is hot pot chinese or korean

is hot pot chinese or korean

Hot Pot: Chinese or Korean?

Have you ever been to an oriental restaurant, only to freeze up when trying to decide between the Chinese and Korean hot pot dishes on the menu?

You’re not alone considering that both Chinese and Korean cultures offer their own distinct versions of this meal option. So, is hot pot something that is typically Chinese, Korean, or both? Let’s dive into this topic and see:

What is Hot Pot?

In general, hot pot is a type of meal that is cooked in a communal pot of broth that is brought to the table while simmering. The diners then add their own ingredients, often meats, seafood, vegetables, mushrooms, etc. into the shared pot and then wait for it to cook.

Chinese Hot Pot

The Chinese version of hot pot likely originates from Mongolia, and dates back to the 14th century, during the era of Genghis Khan. It has become especially popular in the Sichuan and Taiwan provinces of China.

Typically, the soup stock that is used for Chinese hot pot consists of spicy chili oil, Sichuan peppercorn, and other condiments and spices. Chili paste is also added to the broth as the meal progresses, giving it a spicier kick. Traditional dishes to throw into the hot pot include:

  • Meats: Beef, Lamb, Sliced Pork
  • Seafood: Mussels, Squid, Shrimp
  • Vegetables: Bok Choy, Lotus Root, Water E shin
  • Mushrooms: Shiitake, Enoki, King Oyster
  • Noodles: Vermicelli, Udon, Ramen

Korean Hot Pot

Unlike Chinese hot pot, Korean hot pot is typically made without a soup stock. Instead, diners cook the dishes directly in a boiling or simmering pot of water, flavored with kimchi, garlic, scallions, anchovy sauce, and other condiments. Some favorite ingredients that are thrown into this hot pot include:

  • Meats: Beef, Lamb, Pork Belly
  • Seafood: Clams, Oysters, Shrimp
  • Vegetables: Napa Cabbage, Zucchini, Bell Peppers
  • Mushrooms: Shitake, Oyster, Enoki
  • Noodles: Glass Noodles, Udon, Ramen

At the end of the meal, diners usually enjoy Korean hot pot with boiled rice.

So, Who’s Hot Pot is it Anyway?

So, is hot pot something that is typically Chinese or Korean? The answer is… both! While the two cultures offer up their own unique versions of this oriental delicacy, the flavor profiles tend to overlap more than not.

So order whatever Hot Pot option in the restaurant you happen to prefer and let the tastes transport you to places far away.