Myeochi Bokkeum (Candied Mini Anchovies) 멸치볶음

Myeolchi Bokkeum (“Myeolchi” means anchovy, “Bokkeum” means pan-fried) is a traditional Mit-Banchan that is still widely loved today. “Mit” means bottom or foundation. “Banchan” is a side dish served with rice at every meal. So Mit-Banchan means fundamental side dishes served at every meal.

A typical Korean meal consists of a bowl of rice, a main dish, a soup or stew and a few different banchans. By having pre-made Mit-Banchan’s in your fridge, you don’t have to cook several side dishes for every meal. People often make a big batch of Mit-banchan and keep it in the fridge for weeks. Then it’s served at daily meals along with other freshly made banchan’s. Mit-banchan is usually saltier than other banchan’s, so it’s eaten a little bit at a time, with rice. The saltiness preserves the dish for a long time.

Myeolchi Bokkeum is salty but it has really nice sweetness to it, so even kids love it. It’s a great way to enjoy anchovy which is high in calcium. It’s also popular as a lunch box item because it can be served as it is right out of fridge.

This recipe features very fine anchovies called “Jan-Myeolchi” (“Jan” means tiny or fine, and “Myeolchi” means anchovy) which can be found in Korean markets. Sometimes green chili peppers or nuts are added. Medium-sized anchovies can be used as well but the seasoning is usually less sweet and gochujang or gochugaru is often added to create a spicy version.

Myeolchi Bokkeum, Candied Mini Anchovies

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Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Korean
Servings 20


1 Non-stick pan


  • 2 cup Dried anchovies (fine mini size)
  • 2 TBS Vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp Water
  • 1 tsp Soy sauce Depending on the saltiness of anchovies, you may want to increase the amount a bit.
  • 3 TBS Sugar Can reduce sugar if you like
  • 3 TBS Mulyeot (Korean Malt Syrup) Or use rice syrup
  • 1 tsp Sesame seeds


  • 1/3 cup Roasted nuts Chopped, your favorite type, optional
  • 1 tsp Garlic Optional


  • Optional step: Place anchovies in a stainer and shake to remove powder. This is not required but gives a cleaner texture.
  • Pre-heat a non-stick pan. Add vegetable oil.
  • Optional: You can add garlic with oil and cook for 30 seconds. But I personally skip garlic often.
  • On lower medium heat (e.g. 4 our of 9 levels) cook anchovies while stirring frequently. Be patient and cook until anchovies turn golden and completely dry and slightly crispy. If you do it on too high heat, it will burn.
  • Turn off the heat. Add water, soy sauce, sugar and mix thoroughly.
  • Turn back on the heat. On low to low-medium heat, melt all the sugar without burning.
  • Turn off the heat. Add mulyeot (korean malt syrup), roasted chopped nuts (optional) and sesame seeds.
  • Transfer to a airtight container immedicately as they will get harder and clump together as they cool.
  • Store in a freezer and thaw out or microwave for 10-30 seconds before serving. (But do not over microwave. It will burn the anchovies fast.)
    You can store in the fridge for about a week or in a freezer for months.

Myeolchi Bokkeum, Candied Mini Anchovies, is widely loved banchan (Korean side dishes) among Koreans. These are great for any meals, lunch boxes and even on salads! The only problem is it’s hard to stop eating. It is a salty dish so eat a small amount with rice if you can control yourself. #koreanrecipe #banchan #anchovies

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