How to Make Kimchi!

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Kimchi is a delicious, healthy & beautifully classic Korean dish. There are so many different ways to make a Napa cabbage kimchi, but here is my take on it. My inspiration comes from my mom’s recipe (thanks momma!), but I added a little bit of my flare to it, too.

Please note this is not a vegan recipe and it’s also a REALLY spicy kimchi, so if you need to bring the heat down, don’t use as much red pepper powder! Ok, now let’s get down to business (accidental Mulan reference there…).


  • 4 Napa cabbage, chopped
  • 13 garlic cloves, diced
  • 5 green onions/scallions, diced
  • 1/2 cup dashida (beef or seafood soup stock powder)
  • 1/2 cup red pepper powder
  • 1 Tbsp. ginger powder
  • 2 Tbsp. roasted sesame seeds
  • 4 Tbsp. hot pepper paste
  • 1/2 cup salted shrimp
  • 1/2 cup fish sauce

Other important items you will need:

  • Extra large bowl or 2 large bowls
  • Water
  • 1 cup Salt
  • Colander(s)
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Clean, empty glass jar(s) with lids – Large pickle jar or several mason jars

All of the food ingredients can be found at your local Asian market. And for full transparency you guys, I actually bought the ‘wrong’ red pepper powder because, I don’t know, I am an idiot or something. But in all seriousness, I MEANT to buy Korean red pepper flakes (comes in a bag & is a dark red) but for some reason I bought normal red pepper powder? I used it anyway in this recipe, so I’d say you can use either when you make this.

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

First, roughly chop all four Napa cabbage. Place pieces in an extra large bowl or two large bowls if you don’t have a bowl large enough to fit it all. Then fill with water & add the salt. I also set my colander on top of the cabbage to make sure it was all submerged. Next, brine the cabbage for two hours, and mix it up halfway through to make sure each leaf gets maximum attention.

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

Next, drain & rinse the cabbage. Then, set it in the colander for 30 minutes to let any remaining water drain out. You want it as dry as possible.

While you’re waiting, you can start making the kimchi paste in a bowl. Add the diced garlic, green onions, ginger powder, soup stock, red pepper powder, sesame seeds, & hot pepper paste. Don’t mix yet!

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul
How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

For the final section of making kimchi, I HIGHLY recommend going outside. If you so choose, take your cabbage, kimchi paste, fish sauce, salted shrimp, rubber gloves, & jars with you.

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

Next, add the fish sauce & salted shrimp to the kimchi paste. Put on those rubber gloves and mix it all together in the bowl.

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

In a separate bowl, add approximately 1/3 of the cabbage & a handful of the kimchi paste. Mix and massage until all the leaves are coated. Continue until all the cabbage and all the paste is mixed together.

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

Finally, stuff your jars with the Napa cabbage kimchi! I like to put a piece of plastic wrap over the jar mouth, then seal it tightly with the lid (helps the smell of the kimchi stay in the jar!).

You can eat it right away, but I let the kimchi sit in the back of the refrigerator for about two weeks to ferment before I really start eating it. Take what you want as you need it, but make sure to press the kimchi back down into the liquid of the jar to keep it preserved.

I hope you enjoy it! In my biased opinion, it’s one of the best kimchi’s I have ever had, but let me know in the comments below what you think!

How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul
How to make kimchi - A recipe from Novaturient Soul

How to Make Kimchi!

Prep Time 3 hours
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Korean


  • 4 Napa cabbage
  • 1/2 c fish sauce
  • 1/2 c salted shrimp
  • 1 Tbsp ginger powder
  • 2 Tbsp roasted sesame seeds
  • 4 Tbsp hot pepper paste
  • 1/2 c red pepper powder
  • 13 garlic cloves, diced
  • 5 green onions, diced
  • 1/2 c beef soup stock


  • Cut cabbage, then brine in salted water for two hours.
  • Rinse & drain cabbage. Allow to drain 30 minutes.
  • Mix together green onion, soup stock, ginger powder, red pepper powder, garlic, sesame seeds, hot pepper paste, fish sauce, salted shrimp in a bowl.
  • Mix together cabbage and kimchi paste until every leaf is covered.
  • Place kimchi in air tight jars.


See full post for detailed instructions.