Be Full of Minerals: Make Some Korean Seafood Broth

This Korean seafood broth recipe is so full of heads, you will be a genius after you eat it. 

Be Full of Minerals: Make Some Korean Seafood Broth - Nutrients, you fools! -
Korean Seafood Broth

I’m going to recommend that you step out of your comfort zone and get a whole fish carcass. Don’t freak out. They can’t hurt you. They can’t see you either. They can only do good for you. I promise. Fish heads have a higher concentration of nutrients than the fillets alone. And you get my favorite thing ever: LOTS of collagen. Collagen that will break down into gelatin which will not only make the broth taste amazing but will also be amazing for your body. It’s the stuff your insides and outsides love. Great for the joints, skin, hair, nails, digestion and nervous system. Your body wants it. Let’s give it what it wants. 

A few fish head tips:

  • Remove the gills. A good fish monger will do that for you, but it’s fairly simple to do on your own with a pair of kitchen shears. Gills left on will make the broth bitter.
  • Eat the collar and cheek meat. The best way to do this if you aren’t handy with a knife is to lightly cook it (before pressure cooking). Cover the fish with water and once the fish is firm, which happens quickly, remove it from the pot, allow it to cool, then harvest the meat.  Keep the water used to cook the fish flesh so it can be reused when you pressure cook the whole thing later.
  • What to do with that meat. I usually hover over my oven and eat it straight up. Like a rabid animal. Do rabid animals eat fish cheeks? Probably. What I’m saying is that darn cheek meat is delicious. 
  • What else can you do with the meat if you don’t want to eat it like a ravenous beast? Add it to soups, salads, eggs, fried rice — you know,  stuff people eat. 


And on to the next heads in this recipe: shrimp heads. Lots of flavor, lots of minerally goodness. No reason not to do it. My only tip on shrimps heads is to make a shrimpy mush first. Add all shrimp shells and heads to your blender, add as little water as necessary to cover them, then blend up. Add that mixture to your pressure cooker. Tell everyone how you learned to make shrimp mush. You might make a few new friends. 

And the last thing with a head that you will need to add is dried anchovies. Easily found at Asian grocery stores. Look for them in the refrigerated area of the store and keep in the freezer in-between uses. At the end of the post I’ll include a list of grocery items if you can’t find them locally. They come in 3 sizes. The small anchovies are used to make a tasty addictive side dish called myeolchi bokkeum. The medium and large anchovies are used for broth making. I recommend the medium sized. No need to remove guts, you can just throw them in your pressure cooker whole. Did I mention these babies are brimming with calcium?

Gosh I love stuff that tastes good and is good for you. 

Pantry Items:


Once you make the broth, you can make lots of tasty Korean seafood dishes. Like this spicy Korean seafood stew:

Korean Seafood Stew -
Korean Seafood Stew

Want the recipe? Head over to Nourished Kitchen to get it. I did a guest post for her blog and this is the broth recipe I used. 


Korean Seafood Broth Recipe
Super nutrient-rich broth, perfect for making Korean soups and stews.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
  1. Carcass from at least a 4-5 pound white fleshed fish (e.g., snapper, rockfish, blackfish) with gills removed. Cut as need to fit into pressure cooker.
  2. Shells and heads from at least 1 pound shrimp, turned into shrimp mush.
  3. 1/4 cup medium sized dried whole anchovies
  4. 4 whole shiitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
  5. 1 whole onion, roughly chopped with skin left on
  6. 2 small Korean radishes left whole or a 4 inch chunk of daikon radish cut in half
  7. 1 small whole head of garlic sliced through middle
  8. 4 whole scallions, roughly chopped
  9. 2 cups Chinese celery, roughly chopped (regular celery can be used)
  10. 2 pieces of dried kelp
  1. Add all ingredients to pressure cooker.
  2. Fill with water to max line.
  3. Cook on high pressure for 30 mins. (Don't start timing until high pressure is reached.)
  4. Allow pressure to release naturally.
  5. Allow broth to cool then strain.
  6. Now ready to be saved or immediately used.
  1. Please see blog post for fish head and shrimp mush prep.
  2. Also note - that this broth will need further seasoning with salt and or fish sauce when used in recipes.
nutrients, you fools!

Eat your fish heads! Please feel free to leave any questions or suggestions in the comments. 

7 comments on Be Full of Minerals: Make Some Korean Seafood Broth

    1. Hi Davina- You could. Just keep in mind the broth will have a slightly smoky flavor. And yes, I would use 1/2 cup. Let me know how it turns out with the bonito flakes!

  1. Hello! Thanks for this recipe. I will definitely give it a try :). I have been told to use a slow cooker to make broth rather than a pressure cooker as the minerals leech out more effectively when slow cooked. What is your opinion on this. I would much rather be using my pressure cooker than slow cooker. Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi KM, My opinion is that pressure cookers work better than slow cookers at leeching minerals and nutrients. I’m not sure why cooking for a loooong time would be better when a pressure cooker can achieve the same results but faster. Here are some observations I have made:

      My slow cooker & stovetop broths did not regularly gel. My pressure cooker broth *always* gels.

      My slow cooker & stovetop broth had to go an insane amount of time (days) for the bones to become soft. My pressure cooker can do that in a fraction of the time.

      My slow cooker & stovetop broth sometimes tasted good and other times straight nasty. Pressure cooker broth always tastes delicious.

      I wish I could find some science-y proof for you, but most of that is done beans and how great pressure cookers are at breaking down anti nutrients (an thus making them more nutritious).

      Lots of people are converting. I say you give a try and see how it tastes.

      The Pressure Cooker Makes a Comeback

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