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The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2019 Edition

The Ramen Rater's Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2019 Edition

It’s January 2019, and so it is time for the first of many Top Ten Lists. I always start the year with the latest South Korean Top ten. This list was compiled as of posting 3,058 unique reviews of instant noodles, 349 of which are South Korean. All varieties are manufactured in South Korea. If you are a company interested in having your products showcased, please drop me a line. Let’s begin!

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2019 Edition

Video Presentation

Watch the full video presentation of this year’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time! Don’t forget to subscribe to the YouTube channel for daily videos!

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2019 Edition

#10: Nongshim Shin Ramyun Black

Best South Korean Ramen - Nongshim Shin Ramyun Black

When Shin Ramyun Black came onto the scene a few years back it was a huge hit and still is. An upgraded version of their popular shin Ramyun, it includes a sachet of Sul-Long-Tang soup base which gives an extra heartiness to the broth. Thick ramyun noodles and a spicy bite round out the scene. It took me some time to get a pack made in South Korea, a requirement of this this. Original review Get it here

#9: Paldo Cheese Noodle

Best Korean Ramen - Paldo Cheese Noodle

Paldo’s Cheese Noodle has been on the list for awhile now and with good reason. The way the cheese intermingles with the red spicy broth is amazingly good. The noodles are nice and thick ramyun and there’s a large quantity of them. Definitely one that everyone should try – and now there’s a spicier version on the market. Original review Get it here

#8: Nongshim Champong Noodle Soup Spicy Seafood Flavor

Best Korean Ramen - Nongshim Champong Noodle Soup Spicy Seafood Flavor

Nongshim Champong is a spicy seafood noodle soup. It combines what you are used to with the beefiness of a standard Korean ramyun but replaces the beef with seafood flavor. This more ‘of the sea’ variety works very well with the chewy ramyun noodle. It’s kind of like a seafood stew to be honest.  Excellent when paired with seafood. Original review Get it here

#7: Nongshim Neoguri Stir-fry Noodles Spicy Seafood

Best Korean Ramen - Nongshim Neoguri Stir-fry Noodles Spicy Seafood

Neoguri Spicy Seafood Soup is a long time favorite of many and now it’s been converted in this new version as a dry noodle, sans broth. To be honest, I like this much better – not only does it have the great flavor of Neoguri, it’s got a plethora of garnish included – featuring little pieces of fishcake with the raccoon mascot on them. Original review Get it here

#6: Paldo Rabokki Noodle

Best Korean Ramen - Paldo Rabokki Noodle

To understand Paldo’s Rabokki Noodle, you have to understand tteokbokki. It’s also spelled topokki – but however you spell it, tteokbokki are thick cylindrical rice tubes that have a nice chewiness to them. They’re often paired with a thick red sauce which is spicy as well as sweet and served with fishcake, egg and other garnish. These noodles are paired with the sauce in a very tasty representation and crossover of the dish. Original review Get it here

#5: Ottogi Jin Jjambbong Spicy Seafood Ramyun

Best Korean Ramen - Ottogi Jin Jjambbong Spicy Seafood Ramyun

Ottogi’s Jin series added a couple of new varieties recently, and this is my favorite of the two. During a recent trip to Taipei, I went to a restaurant called Love Instant Noodleswhere they doll up packs of instant noodles and serve them piping hot. This is the one I chose from their selection. Jjambbong is a kind of spicy stew and this one has a nice kind of grilled flavor to it, alongside the popular broader ramyun currently spreading around  – great stuff! Original review Get it here

#4: Paldo Budae Jjigae

Best Korean Ramen - Paldo Budae Jjigae

Here we have 2017’s #1 from this list and it was also on the annual The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 list. So, what’s Budae Jjigae? Well, take donated rations from US soldiers from the Korean War and mix them with the local South Korean cuisine. This interesting fusion works so well including tastes from both cultures. Original review Get it here

#3: Ottogi Budae Jjigae Ramen

Best Korean Ramen - Ottogi Budae Jjigae Ramen

Ottogi also has a Budae Jjigae – and it’s my favorite of the varieties to spring onto the market in the last couple years. With bits of processed meats and other niceties, it combines with South Korean flavors into a crescendo of tasty goodness. Budae Jjigae translates to ‘troop stew’ or army stew’ as it originated from donated rations from US forces during the Korean War. Original review Get it here

#2: Samyang Foods Samyang Ramen Spicy Flavor

Best Korean Ramen - Samyang Foods Samyang Ramen Spicy Flavor

This last year I’ve really fallen for Samyang Ramen – both the regular and spicy version. It’s a bit different from most South Korean varieties as they usually lean towards beef, these have a ham flavor. The thick, chewy noodles and the rich and very tasty broth bring these to this list this year, and while I type this, my mouth is watering just thinking about it. Original review Get it here

#1: Gookmul Knight Of Ribs

Best Korean Ramen - Gookmul Knight Of Ribs

With imagery heralding to days of yore, a very unique and tasty one from South Korea tops this year’s list. A thick noodle is complimented with a retort pouch (a metallic sachet) which brings a sweet and savory sauce full of real pork – really like a pulled-pork noodle. What’s surprising is that this was the first variety I’ve found with one of these from South Korea – and it was excellent. Original review Get it here

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2018 Edition

UPDATE: Here’s the new 2019 List!

Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles

Kicking off Top Ten List season, I bring you the South Korean Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time for 2018. I looked at how many varieties from South Korea I’ve reviewed to date and got 326 so far. South Korean varieties continue to evolve and innovate in different ways in order to satisfy the changing needs and tastes of the consumer – definitely keeps things interesting. As always, I ask any companies, whether in South Korea or elsewhere – that would like me to review their products to send me an email! I am happy to talk to you!  Without further delay, let’s have a look at the Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles list for 2018 – the best South Korean varieties available out of the over 360 South Korean varieties from the over 2,500 varieties of instant noodles I’ve reviewed thus far.

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodle Of All Time 2018 Edition

Video Presentation

A video presentation of the Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodles Of All Time 2018 Edition.

The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten South Korean Instant Noodle Of All Time 2018 Edition

#10: Nongshim Shin Ramyun Black

#10: Nongshim Shin Ramyun Black

When Shin Ramyun Black came onto the scene a few years back it was a huge hit and still is. An upgraded version of their popular shin Ramyun, it includes a sachet of Sul-Long-Tang soup base which gives an extra heartiness to the broth. Thick ramyun noodles and a spicy bite round out the scene. It took me some time to get a pack made in South Korea, a requirement of this this. Original review

#9: Paldo Cheese Noodle

#9: Paldo Cheese Noodle

Paldo’s Cheese Noodle has been on the list for awhile now and with good reason. The way the cheese intermingles with the red spicy broth is amazingly good. The noodles are nice and thick ramyun and there’s a large quantity of them. Definitely one that everyone should try – and now there’s a spicier version on the market. Original review

#8: Nongshim Champong Noodle Soup Spicy Seafood Flavor

#8: Nongshim Champong Noodle Soup Spicy Seafood Flavor

Nongshim Champong is a spicy seafood noodle soup. It combines what you are used to with the beefiness of a standard Korean ramyun but replaces the beef with seafood flavor. This more ‘of the sea’ variety works very well with the chewy ramyun noodle. It’s kind of like a seafood stew to be honest.  Excellent when paired with seafood. Original review

#7: Nongshim Neoguri Stir-fry Noodles Spicy Seafood

#7: Nongshim Neoguri Stir-fry Noodles Spicy Seafood

New to the market is Nongshim’s Neoguri Stir-Fry Noodles. Neoguri Spicy Seafood Soup is a long time favorite of many and now it’s been converted in this new version as a dry noodle, sans broth. To be honest, I like this much better – not only does it have the great flavor of Neoguri, it’s got a plethora of garnish included – featuring little pieces of fishcake with the raccoon mascot on them. Original review

#6: Paldo Rabokki Noodle

#6: Paldo Rabokki Noodle

To understand Paldo’s Rabokki Noodle, you have to understand tteokbokki. It’s also spelled topokki – but however you spell it, tteokbokki are thick cylindrical rice tubes that have a nice chewiness to them. They’re often paired with a thick red sauce which is spicy as well as sweet and served with fishcake, egg and other garnish. These noodles are paired with the sauce in a very tasty representation and crossover of the dish. Original review

#5: Nongshin Chal Bibim Myun

#5: Nongshin Chal Bibim Myun

Nongshim’s Chal Bibim Myun is a cold noodle which is great anytime, but especially during the summer months. A kind of sweet and spicy sauce coats the noodles and is also refreshing at the same time. Pairs very well with fresh cucumber and hard boiled egg. Original review

#4: Ottogi Jin Jjambbong Spicy Seafood Ramyun

#4: Ottogi Jin Jjambbong Spicy Seafood Ramyun

Ottogi’s Jin series added a couple of new varieties recently, and this is my favorite of the two. During a recent trip to Taipei, I went to a restaurant called Love Instant Noodles where they doll up packs of instant noodles and serve them piping hot. This is the one I chose from their selection. Jjambbong is a kind of spicy stew and this one has a nice kind of grilled flavor to it, alongside the popular broader ramyun currently spreading around  – great stuff! Original review

#3: Paldo Budae Jjigae

#3: Paldo Budae Jjigae

Here we have last year’s #1 on this list and it is also on the annual The Ramen Rater’s Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2017 annual list. So, what’s Budae Jjigae? Well, take donated rations from US soldiers from the Korean War and mix them with the local South Korean cuisine. This interesting fusion works so well including tastes from both cultures. Original review

#2: Ottogi Budae Jjigae Ramen

#2: Ottogi Budae Jjigae Ramen

Ottogi also has a Budae Jjigae – and it’s my favorite of the varieties to spring onto the market in the last couple years. With bits of processed meats and other niceties, it combines with South Korean flavors into a crescendo of tasty goodness. Budae Jjigae translates to ‘troop stew’ or army stew’ as it originated from donated rations from US forces during the Korean War. Original review

#1: Samyang Foods Paegaejang Ramen

#1: Samyang Foods Paegaejang Ramen

The number one this is year is Samyang Foods Pagaejang. This is a very tasty beef noodle with strong flavor – a hearty broth and rich taste. The noodles are just perfect for me – a nice light outer edge and chewier insides. Definitely one to try and I hope it comes to the United States for all here to sample. Original review

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Well, the little cheese guy has gone from a place of meekness to one of anger. Let me show you.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

As you can see, the original cheese guy was terrified and way too easy going. This guy now has full confidence and is holding a pepper like a weapon. He’s got a lot of confidence. Confidence that he’s going to jack up your day.

The original was on my top ten annual list a few years back – excellent stuff – especially with some Swiss cheese, which in the hot broth becomes sloppy and gloppy and dare I say yummy (see yesterday’s review for my diatribe on that term).

I’ve had this new spicy version once. It was the night that I worked with my son Andy on putting together a Nanoblock set. He had some chicken tanmen and I tried this one. I love cheese ramyun and loading it high with cheese and Busan fishcake. Well, it was freakishly spicy and today I’m going to be attempting it straight, no chaser. This is what they like to call mukbang – when you let everyone watch you eat something on YouTube; let them see the sweat of your brow, hear the slurping and generally make yourself naked for people to see you doing a regular bodily function known as eating. I think I should be able to conquer it, however, I think I noticed that ones with soup have a different mean attitude than the ones without. Let’s check out this new variety and see how spicy it is.

Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle – South Korea

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Contains beef. To prepare, add noodles, powder base and flake sachets to 550ml boiling water. Cook for 4 minutes and then add cheese powder. Finally, stir and enjoy!

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

That’s a big noodle block.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

The powder base.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Very angry looking powder.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

A yellow sachet.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Yellow powder lives in the yellow sachet.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

The vegetable sachet.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Lots of little bits.

Finished (click to enlarge). I definitely love the ramyun in this one – nice and thick with a good chew. The broth has a very strong heat and a good savory flavor to it from the cheese. I expected hotter as my last time trying this was almost unbearable, however, that was just for dinner and I think I used a lot less water, therefore less dilution of the seasoning. Nonetheless, it’s pretty damn hot. I love the original version and I think the spiciness detracts from what I enjoyed about it honestly. 4.25 out of 5.0 stars. UPC bar code 648436101221.

#2650: Paldo Flaming Hot Savoury Cheese Noodle - South Korea - The Ramen Rater - ramyun

Paldo C h e e s e Fromage Ramyun Noodle 3.92 Oz (4 Packs)

A kid eating some spicy Bibimmyun

#1414: Paldo Cheese Ramyun (US Version)

Hey look – it’s the return of the happy little cheese guy with the sign! He looks so happy that he will be eaten – after having been reduced to a powder mix! I wonder how he would look if he really knew he would be eaten?

Well, sorry dude, but your request is going to go unheeded today. Besides, you’re a cheese; cheese is meant to be eaten. Let’s have a look at this one from South Korea, made for the US market!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains beef. To prepare, add noodles, green and red sachets to 550cc boiling water for 3 minutes. Stir in cheese powder sachet contents and enjoy!

A nice big noodle block.

The spicy soup base sachet.

Has a spicy and beef scent.

The vegetable sachet.

Green onion amongst other things.

The cheese powder sachet.

Lots of cheese powder!

 Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sweet onion, Colby Jack cheese and sukiyaki beef. The noodles are Paldo’s regular excellent fare – thick, chewy and fun to chew. The broth is a split of your regular spicy beef ramyun broth and a cheese powder that sets it all off nicely! Cheese makes it so comfort-food oriented which was perfect. The veggie hydrate just fine. This is identical to the one on my top ten list for 2014 – delightful! 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 648436100934.

Here’s a TV spot from Hong Kong for Paldo Cheese Ramyun.

#1183: Paldo Cheese Noodle

Here’s something new from Paldo of South Korea – cheese noodle! I am a big fan of cheese! I also like noodles obviously, so this should be a nice pairing. Let’s dig in to some cheesy goodness!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat-free but check for yourself.

The noodle block.

The soup base sachet.

Light on the spiciness.

The vegetables sachet.

The veggies.

The cheese powder sachet.

Cheese!

 

My son Andreas saw this hat I had yesterday up on a shelf and decided he’d like to wear it. He didn’t know the noodles we’d be having today would be from Paldo!

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added swiss cheese, sweet onion and Fresno chili peppers. The noodles are extremely good – they’ve got some potato starch going on and I always like noodles with potato starch. They’re thick like normal ramyun but a little less chewy. The broth is excellent – while it has a medium spicy flavor before you add the cheese powder packet, the cheese powder softens the spicy blow but doesn’t overwhelm it. The two intermingle in the broth and engorge the noodle with a good flavor. The veggies were pretty good. I could see myself having this one often. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.UPC bar code 648436100873.

[AMAZONPRODUCTS asin=”B005Z3E5WG”]This one’s great too and pairs nicely with processed cheese. Swiss would probably go well too – although swiss doesn’t melt easily, it stays nice and chewy and gloppy.[/AMAZONPRODUCTS]

A commercial for one of their other products showing a recipe involving whelk! I tried it a while back – check it out here.

Cheese Ramyun Samples From Paldo

My pal Moses over at Paldo sent me a message the other day: “I’m sending you something…”

Cheese ramyun! Something brand new by Paldo over in South Korea! Cheese is good stuff and the little cheese guy holding up a sign that says cheese noodle is awesome. Thanks Moses! I’ll be giving this one a try soon!