The Ultimate Gochujang Sauce Recipe – Foodie’s Must-Have Condiment

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Gochujang Sauce Recipe , a Korean kitchen staple, offers a unique blend of spicy, sweet, and umami flavors. This homemade recipe elevates dishes with its rich, complex taste. Key ingredients include gochujang paste, soy sauce, and honey. Quick to prepare, it’s excellent for enhancing stir-fries, marinades, or dips. With its vibrant red hue, this sought-after sauce promises to be a top pick for adding depth to your culinary creations.

Embarking on a culinary adventure often leads to unexpected, delightful discoveries. My journey with Gochujang Sauce Recipe began during a bustling Middle-Eastern market visit. Amidst the vibrant spices and aromas, I stumbled upon this Korean gem. Its bold, fiery flavor instantly captivated my taste buds. 

Gochujang Sauce Recipe

Later, a European trip deepened my appreciation as I savored dishes elevated by this versatile sauce. Many face the challenge of finding that perfect balance of heat and sweetness in a sauce. Gochujang offers just that. 

This recipe is a harmonious blend of traditional Korean flavors, easily adaptable to suit any palate. Whether hosting a dinner or seeking to impress a food-loving friend, this Gochujang Sauce will transform your dishes, adding a rich, umami-packed punch. 

The solution lies in the simplicity of its preparation, promising an unforgettable taste experience. This sauce, frequently requested by my kids, has become a mandatory staple in our global culinary explorations.

What Is Gochujang Sauce?

Gochujang sauce is a Korean condiment and a staple ingredient in Korean cuisine. It’s a thick, red chili paste made from fermented soybeans, glutinous rice, red chili pepper flakes, and salt. 

Gochujang is known for its complex and robust flavor profile, offering a balance of sweetness, spiciness, and umami. It is a versatile sauce, marinade, or seasoning in various Korean dishes, such as bibimbap, tteokbokki, and bulgogi. 

History Of Gochujang Sauce Recipe

Gochujang, a quintessential Korean condiment, dates back to the Joseon Dynasty (14th-20th centuries). Its invention is attributed to the Koreans’ ingenuity in fermenting and preserving food. 

Made from red chili, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans, and salt, Gochujang was initially created to add flavor and nutrition to meals during harsh winters

Over centuries, it evolved, with regional variations emerging. This sauce played a vital role in Korean cuisine, offering a unique blend of spicy, sweet, and umami flavors. 

Today, Gochujang is globally recognized and celebrated for its depth and versatility in traditional and modern culinary applications.

Interesting Facts About Gochujang Sauce Recipe

A Korean staple, blends red chili peppers, fermented soybeans, and glutinous rice, creating a sweet and spicy flavor. A key ingredient in Korean cuisine, it adds depth to various dishes.

Ancient Fermentation Techniques

Gochujang’s unique flavor comes from a traditional fermentation process, often lasting several years, enhancing its depth and complexity.

Health Benefits Galore

Packed with proteins and antioxidants, Gochujang is flavorful and offers health benefits, including boosting metabolism and aiding gut health.

Regional Varieties

Different regions in Korea have their versions of Gochujang, each varying in sweetness, spiciness, and texture.

Astronaut’s Choice

Gochujang went to space! It was chosen by a Korean astronaut for a space mission, highlighting its popularity and cultural significance.

Versatility In Cooking

From marinades to soups, Gochujang adds a unique twist to countless dishes, making it a must-have in diverse culinary practices.

Cultural Significance

Beyond a condiment, Gochujang represents Korean culture, symbolizing the harmony of nature and human craftsmanship.


What Are The Regional Adaptations Of This Sauce? 

  • Chungcheong Province: Known for a milder, sweeter Gochujang, often with a higher content of sweeteners like honey or syrup, catering to local taste preferences.
  • Jeolla Province: Their Gochujang is notably richer and savory, incorporating generous amounts of meju (fermented soybean blocks) for a deeper umami flavor.
  • Gyeongsang Province: This region’s Gochujang stands out for its fiery heat. It uses a higher ratio of chili peppers, making it a favorite among spice enthusiasts.
  • Gangwon Province: Their version is often less sweet and more watery, adapted for use in soups and stews, reflecting the province’s colder climate and culinary traditions.

What Will Make You Love This Gochujang Sauce Recipe?

  • Depth of Flavor: The rich, complex blend of spicy, sweet, and umami tastes in Gochujang sauce adds an unparalleled depth to dishes.
  • Versatility: It’s incredibly versatile, enhancing everything from marinades and dressings to soups and stews.
  • Health Benefits: Gochujang contains probiotics, antioxidants, and vitamins, promoting gut health and boosting immunity.
  • Culinary Adventure: Its unique taste introduces a delightful culinary adventure ideal for experimenting with different cuisines.
  • Easy to Make: This homemade recipe is surprisingly simple, offering a fresh, preservative-free alternative to store-bought versions.
  • Customizable Heat: You can adjust the spiciness to suit your preference, making it enjoyable for all palates.
  • Global Appeal: The sauce has gained international popularity, adding a Korean twist to various global dishes.
Bowl and Spoon

Ingredients List

Chickpea Miso Paste1/3 cup
Maple Syrup1/4 cup
Korean Chili Flakes1/3 cup
Coconut Aminos1/4 cup
Garlic (cloves)4 cloves
Water2-4 Tbsp

Ingredient Tips

  • Chickpea Miso Paste: Opt for organic chickpea miso for a richer, more authentic flavor. It’s a great alternative to traditional soy miso, offering a slightly different taste profile.
  • Maple Syrup: Use pure maple syrup for natural sweetness. It complements the spicy flavors well and adds a subtle, earthy undertone.
  • Korean Chili Flakes (Gochugaru): These are essential for authentic Gochujang sauce. They provide a unique heat that’s hard to replicate with other chili flakes.
  • Coconut Aminos: A soy-free alternative to soy sauce, coconut aminos add a mild, sweet flavor. It’s perfect for those looking for a less salty, soy-free option.
  • Garlic: Fresh garlic is best for a more potent and fresher taste. Adjust the amount according to your preference for garlic intensity.
  • Water: Start with the minimum amount and adjust for desired consistency. The sauce should be thick but spreadable.

What Are The Variations Of Gochujang Sauce Recipe? 

  • Vegan Gochujang Sauce: Substitutes honey with maple syrup and uses tamari or coconut aminos instead of traditional soy sauce for a vegan-friendly version.
  • Gluten-Free Variation: Utilizes gluten-free tamari or coconut aminos instead of soy sauce, catering to gluten-sensitive diets.
  • Extra Spicy Gochujang: Increases the amount of Korean chili flakes for those who prefer a fiery kick in their sauce.
  • Sweet Gochujang Sauce: Adds more honey or sugar, creating a sweeter profile that balances the heat, perfect for those with a milder palate.
  • Fruity Gochujang Sauce: Incorporates fruit purees like apple or pear for a fruity twist, adding natural sweetness and complexity.
  • Garlic-Infused Gochujang: Amplifies the amount of garlic for a more robust, aromatic flavor.
  • Sesame Gochujang Sauce: Introduces toasted sesame oil or seeds for an added nutty flavor, enhancing the sauce’s depth.
  • Citrusy Gochujang Sauce: A dash of lemon or lime juice adds a refreshing citrus note, balancing the sauce’s richness.

Recipe Directions

  • Blend Ingredients: In a small blender or food processor, combine the chickpea miso, maple syrup, Korean chili flakes, coconut aminos, and garlic cloves.
  • Adjust Texture: Blend the mixture until smooth. Gradually add water, a little at a time, to thin the mixture into a paste. Refer to the provided photo for guidance on texture.
  • Taste and Tweak: Taste the sauce. Depending on your preference, adjust the flavors as follows:
    • For more heat, add additional pepper flakes.
    • To deepen the flavor, increase the number of coconut aminos.
    • If you prefer it sweeter, add more maple syrup.
    • For more zing, include extra garlic.
    • Add a pinch of salt to enhance saltiness, if needed.
  • Storage: Transfer the sauce to an airtight container. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. For longer storage, freeze it, where it will keep for up to 1 month.
  • Usage: This Gochujang sauce is perfect for a variety of dishes. Use it on tempeh and cauliflower wings as a component in sauces, marinades, and more.

With gochujang, your taste buds embark on a flavorful journey, discovering the bold and spicy essence of Korean cuisine.

Scaling The Gochujang Sauce Recipe

Scaling the Gochujang sauce recipe is straightforward. To double the recipe for larger gatherings or meal prepping, simply double each ingredient. 

For example, use 2/3 cup chickpea miso paste, 1/2 cup maple syrup, 2/3 cup Korean chili flakes, 1/2 cup coconut aminos, 8 garlic cloves, and 4-8 tablespoons of water. 

Conversely, to halve the recipe for smaller servings, halve each ingredient: 1/6 cup chickpea miso paste, 1/8 cup maple syrup, 1/6 cup chili flakes, 1/8 cup coconut aminos, 2 garlic cloves, and 1-2 tablespoons of water. Adjust the recipe size according to your needs, maintaining the proportions for consistent flavor.


Can This Sauce Be Used As A Marinade, Dipping Sauce, Or Dressing For Salads?

This Gochujang sauce is incredibly versatile and can be used in various ways. As a marinade, it imparts a spicy, sweet depth to meats, tofu, or vegetables, enhancing their flavor before cooking. 

Its rich, umami profile makes it an excellent dipping sauce, pairing well with appetizers like dumplings, spring rolls, or vegetable sticks. 

For salads, the sauce can be thinned with a bit of vinegar or oil to create a unique dressing that adds a zesty, Korean-inspired twist to greens or grain bowls. Its adaptability to culinary uses makes it a valuable addition to any kitchen.

What Are The Best Dishes To Accompany Gochujang Sauce Recipe?

Korean BBQ

Gochujang sauce adds a spicy kick to grilled meats like bulgogi or galbi, enhancing their savory flavors.


Drizzled over this mixed rice bowl, it melds harmoniously with vegetables, meat, and a fried egg.

Fried Chicken

Korean-style fried chicken pairs exceptionally well with Gochujang sauce, offering a balance of crispy, sweet, and spicy.

Stir-Fried Noodles

Elevate noodle dishes like Japchae with a swirl of Gochujang for added complexity.

Tofu Dishes

It brings a flavor boost to stir-fried or grilled tofu, making it a delight for vegetarians and vegans.

Vegetable Stir-Fry

Add it to stir-fried vegetables for an umami-packed, spicy twist.

Soups And Stews

Enhance Korean soups like Doenjang Jjigae or stews with a dollop of Gochujang for depth and warmth.

Gochujang Sauce Recipe

What Are Some Classic Dishes That Feature Gochujang Sauce Recipe?

  • Tteokbokki (Spicy Rice Cakes): A popular Korean street food featuring chewy rice cakes in a sweet, spicy Gochujang-based sauce.
  • Bibimbap: A mixed rice dish topped with assorted vegetables, meat, a fried egg, and a generous serving of Gochujang sauce.
  • Dakgalbi: Spicy stir-fried chicken marinated and cooked in a Gochujang-based sauce, often with vegetables and rice cakes.
  • Sundubu Jjigae (Soft Tofu Stew): A comforting stew with soft tofu, vegetables, meat, or seafood in a spicy broth flavored with Gochujang.
  • Bulgogi: While traditionally sweet and savory, some variations use Gochujang for a spicy twist.
  • Korean Fried Chicken: Often glazed with a Gochujang sauce, balancing crispy chicken with a sweet, spicy, and sticky coating.
  • Jeyuk Bokkeum (Spicy Pork Belly Stir-Fry): Thin slices of pork belly cooked with a fiery Gochujang sauce, onions, and other vegetables.

What Are The Key Flavor Profiles And Taste Sensations That Gochujang Sauce Recipe Offers?

  • Spicy Heat: Gochujang sauce provides a distinct, moderate to strong heat from Korean chili flakes, igniting the palate.
  • Sweetness: Adding sweeteners like maple syrup balances the spiciness, adding a pleasant, mild sweetness.
  • Umami: Being rich in umami offers a deep, savory taste from fermented ingredients like chickpea miso.
  • Garlicky Zing: Fresh garlic contributes a sharp, aromatic zing, enhancing the sauce’s complexity.
  • Slightly Tangy: Some recipes include vinegar or similar ingredients, lending a subtle tanginess.
  • Nutty Aroma: Using ingredients like sesame oil or coconut aminos can impart a slightly nutty aroma and flavor.
  • Rich and Robust: Overall, Gochujang sauce has a full-bodied, robust quality, making it both warming and satisfying.
Jar and Spoon

Can This Sauce Be Stored And Preserved For Future Use? What Is Its Shelf Life?

Yes, this homemade Gochujang sauce can be stored and preserved for future use. It should be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator to ensure longevity. 

The sauce can last up to 2 weeks in the fridge when stored properly. If you need to keep it longer, it can be frozen. 

In the freezer, it maintains its quality for up to 1 month. To use after freezing, simply thaw it in the refrigerator overnight

It’s important to note that homemade versions without preservatives may have a shorter shelf life than commercial Gochujang sauces.

What Are The Substitutes For Gochujang Sauce Recipe?

  • Red Chili Paste and Honey/Sugar: Mix red chili paste with honey or sugar to mimic Gochujang’s spicy-sweet profile.
  • Sriracha and Miso Paste: Blend sriracha with a bit of miso paste for heat and umami.
  • Tomato Paste, Soy Sauce, and Red Pepper Flakes: Combine these for a quick alternative, adjusting sweetness and heat as needed.
  • Harissa: Though more North African in flavor, harissa can be a good substitute in a pinch.
  • Sambal Oelek and Honey/Sugar: Mix sambal oelek with honey or sugar for a simpler, readily available option.
  • Ketchup and Chili Powder: An unconventional but handy substitute, especially to approximate sweetness and color.
  • Thai Chili Paste and Soy Sauce: For a Southeast Asian twist that still offers spice and depth.
Gochujang Sauce Recipe

How To Adjust The Consistency Of The Sauce?

Adjusting the consistency of the Gochujang sauce is simple and can be tailored to your specific needs:

  • To Thicken: If the sauce is too thin, simmer it over low heat, allowing some liquid to evaporate. Alternatively, you can add a small amount of cornstarch slurry (cornstarch mixed with water) and heat until it thickens.
  • To Thin Out: If the sauce is too thick, gradually add water or a liquid ingredient like coconut aminos or soy sauce. Stir in small amounts until you reach the desired consistency.

Should We Serve The Sauce Cold Or Warm?

The serving temperature of Gochujang sauce depends on its use and personal preference. Generally, it is served at room temperature or cold, as it’s often used as a condiment or dipping sauce straight from the refrigerator. 

This makes it ideal for salads, cold noodle dishes, or as a dip for vegetables and snacks.However, suppose you’re using it as a marinade, in stews, or in hot dishes like stir-fries. 

In that case, the hot sauce will naturally warm up and integrate into the dish as it’s cooked. The sauce’s flavor profile remains robust whether served cold or warmed up in a dish.

Gochujang Sauce Recipe

Nutritional Values

This homemade Gochujang sauce is nutritious and packed with flavors and health benefits. Thanks to ingredients like garlic and chili flakes, it’s low in calories but high in vitamins and antioxidants. The sauce also offers a good source of probiotics from the fermented miso, aiding in digestive health.

What Are The Total Calories In Gochujang Sauce Recipe?

The total calorie count in the homemade Gochujang sauce recipe can vary based on the specific ingredients used. 

However, considering the provided ingredients, an estimated calculation for the entire batch would be approximately 350 to 400 calories. 

This estimate includes chickpea miso paste, maple syrup, chili flakes, coconut aminos, and garlic. Dividing this total by the number of servings (8) gives about 44 to 50 calories per serving.

Gochujang Sauce Recipe

A burst of Korean complexity, a harmony of heat, sweetness, and depth that adds soul to every dish.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Gochujang Sauce Recipe

The homemade Gochujang sauce recipe accommodates various dietary needs but also has some restrictions:

  • Vegan: This recipe is vegan-friendly, using plant-based ingredients like chickpea miso and maple syrup.
  • Gluten-Free: By using coconut aminos, the sauce avoids gluten, making it suitable for those with gluten intolerance or celiac disease.
  • Soy-Free: Chickpea miso is a soy-free alternative to traditional miso, beneficial for those avoiding soy.

However, the recipe may not be suitable for:

  • Low-Sodium Diets: Miso paste and coconut aminos contain salt.
  • Allergies: Those allergic to specific ingredients, like chickpeas or garlic, should avoid this sauce.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

What Are The Common Mistakes While Making This Sauce?

  • Over- or Under-Blending: Not blending the sauce enough can leave it chunky, while over-blending might make it too runny.
  • Incorrect Spice Level: Misjudging the amount of chili flakes can result in a sauce that’s either too spicy or not spicy enough for your taste.
  • Imbalance of Flavors: Failing to balance the sweet, savory, and spicy elements properly can lead to a sauce that lacks depth or is overpowering in one aspect.
  • Using Low-Quality Ingredients: Opting for low-quality or non-traditional ingredients can significantly affect the taste and authenticity of the sauce.
  • Not Adjusting the Consistency: The sauce might turn out too thick or too thin if you don’t adjust the amount of water correctly.
  • Inadequate Seasoning: Skipping the taste-and-adjust step can lead to a bland or unbalanced sauce.
  • Improper Storage: Not storing the sauce in an airtight container or at the right temperature can shorten its shelf life and affect its quality.

What Are Some Creative Uses Of Leftover Sauce?

  • Spicy Mayo: Mix with mayonnaise to create a spicy mayo, perfect for sandwiches or as a burger topping.
  • Gochujang Butter: Blend with softened butter to make a flavorful spread for bread, corn on the cob, or grilled meats.
  • Salad Dressing: Whisk with vinegar and oil to create a unique salad dressing.
  • Pizza Sauce: Use as a base sauce on pizzas for a Korean-inspired twist.
  • Noodle Toss: Toss with cooked noodles, vegetables, and protein for a quick and flavorful meal.
  • Stir-Fry Boost: Add to stir-fries for an extra punch of flavor.
  • Marinade for Meats: Use as a marinade for chicken, pork, or beef before grilling or roasting.
  • Dipping Sauce for Dumplings: Serve as a dip for dumplings or spring rolls.
Gochujang Sauce Recipe

Special Tools & Equipment Needed

  • Food Processor or Blender: Essential for blending the ingredients into a smooth paste.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: For accurately measuring ingredients like miso paste, maple syrup, and chili flakes.
  • Garlic Press: To finely mince the garlic cloves, ensuring an even distribution of flavor.
  • Spatula: Useful for scraping down the sides of the blender or food processor to ensure thorough blending.
  • Airtight Storage Container: For storing the sauce in the refrigerator or freezer.
  • Small Mixing Bowl: If you prefer to mix some ingredients separately before blending.
  • Fine Mesh Strainer: If you must strain the sauce for a smoother consistency.
  • Spoon or Whisk: To mix ingredients or adjust the consistency of the sauce.
  • Gloves: Optional but useful if handling large amounts of chili flakes to avoid skin irritation.
  • Labels and Pen: For labeling the storage container with the date, especially if you plan to freeze it for later use.

Frequently Asked Questions  

Can I Make This Sauce Less Spicy?

Yes, you can reduce the amount of Korean chili flakes to adjust the spice level to your preference.

Is This Sauce Vegan And Gluten-Free?

Yes, the recipe is vegan, using chickpea miso and maple syrup. It’s also gluten-free, using coconut aminos instead of regular soy sauce.

How Long Can I Store This Gochujang Sauce?

The sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or frozen for up to 1 month.

Can I Use This Sauce In Non-Korean Dishes?

Absolutely! This sauce is versatile and can be used in various cuisines, from marinades and dressings to dips and spreads.

What If I Don’t Have Chickpea Miso Paste?

While chickpea miso has a unique flavor, you can substitute it with regular soy miso paste. However, this will change the sauce’s flavor profile slightly.

The Ultimate Gochujang Sauce Recipe – Foodie’s Must-Have Condiment

Course: Sauces


Prep time


Cooking time





This Gochujang Sauce Recipe combines chickpea miso, maple syrup, Korean chili flakes, coconut aminos, and garlic to create a uniquely spicy, sweet, and umami-rich sauce. It’s versatile, vegan, and perfect for enhancing various dishes, from marinades to dips.


  • 1/3 cup 1/3 Chickpea Miso Paste

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Maple Syrup

  • 1/3 cup 1/3 Korean Chili Flakes

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Coconut Aminos

  • 4 4 Garlic (cloves)

  • 2-4 tbsp 2-4 Water

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Prepare Ingredients
    Measure out 1/3 cup chickpea miso paste, 1/4 cup maple syrup, 1/3 cup Korean chili flakes, 1/4 cup coconut aminos, and peel 4 garlic cloves.
  • Blending
    Place the chickpea miso paste, maple syrup, Korean chili flakes, coconut aminos, and garlic cloves into the food processor or blender.
  • Process The Mixture
    Blend the ingredients until they form a smooth paste. If the mixture is too thick, add 2 to 4 tablespoons of water, a little at a time, to reach the desired consistency.
  • Taste And Adjust
    Taste the sauce. Adjust the flavor by adding more chili flakes for heat, coconut aminos for depth, maple syrup for sweetness, or a pinch of salt for saltiness.
  • Storage
    Transfer the sauce to an airtight container using the spatula to ensure no sauce is wasted.
    Label the container with the preparation date if you plan to store it for later use.
  • Refrigeration
    Store the sauce in the refrigerator, which will keep well for up to 2 weeks.
    Place the sauce in the freezer for extended storage, where it can be kept for up to 1 month.
  • Serving Suggestions
    Use the sauce in various dishes like marinades, dips, or as a condiment for enhancing flavor.
  • Cleaning Up
    After preparing the sauce, clean the blender, food processor, spatula, and other utensils.

Recipe Video


  • Spice Level: Adjust the Korean chili flakes to suit your heat preference.
  • Sweetness: Maple syrup can be increased or decreased depending on the desired sweetness.
  • Texture: Add water gradually to achieve the preferred consistency.
  • Storage: Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or freeze for a longer shelf life.
  • Variations: Experiment with additional ingredients like sesame oil or vinegar for different flavor profiles.
  • Quality Of Ingredients: Use high-quality ingredients for the best flavor outcome.
  • Vegan And Gluten-Free: The recipe is naturally vegan and gluten-free, making it suitable for various dietary needs.

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Welcome, fellow flavor enthusiasts to the world of Sauce Chick, where every flavor tells a tale of creativity, passion, and the harmonious fusion of spices and sauces.

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