One-Pan Korean Beef Japchae

When made right, beef noodle stir-fries can be a thing of beauty. And, with just a few simple ingredient swaps and the right cooking techniques, you can enjoy a different take on the dish come dinnertime. These one-pan Korean beef japchae noodles are the perfect example of when a couple of select switches take a beef stir-fry to a whole new level.

10 minutes + soaking
15 minutes

200g (7 oz) Korean dried sweet potato noodles* 

2 tsp sesame oil, plus an extra 1 tsp for drizzling at the end

300g (10.5 oz) bulgogi beef* or rump or sirloin steak, thinly sliced 

1 tbsp vegetable oil 

1 brown onion, thinly sliced 

1 carrot, julienned 

2 small capsicums (bell peppers), deseeded, finely sliced

300g (10.5 oz) sliced mixed mushrooms, e.g. shiitake, oyster and wood ear (or just use sliced button mushrooms)

100g (3.5 oz) baby spinach

1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted, plus extra to serve



150ml ( 5 fl oz) soy sauce 

1 tbsp honey 

1½ tbsp white sugar 

1 tbsp Korean corn syrup* 

1 tbsp sesame oil

½ tsp ground black pepper

1 garlic clove, finely grated 

  • Step 1

    Soak the dried sweet potato noodles in room temperature water for 1 hour or until bendy and pliable. Cook them in boiling water for 3 minutes or until just tender, then rinse under cool running water to prevent them from cooking further. Drain well, then transfer to a large bowl. Drizzle in 2 teaspoons of sesame oil and mix through. This will ensure the noodles don’t clump together while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. Set aside.

  • Step 2

    Add the ingredients for the marinade into a large bowl. Add the beef slices and gently mix until evenly coated in the marinade. 

  • Step 3

    Place your wok over high heat, then drizzle in the vegetable oil. Add in the onions and the marinated bulgogi beef, along with the marinating liquid. Spread the beef out in the pan until it just starts to colour.

  • Step 4

    Next, add the carrot to the wok. Stir-fry for 1 minute until just tender, then add the capsicum and mushrooms. Stir-fry for another minute until tender. Add the noodles to the wok and gently combine with the other ingredients.

  • Step 5

    Add the spinach to the wok and continue to stir-fry for 1 minute until just wilted. Turn off the heat then add in the extra sesame oil and sesame seeds.

  • Step 6

    Divide among serving bowls and sprinkle with extra sesame seeds.

  • Notes

    The noodles used in this recipe are Korean sweet potato noodles. They are sold dried and are made from sweet potato starch and water, making them gluten-free. They have a grey-ish tint to them and go translucent when cooked.


    Pre-sliced bulgogi beef is available at some Asian grocers and markets. You can swap it for rump or sirloin steak though if you can’t get hold of it. 


    Korean corn syrup is made from corn starch and is used to add a slight sweetness to dishes, as well as texture. You can find it in most Asian or Korean grocers.

Hey Foodie. So glad you're here. Let's hav some fun making delicious food. Hey Foodie. So glad you're here. Let's hav some fun making delicious food.

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