HobakJuk (Korean Pumpkin Porridge) made from Kabocha Squash

Hobakjuk - Korean Pumpkin Porridge (Instant Pot and Regular Recipe)

Hobakjuk or Korean Pumpkin Porridge is the perfect food for a cold winter day or any day. It is also a yummy healing food, light on the stomach and very nutritious!

Course Porridge
Cuisine Korean
Keyword baby food, easy to digest, good for patient
KoreanCategory Juk (죽)
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 16 cups
Calories 56 kcal
Author JinJoo


  • 1 kabocha squash (1 kg or 2.2 lbs)

For Instant Pot

  • 6 cups water

For Regular Cooking

  • 7 cups water

Sweet Rice Balls

  • 1/2 cup sweet rice flour (mochi flour)
  • 3 Tbs hot boiling water

Sweet Rice Slurry

  • 6 Tbs sweet rice flour (mochi flour)
  • 8 Tbs water


  • 3 Tbs sugar (optional or use less for soup)
  • 0.75 tsp Sea Salt (Trader Joe's) Trader Joe's


  1. If you have a whole Kabocha Squash, rinse and microwave on high for 5 – 6 minutes. It is much easier to cut and peel when cooked slightly. Cut Kabocha Squash into big chunks after peeling them.


  1. Add Kabocha Squash pieces to Instant Pot and add water. (2 cups per 1 Kabocha Squash) Cook it at Manual High for 5 minutes. Natural release if you have extra time otherwise you can do manual release which should take about 10 minutes or so.

For Regular Cooking Method

  1. Boil cut kabocha in a pot (bring to boil then reduce to medium heat) with water. (3 cups water per 1 Kabocha Squash) Cook for 25-30 minutes until fork goes in really easily and breaks apart.

Make Sweet Rice Balls (SaeAlShim) - OPTIONAL

  1. While the squash/pumpkin is cooking, make mini sweet rice balls (chapssal sae-al-shim 새알심) to add to porridge. Start boiling a pot of water to cook the rice balls in.  Make dough by mixing 1/2 cup sweet rice flour and 3 Tbs HOT water.

  2. First mix with a spoon because it’s so hot! After it’s cooled a bit, gather with your hands and make it into a dough ball.

  3. Tear off a little of the dough and make cute mini sweet rice balls. I made each of mine about 1.5 cm (1/2 in) in diameter. 

  4. Cook mini rice balls in boiling water. Cook for about 2 minutes and rice balls should float to the top when cooked.

  5. Take rice balls out of the boiling water and drain, let them cool. Keep them covered so they don’t dry out.


  1. Once the squash or pumpkin pieces are fully cooked, get a blender or chopper to blend it as smoothly as you’d like. Divided  pumpkins into 2 or more batches depending on the size of your blender.

  2. For each 1 cooked Kabocha Squash, blend the squash + remaining liquid from pot + 4 cups water.

  3. You can either put the blended pumpkin mix back into your Instant Pot or into a large pot. Season with sugar and sea salt to taste. Mix.


  1. Turn on Sauté button and choose LESS or whatever button combination that will simmer.


  1. Turn heat on low to simmer.

Make Sweet Flour Slurry

  1. Make a sweet flour slurry of (6 Tbs sweet rice flour + 8 Tbs water per 1 Kabocha) to thicken up the Pumpkin soup to turn into Pumpkin Porridge. Using a whisk, mix quickly as you pour the slurry in. Simmer for another 5 min. SERVE warm.

Recipe Notes

Serving Suggestions

Nutrition Facts
Hobakjuk - Korean Pumpkin Porridge (Instant Pot and Regular Recipe)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 56
% Daily Value*
Sodium 95mg4%
Potassium 200mg6%
Carbohydrates 13g4%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 3g3%
Vitamin A 770IU15%
Vitamin C 6.9mg8%
Calcium 22mg2%
Iron 0.3mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.