Did you travel if you didn’t return home with a bag full of souvenirs? Probably not. If you’re like me, picking out a few trinkets (and then some for your friends and family) that perfectly encapsulate a place is more stressful than fun. But that’s where food comes in!
Trinkets come and go, but the delicious memories of a yummy snack are forever, which is why a country’s staple items and wackiest wonders you can stick in your mouth are what every tourist and traveler should be brought home by the boatload.
Here are seven Korean snack souvenirs that if you don’t bring back in your suitcase after traveling to South Korea, you’re not doing Korea right.
7 Best Korean Snack Souvenirs
#1 Honey Butter Chips
A few years back, this Korean chip's flavor allegedly caused a Korean snack black market, giving new meaning to the term "food craze." K-pop idols, celebrities, and mere mortals were clamoring for this deliciously sweet flavor, and you should be, too! If chips are different from your style, there are other food items touting Honey Butter, but unfortunately, chips are one of the few food forms that will make it past TSA.
#2 Korean Rice Cakes
Tteok, or Korean rice cakes, are usually given out as gifts on New Year’s or Chuseok, making them a fantastic souvenir for family and friends. While it would be hard to bring home some fresh tteok, the famous instant food brand OTTOGI makes an instant Korean Rice Cake Soup that will survive the plane ride home. This filling snack kills two birds with one stone, combining Korea’s famous convenience store ramen with traditional cuisine.
#3 Jolly Pong
Sometimes the best souvenirs are the practical ones, and Jolly Pong is helpful! This puffed wheat snack can be munched on straight out of the bag or enjoyed with milk as a breakfast cereal. Sure, your friends already know about the wonders of dry cereal, but this is the Korean equivalent!
#4 Dried Squid
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. :: 독하게 100일 다이어트 78일 :: 2015.06.21 간식 ✔허니버터오징어, 초콜릿 간식창고에 왜케 이것저것 많이 쟁겨놨는지ㅠㅜ 새로운 다이어트 시작전 먹고픈거 꺼내먹기 내일 인바디가 또 확 늘어날 예정이요ㅋ 역시 애증의 초코는 많이 거기에 허니버터오징어는 음💕 . . :: 100days Diet day 78 :: 2015.06.21 Snack ✔honey butter dried squid, chocolate . . #JOO다이어트 #JOOdiet #JOOダイエット #다이어트 #다이어트식단 #맛스타그램 #먹스타그램#100일다이어트 #독하게다이어트 #다이어터 #운동하는여자#간식 #ダイエット #筋トレ #상주는날#치팅데이 #먹방 #Cheating #cheatingday #カンニング #カンニングデー #허니버터오징어 #gs25 #ハニーバターイカ #するめ #スルメ #間食
We don’t have anything like Dried Squid in the States, which makes this snack a souvenir delicacy. Whether your friends are inclined to spicy or prefer sweet, there are plenty of flavors to bring back, including smoked beef rib, peanut butter, and even honey butter! Dried, seasoned, and cut into strips, Dried Squid is not only a popular snack in Korea but also a popular flavor in other snacks, so you can’t go wrong with a few bags of these.
#5 Tteokbokki Chips
If you’re talking Korean street food, tteokbokki will be a prominent part of the conversation. While TSA certainly won’t let you through with a steaming pot of fresh tteokbokki—all that spicy goodness probably messes with the airwaves or something—you can bring home some tteokbokki chips that mimic the flavor of the real deal but in a crunchy chip form.
#6 Lotte Chocopie
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🍫 LOTTE CHOCO PIE 🍫 Alfajor con dos capas de suaves bizcochuelo y un relleno premium de malvavisco! Llená tu boca con el placer del más delicioso chocolate todos los días. ¡COMPRALAS HOY MISMO! #TuStory24 #TuStory24Candy #ChocoPie #LotteChocoPie #Lotte #Chocolate #Alfajor #Food #KoreanFood #Corea #foodsofinstagram
Literally a classic. If you’ve watched Korean dramas, reality shows, or any Korean television and entertainment, you’ve heard about the infamous chocopie and have probably even dreamt about biting into one. This is a definite must-snack for a laundry list of reasons. The first being chocolate is life. Not to mention, you know what they say: when in Korea, eat as the celebrities do. Buy as many as your arms can hold because Lotte Chocopies are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
Bonus! Here is an item I think everyone should try even though you definitely won’t be able to cross oceans with it in your bag, a.k.a an ode to the convenience store:
#7 Corn Ice Cream
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暑いですね。 とうきびアイスの画像を投下。先日のおやつで食べました。面白い見た目と意外な安さに反して、クオリティが高く、きちんとトウモロコシの味がして美味しかったです(笑) こりゃ買ってしまいますな！！ さあ、今日もサービス業だ！ #とうきびアイス#とうきびアイスモナカ #美味しい#おいしいよ#とうきび#アイス#北海道#ご当地#ご当地アイス#美味#とうきびの味#再現#再現クオリティ#クオリティ#高め#ハイクオリティ#美味しい#北海道とうきびアイスモナカ#tasty#corn#corniceceam#icecream #tokibi#yum#foodpic#yummy#yumyum#hokkaido
As someone who has yet to travel to Korea, Korean convenience stores feel like the stuff of legends, and this ice cream disguised as corn is truly legendary. Supposedly, this ice cream even contains real kernels of corn, which is truly an experience I feel everyone should partake in. I’m not the only one who’s intrigued, right? If I still haven’t sold you on taking a bite out of this realistically shaped ice cream, note that this isn’t the only one replicating a different food item in Korean convenience stores, but I’ll leave the rest up to you to discover.
Want to give Korean snacks a try? Go to snackfever.com and order your box of happiness!
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