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Doenjang Gui (Grilled Meat with Soybean Paste Marinade)

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nut free
prep time: 
20 min
inactive time: 
60 min
cooking time: 
10 min
total time: 
90 min

Here is another dish that can impress your guest. Doenjang Gui (Grilled meat with soybean paste marinade) works well with any type of meat. It is exceptionally delicious when made with thinly sliced pork belly. It is also great with fish, tofu or vegetables. Soybean paste marinade is not heavy, yet the complex flavor resulting from the fermentation and aging process elevates the taste of the meat. Ginger adds a nice kick and removes the gamy smell and taste.

If you are using fish, tofu or vegetables, marination time can be just a few minutes. This dish can be pan-fried or grilled on a BBQ. You can make it spicy by adding gochujang (hot pepper paste) or gochugaru (red chili flakes).

Make it gluten free with Wholly Doenjang (Gluten Free Chemical Free Soybean Paste).

Buy Doenjang Gui ingredients online here.

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Change to: Metric US
10 ozSliced Pork (Belly or Neck) 불고기용 돼지고기 (thinly sliced (⅜”) pork belly is the best. can also use beef, chicken, fish, tofu or veggies)
2 tbsSoybean paste (Doenjang) 된장
2 tbsSugar 설탕 (or twice the amount of honey or fruit juice)
¼ Onion (Medium) 양파
Green Onion 파
½ tspGarlic (minced) 다진 마늘
½ tspGinger (minced) 다진 생강
pinch Black Pepper 후추
1 tbsCheongju, Korean Rice Wine 청주 (or red / white wine)
1 tspSesame Oil 참기름
½ tspSesame Seeds 깨 (optional)

Optional Ingredients and Substitutions
Pork: can also use beef, chicken, fish, tofu or veggies. Make sure to thinly slice the meat for the best result.
Sesame seeds: can be omitted.
Sugar: can be replaced with honey or fruit juice but use twice the amount of sugar.

Good to Know
If you are using fish, tofu or vegetables, marination time can be just a few minutes. For chicken or thicker meat, marinate for 12 hours.
You can make it spicy by adding gochujang (hot pepper paste) or gochugaru (red chili flakes).

More questions? Please leave your questions below in the comments section. We will do our best to answer as soon as we can.

Ingredient amounts in the recipe instructions are for the default serving size.
Click to enlarge photos.
Ingredient amounts in the recipe summary are for the default serving size.

1. Cut pork

If the pork is not sliced, slice as thinly (⅜”) as possible. If pork is slightly frozen, it’s easier to cut into thin slices. If the slices are too big, cut into roughly 3” squares (optional). They don’t have to be square shaped as long as the area is about that size.

image: DOENJA01.JPG

Thinly slice

  • pork

Cut into 3” square (optional)

2. Score meat (OPTIONAL)

Score both sides of the meat. Make very shallow cuts at ½” intervals diagonally across the surface and repeat to create a diamond pattern.

image: DOENJA02.JPG

Score meat

at ½” intervals

3. Prepare vegetables

Peel and chop ¼ onion. Wash and finely chop 1 green onion. Mince garlic and ginger. If it makes it easier, you can grind onion, green onion, garlic and ginger all together in an electric grinder.

image: DOENJA03.JPG

Chop ¼ onion

Chop 1 green onion


  • garlic
  • ginger

4. Make marinade

Mix all ingredients except meat in a bowl.

image: DOENJA04.JPG

Mix all ingredients.

5. Marinate meat

Rub the marinade on both sides of the meat and massage the meat for 1-2 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (for ⅜” thick pork or beef). If your pork or beef is thicker, marinate for 2-4 hours. For chicken, marinate for at least 12 hours. For fish, tofu, veggies, marinate for 10 minutes.

image: DOENJA05.JPG

Rub marinade

Massage by hand image: clock.png 2 min

Refrigerate image: clock.png 60 min

6. Cook meat

Cook both sides of the meat on BBQ, or pan-fry on high heat without oil until the outside is nicely browned. If the meat starts to stick to the pan, add a little bit of vegetable oil. Make sure it’s cooked through inside. *If the meat is thick, you must cook on medium heat so the meat is cooked through. Then, cook on high heat to brown the surface.

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Cook High Heat image: highheat.png image: clock.png 10 min

  • until cooked & browned

7. Serve

Serve on a plate and sprinkle sesame seeds to garnish (optional). You can enjoy it with a bowl of rice or make “ssam” (wrapping a piece of meat with a dab of ssamjang (lettuce wrap sauce) in leafy lettuce).

image: DOENJA07.JPG


Sprinkle sesame seeds