While slowly fermented cabbage and pungent garlic are the ingredients most people associate with kimchi, there are dozens and dozens of other versions of Korea's national dish, featuring all manner of vegetables, such as these quickly pickled cucumbers with just a trace of garlic.

Jamie Purviance
Source: EatingWell Magazine, July/August 2010


Read the full recipe after the video.


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Cut cucumbers in half lengthwise and then crosswise into 1/8-inch-thick half moons. Place in a medium bowl and mix thoroughly with salt. Let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, combine garlic, scallions, ginger, vinegar, chile powder, sugar and fish sauce in a medium nonreactive bowl (see Tip).

  • Drain the cucumbers (discard the liquid). Stir the cucumbers into the vinegar mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours before serving.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

Notes: Korean chile powder (gochugaru, gochugalu or Korean “crushed red pepper”) is made from thin red peppers that are sun-dried on woven mats or strung together and hung from the eaves of thatch-roofed houses throughout the countryside. Find it in Korean or Asian markets or online from koamart.com. Store, airtight, in the refrigerator or freezer indefinitely.

Fish sauce is a pungent Southeast Asian condiment made from salted, fermented fish. Find it in the Asian-food section of large supermarkets and in Asian specialty markets. We use Thai Kitchen fish sauce, lower in sodium than other brands (1,190 mg per tablespoon), in our recipe testing and nutritional analyses.

Tip: A nonreactive bowl or pan--stainless-steel, enamel-coated or glass--is necessary when cooking with acidic foods, such as vinegar, to prevent the food from reacting with it.

Nutrition Facts

8 calories; protein 0.3g; carbohydrates 1.9g; dietary fiber 0.3g; sugars 0.9g; fat 0.1g; vitamin a iu 96IU; vitamin c 1.2mg; folate 3.1mcg; calcium 7.3mg; iron 0.2mg; magnesium 5.3mg; potassium 61.1mg; sodium 64mg; added sugar 1g.

Reviews (6)

Read More Reviews
11 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 5
  • 4 star values: 4
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 1
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
Very good recipe. Nice side dish with fish & rice. Will definitely go back to this recipe again and again. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Delicious but nutritional info is messed up. this is a great recipe but there is literally no way the nutritional information adds up. 7 carbs per serving? Not likely. That amount of cucumbers is about 10 carbs the 2 tsp of sugar is about 8 carbs then add a couple for incidentals like garlic and the ginger. 3 carbs. That makes a total of 21 carbs for the WHOLE DISH. divided 6 ways would be 3.5 carbs per serving. What the hell? Pros: The best snack ever. Cons: NONE. Read More
Rating: 3 stars
Can you leave ot the ginger or use ginger powder? I only have powder and don't have fresh? Would it still taste well? Read More
Rating: 5 stars
wonderful! So glad to find this recipe. It takes me back to my days in Korea. So easy to prepare...a wonderful healthy dish by itself or paired with most any grilled meat. Thanks for sharing! (PS I used Korean Garlic Chili Paste as that's what I have on hand) Pros: Easy Healthy Delicious! Read More
Rating: 2 stars
"Fish Sauce" from different countries taste different. Using Thai Fish sauce makes this dish taste off... A LOT. If you can't get Korean fish sauce then I would leave it out or not bother making this dish. If you like Chinese food made by Mexicans or Mexican food made by Chinese I guess it's okay. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This dish was quick easy and wonderful! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
I have not yet made this but could I add tomatoes to this? Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I've made kimchi a couple of times. We love it. But this kimchi is the easiest and among the most flavorful I've tried. The cucumber retains it's crunch and the flavor is phenomenal. My only complaint is the batch was small. The next time I make it (this weekend after hitting the farmer's market for good local cumcumber) I'll likely triple or quadruple the recipe. Outstanding! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Looks great but nutritional values must be incorrect. I will definitely try this recipe because it looks so good. I'm a big fan of cucumbers! But how could this 1/4 serving of mainly cucumbers have 10 grams of protein and 0 fiber? Somebody also posted about the carb counts. C'mon Eating Well... Some of us count on the nutritional values posted by you for health reasons. I'm going to have to second guess each time i see a recipe i would like to try. Read More