Kerry met with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se in Brunei.
The talks were described as "productive."
"The ministers reaffirmed their insistence on North Korea's complete denuclearization," the State Department said.
Researchers at Johns Hopkins University last week said North Korea may be making preparations for another nuclear test. An early 2013 test heightened nuclear security concerns on the Korean Peninsula.
Tensions between North and South Korea prompted Pyongyang to back out of the armistice agreement that suspended the Korean War in the 1950s.
Kerry said in a statement it was time for all parties to return to a negotiating table sitting empty since talks between the two Koreas, Russia, China, the United States and Japan were suspended in 2009.
"Now we have to make sure we translate commitment to the policy into the reality of achieving policy through the denuclearization itself," he said.