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Healthy Dinner: Vegan Korean Burrito Bowl


Healthy Dinner: Gluten Free Vegan Korean Burrito Bowl
We’ve all seen Korean tacos and burritos by now–or at least in places like New York, Brooklyn, LA, and Portland, Oregon. You might think that it’s a weird food fad, born out of demand for the trendy, but I actually think its roots are pretty authentic. There are a lot of Koreans and Mexicans who work together in the restaurant industry, so naturally there are a lot of “family meals” that the staff prepare and eat together…and so, someone pretty soon had to figure out that Mexican flavors and Korean flavors go hand-in-hand like peanut butter and jelly.

While this Korean Burrito bowl may not be strictly Korean or strictly Mexican, it’s absolutely delicious. The sharpness of the kimchi is mellowed by the hearty beans and veggie medley and creamy tahini dressing, in one beautiful harmony! It’s not too spicy and so savory and umami-rich. Once you try it, you’ll want to keep making it again and again!

Vegan Korean Burrito Bowl


Prep Time: 05 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Yield: 1 bowl
  • 1 cup cooked rice (brown or white)
  • 3/4 cup kimchi
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 small carrot, chopped
  • 1 plum tomato, chopped (or 1/2 medium tomato)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup broccoli, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (like Cholulah)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp tahini
  • as needed water
  • to taste sea salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 stalk green onion, chopped
  • 4-5 white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin


1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large frying pan with lid. When oil is hot, add onions and carrots and stir lightly to coat. Add the lid and cook for about 6 minutes until onions are translucent.
2. Add garlic and broccoli and stir. After about thirty seconds, add a bit of water to release steam and close with lid. Cook for a few more minutes.
3. Add green onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, cumin, black beans, and stir. Add soy sauce and Mexican hot sauce, and combine. Cook covered for another 4-5 minutes until all vegetables are cooked through. Turn off heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together equal parts tahini and water, and add nutritional yeast, salt and pepper to taste.
5. to assemble, add rice to the bottom of the bowl. Add bean medley and kimchi, then drizzle with tahini dressing. Garnish with more chopped green onions or sesame seeds if desired. Bon appetit!

Photo: Peaceful Dumpling

Juhea Kim
Originally from Portland, Oregon, Juhea now lives in NYC with her Oreo cookie cat, Zeus. When she is not writing, she enjoys running in Central Park, yoga, and teaching Barre classes. Follow Juhea on Instagram @peacefuldumpling, Google+ and Pinterest.
  • Yummy-looking recipe, Juhea! Okay, questions: my instinct would be to use sesame oil instead of olive for more Korean flavors, or would that overpower the dish? Also, do you make your own kimchi? If not, what are your recommendations for getting vegan kimchi? You are my vegan Korean cooking guru, just so you know! Next let’s do jjajangmyeon, okay? 😉

    • Juhea Kim

      what a great question! as a matter of fact, we don’t cook with sesame oil in Korean cooking. Typically Koreans cook with vegetable oil and then sesame oil is added either near the end of heat cooking, or after removing from heat. In many bowl type of dishes like bibimbap, sesame oil is added at the end–but for this dish I preferred tahini, which seems to go better with black bean medley.
      Kimchi- I buy them! no unmarried Korean gal would just make her own kimchi. 🙂 you can find vegan kimchi most often at places like Whole Foods. Sunja’s is a vegan brand, I believe. I’ve found that vegan kimchi at these western markets are not as pungent but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, in my book. I can’t believe you know jjajangmyeon, too–you’re so funny! I’ve made some really good jjajangmyeon in the past, just haven’t done it in several years. I should make it again now that it’s colder! 🙂

      • Aaah, I’ve been doing it wrongly for 5 years?!? Welp, live and learn I suppose. Thanks for answering my questions Juhea. I’ll have to try WF for the vegan kimchi. Our Korean market here in StL had Pulmuone brand vegan kimchi ONCE but I’ve never found it there again. We can talk KFoods any time, friend–best food on Earth! <3

  • Cara’s Healthy Cravings

    My idea of the perfect meal! Especially because it includes kimchi!

  • Kimchi is life! I love eating things in big ass bowls!

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