kinpira gobo in a white bowl with chopsticks

Kinpira Gobo is braised burdock root seasoned with soy sauce, sake and sugar. A simple vegan burdock root recipe thats packed with flavour and health benefits!

japanese braised burdock in a white bowl

Have you guys tried burdock before? Burdock is a root vegetable that’s long in shape and brown in colour. It has a slight bitterness to it but if prepared properly, it’s a super delicious side dish! A really popular way of preparing burdock in Japanese cuisine is Kinpira Gobo (or braised burdock). I have seen braised burdock in both Korean and Japanese cuisine, but today I’ll be sharing my mom’s recipe that I grew up eating. In Japanese, Kinpira just refers to the method of cooking in soy sauce, sake and sugar. And gobo, means burdock!

Ingredients to make Kinpira Gobo

This burdock root recipe requires just 6-ingredients to make!

burdock root how to cut
method of making japanese kinpira gobo

How to Cut & Prepare Kinpira

How to cut gobo: Scrape the gobo using a knife to get rid of all the skin. Then rinse the gobo to get rid of excess dirt. Traditionally, for kinpira gobo the burdock is cut into 1.5-2 inch match sticks, but it can be quite tedious. To make it simpler, you can use a vegetable peeler or julienne peeler. This method yields thiner pieces, making it easier and faster to cook as well. In the photo above, the left bowl shows the peeler method and the right bowl shows the hand cut method. Remember to soak the gobo to get rid of any extra bitterness!

How to make Kinpira Gobo: First add in a bit of oil over high heat. Typically, I don’t use sesame oil over high heat, but here I do. You can use your choice of oil to fry and then add the sesame oil at the end though. Add in the gobo and fry for 1-2 minutes. Add in the seasoning mix and then fry until most of the liquid is absorbed. Add in the sesame seeds and optional Japanese chili powder and then it’s ready to be enjoyed! Super simple right?

japanese braised burdock in a white bowl dish shot

How to Enjoy Kinpira Gobo

Kinpira Gobo can be enjoyed in a variety of ways and it’s great for adding in some extra vegetables to meals. My favourite is just having it on the side with some plain white rice. I also love adding it in my Vegan Kimbap rolls, sushi rolls, onigiris and bento boxes.

kinpira gobo burdock in a white bowl close up

Health Benefits of Gobo

Not only is Kinpira Gobo delicious, but it’s also packed with antioxidants and is anti-inflammatory. It’s also commonly used as a herbal medicine for digestion, skin, flush toxins out of your blood and more. Whether these claimed benefits are true or not, I think it’s a delicious way of adding a bit more variety into your diet!

kinpira gobo in a white bowl side shot

If you recreate this Kinpira Gobo Braised Burdock recipe let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment and rating below or by tagging me on Instagram @Okonomikitchen, I love seeing all of your tasty recreations!

kinpira gobo in a white bowl

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Kinpira Gobo

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  • Author: Lisa Kitahara
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


Kinpira Gobo is stir fried burdock root seasoned with soy sauce, sake and sugar. A simple vegan burdock root recipe thats packed with flavour and health benefits!




  1. Scrape the skin of the burdock using the back of a knife. Rinse the root, then slice into match stick sized pieces. Alternatively, use a mandolin or vegetable peeler to make thin strips.
  2. Soak the burdock in water for 10 minutes. Change the water every time it gets cloudy (I do this around 2-3 times). 
  3. Combine the sake, soy sauce and sugar in a bowl and mix until the sugar dissolves. 
  4. In a large pan, heat the sesame oil over high heat and add the burdock root. Stir fry for around 3 minutes (4 minutes if the root is cut my hand).
  5. Add in the seasoning mix and cook until the liquid significantly reduces. Add in the sesame seeds and Japanese chili powder. Serve & enjoy!


  • Store Kinpira Gobo in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. 
  • Gluten free: sub tamari for gluten free version. 
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: Japanese


  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 98
  • Sugar: 4.6g
  • Sodium: 222mg
  • Fat: 5.4g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.8g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 4.3g
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 12.1g
  • Fiber: 1.8g
  • Protein: 1.3g
  • Cholesterol: 0

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kinpira gobo japanese braised burdock

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About Lisa

I'm Lisa, a home cook, recipe developer and founder of Okonomi Kitchen. Here, you'll find a mix of classic and modernized Japanese recipes, and creative, plant-forward meal inspiration using seasonal ingredients. I hope to share more about Japanese cuisine and culture through food and recipes.

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