warning: a very weird question. What is the function of agave in the recipe? I only have date sirup – would it do the same or would it cause a disaster? What do you think :))

    • jennymustard

      haha not weird at all ! it’s just to add some sweetness, so i think date syrup should work just fine ! let me know what you think ! :D

  5. Melanie Bartholomaeus

    I have finished day 2 of fermentation. It seems to have dried a bit or the top and had a bit of mould on the top. Should have I covered it with more of the salt water?

    • jennymustard

      i’ve never had to cover my kimchi with salt water. it does look dry at the top, but that’s fine. however if it’s mouldy you need to throw it out. are you sure it’s mould and not just the kimchi looking dry ? just be careful and only eat it if you’re sure :) i’ve never had mine turn mouldy though. did you cover it with something and had it kept somewhere where it’s not easily contaminated ? i usually keep mine on a high shelf without close contacts to other food. hope this is of some help !

    • hi. i am korean. if kimchi is not enough salty could be mould. my mom covered kimchi with the outer leaves. the outer leaves is green and big. it is good to as a cover. and against the dryness. i think yours is not salty enough. if it is well salty its not going to dry.

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  7. Hi!
    I have just made my first kimchi and passed day 5 of fermentation. I tasted today and I have to say I’m a bit worried about the taste. Tastes very strangely sour and smells a bit unpleasant when I open the jar in the kitchen.. How can I be sure that it’s not bad? The liquid seems a bit cloudy (no apparent mold on the surface!) – is that normal?
    I have to say I really enjoy your videos – you inspire me a lot and it’s a pleasure to warch your beautiful videos.
    Thanks a lot,

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  9. Hi Jenny! I’m really excited to try this tomorrow. Just a quick question for you – yours is the only recipe that doesn’t say to rinse the cabbage after you soak it and before you add in the chili etc., Did you forget to mention to rinse it? Or does leaving the leaves salty help with the flavour?

  10. Hi jenny!
    I’ve been loving all you have been doing.
    I am new to the vegan diet, and i have decided to have a vegan diet due to previous serve stomach problems.
    I also wanted to maybe ask you for a few gluten free tips or recipe videos because i am gluten free as well.
    one more thing I needed to ask you was were to find your cook book?! I was interested in buying one, but i can’t seem to find where! thanks so much for your motivation and inspiration.

  11. Ellen Norman

    Jag gjorde detta för typ två veckor sedan. Att receptet kan hålla sig 6 månader betvivlar jag inte. Men att man kan hålla sig ifrån att äta upp allt inom tre veckor betvivlar jag starkt. SÅÅ GOTT.

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  13. Love your videos so much. Thank you for the kimchi recipe, I am going to have to make some. Keep the videos coming, how do I get a hold of your cookbook. Cheers, Michele

  14. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I can’t wait to try it. I’d love to buy your cookbook but I can only read English. :’ ( Since I have discovered you a few weeks ago I’ve made your porridge (many times) and your fettuccini with chickpea sauce. They are truly as divine in your mouth as in the beautiful photos. What an inspiration you are for good health and beauty. Thank you! Merry Christmas to you and Mr. Mustard. <3

  15. I love kimchi :) Lately I love especially water kimchi which is surprisingly very refreshing to drink.

  16. jenny, i am very proud of you !!
    l am korean. I watched your video that you making kimchi , kimbap and bibimbap.
    you make video very beautiful and it makes korean food looks very luxurious and yummy!
    these days korea is kimchi season. we make kimchi for 1year. I make kimchi with my mom 50 napa cabbage last weekend.
    thank you for every your video!
    I am a big fan of you!!!!

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