Need a grab and go picnic food? This Jumeokbap a.k.a Korean rice ball is truly made for you. Make from white rice seasoned with seaweed and sesame oil, then stuffed with beef bulgogi and tuna mayo in a cute ball shape. They’re great for the whole family as a snack or as part of a meal!
Grab and Go Snack
Korean rice ball, where Jumeokbap means “fist rice” in Korean, refers to tightly packed rice balls that are a popular snack or side dish in Korea. I think Jumeokbap is one of the easiest lunches you can make! All you need is vegetables, cooked rice, sesame oil, and sesame seeds, mix it with your favorite fillings, roll it in a ball, and serve! making it super easy to make rice balls for the whole family to enjoy! This dish especially goes well with spicy foods (if you like spicy food).
One of the reasons why Korean rice balls are so fun is because you can stuff them with anything you’d like! The delicious fillings range from beef and chicken to vegetables like kimchi and leftover banchan (Korean side dishes). Even plain and simple rice balls are yummy! Just make sure to include gim (seaweed) and sesame seeds. Those are the only essentials.
The other reasons why you love this recipe is; Portability and convenience. Easy to take with you wherever! that’s why perfect for picnic or outdoor activities. and also Budget-friendly. Jumeokbap is a cost-effective meal choice. it’s affordable ingredients you can choose your filling.
What are those everything rice in korea?
I’m really in love with Korean food, if we have the same page, you must be find a lot of food come from rice variations, and sometimes it still confusing to differentiate them.
So, here I am trying to make a summary for those everything rice in Korea. I know there still a lot of rice variation I haven’t know yet. At least there are 3 famous one, which are Jumeokbap, bibimbap, and kimbap. Here’s a brief overview of the differences between them:
Bap means rice, so Jumeokbap translates to “fist rice” in English. Bibimbap translates to “mixed rice” in English. And Kimbap translates to “seaweed rice” in English. A little enlightenment right? Lol
Jumeokbap, Bibimbap and Kimbap
Meanwhile for today’s recipe is Jumeokbap. it is a type of rice ball that is usually made by shaping cooked rice into small, compact, fist-sized balls. These rice balls contain of vegetables, meats, or seasonings. and coated with sesame oil and seaweed
Then, we have Bibimbap is a popular Korean mixed rice dish that typically consists of a bowl of steamed rice topped with various vegetables, sliced meat (often beef), a fried egg, and gochujang (red chili paste). The dish is served with the components arranged on top of the rice, and diners mix everything together before eating. I had the recipe here;
Lastly for Kimbap is often referred to as Korean sushi or seaweed rice rolls. It consists of rice, vegetables, and occasionally meat or seafood rolled in sheets of dried seaweed. The roll is then sliced into bite-sized pieces. Kimbap is a convenient and portable dish and is sometimes served with dipping sauces. For more about kimbap, I made it before Spam Kimbap
In summary, jumeokbap involves shaping rice into compact balls, bibimbap is a mixed rice dish with various toppings mixed together, and kimbap is a type of rolled sushi with rice and other ingredients wrapped in seaweed. Each of these dishes has its own unique preparation method, presentation, and flavor profile.
So which team are you?
You can make this Korean rice ball when you’re packing a picnic. Be careful though, these are super addicting and you know that you can’t eat just one! Let’s go to the recipe
Ingredients of Jumeokbap
- Cooked Rice; the pillar of both the Korean rice ball and the Japanese Rice balls a.k.a onigiri is short-grain white rice which is very starchy and sticky. Go for sushi rice to help the rice balls stick together. Other rice varieties won’t quite cut it for Jumeokbap, as they won’t hold their shape well.
- Carrot diced; Carrot is optionally, but carrot to give the Jumeokbap a bright pop of color and also the crunch texture.
- Seaweed crushed; in Korea, people typically use salted seaweed crushed for the seasoning. I come with this gim. However, if you have a furikake at home, it’s also perfect! Furikake is a mix of pre-crushed seaweed and sometimes sesame seeds, giving that lovely umami touch to your jumeokbap. then you don’t need to add more toasted Roasted Sesame Seeds.
- Roasted Sesame Seeds; if you use a gim/ seaweed, then add these roasted sesame seeds. you can also use Furikake only.
- Sesame Oil; to season the rice, and make it easier to shape and to prevent rice from sticking to your hands.
- Ground Beef Bulgogi; I used leftover bulgogi with the same recipe as my wrap bulgogi Recipe but you can use any protein you’d like.
- Canned Tuna; A simple filling made with canned tuna, Japanese mayo, and salt and pepper.
- Mayonnaise; make the filling creamier and hold it together
- Salt; just a pinch to season the rice to taste.
How to Make Jumeokbap
First thing first, let’s make a tuna filling. In a bowl, mix well a canned tuna with mayonnaise and salt, and set aside.
Next, for making bulgogi filling, you can use leftover one, or if you making from pre-cooked beef bulgogi, you can come to this recipe Korean beef BBQ Spring Roll.
Now, for making and shaping jumeokbap all you need to do;
Firstly, In a pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the diced carrot and cook for about a minute. Sauté them for another couple of minutes until they become tender. It takes about 3 minutes for total, Then, Transfer the carrot to a mixing bowl.
Secondly, In a mixing bowl containing sautéed carrot, add cooked rice, sesame oil, crushed seaweed, and sesame seeds. Once well combined, adjust any seasonings as needed.
Allow the mixture to cool slightly until it’s comfortable to handle with your hands.
Next, Wearing food prep gloves or using clean hands, Take about 2 tbsp of rice mixture then flatten it on your hand, place about ½-1 tbsp of tuna filling or ground beef bulgogi then carefully wrap until the filling is fully covered and shape the rice into a ball.
Korean rice balls are ready to serve, enjoy! Serve the Jumeokbap as a snack, or side dish, or pack them for a convenient on-the-go meal.
Wanna try this recipe?
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Here are K-Food recommendations for Picnic snacks;
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Jumeokbap – Korean Rice Balls
- 3 cup Cooked Rice
- ⅓ cup Carrot diced
- 15 g Seaweed crushed
- 1½ tsp Sesame Oil
- 1 tbsp Roasted Sesame Seeds
- ½ cup Ground Beef Bulgogi
- 6 oz Canned Tuna
- 1½ tbsp Mayonnaise
- ½ tsp Salt
In a bowl, mix well canned tuna with mayonnaise and salt, set aside.
Sautee diced carrot over medium heat for about 3 minutes. Transfer the carrot to a mixing bowl.
Add cooked rice, sesame oil, crushed seaweed, and sesame seeds to a mixing bowl then mix until well combined.
Take about 2 tbsp of rice mixture then flatten it on your hand, place about ½-1 tbsp of tuna filling or ground beef bulgogi then carefully wrap until the filling is fully covered and shape the rice into a ball. Korean rice balls are ready to serve, enjoy!