Stir fry kimchi and pork belly is so simple to make yet out of this world satisfying! Dinner under 30 minutes, and keto friendly.
This time of the year, when farmer’s markets are closed, and fresh produce in grocery stores are so limited, I often reach for my fermented vegetables. Sometimes I even run out of supplies and have to make a second or third batch. There is a pattern of me talking about fermented vegetables in March – just look at the sauerkraut recipe I blogged about last year. This year I am sharing a stir fry kimchi recipe with video direction. The talented Paul Cafcae created the instrumental soundtrack for this recipe video.
Tasty Asian Fast-Food
When I lived in Tokyo, I could find this Korean-style stir fry kimchi and pork dish easily at many fast food joints. I fell in love with it. Now living in Canada, I really miss that in Asia a quick meal can still be so healthy.
Replicating this dish at home is extremely easy. Wouldn’t anyone want this kind of “fast” food that’s good for us?
Does Cooking Destroy Kimchi?
People have been praising the ever so popular kimchi as a probiotic food. The question is “does cooking destroy all of kimchi’s benefits?” The short answer is “no”. I think we need to look at fermented vegetables as more than just a source of probiotics.
There is a long tradition of fermenting vegetables in the human history. Modern science has discovered probiotics as one benefit of fermented foods. And heat can destroy the probiotic microbes. However, fermentation has other benefits. These include preserving peak-harvested produce, making them more digestible, more nutritious and more flavourful, as well as breaking down toxins!
Traditionally, fermented vegetables are often cooked in various dishes throughout the winter. Fermented ingredients add complex flavours. So, don’t be concerned about eating them cooked as well.
Shorter Cooking Time of Stir Fry Kimchi
Fermented vegetables aren’t considered completely raw by the traditional cooks. This is because they have been pre-digested by the bacteria. When using kimchi, the cooking time is much shorter compared to using fresh raw cabbage.
As a result, this stir fry kimchi and pork belly dish is so quick to put together. This is a perfect weeknight dinner under 30 minutes.
Related: More Tasty Dinner Under 30 Minutes
- Sheet-Pan Keto Zucchini Noodles and Shrimp (Paleo, Whole 30, Keto)
- Olive and Preserved Lemon Poached Shrimp
- Coconut Pea Puree + Baked Sole Flowers
- Stir Fry Bean Sprouts with Minced Pork (Keto, Gluten-Free)
- Keto Cauliflower Fried Rice /w Hot Dog and Eggs
Homemade Kimchi for Keto, Paleo, Whole 30 and GAPS
My lacto-fermented home-made kimchi is free of MSG, added sugar and grains. I have 2 delicious kimchi recipes! Both are so flavourful and suitable for various traditional healing diets.
- Keto Kimchi: A traditional kimchi made with all Keto ingredients. Also paleo, whole 30, GAPS friendly.
- Paleo Apple-Fermented Kimchi: With a hint of sweet apple, this kimchi is unique and refined sugar free. Also whole 30 and GAPS friendly.
Pork Belly in Stir Fry Kimchi
Eating animal fat can be healthy, even if you aren’t following a ketogenic diet to lose weight. Consuming not only the lean cuts is a great way to support nose-to-tail eating, a food philosophy about consuming every part of the animal for both nutritional and ethical reasons.
There is also part of the population, due to genetics, that require higher animal fat consumption. Consuming healthy fats is beneficial for mental health, regular hormone production, and helps to maintain a healthy weight. Like me, I would probably have vanished if I didn’t eat every part of the animal.
Humans and animals alike, our bodies store some toxins in the fat cells. Therefore, I think it’s extra worthwhile to buy naturally-raised pork belly. When using pork belly, there is no need to add oil. Compared to many plant-based oils, especially highly-processed vegetable oil, animal fat is a much healthier and more stable high-heat cooking fat.
If you don’t like pork belly, then by all means switch to pork tenderloin or a lean pork of your choice. However, added oil will be necessary when using a lean cut.
Easy Stir Fry Kimchi & Pork Belly
- Slice the pork belly as thin as possible. Marinate in tamari soy sauce and rice wine for about 10 minutes. If your kimchi isn't pre-cut, then cut them into 1 inch size.
- Heat a heavy bottom pan (I use cast iron). When the pan is very hot, add the marinated pork belly. Stir fry the pork belly on medium high heat for about 6 to 8 minutes until nicely browned. You should see some fat being cooked out of the pork belly at this point.
- Add the kimchi into the pan, stir fry for another 2 minutes, for the flavour of kimchi and pork to completely combine.
- Turn off the heat. Thinly slice the green onion, and add to the stir fry.
- If available, sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top as garnish.
- Tamari soy sauce is naturally gluten-free. You can make this dish with regular soy sauce as well.
- If you use a store-bought kimchi, make sure to check the ingredients for your dietary requirements. It's easy to ferment your own keto kimchi and paleo apple-fermented kimchi at home. When you make your own, you can ensure they are free of MSG, grains or added sugar.
- To toast your own sesame seeds, cook raw sesame seeds on medium-low heat in a cast-iron or stainless-steel skillet for 5 to 7 minutes until fragrant and slightly golden. Stir continuously to prevent burning.