Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Halal Restaurants in Seoul

Disclaimer: The site is not taking responsibility that all the food served in restaurants listed here will be 100% halal. Please take own caution when doing your orders.

If you are planning to stay near Itaewon you won't face any problem looking for halal food. Itaewon is filled with halal restaurants, especially among the road heading to Seoul Grand Mosque. This site is therefore focusing on halal restaurants outside of Itaewon. While it is more difficult to find halal restaurants outside of Itaewon, it is not impossible. In addition to halal restaurants there are still many other options.

Including halal restaurants, described below are restaurants that serve meals that are permissible to Muslims.

ADDED 9th JULY 2012: I feel the need to clarify that I am not endorsing or recommending any of the restaurant listed here. This is just a listing of available halal/permissible restaurants in Seoul especially outside of Itaewon. It is not possible for me to have been to all the restaurants here (in fact I've only been to two). Reviews on the restaurants can be found in the sources I listed or if it is not there please search for it from Google. Thank you for your understanding.

ADDED 14th JANUARY 2014: There is disagreement on me choosing to list shrimp burger and vegetarian pizza as food that can be considered on the comment box below. Again I need to clarify that I am not a religious scholar, I do not wish to partake in any debate (again) on the permissibility of food. Please do your own research and get your own "yaqeen" from your findings ><. Thank you again for your understanding.

Halal Restaurants

These are restaurants that serve slaughtered meats, displaying Halal signs at their premise or claimed as Halal by their owners. To look at the list of halal restaurants listed in this site browse through the restaurant: halal tag.


Vegetarian Restaurants

These are restaurants that serve vegetarian/vegan meals exclusively or have a separate vegetarian menus. Browse these restaurants by tag restaurant: vegetarian.


Vegetarian Friendly Restaurants

These are restaurants that have one or two vegetarian options. Some have seafood options like prawns. Most options listed here are Indian restaurants. Most Indian restaurants have vegetarian or seafood options so if you stumble upon restaurants not listed here do go inside and look at their menus. These restaurants are listed here under restaurant: vegetarian friendly tag.

Seafood Restaurants

The riskier option. While all seafood is halal, other ingredients used may be of not permissible sources. Most Muslim travel agencies will take you to seafood restaurants but they probably have Korean speaking guide to instruct the restaurant servers. In backpacking case you have to tell them yourself that meat and chicken should not be put inside.

Here are some menus that are less likely to have the ingredients above and should be safe to order:

  • MaeWoonTang / 매운탕 - Spicy Fish Stew
    To know the ingredients used to cook check here
 source: aeriskitchen.com
  • Sundubu Jigae / 순두부 찌개 - Hot & Spicy Soft Tofu Stew
    To know the ingredients used to cook check here.
 source: mykoreankitchen.com
  • Saengseon Gui / 생선구이 - Grilled Fish
    To know the ingredients used to cook check here.
 source: beyond kimchi
  • Saengseon Jeon / 생선전 - Pan-fried Fish Fillets
    To know the ingredients used to cook check here.
source: latestrecipes.net
  • Haemul Paejeon / 해물파전 - Seafood Pancake
    To know the ingredients used to cook check here.
 source: thekitchn.com

Even if the ingredients for menus above show only seafoods are used, some restaurants may put beef inside the stews for stock. Make sure to tell them not to. This site list very few seafood restaurant, but you can just walk in to any seafood restaurants you found or hail a taxi and ask them to bring to nearest seafood restaurant. Try looking for this sign: 해물 (Seafood).

NEW: Use this table below to help you order in Korean:

Click to make bigger

Fast food Restaurants

Many must have experienced just buying french fries in fast food restaurants at that moment of hunger in foreign countries due to no halal restaurants nearby. Fortunately fast food restaurants nowadays have seafood menus in addition to their usual dishes. Fast food restaurants in Seoul are not exempted. Vegetarian pizza and shrimp burgers are among some dishes that Muslims can buy from outlets of KFC, Lotteria and Mr. Pizza. Browse the restaurant: fast food tag for more information and location.

 KFC: familiar sight abroad

I hope this entry will be beneficial for travellers looking for permissible meals in Seoul. Browse through the related tags or just the category: restaurant tag for all restaurants listed in this site. InshaAllah you will not starve :)

72 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing ^^

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    Replies
    1. You are very much welcome ♥

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    2. If you cann't find real halal food restaurant or grocery, contact to www.thebridgetokorea.com. It will take you to halal food restaurant.

      Delete
  2. Salam..for vegetarian restaurant,will they use veggie oil as well?no animal fat or gelatin or alcohol in the food?if have how to make sure they didnt put it in?any phrases that u can teach me what to say to the waiters to not put alcohol etc?i can read hangul but most of the time i dont understand what im reading...

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      Hi dear, most vegetarian restaurants take special care to use only plant-based products in their dishes. After all they use mock meats, it is hard to imagine they would use lard instead of palm/vege oil for cooking.

      I don't really know Korean too, and these phrases below are broken Korean at most but they should understand.

      I don't eat meat: Gogi anmokgoyo
      I don't drink alcohol: Sseul anmasyoyo
      Please don't put in alcohol: Sseul nohjimaseyo

      Of course it is impossible to make 100% sure that they don't use them, if you are really in doubt stick to halal restaurants okay :)

      Delete
    2. Salam. I managed to get a guide book "Seoul Dining - Soul Food of Seoul A Delicious Epicurean Journey" published by Seoul Metropolitan Government. It is easily available for free at Itaewon Tourist Guide Center.
      There are guides on vegetarian and halal recommended restaurants. One interesting point to take note on page 77 under sub-title Ordering Tips For Vegetarians item no 7: Ramen, noodles, dumplings and other dishes that claim to be meat-less may not be vegetarian. and item no 11: Even if it's a vegetable pizza, it may still contain some animal products.
      Wallahualam.

      Delete
    3. Salam,

      I was in Korea in 2011 with my family. Initially we would buy seafood and vegetarian pizza from Mr Pizza. However, one conversation with a Mr Pizza owner made us realise that often they would put some meat or pork pieces in these pizzas. This practice varies between outlets. I cannot say whether it is still the same now, but I was made to understand that they do this because they like the taste of meat/pork in their food, even in vegetarian or seafood stuff.

      Delete
  3. Assalamualaikum, such a helpful blog you have. I was wondering, are there really no halal restaurants serving korean cuisines such as korean bbq, bibimbap, deokbokki etc. It would be great to experience Korean food in Korea itself. Thank you.

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      Unfortunately currently I have no information on halal Korean cuisine restaurants. Your best bet would be seafood/vegetarian restaurants.

      Thank you for visiting!

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    2. Hi! Thank you for the info by the reader below we found out Murree Restaurant serves halal Korean food. So make your way there: http://t.co/zbPu3LoP

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    3. I think I saw them in Itaewon

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    4. If you cann't find real halal food restaurant or grocery, contact to www.thebridgetokorea.com. It will take you to halal food restaurant.

      Delete
  4. Salam,

    Just to share, a friend who went to Seoul last year said that there is a restaurant in Itaewon serving halal Korean food. The restaurant name is Murree.

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      Thank you for your info. I shall have a look at it :)

      Delete
    2. How much does the food cost in the restaurant?

      Delete
  5. thanks fadzlin. such an informative blog u have.

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  6. Thanks for sharing..i will backpack around april & planning to stay at itaewon hostel.now in middle to find halal restaurant.this is good info.

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  7. Salam. Hey, do you know any Halal Korean food restaurant? My friends and I would like to try Korean dishes but it seems so hard to find one

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam. Sorryyyy for this extremely late reply. I've only noticed your comment.

      Try Murree Restaurant in Itaewon. They serve Halal Korean food.

      http://www.muslimbackpackerseoul.com/2012/11/murree-restaurant.html

      Delete
  8. Hanyang University in Seoul opened a Halal Food Court.

    Halal food is available at the cafeteria every Tuesday and Thursday and the price per meal is around 4,500 won. The Halal food court is open to everyone, even if they are not a student of the university.

    http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/FU/FU_EN_15.jsp?cid=1799436

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Anon, thank you for sharing :)

      I saw the tweet too on twitter. Right now it seems like they always run out of food, but hopefully they'll manage to budget how much they should prepare and extend serving days to every weekdays. I will update when more news come out.

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    2. It's been almost 9 months since you've posted this. I was wondering if they still have the Halal food court open to everyone?? Thanks for your time.

      Delete
  9. salam :) as for the fast food restaurants, may i know whether they use what kind of oil? :S thank you.

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam, most fast food restaurants use vegetable oil, but of course I can't claim to know what kind of oil every restaurant uses. http://www.b2bagri.com/Resource/view.jsp?id=1902 Just decide wisely :)

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  10. Salam sister,

    Thanks for creating this helpful blog :) I was wondering whether there are any halal restaurants at Seoul Central Area. I was thinking of booking a hotel there.

    Siti

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam, which area in specific? You can use this tool to check:

      http://www.muslimbackpackerseoul.com/2013/01/new-site-feature-search-by-two.html

      Example if you are looking for halal restaurants in Jung-gu, choose district: jung-gu and restaurant: halal

      Good luck!

      Delete
  11. salam mcm mane nak apply bljr kat sejong university and konkuk university??then klu nak mintak scholarship korea mcm ne??harap bley tlg sbb sy dan kwn sy nak bljr di sana...:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      Dah check website universiti sana? Dan scholarship kena melalui JPA/MARA. Boleh check website Malaysia Scholarship. Yang lain saya tak tahu, this is not the place to check unfortunately. Good luck for your quest.

      Delete
  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  13. Hi, is there any halal restaurant in Korea that sells authentic korean dishes? Like jajjangmyun or any popular korean food? :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    1. Try Murree Restaurant in Itaewon. They serve Halal Korean food.

      http://www.muslimbackpackerseoul.com/2012/11/murree-restaurant.html

      Delete
  14. Assalamualaikum..
    I am seeking to do masters from seoul national university.. Can anybody tell me that is there any mosque in the university and also is there availbility of halal food and what is the distance of ITAEWON central Mosque to the university...
    Thanks...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam, From the Seoul National University Station to Itaewon Station is around 40 minutes, as for availability of halal food near there maybe you can ask other students there. I only know of one Indian Restaurant - Otsal : http://wingspoon.naver.com/spotDetail.nhn?cityId=3339&townId=11569&spotId=19263&menu=comment#tabReviewArea Usually Indian restaurants are halal (and their branch in Anam is halal) but you can always call ahead and ask.

      I hope this helps.

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  15. thanks my muslim Brother.. what do you do there?

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  16. Assalamualaikum,may I know if the fries in KFC can be eaten? Thanks in advance! :)

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam. Fries is from potatoes, so they should be allowable. However if you are in doubt then stick to only halal restaurants okay :)

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    2. Yes, fries are from potatoes. Don't just look at the end products but we have to consider the process of preparing from potatoes to fries. Similarly for veggie pizza. I believe there is no separate kitchen to prepare the halal and non-halal ingredients. Do you dare to go to any non-halal restaurant and only order the vegetables or fishes with rice? I'll rest my case.....My advice stick to halal restaurants only.....

      Delete
  17. Assalamualaikum.
    I want to ask. My professor was just back from Jeju and he give me Jeju Hallabong chocolate. Is this safe/halal for us to eat? I have search in internet and i'm worried about it. hope you give me the information

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam.

      Hello dear, sorry I don't know :(

      Delete
  18. Hellos, I've read on some online news that Paris Baguette has been halal certified recently. Does anyone knows how true is this?
    Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. What I mean is there any label on the restaurant to indicate so? :)

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    2. Salam, I've read the news too but I don't know if they display their halal logo on their stores.

      Delete
  19. Assalamualaikum, I will be going to korea on next month with our group, would you please show to us Halal resto in jeju, Nami & Mt sorak, many thanks as yr attention

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    Replies
    1. In Jeju here are two addresses:
      Bagdad: 제주특별자치도 제주시 이도2동 1188-16
      Raj Mahal: 제주특별자치도 제주시 연동 272-13번지 신제주제원사거리

      In Nami Island you can go to Cafe Drama "yeonga jinga". You should get a Nami Island Map when you arrive there and it is on the map. The same building as the Musolla/Prayer room.

      As for Mount Sorak, as far as I know there is no halal restaurant there.

      Delete
  20. Salam Admin. I think it is misleading to say that veggie pizza or shrimp burger from the fastfood outlets in Korea can be consumed by Muslim especially this website is meant for Muslims to refer to. Please consider how the foods are being prepared. Are the halal and non-halal ingredients being prepared separately? If there is no halal restaurant around the area you're visiting, just prepare a simple packed meal before the trip. This is my personal view as a Muslim to my fellow Muslims. By the way, I'm going there in Dec 2013 and Alhamdulillah my family has made the necessary preparations. Wasalam. Azman

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    Replies
    1. Salam,

      Encik Azman, good for you that your family have made the necessary preparations and you are entirely entitled to your opinion that you don't want to eat any food that you think are not entirely clean. However there are other opinions that are not as strict, like Sh Yusuf Qardhawi's fatwa. Here is a video that I find helpful. Wallahualam.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5FYhoYxlqQ

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    2. Salam Fadzlin. Alhamdulillah, I had just returned from Korea last Dec 2013 with my family. I must say that your website is indeed very informative but I still disagreed on the recommended foods that you suggested such as shrimp burger and veggie pizza. You must analysis what is the content of the above video before concluded that "other opinions that are not as strict". Based on my experience, most of the non-halal restaurants serve pork as the main dishes that include the fast-food restaurants. How are you going to order the shrimp burger or veggie pizza, if the menu clearly indicates there is pork being served? Do you choose to be ignorance? Alhamdulillah, before our trip to places where halal food was not available, we just prepared a simple packed meals such as sandwiches, biscuits or fruits. We were there for the first time and we really enjoyed the free and easy trip. So, to my fellow Muslim brothers and sisters, I have done my part and I leave the choice to you to decide. To Fadzlin, keep up your good work in providing the information about Korea. Wasalam. Haji Azman.

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    3. Bismillah,

      Haji Azman. I wonder if you actually watched that video? Anyway, the position that any utensils that touched with porcine matter need to be cleansed with one part of soil water is a Shafiee position, other scholars have different opinions, that it is suffice that we see the utensils are clean. Even if we go to Mecca we adopt other mazhab's position ie wudu' not being nulled if we accidentally touched a non-mahram when doing tawaf. Also in Malaysia if we exclusively follow Shafiee school we have to pay fitrah using rice, and not money like what we are doing. So there are allowances there.

      I think you labeling me as misleading and choosing to be of ignorance is very unfair. I've done my work too, but I also understand that there are people who choose to be strict like you and your family. Like I said, it is good for you, but others may think otherwise. I've also put a disclaimer up above that they should take their own precaution when ordering, that they should do informed decision.

      I can see that you are set in your ways, but this blog is not meant for religious debates and I am not a religious scholar, I just wish to ease things. Even if you disagree, I hope we can just agree to disagree. Wallahualam.

      Delete
    4. I was told the same by the ustaz when I was studying in Ireland. As long as the utensils are clean, we don't have to clean the utensils with soil. Even my Muslim Arab friends weren't as particular with halal food compared to Malaysians. If was was, even if the food is halal, it automatically becomes not halal anyways.

      Delete
  21. Assalamualaikum :)

    I'm going for a backpacking to Seoul this Sept and i know i still have a lot of time to prepare . But just to ask, is it okay to eat donuts in dunkin donut in korea ? and can you give me the name of ingredient in korean , things that are haram ? because i can read hangul but i can't understand some of the words . thank you :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      I don't know if Dunkin Donuts is halal. For ingredients you can check this FB page, they have more knowledge about it: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Halal-Korea/584530258235428

      Delete
    2. hi.my tour guide(malaysian student in korea) told me that dunkin donut is halal

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    3. I do heard that too from the Malaysian students there that they said its okay to consume dunkin donuts but seriously??, like my friends and I will be going to Korea this end of march and if it's true, it'll much helpful :D

      Delete
    4. Thank you for all the replies. InsyaAllah I will try my best to avoid food that I feel was was.

      Delete
  22. Just to clarify on Fiqh Jurispudence, our burden of Fiqh Law (hukum) is based on what is obvious / seen in front of us. If a Muslim decides to eat a shrimp burger or vegetarian pizza, that is Halal for him to do so, because the origin (asal) of the food is from halal sources. So, do we need to check whether the utensil is clean, or have been touched by pork, etc, etc? The answer is: NO. There is no necessity to do so because as I mentioned, the basis of hukum is based on its origin.

    So what if the menu has pork in its list? Again, to make something haram / najis must be based on our own confirmation based on our five senses with absolute yaqeen. So he may continue to consume his shrimp burger / vegetarian pizza because the origins of the food is based on halal sources, UNLESS if he confirms that it is cooked in lard.

    We have to differentiate this with wara' i.e. a person who wishes to be more careful. Different people have different needs and abilities. So hukum is one issue, and wara' is another.

    Within Shafie scholars, there are still differing opinions whether pork is mughaladzah or mutawassitah. So, khilaf 'ulama is a rahmah for us the followers.

    What I have mentioned above, are all based on Shafie fiqh and scholarship. Islam is a religion made simple, but sometimes we as teachers transmit misconceptions to students and cause confusion amongst the public.

    So cheers everyone! You all are right.

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  23. Lotte Ghana chocolates halal?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope.avi
      They contain pork gelatin, which is tastes like shit

      Delete
  24. Fadzlin, how to engage your travelling service? I'm planning to go this September.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, you can check the Planning Service tab at the top :)

      Delete
  25. assalam fadzlin. what about street foods like tteokbokki, waffle, roti gula merah? can we eat those ? ;)

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  26. assalam fadzlin, nak tumpang tanya, saya akan ke korea pada bulan 9 ni.. saya stay dekat panpo-dong,socho-gu, seoul gangnam for 1 week.. ada tak restaurant halal at this area? tolong saya..saya dah cari tapi tak jumpa..

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  27. Assalamu alaykum Fadzlin,

    thanks for sharing, very informative for us as a Muslim to keep practicing Islam, including halal food.
    This information will be useful for other Muslims in the world who plan to visit Seoul. May I copy the information and put the link of your website to my website?(at www.thehalalcenter.com)

    jazakumullahu khairan

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  28. Please can you recomment which hotel is good to stay at Itaewon area?

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  29. Assalamualaikum.. I am planning to travel there with my young kids in shaa allah in november.. However their little tum tum definitely will be my greatest worries. :) but syukran saw your blog with so much tips and sharing among d sahabat makes me feel much better den before.. Jazakallahu Kairan..
    Worried Umie

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    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      Alhamdulillah, I'm glad the blog has helped you :) May Allah bless you and me.

      Delete
  30. assalam , nak tahu , coffee shop kat sana semua halal erk ?

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  31. Asslamualikum . maybe keluar topik sikit sbb its not about food . i just nak tau, kalau pegi nami island, aktiviti apa lagi yg boleh dibuat instead of taking picture ? Harap awak reply ehh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Waalaikumsalam,

      There are bungee jumping, zip line, most people rent bicycles to circle the small island.

      Delete
  32. Alhamdullilah..tngah cari info tntang halal food in korea..terjumpa blog awak...thanks for sharing..bole tak saya nak tnya pndapt awak..saya hrap awak bole kongsikan ye..antara Hongdae dan Itaewon, dimanakah area yg sesuai untuk guesthouse?terima kasih.

    ReplyDelete