Trader Joe’s Tteok Bok Ki Korean Spicy Rice Cakes Reviews

(37 customer reviews)

Vegan and sold in the frozen section.

37 reviews for Trader Joe’s Tteok Bok Ki Korean Spicy Rice Cakes Reviews

  1. maryssa

    Pretty good and sauce is very flavorful! Has a subtle kick. I recommend cooking sauce as recommended but as for the corn puffs I would fry or put in air fryer to make crispy. Corn puffs are chewy regardless if they get crispy on the outside. I highly recommend and will be buying again. This meal was unique and different then all the Asian dishes trader joes has to offer.

  2. Anne

    I like tteokbokki, I eat it often. This is not tteokbokki. The sauce was sweet. There were no fish cakes. It was genuinely awful. I took 2 bites and threw it out. If you’ve never had tteokbokki, maybe you would think this is good. But if you actually want tteokbokki, this isn’t it. This is rice cakes in a sweet red sauce.

  3. Jeffrey

    With the extreme caveat that I never expect any asian food from Trader Joe’s to be authentic, I am split down the middle of this product. I cooked the rice cakes in the air fryer as recommended for “extra crispy ” and it still ended up being unpleasantly gummy in the sauce. The last bites were a bit hard to finish. However, I really enjoyed the sauce! A good spice level, albeit a tad sweet. I mad some steamed broccoli and tossed it in with the sauce and rice cakes….the saucy broccoli was the best thing about it. I would love for this sauce to be sold on its own. I would by this again, but honestly only for the sauce packet.

  4. Melanie

    Honestly, it’s what I imagine to be a very westernized version of the original dish. It’s too sweet and the spice is tolerable, which to me makes it a bit inauthentic (haha.) The rice cakes oddly enough don’t have the smell or consistency as they normally would. This one is more bouncy (rubbery?) and lacking in flavor. The broth tasted like green onion, sesame oil, and sugar. Overall, if you’ve never had tteokbokki before you’ll probably like it, but if you have had it before, you’re definitely not going to like it.

  5. Anonymous

    It has so much flavor and I enjoyed it very much

  6. Angela

    My whole family try this product and we loved it!! No need to drive far to K-Town – we got this sto bookie at Trader Joe’s.

  7. Jessie

    I LOVED these, now I want to buy all the items individually and make it every night for dinner. I really like the texture & the sauce is the perfect sweet yet spicy mix.

  8. Holly

    The flavor and texture was great, but was extremely spicey. If you’re sensitive to spice and heat, caution eating these.

  9. JH

    These are so good, perfect texture (springy and chewy) with a wonderful spice to go with the sweetness of the sauce

  10. Anonymous

    Pros: Made in Korea; has the correct flavor
    Cons: VERY sweet; not spicy at all

    Someone at Trader Joe’s must have convinced the manufacturer to make these very sweet to appeal to “Americans” because there is no way these would sell in Korea at that sweetness level. Also, the instructions call for throwing the rice cakes into an airfryer. That’s a mistake because that would create a crust and make it difficult for the sauce to be absorbed. Nobody in Korea would do that.

    @Holly: These are not spicy at all.

  11. Skylar

    This is definitely far from authentically Korean, but if you prepare it right, it can be a nice snack.

    The sauce: By itself, the sauce isn’t spicy at all and it’s very sweet. It also doesn’t thicken up with only heat, so be prepared to make a corn starch slurry to get it to the right consistency. Personally, I added quite a bit of sriracha in order to make the sauce spicy to my liking, but it would most likely be better if you added gochujang (Korean red pepper paste) or gochugaru (Korean chili flakes) instead.

    The rice cakes: I chose to prepare them the “crispy” stovetop way, but honestly, after being combined with the sauce, they lose all crispiness. They’re chewy, but just the right amount of chewy. The mildness of the rice cakes goes really well with the sauce (given that you added things to make it actually spicy). Overall, I really like the consistency, but I’d recommend steering clear if you’re not a fan of chewy textures.

    Overall: I think with the right modifications and preparation methods, you can make this dish into something worth making again. By thickening the sauce with a corn starch slurry and adding extra spice, it ended up being delicious. Of course, you can adjust the spiciness level based on your preferences. I mixed the rice cakes into the sauce before dishing it and then topped it with sliced green onions and I really enjoyed it! Trader Joe’s did an alright job with this one, but it’d be nicer if it was actually spicy out of the packaging.

  12. Anonymous

    Too sweet and the sauce in mine was weirdly grainy. Tasted like ketchup. Rice cakes wouldn’t absorb the sauce so they had almost no flavor either.

  13. rey

    gummy bear consistency, chewy, I made mine with soy sauce, vinegar, ginger, pepper, garlic, the sauce was too spicy for me

  14. Grace

    Trader Joe’s version of Korea’s traditional 떡볶이 was disappointing, to say the least. Another white-washed version of an ethnic and traditional dish. Not surprising. Meh.

  15. Lindsey

    Sauce does not thicken with stovetop sauce directions. Used air fryer for the rice cakes then mixed in the sauce and they’re very chewy. Sauce is delicious if used on some chicken thighs. Spicy and sweet.

  16. Anonymous

    I love traditional Tteokbokki, I’m half Korean and live part time in Korea.
    While this isn’t completely authentic, it’s pretty close.
    Some places in Korea do have a much sweeter Tteokbokki than others. Depends on what you prefer.
    When I make the Trader Joe’s Tteokbokki, I soak the rice cakes in mildly warm water while I am preparing the sauce.
    Add some fish sauce and soy sauce to the sauce.
    Once the sauce comes to a boil add in the rice cakes and fish cakes and egg if you like.
    Simmer and slightly boil until it thickens.
    It takes longer than the directions on the package.
    It will get as thick as you want.
    Afterwards add a little cheese if ya like.

  17. Anonymous

    Love it

  18. Anonymous

    Sooooo good!!

  19. GT

    The chewy texture of the cakes were not pleasing to me. Will not buy this again

  20. Kathryn

    I love the chewy texture of the rice cakes, but the sauce was awful, SO SWEET. I should have read the label… the first ingredient of the sauce (after water) is brown sugar. It tasted like spicy dessert and was gritty in texture from so much sugar.

  21. catherine

    terrible sweet like eating half a cup of cheap kraft bbq sauce. i added vinegar, kimchi, hot pepper sauce, onion, peppers, shrimp, turkey bacon, spinach whatever i could think of and it was still terrible sweetness. gag…this cannot be what its supposed to taste like,

  22. Vegan Number 1

    First of all, the sauce is way too sweet. Traditional Tteok Bok Ki is not this sweet. We eat Tteok Bok Ki to replace our meal, not as snack so it shouldn’t be this sweet. And the sauce doesn’t have depth in it. Just spicy and sweet. There is extra good flavor in real Tteok Bok Ki in Vegan version.

    Second of all, Tteok is like rubber. I can’t even chew in my mouth and causes the stomachache! Tteok has too much starch in it, you gotta put real 100% rice Tteok otherwise it tastes really like rubber. man…I never buy this again.

  23. Scott Lewis

    The sauce is MUCH, MUCH too sweet, and the “rice cake” rolls are MUCH, MUCH too chewy and flavorless. Not authentic tasting at all. I couldn’t finish it.

  24. Wendy

    I’m not sure how I feel about this product. Perhaps if I had eaten authentic tteokbokki I’d have something to compare. I was not a fan of the rice cakes, they were very gummy. This may just be the normal consistency, but it’s not pleasant.

    The flavor is ok. A very mild spice and a bit too sweat but not awful.

    Overall, edible but probably won’t try again.

  25. Anonymous

    Honestly disappointing. As well as the fact it wasn’t authentic it didn’t taste good at all. Originally it looked great and after 3 bites i threw it out completely.

  26. juju

    the texture is gummy and almost glue like! Never getting again

  27. LK

    I’m generally happy with my purchases at TJ’s. The ethnic dishes are never very authentic but still fun to try. My husband and I eat authentic Korean food in Korea town often. I have had real tteokbokki and this definitely isn’t it. The sweetness is in authentic but that’s not my gripe.
    The “rice” cakes are literally rubber. My husband took one bite and spit it out. I ate 3 of the so called rice cakes (trying not to waste it), and still have a stomach ache the next morning. I dumped it down the drain and turned on the disposal. The rubber “rice” cakes literally did not break down! I had to reach in the drain and pull them out completelyin tact! Wtf? I will definitely notify the store where I purchased. Totally inedible!

  28. Lara

    First time in a while when I had to throw out food. No texture, too chewy, the sauce is sweet and TOO spicy

  29. Anonymous

    I think a lot of these reviews are from nonkoreans because I can tell you (born and raised in Korea) that this is really pretty good. It is definitely on the sweet side for 떡볶기, but this is pretty common in Korea.

    The pros: the tteok is very good. It’s supposed to be chewy and if you follow the boiling directions, this is the correct texture. Please do not follow the crispy directions. That’s just.. it’s just wrong.

    The sauce has the correct flavor profile, but it is on the sweet side. I would add some soy sauce to help balance better.

    Cons: The sauce is very watery so you might need to remove the tteok and boil off some water or add a starch slurry.

    This is only tteok and sauce so if you want “real” 떡볶기, you’ll have to add your own fish cakes, hard boiled eggs, and green onions (and onions, cabbage, or carrots, but it’s a little problematic because all those veggies are sweet so you’ll have to add quite a bit more saltiness to balance)

    Overall this is a great base for tteokbokki, and also really pretty good just on it’s own too! And fairly authentic tho on the sweet side

  30. Andrew

    We enjoyed it a lot…cooked the cakes in the sauce, nice rubbery texture (which I like a lot). It is very saucy and medium spicy. We added 2 squares of cooked (not instant) ramen to the mix and it was really good.
    Next time I will add carrots broccoli and cabbage to the sauce and serve with rice.

  31. Phoebe

    (Caveating that I’ve never had the authentic dish and have a mild spice tolerance) I thought these were really good! The texture is fun and chewy, and while I understand the authentic version might be softer, this is definitely a fun and different texture to experience. The sauce had some sweetness which I loved, but honestly was too spicy for me to handle! No idea how everyone in these reviews are saying it’s not that spicy lol. I could barely finish it and was taking sips of water in between each bite. Eating it with rice would probably help, but I ate it as-is. Additionally, I saw a comment saying that the sauce doesn’t thicken without cornstarch, but this is probably because they aren’t simmering it long enough. It is pretty watery while simmering, but at the 10 minute mark started really thickening.

  32. Eric D

    I’m a Trader Joe’s slut and am absolutely not buying this again. Awful rock hard rice cakes tasted like stale popcorn. I cooked using the air fryer method and do not recommend. I could maaaaaybe see this having turned out better with the boiling method but still…

  33. Anonymous

    Having grown up with a ‘clean your plate, there are starving children in the world’ mentality, I seldom waste food. When confronted with an unappetizing dish, I will almost always try to redeem it somehow, and it usually works… THIS however, was fed straight to the garbage disposal after a few bites. Unpleasant, extremely gummy texture, and a runny sauce that made me choke and set my eyes watering. Lose/lose.

  34. BOB

    ive never had this shit before so I went for it. a couple things. they are gooey, its not intolerable but its a little weird. the sauce I was surprised by – it tasted a lot like tomato sauce that was sweetened and had a mild spiciness to it. together they were ok as a snack. I cooked the rice cakes 2/3 in a nonstick, rolled and browned them in plugra, and added some kosher salt. tasted fine, gave it a little crunch. then added the sauce. it was sweeter than I was expecting and would have liked but ok. im looking forward to trying the real thing someday. 3.5 stars

  35. Andrea

    I have never had the authentic version. The sauce is too sweet but it’s addictive. As a mochi lover I like the noodles but I can understand if they are not “authentic” for someone who is Korean. For me it’s an indulge meal. Sometimes I throw a veg in it. I like them crispy too. Overall I love it, just wish the sauce wasn’t so sweet. Guess I better go try the real thing!

  36. J

    As other have stated, incredibly gummy texture. I had a hard time finishing the portion I made (about half a bag) and wish I hadn’t. I am also a “don’t waste food” type of person but I cannot fathom eating this again so I think it will unfortunately be tossed. I am just not a fan of the texture more than anything else. Sauce was okay-a little on the sweet side for me with a just right spice, but not good enough for me to save either. Not a fan of this!

  37. CM

    Knowing nothing about this dish or product I decided to be adventurous and brought them to a small gathering, which included vegetarians and I was tired of always bringing kimchi dumplings. Suffice to say everyone (except me..) hated them. Either the texture was off putting (I air fried then tossed them in warmed sauce..) or too spicy. I thought they were strange but kind of interesting and certainly edible. So, 1 star from everyone else, 3 or 4 from me. I wouldn’t get them again but they were putrid by any means

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