Gyeran Bap (Korean Fried Egg on Rice)

Gyeran bap is a quick and easy Korean-style breakfast of fried egg on rice. The golden egg yolk and pan juices coat the plump rice kernels with a buttery-soy sauce. It’s a delicious umami-filled meal for one, any time of day.

Gyeran bap is a classic Korean breakfast of fried eggs served over hot rice. I love to add a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds and a large handful of crushed roasted seaweed. It’s also an extraordinarily delicious and easy dinner for one when you’re in no mood to cook.

The runny egg yolk doubles as a flavourful sauce combined with the browned butter, sesame oil and soy sauce to coat every plump rice kernel. Think buttered rice, but better.

And the toasted sesame seeds and roasted seaweed add an umami flavour kick (that you are free to omit).

Best of all? With leftover cooked rice, this quick meal takes less than 10 minutes.

A bowl of gyeran bap with everything mixed together using a golden spoon. The runny yolk coats the plump rice kernels.

Why you’ll love this recipe

This Korean gyeran bap recipe delivers a bowl of comfort food in no time. There are many reasons to love this simple Korean breakfast as much as I do:

  • It’s great for meal prep: Cook up a batch of medium-grain white rice, refrigerate and use it throughout the week to make your Korean egg rice in under 10 minutes. Always reheat leftover rice until piping hot.
  • It’s a great way to use up leftovers: For a more substantial meal, add leftover veggies or that last bit of kimchi lurking in the back of the fridge.
  • It’s quick and easy to make: If you already have leftover rice, you are essentially just frying an egg. It’s the little tips, tricks, and how the flavours combine into something magical that makes this more than just eggs and rice – even though it’s all you need to prepare. 
  • It’s utterly delicious: The runny egg yolk forms a flavourful sauce with the browned butter, sesame oil and soy that clings to the warm rice kernels. It takes no effort to make a restaurant-worthy bowl of gyeran bap.
  • It’s super versatile: You can adjust the flavour with what you have on hand. Want it spicy? Drizzle with gochujang bibimbap sauce or chilli crisp. Or turn it into a rice bowl with sliced avocado and heaps of kimchi.
A soy sauce fried egg on rice with crushed gim (roasted seaweed) and sesame seeds in a ceramic bowl.

What is gyeran bap?

Gyeran bap (or Korean egg rice) is a popular Korean breakfast dish that combines cooked white rice with a fried egg.

It’s a simple yet flavourful dish. Typical accompaniments include roasted seaweed (Korean gim), sesame oil, and soy sauce.

The egg is fried sunny-side up and placed over warm rice. To eat gyeran bap, you break the runny egg yolk with a spoon and mix – mixed together is where the magic happens. The roasted seaweed wilts and flavours the rice with egg yolk, soy sauce and sesame oil.

Gyeran bap is a great way to use leftover cooked rice for a convenient and delicious breakfast or snack. But with a rice cooker or instant pot, a batch of freshly steamed rice is hardly any effort.

Ingredients and substitutions

This simple yet delicious dish requires minimal ingredients and effort.

The simple ingredients you need for this gyeran bap recipe including cooked white rice, an egg, unsalted butter, soy sauce, sesame oil, roasted seaweed and toasted sesame seeds.

Rice

Use short-grain rice (like sushi rice) or medium-grain rice (like Calrose rice).

I typically use medium-grain rice cooked in my Instant Pot. Or see this stovetop sushi rice recipe for rice cooker and stovetop instructions for medium-grain or short-grain rice.

You can also use leftover cooked rice. Always reheat leftover rice until piping hot throughout.

Eggs

I use good quality pasture-reared eggs – you can use the eggs you prefer. The recipe calls for one egg, but you can add as many as you want.

I sometimes add two eggs when I make gyeran bap for dinner, but I’m a one-egg-for-breakfast person.

Frying fat

I use a combination of butter and toasted sesame oil to fry the egg. You can swap the butter for vegetable oil to keep it dairy-free or double the sesame oil.

Soy sauce

I use light or all-purpose soy sauce (dark soy sauce is too intense). You can use tamari or coconut aminos as a gluten-free option.

Roasted Korean seaweed

You can buy Korean seaweed in small packs of 4 to 5 grams. These small seaweed sheets are seasoned and crunchier than nori.

But you can also use a single nori sheet cut into thin strips or a generous sprinkle of furikake rice seasoning.

Two different packets of Korean roasted seaweed, a spicy one and a plain salted one.

Sesame seeds

Lightly toast sesame seeds in a frying pan for a nutty flavour boost, or serve them untoasted. I always toast a large batch of sesame seeds and keep it in an airtight container in the pantry, ready to sprinkle over any meal.

You can use black sesame seeds or a mix of white and black sesame seeds.

How to make gyeran bap

Gyeran bap is an easy breakfast or quick anytime meal. It takes only 10 minutes to make when you start with cooked rice.

A composite image of how to make gyeran bap in three steps. A bowl of white rice, a fried egg, and a ceramic bowl with egg, rice, seaweed and sesame seeds.

Step 1: Prep the rice

Start with one cup of cooked white rice – short- or medium-grain works best. 

You can use freshly cooked rice. Follow the stovetop sushi rice (with rice cooker instructions) or instant pot sushi rice instructions for cooking short- or medium-grain rice. 

Or reheat leftover rice until piping hot.

Add one cup of warm rice to your serving bowl. 

A ceramic bowl with cooked medium-grain white rice.

Step 2: Fry the egg

Melt half a tablespoon of butter in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Once the butter starts to foam, stir in two teaspoons of sesame oil.

Crack your egg into the pan. And once the white edges start to set (after about a minute), drizzle a teaspoon of light or all-purpose soy sauce over the egg white.

Cook until the whites set around the yolk, puff up slightly, and crisp around the edges – about 2 minutes – but the yolk is still runny. Or cook to your desired doneness.

A fried egg in a small nonstick pan with butter, sesame oil and soy sauce.

Step 3: Assemble the gyeran bap

Slide the fried egg onto your warm rice. And pour over the buttery soy sauce from the pan.

Crush the roasted seaweed over the rice and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.

How to eat gyeran bap

Use a spoon to break the runny yolk and mix everything together, coating the rice in eggy sauce.

Adjust the seasoning to taste at the table, adding more soy sauce or salt. 

A close-up of a bowl of Korean egg rice with everything mixed together. The runny egg yolk creates a glossy sauce with the soy sauce, butter, and sesame oil to coat the rice kernels.

Enjoy it as is for a delicious breakfast, or a light meal. Or, for a more substantial meal, serve the gyeran bap with kimchi and more banchan (like sesame broccoli, spicy cucumber salad, gamja jorim (braised potatoes), or green onion salad). 

And if you’re in a spicy mood, add a cheeky drizzle of bibimbap sauce (made with gochujang) or a spoonful of sambal oelek for even more saucy goodness.

A ceramic bowl with fried rice, fried egg with a runny yolk, crushed seaweed and toasted sesame seeds, drizzled with soy sauce, sesame sauce and brown butter.

Gyeran Bap (Korean Rice with Fried Egg)

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Gyeran bap is a delicious umami-packed Korean-style breakfast of fried eggs on rice with seaweed (gim). But it’s also delicious as a quick dinner for one when you’re in no mood to cook. The runny egg yolk forms a flavourful sauce with the browned butter, sesame oil and soy that clings to the plump rice kernels.
Recipe byAdri
Servings: 1 serving
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Equipment

  • Small nonstick skillet , or larger if you're making more than one egg

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup cooked white rice* , short- or medium-grain
  • ½ tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 large egg* , or more if you feel like it
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce , light or all-purpose

Toppings (optional)

Instructions

  • Add the rice to a serving bowl and set aside.
  • Melt the butter in a small nonstick skillet or well-seasoned wok over medium heat. Once the butter starts to foam, stir in the sesame oil.
  • Crack the egg into the pan. As the edges of the white begin to set (after a minute of cooking), drizzle the soy sauce over the egg white. Cook until the whites set around the yolk, puff up slightly, and crisp around the edges – about 2 minutes. Or cook to your desired doneness.
  • Slide the fried egg over the rice and pour over the buttery soy sauce from the pan. Crush the seaweed over the rice and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. To eat, use a spoon to break the runny yolk and mix everything together, coating the rice in eggy sauce. Adjust the seasoning to taste at the table, adding more soy sauce or salt.

Notes

  • Use short-grain rice (like sushi rice) or medium-grain rice (like Calrose rice). See stovetop sushi rice or instant pot sushi rice for short- or medium-grain rice cooking instructions. You can also use leftover cooked rice reheated thoroughly for a quick breakfast with eggs and rice.
  • I use one egg when I have Korean egg rice for breakfast, but I’ll add a second egg if it’s a quick dinner. You can add as many as you want – just use a large enough pan.
  • If you unintentionally overcooked your egg, you’ll lose out on the yolky goodness. But you can save the day by stirring a raw egg yolk into the hot rice – if that’s your style (it sure is mine).
  • You can buy Korean roasted seaweed in snack packs of 4 to 5 grams. These small seaweed sheets are seasoned and crunchier than nori. But you can also use a nori sheet cut into thin strips or a generous sprinkle of furikake rice seasoning. It will seem like excessive seaweed, but it will reduce as it wilts from the heat.
 
In this gyeran bap recipe, I use Eric Kim’s gyeran bap trick from Korean American: Food That Tastes Like Home (Amazon affiliate link). He fries his eggs in the soy sauce and sesame oil you would normally drizzle over the fried eggs. This way, the sesame oil acts as a cooking fat and seasoning for the rice, and the soy sauce reduces slightly, caramelising around the puffy edges of the fried egg.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 416 kcal Carbohydrates: 46 g Protein: 11 g Fat: 20 g Saturated Fat: 7 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 5 g Monounsaturated Fat: 7 g Trans Fat: 0.3 g Cholesterol: 179 mg Sodium: 401 mg Potassium: 153 mg Fiber: 1 g Sugar: 0.3 g Vitamin A: 465 IU Vitamin C: 0.4 mg Calcium: 83 mg Iron: 2 mg

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