Compilation of mushrooms and seaweed in Korean

By now, we have touched upon the vast diversity of plant-based foods like vegetables, fruit, grains and nuts. 🗒🌱 You may have learned enough Korean to identify the most common animal-based ingredients as well. 🗒🐮 So what’s left? Well, a LOT! 😉 For example, there are hundreds of fungi and many kinds of seaweed, which are also edible! Strictly speaking, both belong neither to plants nor to the animal kingdom. Let’s take a look at the remaining “other” lifeforms in this compilation of Korean vocabulary!

As a matter of fact, Korean cuisine features a large number of edible mushrooms as well as seaweed! Some of those you will encounter every day, because typical Korean dishes such as Kimbap, Bibimbap, and almost every soup contain seaweed and/or mushrooms. Whether you like them or not, being able to identify friend or foe will be an advantage in either case!

Below vocabulary list provides the names of mushrooms and seaweed in Korean language. 🗒🍄🇰🇷🇰🇵 The variety of local and seasonal produce is sheer endless and Korean groceries may appear mysterious or exotic! Thus, exploring new tastes and textures can be a fun culinary adventure. Can you think of something that’s not listed here, yet? ❓ Then let’s learn more about it! ❗️ Comment below or send me a message!

This collection of food-related vocabulary begins with mushrooms and continues with names of seaweed. At the end, there is a section of edibles that are neither fungus nor algae. 👽 Note that some of the organisms are not listed with a proper name in English, yet. You will also notice that certain mushrooms and seaweed are known by names derived from Japanese language. [Regardless, they may be common ingredients in Korea, China and various other Asian cuisines as well.] In order to avoid confusion among the numerous trivial names and English translations, the scientific names are listed in brackets, too.

⚠️UPDATE: For visual learners [like me], there are now pictures of food items along with the respective Korean name, pronunciation and English translation. Refer to the image slideshow at the bottom of this page!👇

Various mushrooms and other local produce at a traditional market in Seoul, 2019.

Names of mushrooms and seaweed in Korean

plant-based ingredients 식물성 재료 植物性材料 sikmulseong jaeryo

🍄 mushrooms 버섯 🍄🍄

  • class of mushrooms – 버섯류 –類 beoseotnyu
  • mushroom in general – 버섯 beoseot
  • edible mushroom in general – 식용버섯 signyong beoseot
  • button mushroom, cremini, portobello (Agaricus bisporus) – 양송이버섯 yangsongi-beoseot
  • king trumpet mushroom, French horn mushroom (Pleurotus eryngii) – 새송이버섯 saesongi-beoseot
  • matsutake (Tricholoma matsutake) 송이버섯 songi-beoseot
  • 송화버섯 songhwa-beoseot
  • shiitake (Lentinula edodes) – 표고버섯 pyogo-beoseot
    • high-grade shiitake, “winter mushroom” – Chin. dōnggū 冬菇
    • high-grade shiitake with pattern of flower-like cracks, “flower mushroom” – Chin. huāgū 花菇
  • golden needle mushroom, enoki mushroom, Jap. enokitake (Flammulina velutipes) – 팽이버섯 paengi-beoseot
  • beech mushroom, shimeji mushroom (Hypsizygus tessellatus) – 만가닥버섯 man-gadak-beoseot / 백만송이버섯 baekman-songi-beoseot
  • Korean type of oyster mushroom – 느타리버섯 neutari-beoseot
  • lion’s mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) – 노루궁뎅이버섯 norugung-daengi-beoseot (literally: “Siberian roe deer tail mushroom”)
  • (Ramaria) – 싸리버섯 ssari-beoseot
  • wood ear mushroom – 목이버섯 木耳 mogi-beoseot
  • white wood ear – 은이버섯 eunibeoseot / 흰목이버섯 hwin-mogi-beoseot
  • truffle – 송로 松露 songno / 트러플 teureopeul
  • (Cordyceps militaris) – 동충하초 冬蟲夏草 dongchung hacho
  • lingzhi mushroom, Jap. reishi (Ganoderma lingzhi) – 영지버섯 靈芝 yeongji-beoseot [👉medicinal use and symbol in art]

🌊 seaweed 해초 🎣🌿

  • class of seaweed – 해초류 海草類 haecho-ryu
  • seaweed in general – 해초 海草 haecho / 해조 海藻 haejo
  • sea laver, Jap. nori, type of red algae (Pyropia / Porphyra) – 김 gim [👉 sushi, Kimbap 김밥]
  • sea mustard, Jap. wakame, type of brown algae (Undaria) – 미역 miyeok
  • kelp, Jap. kombu, type of brown algae (Laminaria / Saccharina) – 다시마 dasima [👉 soup stock]
  • Jap. hijiki, type of brown algae (Sargassum) – 톳 tot
  • type of green algae (Ulva) – 파래 parae
  • type of green algae (Enteromorpha) – 매생이 maesaengi
  • (Codium) – 청각 cheonggak
  • type of brown algae (Ecklonia) – 감태 gamtae
  • type of red algae used for agar – 우무 umu
    • jelly made from agar – 한천 hancheon

👽 miscellaneous 기타 🦄👾

  • manna lichen (Umbilicaria esculenta) – 석이버섯 石耳 seogi-beoseot


⚠️ For quick learning and easy remembering: Here’s a slideshow with images of nuts and seeds together with the respective Korean names, pronunciation and English translation 👇


✍️ Work is still in progress! This list will be expanded gradually! ✍️

❓ Didn’t find the word/sentence you need?
❗️ Send me a message! Or comment below!

📝 Any questions, comments, vocabulary suggestions and language feedback are welcome! 🤗

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