Is Korean barbecue halal?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Is Korean barbecue halal?”. We will also talk about what halal is, what Korean barbecue is, and what are the components of Korean barbecue.

Is Korean barbecue halal? 

Korean barbecue is not halal. However, there are several restaurants and Korean barbecue places that have halal certification and the meat used is halal certified.

If you are planning a Korean barbecue at home, then buying halal meat and not including any haram or non-halal food and drinks can convert the Korean barbecue into halal.

What is halal?

Halal is an Arabic word that simply translates to ‘permissible’ in English. Halal is contrasted with haram in the Quran where haram is unlawful or forbidden and halal is lawful or allowed.

The most common example of non-halal food is pork meat as it is considered haram to consume pork meat in Quran. The other food items and meat to be considered halal need to pass different criteria such as the origin of the animal, the method of slaughter, the cause of the animal’s death, and how the meat was processed.

The foods that are not considered halal for Muslims to consume include blood and intoxicants like alcoholic beverages.

What is a Korean barbecue? 

Korean barbecue is a popular method in Korean cuisine of grilling meat, typically beef, pork, or chicken on the table on gas or charcoal grills with an array of accompaniments to eat with the grilled meat.

Korean barbecue, also known as ‘gogi-gu-i’ in Korean is very popular in its home country and is gaining popularity across the globe as it is a very communal and fun way of eating and interacting with your fellow diners.

The main items that accompany the meat are the sauce, lettuce to wrap the meat, rice, kimchi, seaweed, pickles, and soju, a Korean alcoholic drink.

What are the components of Korean barbecue?

Korean barbecue consists of many components that make it a complete eating experience.


Meat is the main component of Korean barbecue and is the star of the show. You have a choice of marinated pork, chicken, or beef as a choice which are all marinated to make it tender and flavorful. 

Different cuts of pork and beef are used such as pork belly, neck, legs, beef brisket, sirloin, filet, and short ribs. It is generally the tender meat cuts are only seasoned with salt and pepper and the tough cuts are marinated to tenderize them


The sauce is an important component called the Ssamjang in Korean which translates to English as ‘wrapped thick sauce’. The sauce is a paste made up of chili paste and soybean paste which is put in the lettuce or perilla leaves with the meat and other components to make a wrap.

The amount of Ssamjang you use determines the flavor and intensity of the Korean barbecue experience.

Wraps of lettuce 

Lettuce and perilla leaves are important to make the eating experience complete as it is used to make a wrap or parcel with all the components of the Korean barbecue such as grilled meat, sweet and spicy sauce, rice, kimchi, pickles, and stir-fried anchovies.

The perilla leaves are often sold as sesame leaves which have a grassy, slightly aniseed flavor that makes up for a perfect wrap to the meat. The lettuce and perilla leaves also help in the intake of leafy greens which would help in digestion.

Side dishes 

Korean barbecue is all about lots of side dishes that come along with the platter of meat on the table. In Korean, the array of side dishes is called a Banchan which includes pickled or fermented vegetables such as kimchi, marinated greens such as spinach and watercress, rolled scallion omelets, stir-fried anchovies, and much more.  


Rice is a major component in any Korean meal, Korean barbecue is no exception. A bowl of sticky rice is always part of the Korean barbecue which fulfills the carbohydrate intake.


Korean barbecues are not complete without a sip of Korean alcoholic beverages such as soju, Makgeolli, a milky Korean wine, and Korean beers. These alcoholic drinks are part of the barbecue and eating experience as the salty meat and other components make you salivating and thirsty.

The drinks can help you wash down the richness and saltiness of the overall eating of the barbecue.


In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Is Korean barbecue halal?”. We also talked about what halal is, what Korean barbecue is, and what are the components of Korean barbecue.

I hope you find this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.


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