Naengmyeon (Cold Noodles)

duration95 mins
meal_typeLunch, Dinner


  • For sweet and sour radish (8 servings)
  • 1 pound Korean raddish (mu)
  • 3 tbsps vinegar
  • 2 tbsps Sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • For beef broth (makes about 10 cups - 4 servings)
  • 230 g beef brisket
  • 6 ounces Korean raddish (mu)
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 3 thin slices of ginger
  • 2 large scallion white parts
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorns
  • 2 tbsps soup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • For noodles - either type of naengmyeon (2 servings)
  • 2 servings of naengmyeon noodles
  • 1 egg boiled and cut into halves
  • 1/2 Korean cucumber
  • 2 thin half-moon shape slices of a Korean pear - optional
  • Vinegar
  • Hot mustard paste
  • For bibim naengmyeon sauce (2 servings)
  • 4 tbsps finely ground gochugaru
  • 4 tbsps beef broth or water
  • 3 tbsps grated Korean pear or apple
  • 2 tbsps Sugar
  • 1 tbsp corn syrup or use more sugar
  • 2 tsps minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Sesame oil to drizzle over the noodles


  1. Sweet and sour radish Clean the radish by scrubbing with a brush and/or scratching off the stubborn impurities with a knife. Cut the radish crosswise into 2 to 3 inch pieces if long. Place cut side down and slice lengthwise as thin as you can. Gather the slices and cut into about 3/4-inch strips. You can use a mandoline to thinly slice, if available.
  2. Add the vinegar, sugar, and salt. Mix well by hand until the sugar is dissolved. Taste and add more vinegar or sugar to taste.
  3. Mul Naengmyeon In a large pot, bring the meat, onion, scallions, garlic, ginger and peppercorns to a boil, uncovered, in 14 cups of water. Reduce the heat to medium to medium low to keep it at medium boil, and skim off the scum. Continue to boil, covered, until the meat is tender, about 1 hour. Stir in soup soy sauce with 10 minutes remaining. Remove the meat and cool. Discard the vegetables. Cool the broth.
  4. Pour 5 cups of the broth to a bowl (about 2-1/2 cups per serving). Stir in one teaspoon of sugar and salt to taste (about 1 teaspoon). You can add 1 or 2 cups of dongchimi broth, if available, and reduce the beef broth by the same amount. Also use less salt. Keep it in the freezer for an hour or two until the broth becomes slushy. Keep the remaining broth in the fridge or freezer for later use.
  5. Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise. Thinly slice crosswise, lightly sprinkle with salt, and let it sit until the cucumber slices are wilted. Thinly slice the beef against the grain. Thinly slice the pear into a half-moon shape if using.
  6. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Prepare an ice bath while water is boiling. Cook the noodles according to the package instructions. Drain quickly and shock in the ice water to stop cooking. Drain and rinse again in icy cold water until the noodles are very cold.
  7. Make two one-serving size mounds, placing in a colander to drain.
  8. Place one serving of noodles in the middle of the serving bowl and top with the pickled radish, slices of beef, cucumber, and pear if using, and the egg half. Pour one half of the icy broth around the noodles. Repeat for another serving. Serve with vinegar and hot mustard paste on the side.
  9. Bibim naengmyeon Mix all sauce ingredients and keep it cool in the fridge. You can do this ahead of time.
  10. See mul naengmyeon above for cooking noodles and preparing the toppings. For bibim naengmyeon, slice or julienne the cucumber and do not salt.
  11. Place the noodles in the middle of the serving bowl, and drizzle 1 teaspoon of sesame oil over the noodles. Top with the pickled radish, cucumber slices, pear slices, sliced beef if available, and the egg half. Drop in a few ice cubes so the dish can stay cool while eating. You can add 1/4 cup of beef broth, if available, to the bottom of the bowl. The sauce can be served on top or separately. Serve with vinegar and hot mustard on the side.
Please be mindful of any allergies you and/or your family may have before you try out this recipe.