Trader Joe’s Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi Review

Trader Joe's Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi

Trader Joe’s has a wonderful assortment of fried rice, from your basic Vegetable Fried Rice to more complex takes like the Japanese Style Fried Rice. We’re always happy to review more of it, so we were pretty excited to see that the Trader Joe’s Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi was added to TJ’s frozen food line.

Cooking this is a simple matter. You can either pop it into the microwave for five minutes, or toss it into a hot skillet for seven minutes. We went with the skillet, because that seems like it would make for a better batch of fried rice. (You can read the full cooking instructions by checking out the package scans at the bottom of this review.)

One thing we should point out is that the trickiest part about cooking this is making sure the beef cooks all the way through. Now, this is pre-cooked beef, so if you don’t get it cooked to the very center it’s not a hugely dangerous issue, but cold beef in hot fried rice is simply not fun to eat. You’ll have to take some extra care to ensure the beef is properly cooked, as some of the chunks are a bit thick.

Trader Joe's Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi

Once it’s done cooking, that beef portion is pretty decent. It has a bit of sweetness to it (this is a Korean-style beef, after all), though it’s a lot more subtle than we were expecting it to be. The consistency of the beef is certainly not perfect — it’s kind of hard and dry on the outside, though soft in the middle. We’re wondering if it ends up less dry when cooked in the microwave, because that’s really our only issue with this dish (and even then, it’s not a major issue).

Like the beef, the rice has a subtle sweetness to it — from the kimchi, no doubt — which really drives the flavor of this dish. We think this is a great combo, though it does seem less like a complete meal and more like the base for a bigger meal. Throw some strips of Korean-style BBQ beef on top of this and you’d really be in for a treat.

There’s no egg portion here, which is a little bit of a bummer, though Trader Joe’s does recommend adding some yourself. We definitely think a little bit of scrambled egg would really kick this whole thing up a notch.

This is just a teensy bit spicy. This batch of fried rice will clear your sinuses, but unless you’re an extreme spice-ophobe, this is a pretty mild spice level that we don’t think will be a problem for anyone.

The serving size is one package, but for some reason, Trader Joe’s also includes the nutritional content for one cup. If you stick with a cup, you’re looking at 400 calories and 1,150 mg of sodium. If you eat a full serving, you’re up to 680 calories and 1,960 mg of sodium. This is not a food for dieters, that’s for certain.

The Trader Joe’s Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi is another fried rice winner from the tastemakers at Trader Joe’s. This isn’t perfect, and we think we still prefer the Japanese Style Fried Rice to this, but it’s still quite good, and it’s definitely worth trying if you’re a fan of easy-to-make fried rice kits.

To learn more about the nutrition content, ingredients, or cooking instructions for this frozen fried rice dish, check out our package scans below.

Trader Joe's Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi
Trader Joe's Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi
Trader Joe's Korean Inspired Bulgogi Beef Fried Rice with Kimchi