Kitchen Scrap Kimchi

According to chef Jason Weiner, stems, cores, and leaves that remain after making kale salad or stuffed cabbage are a veritable treasure trove of flavor. Weiner takes the scraps and transforms them into the base of spicy, good-for-your-gut kimchi—a flavor-packed condiment that you might just want to throw into your next salad bowl for an unexpected Korean kick.


  • 4 cups cores, stems, and outer leaves of cabbage, kale, chard, beet, or any other greens you have on hand, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 10 to 15 garlic cloves
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped
  • 1 cup gochugaru (Korean chile powder)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onion 
  • 1/2 cup sliced Asian pear 
  • 1/2 cup daikon radish, peeled and roughly grated
  • 1/4 cup ginger, peeled and chopped 
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce 
  • 2 tablespoons sugar


Toss the greens’ cores, stems, and leaves in a large bowl with the salt. Transfer the mixture to a large colander and place the bowl underneath. Let sit overnight on the counter.

The next day, rinse the greens under cold water and pat dry. Transfer to a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Mix to combine. Pack the kimchi in clean jars or ziplock bags at room temperature for 2 to 3 days, then refrigerate. The kimchi will keep for 10 to 12 days in the refrigerator.


From Waste Not: How to Get the Most from Your Food by The James Beard Foundation/Rizzoli Publishing.


3 cups