Inside Out Gimbap: A Delicious Twist on a Classic

Inside Out Gimbap: A Delicious Twist on a Classic takes the beloved Korean dish to new heights by flipping its traditional preparation. This recipe introduces inside out gimbap, also known as “nude gimbap,” where the rice is on the outside and the seaweed on the inside. With no need for a gimbap mat, anyone can easily make this satisfying meal with customized fillings. Perfect for lunchboxes or picnics, the key to success lies in keeping the workspace clean and organized. The ingredients include cooked rice, eggs, cucumber, artificial crab sticks, yellow pickled radish, green onions, gim (seaweed paper), salt, sesame oil, and black sesame seeds. Following the steps to season the rice, prepare the fillings, and roll the gimbap, the end result is a delectable treat ready to be savored in bite-size pieces.

Recipe Overview

Inside out gimbap, also known as “nude gimbap” (누드김밥) in Korea, is a popular dish that is easy to make and customizable. Unlike classic gimbap, this recipe has the rice on the outside and the seaweed on the inside, creating a unique twist on a traditional recipe. Inside out gimbap is a popular option for lunchboxes, picnics, and social sharing trends. To make this dish, you will need ingredients such as cooked rice, eggs, cucumber, artificial crab sticks, yellow pickled radish, green onions, gim (seaweed paper), salt, sesame oil, and black sesame seeds. The recipe involves steps for seasoning the rice, preparing the cucumber, frying the eggs, preparing the crab sticks and radish, and rolling the gimbap. The rolled gimbap is then cut into bite-size pieces before serving.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Seasoning the Rice

The first step in making inside out gimbap is to season the rice. Start by cooking the rice according to the package instructions. Once the rice is cooked, transfer it to a large mixing bowl. In a separate small bowl, combine salt and sesame oil. Mix well until the salt has dissolved. Pour the salt and sesame oil mixture over the cooked rice and gently mix until the rice is evenly seasoned.

Preparing the Cucumber

Next, prepare the cucumber for the gimbap. Start by cleaning the cucumber thoroughly under running water. Slice the cucumber into thin strips or julienne them for a more delicate texture. Sprinkle salt over the cucumber slices and let them sit for about 5 minutes. This will help remove excess moisture from the cucumber. After 5 minutes, squeeze the cucumber slices gently to remove any excess water.

Frying the Eggs

To add a delicious layer of flavor to the gimbap, fry the eggs. In a non-stick skillet, heat a small amount of oil over medium heat. Crack the eggs into the skillet and gently whisk them with a fork or chopsticks. Cook the eggs until they are fully set and slightly golden on one side. Flip the eggs and cook them for an additional minute. Transfer the cooked eggs onto a plate and let them cool before using them in the gimbap.

Preparing the Crab Sticks and Radish

Inside out gimbap typically includes artificial crab sticks and yellow pickled radish. To prepare the crab sticks, slice them into thin strips. For the yellow pickled radish, slice it into thin sticks or julienne it. Both the crab sticks and radish will add a unique texture and flavor to the gimbap.

Rolling the Gimbap

Now it’s time to assemble the gimbap. Lay a sheet of gim, or seaweed paper, on a clean surface. Spread a thin layer of the seasoned rice evenly across the gim, leaving a small border around the edges. Next, add the cucumber slices, crab sticks, radish, green onions, and fried eggs in a line across the rice. It’s essential to layer the ingredients neatly for a visually appealing gimbap. Using both hands, carefully roll the gimbap tightly from one end to the other, applying gentle pressure to ensure it holds its shape.

Cutting and Serving

Once the gimbap is rolled, use a sharp knife to cut it into bite-size pieces. Clean the knife with a damp cloth between each cut to ensure clean, even slices. Arrange the gimbap pieces on a serving platter and garnish with black sesame seeds for added flavor and visual appeal. Serve the gimbap immediately or store it in an airtight container for later consumption.

Inside Out Gimbap: A Delicious Twist on a Classic

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Tips and Tricks

Keeping Workspace Clean

To create a successful inside out gimbap, it is crucial to keep your workspace clean and organized. Ensure you have all the necessary ingredients and tools readily available. Clean and sanitize your surfaces and utensils before starting the preparation process. This will help prevent cross-contamination and ensure a hygienic cooking environment.

Customizing Fillings

One of the main advantages of inside out gimbap is the ability to customize the fillings to your liking. Feel free to experiment with different ingredients such as marinated beef, grilled tofu, or various types of vegetables. You can also incorporate different flavors by adding sauces or spreads to the rice before rolling. Get creative and tailor the fillings to suit your taste preferences.

Choosing the Right Rice

To achieve the perfect texture and taste, it is crucial to choose the right rice for inside out gimbap. Look for short-grain rice that has a slightly sticky texture when cooked. This type of rice will hold its shape well when rolled and provide a satisfying mouthfeel. Avoid using long-grain or sticky rice varieties, as they may not hold the gimbap together effectively.

Ensuring Proper Rolling

Rolling the gimbap tightly is essential to prevent it from unraveling and falling apart. Apply gentle pressure while rolling to ensure the ingredients are compact and the gim holds its shape. It may take some practice to perfect your rolling technique, so don’t get discouraged if your first few attempts are not as tight as you’d like. With time, you’ll develop the skills needed to create beautiful, tightly rolled gimbap.

Storing for Later

If you’re making inside out gimbap for future consumption, it’s essential to store it properly to maintain its freshness. Place the cut gimbap pieces in an airtight container and refrigerate them. Inside out gimbap is best consumed within 24 hours to ensure optimal taste and texture. Before serving, allow the gimbap to come to room temperature to enhance the flavors.

Variations and Modifications

Vegetarian Options

For vegetarian gimbap, omit the eggs and artificial crab sticks and replace them with grilled or marinated tofu, sautéed mushrooms, or various types of pickled vegetables. You can also incorporate ingredients like avocado or cream cheese for added creaminess.

Spicy Gimbap

If you enjoy a kick of heat, consider adding spicy elements to your inside out gimbap. This can be achieved by incorporating gochujang, a Korean chili paste, into the seasoned rice. You can also add thinly sliced spicy peppers, kimchi, or sprinkle some chili flakes on top of the gimbap for an extra spicy twist.

Protein-Packed Gimbap

To boost the protein content of your gimbap, consider adding grilled chicken, beef, or shrimp. You can marinate the proteins in a flavorful sauce before cooking them to add an extra dimension of taste. Protein-packed gimbap is a great option for those who need a more substantial and filling meal.

Fusion Twist

For a fusion twist on the traditional inside out gimbap, experiment with different flavors and ingredients from various cuisines. Incorporate elements such as teriyaki sauce, wasabi mayo, or sriracha to add a unique twist to the gimbap. You can also use different types of sauces and condiments to dip the gimbap, such as soy sauce, ponzu sauce, or spicy mayo.

Inside Out Gimbap: A Delicious Twist on a Classic

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Health Benefits

Low in Calories

Inside out gimbap is a relatively low-calorie dish, making it a healthy option for those looking to manage their calorie intake. By using a balanced amount of rice and incorporating a variety of vegetables and lean proteins, you can create a satisfying meal without excessive calories.

Rich in Nutrients

With its diverse range of fillings, inside out gimbap can provide a good balance of essential nutrients. Vegetables like cucumber and radish offer vitamins and minerals, while proteins like eggs and crab sticks provide necessary amino acids. By incorporating nutrient-dense ingredients, you can enhance the overall nutritional value of the gimbap.

Good Source of Fiber

Inside out gimbap can contribute to your daily fiber intake when incorporating whole ingredients like vegetables and brown rice. Fiber plays a vital role in digestion and helps promote feelings of fullness, making it an essential component of a balanced diet.


By using lean proteins and incorporating heart-healthy ingredients like sesame oil, inside out gimbap can be a beneficial option for heart health. Sesame oil contains monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which can help lower LDL cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease when consumed as part of a balanced diet.

Cultural Significance

Origin of Inside Out Gimbap

Inside out gimbap has its origin in Korea. It is believed to have been invented as a creative twist on the traditional gimbap. The reverse assembly of the ingredients, with the rice on the outside and the seaweed on the inside, was a novel approach to making gimbap. Today, inside out gimbap remains a popular variation of the classic dish in Korea and around the world.

Popular Lunchbox Option

Inside out gimbap is a popular choice for packed lunches, especially in Korea. Its compact and portable nature makes it an ideal meal to take on the go. The bite-size pieces are easy to eat, and the variety of fillings ensure a satisfying and nourishing lunch experience.

Picnic Favorite

Due to its versatility and convenience, inside out gimbap is also a favorite picnic food. Its ability to be made in advance and stored makes it an excellent choice for outdoor gatherings. The colorful and appetizing appearance of the gimbap also adds to the overall picnic experience.

Social Sharing Trend

In recent years, inside out gimbap has become a social sharing trend, particularly on platforms like Instagram and TikTok. The visually appealing rows of vibrant ingredients wrapped in gim make for stunning food photography. Many enthusiasts have taken to showcasing their own creative versions of inside out gimbap, inspiring others to try their hand at this unique dish.

Inside Out Gimbap: A Delicious Twist on a Classic

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Ingredient Spotlight: Black Sesame Seeds

Nutty and Earthy

Black sesame seeds are a versatile ingredient that adds a distinct nutty and earthy flavor to dishes. When toasted, they develop a rich aroma and slightly crunchy texture. In inside out gimbap, black sesame seeds are often used as a garnish, adding depth of flavor to each bite.

Roasting for Maximum Flavor

To enhance the taste of black sesame seeds, it is recommended to toast them before using them in your gimbap. This simple step brings out the natural oils and intensifies their unique flavor. Heat a dry skillet over medium heat and add the black sesame seeds. Toast them, stirring occasionally, until they become fragrant and slightly golden. Be careful not to burn them, as they can quickly go from golden to burnt.

Uses Beyond Gimbap

Black sesame seeds can be used in various other dishes and baked goods. They are commonly found in desserts like cookies, cakes, and ice cream due to their rich flavor and aesthetic appeal. Sprinkle them on top of salads, stir-fries, or roasted vegetables for added texture and flavor. You can also grind them into a paste and use them as a topping for toast or as an ingredient in savory spreads.

In conclusion, inside out gimbap is a versatile and delicious dish that offers endless possibilities for customization. It is a popular option for lunchboxes, picnics, and social sharing trends due to its portable nature and visually appealing presentation. By following the step-by-step instructions, you can create beautiful and flavorful inside out gimbap in the comfort of your own kitchen. Experiment with different fillings, sauces, and toppings to make this dish uniquely yours. Whether you’re a fan of the traditional flavors or prefer to incorporate fusion twists, inside out gimbap is sure to delight your taste buds and impress your friends and family.

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