This Korean Spicy Tofu Jjageuli with Tuna has everything you want if you are a spicy food lover with an extra tuna flavor! It’s spicy, pungent, full of texture and perfect with rice! This one pot saucy meal is super tasty, easy to make, and surprisingly affordable!
what is korean jjageuli?
Jjageuli is a Korean dish that’s like a cousin to Korean stew, however it differs in the overall texture and consistency. Jjageuli has more of a sauce consistancy rather than a stew. Reasoning behind this is so that it can be topped on rice when served. And of course, the recommended way of eating jjageuli is to mix well with rice, simliar to how Koreans eat curry with rice.
where did jjageuli originate?
Jjageuli is said to have originated from the Chungcheong Province in south Korea. It is typically made with pork and vegetables and known to be spicy, salty, saucy meal. Today there are many variations of Jjageuli and became a popular dish among spicy food lovers in Korea.
how do you make spicy tofu jjageuli with tuna?
You don’t need a lot of ingredients for Jjageuli. Prepping your protein and vegetables and making the sauce ahead of time will be a big help when cooking.
- Drain the can tuna, set aside.
- Prep veggies, dice, chop and mince as needed.
- Measure and combine the sauce ingredients.
- Heat pan and stir fry aromatics with tuna. Add sauce and stir fry a bit.
- Add vegetables, tofu, and water into pot. Bring to boil.
- Simmer and garnish.
- Time to enjoy!
can you use different type of protein and veggies?
Yes you can use pork, beef or even spam as protein. I also suggest potatoes and radishes or anything that can be diced and can come out soft after simmering.
what are some tips on making jjageuli a success.
- Dice everything bite size. Since you will be mixing it with rice, you want the ingredients to be small enough to scoop and eat without having to cut or slice.
- Don’t overcook Jjageuli. You want to keep some texture so that you can enjoy it to the fullest. It’s nice to have soft and crunchy texture with rice.
- Use minimal amount of water. If you use too much water, your jjageuli may end up as a soup and you will have a runny rice meal.
- Try to use a small pot or a flat pot. I don’t recommend using a big pot for jjageuli to avoid overheating and burning.
- Keep your eye on the pot and don’t walk away during cooking. Jjaeuli is a delicate dish since it has minimal amount of water. It will be safe to stay with the pot the whole cooking time so you can control the temperature and stir as needed.
can you make this recipe less spicy?
Yes you can make this dish less spicy by reducing the gochujang, however with tuna, it made it less fishy from being spicy. So if you want less spicy Jjageuli I suggest using a different protein than tuna.
can you use fresh tuna?
I recommend using the Korean can tuna. It is very convenient to use, without having to measure, cut and getting your hand dirty. I also think the canned tuna had slightly different texture which helped the end result. But if you are a real tuna lover, I say go for it. Just be mindful, the final texture and flavor may be different from this version.
where can you find Korean canned tuna?
You can find Korean canned tuna from Korean grocery store or Asian market. Some even carry them online. I like to use either the Dong Won brand or the Ottogi brand. Dongwon’s Tuna in LIght Standard flavor was used for my version. I believe some come in kimchi flavor, jjajang flavor and vegetable flavor so make sure you read the label when purchasing!
what is the best way to eat spicy tofu Jjageuli?
The best way to eat jjageuli is mix it with short grain rice!! The spicy, savory sauce will go perfectly well when mixed with hot fresh rice!! You can pair it with kimchi, fried egg, and other Korean side dishes.
how can i store spicy tofu and tuna leftovers?
You can store Left over Jjageuli in the fridge for about 2 days. The sauce will thicken as it solidifies. You can add a bit of water to loosen up the sauce when reheating.
if you like spicy dishes, check out the following recipes!
- SPICY KOREAN RICE CAKE WITH CABBAGE, TTEOKBOKKI
- SPICY SALMON WITH SHISHITO PEPPERS
- HAEMUL SUNBUDU JJIGAE/ SPICY TOFU STEW WITH SEAFOOD,
- Spicy Korean Squid Stew, Ojingeo Jjigae
did you like this spicy jjageuli dish?
Did you try making this dish and enjoyed it? Love to see your creation! Tag me in your creation on Instagram! and tag me @seasonedbyjin
Spicy Tofu Jjageuli with Tuna
- 1½ Tbsp neutral oil
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 1 can tuna (150g) I used Dong Won Tuna Light Standard
- 3 cloves garlic mince
- 2 Tbsp sake
- 1 cup zucchini, diced
- ½ cup shiitake mushroom, chopped
- 8-9 oz tofu, firm dice
- 1 cup water
- 1½ Tbsp gochujang Korean red pepper paste
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ Tbsp doenjang Korean soy bean paste
- 2 Tbsp Guk ganjang Korean soup soy sauce, I used Sempio
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- 1 serrano pepper slice
- 1 finger red pepper slice
- 1 stalk scallion chop
- 1 tsp sea salt depends on your preference and saltiness of your gochujang and doenjang.
- Empty can of tuna into a small strainer and drain liquid. Let it sit for about 5 mins.
- Chop and slice all veggies. Chop tofu and mince garlic. Set aside.
- Combine sauce ingredients into a small bowl. Set aside.
- Heat pan on medium high heat and add oil. Add onion and stir fry for about 2min or until fragrant. Add pinch of salt and pepper.
- Into the pot, add garlic, tuna, sake and stir fry for another 2-3mins. Then add sauce and stir fry for 1min.
- Add rest of veggies, tofu and water. Bring to boil and cook on medium heat for 9-10min. Then lower heat and simmer for 6-7mins. Stirring occasionally.
- Can add more salt as needed. I used 1tsp sea salt. Garnish with serrano pepper, finger red pepper and scallion.