This Korean potato soup (gamjaguk) is mild and full of umami flavor. It has a delicious, clear broth, with bite-sized potato pieces.
The recipe we are sharing today is very simple and uses the umami flavors from seaweed, dried anchovies, and Dasida beef soup stock powder. This version of Korean potato soup (gamjaguk) does not have any beef in it. Gamja (감자) means potato, and guk (국) means soup. It really has a nice depth of flavor while also being a very light meal or addition to your meal.
This recipe is a great option for children due to its mildness and delicious flavor. Everyone and anyone can enjoy this soup on a cool day or any time of the year. Most Koreans have soup with their meals all year round. Yes, that means even in the middle of summer. Soup is really great to have all year round, it is filling and light. This potato soup, in particular, is a great option for all ages or spice levels!
Key features and tips
We love having this soup with our meals and not as our main meal. However, if you’re wanting it to be more of a well-rounded meal in itself, then feel free to experiment by adding other vegetables and additions to this soup. You could add in onions, tofu, drizzle in lightly beaten eggs at the end of cooking, or even add some sweet potato starch noodles (like the ones used in japchae).
You can easily transform this soup into a gluten-free or Whole30 option as well. Simply ensure that the fish sauce you are using is to your dietary standards. Also, substitute the Dasida beef powder soup stock with a mushroom umami powder (like this one) that offers the umami flavor or a beef bouillon that fits your dietary needs.
Ingredients needed to make our Simple Korean Potato Soup (Gamjaguk)
- Russet potatoes
- Rice water (see step 2 in Instructions below)
- Olive oil
- Kombu seaweed
- Dasida beef powder soup stock (or a substitute like a mushroom umami powder)
- Large-sized dried anchovies
- Ground black pepper
- Green onion
- Fish sauce
How to make this delicious potato soup
Step 1: Prep the potatoes
Remove the skins from the potatoes. Cut the potato in half lengthwise, and slice into half-moon shapes (about 1/3-inch thick).
Step 2: Save rice water
When you rinse the rice to go with this meal, drain and discard the first rinse of water. Rinse again with cool fresh water, however, save the strained water (4 cups worth).
Step 3: Soak the Kombu seaweed
Place the kombu seaweed in the rice water for about 30 minutes. Then, remove the seaweed from the rice water (save this rice water!) and slice the seaweed into thin strips.
Step 4: Toast the dried anchovies
Put a pot over medium-high heat, add the olive oil. Add the dried anchovies, and toast them for about 1 minute.
Step 5: Stir-fry the sliced potatoes & add rice water
Next, add the sliced potatoes and salt to the pot. Stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes. Then, add the rice water to the pot and allow it to come to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Remove and discard the anchovies and turn the heat down to low heat.
Step 6: Add the rest of the seasonings to the soup
Add the Dasida, fish sauce, garlic, and black pepper to the pot. Mix well. Allow the soup to continue to simmer for about 2-3 minutes.
Step 7: Stir in the green onions and strips of seaweed
Stir in the green onions and the strips of seaweed and allow to cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat. Serve and enjoy!
We like having this soup as an addition to our meal. So we will usually have it with freshly steamed rice and an assortment of side dishes and kimchi. Try this soup recipe along with our Spam and egg (buchim) recipe, and one or two of our vegetable side dishes (see below).
Side dish recipe ideas
- Spicy Korean Radish Kimchi
- Stir-Fried Poke Salad (Sallet) Stems
- Korean Spicy Stir-Fried Eggplant
- Easy Asian Pan-Fried Zucchini
- Easy Napa Cabbage Korean Kimchi – Cut-Up Kimchi
We hope you enjoy our simple and delicious Korean potato soup (gamjaguk) recipe!
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