Honey Butter Tteokbokki: A Sweet Twist on Korea’s Spicy Favorite

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Written By Hot Thai Restaurant

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Imagine taking a classic Korean street food and giving it a sweet, buttery twist. That’s exactly what honey butter tteokbokki does! Traditionally known for its spicy kick, tteokbokki is a beloved dish made from chewy rice cakes simmered in a fiery red sauce. But when you add the luxurious combo of honey and butter, you transform this popular snack into an irresistible fusion of flavors that dance between sweet, savory, and spicy.


Here’s what you’ll need to create your delicious honey butter tteokbokki. Let’s start by gathering the ingredients for the base and the sauce.

For the Tteokbokki

  • 350 grams (12 ounces) of tteokbokki tteok (Korean rice cakes): If using dried rice cakes, soak them in warm water for about 20 minutes until softened.
  • 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red chili flakes (adjust based on your spice preference)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 2 green onions, finely sliced for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame seeds for garnish

Required Tools and Equipment

Cooking Utensils

To effectively prepare honey butter tteokbokki, you’ll need a set of basic cooking utensils, which ensures a smooth cooking process. Start by gathering the following items:

  • Non-stick frying pan or wok: Essential for frying the rice cakes evenly without sticking.
  • Spatula: Helps in stirring and evenly distributing the sauce over the tteokbokki.
  • Measuring cups and spoons: Crucial for adding the exact amount of each ingredient, ensuring the perfect balance of flavors.

Preparation Tools

Before you start cooking, make sure to have the following tools on hand to help with the preparation of ingredients:

  • Knife: Needed to finely chop the green onions and garlic.
  • Cutting board: Provides a safe surface for all your chopping needs.
  • Mixing bowls: You’ll need at least one bowl to mix the sauce ingredients before adding them to the pan.

Additional Equipment

A few additional pieces of equipment can enhance the cooking experience and help achieve the best results:

  • Kitchen scale: Not strictly necessary, but helpful for measuring ingredient quantities accurately, especially if you prefer using weight measurements.
  • Serving dishes: For presenting your honey butter tteokbokki elegantly.
  • Kitchen timer or stopwatch: Useful to keep track of cooking times, ensuring you don’t overcook the rice cakes.

With these tools and equipment at the ready, you’re all set to begin crafting your delicious honey butter tteokbokki. Ensure each is clean and accessible to streamline your cooking process.


Now that you have your ingredients and tools ready, let’s start making your delicious honey butter tteokbokki.

Rice Cake Soaking

First, prepare your tteokbokki rice cakes. If they are fresh, simply rinse them under cold water. For frozen rice cakes, you’ll need to soak them in warm water for about 20 minutes to thaw and soften. This step ensures that the rice cakes become plump and tender, perfect for absorbing the honey butter sauce.

Sauce Mixing

While the rice cakes are soaking, grab a small bowl to mix your sauce. Combine 3 tablespoons of melted butter, 2 tablespoons of honey, and 1 teaspoon of soy sauce. Stir these ingredients well until they form a smooth, glossy sauce. This mixture will coat your rice cakes, giving them a delightful glaze that’s packed with flavor.

Cooking Instructions

After preparing your ingredients and tools, it’s time to dive into the actual cooking process. Follow these steps to achieve the best results for your honey butter tteokbokki.

Frying the Tteokbokki

  1. Heat your non-stick frying pan over medium heat.
  2. Add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the pan to ensure the tteokbokki doesn’t stick.
  3. Drain the soaked or rinsed tteokbokki rice cakes and pat them dry with a paper towel.
  4. Once the oil is hot, add the rice cakes to the pan in a single layer. Avoid overcrowding to ensure each rice cake browns evenly.
  5. Fry the rice cakes for about 2 minutes on each side, or until they are golden brown and have a slightly crispy exterior.
  6. Remove the rice cakes from the pan once done and set them aside on a clean plate.

Making the Honey Butter Sauce

  1. In the same pan, lower the heat to medium-low.
  2. Add two tablespoons of butter to the pan and let it melt slowly. Do not let it brown.
  3. Once the butter has melted, stir in three tablespoons of honey and a tablespoon of soy sauce. Mix until well combined.
  4. Continue to cook the sauce for about one minute, stirring consistently, until it becomes slightly thickened and glossy.
  1. Return the fried rice cakes to the pan with the honey butter sauce.
  2. Gently toss the rice cakes in the sauce to coat them evenly. Do this carefully to avoid breaking the rice cakes.
  3. Allow the rice cakes to simmer in the sauce for an additional 1-2 minutes, soaking up all the flavors.
  4. Turn off the heat and immediately transfer the honey butter tteokbokki to a serving dish.
  5. Optional: Garnish with a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds or chopped green onions for an added touch of flavor and color.
  6. Serve your dish warm and enjoy the delectable, buttery sweetness combined with the comforting texture of tteokbokki.

Serving Suggestions

After you have prepared your honey butter tteokbokki, it’s time to think about how to serve it for the best dining experience. This dish is wonderfully versatile and pairs well with a variety of accompaniments.

Pair with Proteins

For a balanced meal, consider serving your tteokbokki with a protein. Grilled fish or a plate of fried tofu make excellent companions, adding a pleasant contrast to the dish’s sweet and buttery flavor. Even a simple fried egg, sunny-side up, can elevate your meal with its richness.

Include a Refreshing Salad

A fresh salad can cleanse the palate and lighten the overall meal. Opt for a simple salad with a tangy vinaigrette to provide a counterbalance to the sweetness of the honey butter sauce. A cucumber salad sprinkled with sesame seeds and a dash of rice vinegar works wonderfully.

Offer Side Dishes

Traditional Korean meals often include a variety of side dishes. Kimchi is a popular choice and its tangy spiciness complements the sweetness of the tteokbokki beautifully. Pickled radishes and seasoned seaweed can also round out the flavors, adding texture and zest to your meal.

Serving Tips

Serve the honey butter tteokbokki warm, ideally as soon as it’s cooked for maximum enjoyment. The dish should be plated in a shallow bowl or a large plate and garnished with extra sesame seeds and sliced green onions to enhance both the visual appeal and the taste.


You’ll find that honey butter tteokbokki offers a delightful twist to the fiery classic, making it a must-try for anyone looking to explore new flavors. Whether you’re serving it at a casual dinner or a special gathering, this dish is sure to impress. Remember to enjoy it warm and don’t hesitate to experiment with different sides to discover your favorite combinations. Dive into this creamy, sweet, and savory experience and let your taste buds celebrate!

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