Is Gochujang Gluten-Free?

Is Gochujang Gluten Free

Is Gochujang Gluten-Free? 

Gochujang might be gluten-free. 

Traditionally Gochujang is made using Gochugaru (Korean red chili flakes), fermented soybeans, glutinous rice flour, barley malt powder, and salt. With the addition of barley, traditional gochujang would not be considered to be gluten-free. 

However, with the rise of the commercial production of Gochujang, many brands have altered the traditional; recipe. To accommodate people with gluten intolerance, allergy some companies have removed gluten from their Gochujang, replacing it with other gluten-free starches. 

To ensure that your Gochujang is gluten-free, always read the ingredients label located on the product.

About Gochujang 

Gochujang is a highly popular Korean condiment. Otherwise known as Korean red pepper paste, Gouchjang is used in a variety of dishes and is favored for its perfect balance of sweetness, umami, and heat. 

Gochujang is a key ingredient in a variety of Korean dishes including, bibimbap, bulgogi, and tteok-bokki. It is considered highly versatile and is commonly added to soups stews to add depth of flavor and as a marinade for meats, fish, and tofu. 

Gochujang is part of the Jang family of condiments, including Doenjang (fermented soya bean paste) and Ssamjang. 

The History of Gouchjang

The first recorded use of Gouchjang in Korean cooking dates back to the early 17th century. Back then, Gouchjang was made at home. The sauce was made and then stored in large earthware pots (jangdok) on elevated platforms and left, allowing the ingredients to ferment and develop flavor. 

By the 1970s, homemade Gouchjang had faded away from popular culture as the condiment became commercially available. 

Since then, Gouchjang has spread into western culture and is now considered an artisan ingredient commonly used to coat chicken wings or even added to ketchup. 

Taste Profile

Gochujang can be identified by its thick consistency and bright red color. Its taste profile is a complex mix of umami and heat balanced by a slight sweetness that is brought about by the fermentation process.  

Different varieties of Gochujang have been produced to varying degrees of heat , ranging from mildly hot to extremely hot. 


Ingredients vary depending on the variety of Gouchjang you buy. The majority of Gochujang does contain gluten in some form, primarily from the wheat or barley grains used in the condiment.  

Here are the standard ingredient list for several commercial varieties of Gochujang: 

O’Food Gochujang: Tapioca syrup, water, brown rice, red pepper powder, salt, alcohol, soybean, garlic, onion.  

Ajumma Republic Gouchjang: Starch syrup, wheat flour, water, powdered red pepper (10%), salt, polished wheat, ethyl alcohol, garlic, hydrolyzed vegetable protein (wheat), onion.

CJ Haechandle Gouchjang: Corn syrup, red pepper seasoning (red pepper powder, water, salt onion garlic,) rice, water, salt, red pepper powder 2.0%, gain alcohol, soybean, salt soybean powder, glutinous rice, rice flour, koji. 

Nutritional Information

(The following nutritional information is from O’Food Gouchjang. The nutritional information of other varieties of gochujang may vary.) 

Nutriconal information per 100g
Energy 903kj/ 216 Kcal
Fat 0.7g
Saturated fat 0.0g
Carbohydrates  43.5g
Sugars  26.1g
Proteins 3.9g
Salt 2.5g

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