What is Patbingsu And How to Make It

A visit to Korea is never complete without having a bowl of Patbingsu. It's a delicious and refreshing treat which is famous in this country. But did you know that you can bring Korea right to your home? When you make this delightful dish, all that's left to do is to imagine the Korean landscape.

Imagine a bowl of shaved ice, topped with a variety of condiments like beans, fruits, sweets, rice cake pieces and more. It's enough to make your mouth water. This is Korea's most popular summer dessert.


Korean Patbingsu: The Perfect Ice Dessert

A Patbingsu surprise will cool your body temperature caused by the summer sun. Also, the energy-rich ingredients will make you feel revitalized.

Prepare your condiments. Shave some ice, innovate and make your own patbingsu. Now you can have a Korean summer in your own home, each and every day.

Prepackaged patbingsu varieties are available. But they will not taste as good as when you make your own combinations which will agree with your taste. This is perhaps the allure of making your own patbingsu.

You have the freedom to choose your condiments. If you love beans, pour them on. Berries? They're good, so dump them. Canned fruits? No way, so skip. The combinations are endless and you can have a different version of patbingsu each time.

What You Need To Making Patbingsu

Patbingsu is a Korean name for a smoothie. But the difference is that the patbingsu is fully loaded with condiments.

Tools Required

  • Shaved ice is the base ingredient and having shaved ice machine would be come in handy.
  • Any food processor with a blade for ice-shaving will do as well. Just make sure your food processor can handle the ice you put into it.



  • The main ingredient of the patbingsu is beans. Sweetened red beans in cans are readily available in Asian specialty markets. But you can try making some from scratch.
  • Homemade sweetened red beans taste a lot better and cooking them is easy. Buy some red beans then cook them in a slow heat. This will take some time, so be patient. Once cooked, the beans should be firm but soft, and mildly sweet.


  • Another important ingredient for the dish is injeolmi, a kind of rice cake made with rice powder with a sweet taste. This is a usual topping for the patbingsu.
  • You can buy this freshly-made or frozen from a Korean market. Or, you can again try to make a basic version using the microwave.


  • To add flavor to the ice, drizzle regular milk or condensed milk over it. The choice will depend on you. The simplest and most basic version of patbingsu consists of just pat, injeolmi and some sweet, condensed milk. It makes for a cool refresher. But there is no reason not to fill it up and make your ultimate patbingsu.

Toppings And Flavors

  • Prepare your choice of fruits, ice cream of any flavor, plain or toasted cereals, cookies, nuts, and more.
  • You can even sprinkle some green tea or matcha powder for a unique blend. No limits barred to quench your thirst from the summer heat!

Preparing The Beans

You will need these ingredients:

  • 1 cup of pound dried azuki beans
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • ​1/6 cup of sugar
  • 1/6 cup of honey

Here are some steps for you to follow:

Boil The Beans

Prepare your red beans. Sort through them and discard any broken or bad beans. Rinse and in a big pot with water, add the red beans and bring to boil over medium heat, uncovered. Lower the heat and keep boiling for another 4-5 minutes.

Simmer the beans gently

Drain the water from the beans then place them back into the pot, this time with fresh water. Cover, boil, then allow to simmer for another 35-40 minutes over medium-low heat. When the liquid is almost gone, add 1-2 more cups of water.

Replace the cover of the pot and simmer for 25-35 minutes. Be sure to occasionally stir the beans gently so the beans won't stick to the bottom. Keep checking the water and add some more if needed.

Add condiments

Add the honey, sugar, and salt while stirring gently. Keep on simmering for half an hour, this time without the lid. Add some water as needed until the beans become liquidy. At this point, the beans would have soaked up most of the fluid.


Transfer the beans to a different container for them to cool. The beans will last for up to 7 days in the refrigerator. To last longer, store the container in your freezer. When you are want to use them, thin the beans with some cold water.

Preparing The Rice Cakes

Prepare these ingredients to make the rice cakes:

  • 2/3 cup of sweet rice powder
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ​1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup of water

Making the rice cakes at home is easy. Just follow these steps:

  • Mix well the rice powder, salt, and sugar using a whisk. Pour in the water and mix again.
  • Cover the mixture with a ceramic wrap and microwave for about 2 minutes. Turn it around, then microwave again for half a minute until translucent. Take out of the microwave then let it stand for 5-7 minutes. Knead it using a wooden spoon for a few minutes. This will give the rice cake a chewier texture.
  • ​Dust your board with one tablespoon of cornstarch. Place your rice cake on the board and flatten it out using your hands.
  • Cut the rice cake into strips. You can choose the width of these strips. Moisten your knife then cut the strips into cubes. Sprinkle cornstarch on the cubed rice cakes to prevent sticking.

Once done, you are finally ready to create your patbingsu!

Assemble Your Patbingsu

Prepare all your ingredients and materials on your table or work station. Be sure that all your ingredients and your serving bowls are cold.

Keep them in the fridge until needed. Do this to keep the consistency of the patbingsu longer. When have everything prepared, shave as much ice as you need and place them in your bowls.

To each bowl with shaved ice, add some beans. Drizzle condensed milk on top along with some rice cake cubes. And finally, add your condiments of choice.

These can be nuts, fruits, cookies, and more. This recipe is good for 2-3 servings. Now enjoy your Korean patbingsu made in the comfort of home!

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