Good Eats: Quinoa & Brown Rice Kimbap

by Japs Medina July 26, 2020

Good Eats: Quinoa & Brown Rice Kimbap

Being home more has definitely produced a shift in Netflix choices. If there's one thing being in quarantine has taught us, it's this: K-dramas have opened up new worlds not just in terms of knowing hard-to-pronounce K-celebrity names, but in terms of knowing another world of cuisines. 

We rummaged our kitchens for our next K-drama party for the classic Korean food: kimbap... but make it healthy. For the unfamiliar, kimbap is the Korean version of sushi but with a very distinct taste. If the Japanese love putting rice vinegar in their sushi, Koreans clap back with their staple sesame oil.

Kimbap in general is very healthy. It typically has a combination of rice, beef, egg, and a lot of veggies - that's fiber and protein all in one bite-sized roll. To up the game a bit more, we decided to switch out white rice with brown rice and quinoa.

While we're not licensed nutritionists, we know that carbs are not necessarily bad for you - in fact, your body needs enough of it to keep your energy up. The question is whether you are consuming good carbs or not, and if you are doing so in appropriate portions. But we digress.

Without further ado, we present our modified kimbap roll:



5 sheets of kim (seaweed paper)
4 cups cooked rice
½ pound beef skirt steak (or tenderloin, or ground beef)
1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks (about 1½ cup)
5 strips of yellow pickled radish (use pre-cut danmuji or cut into 8 inch long strips)
Several leaves of romaine lettuce (stalks removed)
3 eggs
3 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon brown (or white) sugar
1½ teaspoon kosher salt
2½ tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup cooked quinoa



Place freshly made brown rice in a large, shallow bowl. Gently mix in ½ teaspoon kosher salt and two teaspoons toasted sesame oil over top with a rice scoop or a wooden spoon. Let it cool down. Cover and set aside.

Do the same with the cooked quinoa.


Combine the carrot with ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Mix well and let it sweat for five to 10 minutes. Heat pan and add a few drops of oil. Squeeze out excess water from the carrot then saute for about a minute. Set aside.


If you are using skirt steaks, trim the fat and slice into ¼ inch wide, 3 to 5-inch strips. Put the strips into a bowl and add two teaspoons soy sauce, one minced garlic clove, ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, one tablespoon plus one teaspoon brown (or white) sugar, and two teaspoons toasted sesame oil. Mix well and set aside to let the beef soak in the marinade.

After letting it sit for a while, cook it in a pan over medium high heat.


Crack three eggs in a bowl and add ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Beat it with a fork and remove the stringy chalaza. Drizzle a few drops of oil on a heated 10 to 12-inch non-stick pan. Wipe off the excess with a paper towel so only a thin sheen of oil remains. Turn down the heat to low and pour the egg mixture into the pan. Spread it into a large circle so it fills the pan.

When the bottom of the egg is cooked, flip it over with a spatula. Remove from the heat and let it cook slowly in the hot pan for about five minutes, keeping the egg as yellow as possible, not brown. Cut it into ½ inch wide strips.

Rolling the kimbap

Place a sheet of kim on a bamboo mat with the shiny side down. Evenly spread about ¾ cup of cooked brown rice over top of it, leaving about two inches uncovered on one side of the kim. Spread a thin layer of quinoa on top next. Remember to do it in this sequence as quinoa does not bind well.

Place the beef, carrot, yellow pickled radish strip, a few egg strips, and spinach in the center of the rice.

Roll as you would roll sushi. Cut into pieces using a sharp wet knife to prevent rice from sticking. 

Serve and enjoy!

(Recipe adapted from Maangchi) 

Japs Medina
Japs Medina


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