Gut-Healing Kimchi from the 10-Day Belly Slimdown

Gut-Healing Kimchi from the 10-Day Belly Slimdown

Gut-Healing Kimchi Recipe from The 10-Day Belly Slimdown


  • 1 medium head napa cabbage
  • ¼ cup Celtic or pink Himalayan salt (do not use iodized salt)
  • Filtered, nonchlorinated water
  • 5 garlic cloves, grated or minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger (about ½-inch knob)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce or water
  • 1 to 5 tablespoons Korean red pepper flakes (gochugaru; see Notes)
  • ¾ cup peeled daikon matchsticks
  • 4 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 carrots, cut into matchsticks

Wash the cabbage, cut it lengthwise into 2-inch-thick slices, and discard the center core. Put the cabbage in a large bowl and add the salt. Massage with your hands for a few minutes until it starts to soften, cover with filtered water, place a plate on top of the cabbage, and weight the plate down with something heavy, such as a can of tomatoes.

Let stand at room temperature for about 1½ hours. Put the cabbage in a colander and rinse well at least three times. Set aside to drain for 15 minutes while you make the seasoning paste. In a large bowl, combine the garlic, ginger, fish sauce or water, and Korean red pepper flakes to make a paste. Add the daikon, scallions, and carrots. Squeeze out any moisture left in the cabbage and combine it with the other vegetables and spicy paste.

Wearing rubber gloves, gently mix all the ingredients together and pack into a clean glass jar until the liquid rises above the vegetables. Leaving at least 1 to 2 inches of headroom, loosely seal the jar, and put it on a plate or in a bowl to collect any juices that overflow while the kimchi ferments. Keep the mixture at room temperature so the vegetables can ferment; do not refrigerate. Open the jar once daily to pack down the vegetables using a clean utensil and allow the gases produced during fermentation to be released.

This is also the time to taste it to see if it is fermented to your liking. After tasting, do NOT insert the utensil back into the kimchi. You will likely want 2 to 4 days of fermentation, unless you’re a hard-core kimchi fan. The longer it ferments, the stronger it gets. When done, refrigerate. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 weeks.

NOTES: Fermented foods heal the gut by feeding it healthy bacteria. Korean red pepper flakes, or gochugaru, is a sun-dried Korean chile pepper that has been ground to a flaky/powdery texture. You can find it online or in Asian groceries. It is very hot and spicy with a bit of smokiness. Use 1 to 5 tablespoons depending on how hot you like your kimchi; if you are making it for the first time, start with about 2 tablespoons.

Gut-Healing Kimchi Recipe from the 10-Day Belly Slimdown Fermented foods heal the gut by feeding it healthy bacteria... and kimchi is one of my all-time favorite fermented foods!