Vegetarian food options in japan

Food Near Me

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Being a vegetarian in Japan may be troublesome, however with some effort and pre-planning it can be very rewarding. We’ve had among the most uncommon and scrumptious meals we now have ever eaten there.

We love the meals tradition and discover vegetarian meals in Japan to be top quality, fantastically introduced, and wholesome.

Reading: Vegetarian food options in japan

Since our first go to to Japan in 2011 the scenario has a lot improved. There at the moment are extra vegetarian and vegan eating places in addition to conventional Japanese eating places providing vegetarian choices (with useful English menus).

I replace this information recurrently (initially revealed in January 2012) based mostly on our experiences on a number of return journeys.

Listed below are our suggestions for surviving Japan as a vegetarian:

Contents

  • Video for Japan Inspiration
  • Ideas for Vegetarians in Japan
    • Be taught Some Japanese
    • Print a Vegetarian or Vegan Card
    • Purchase a Japanese Knowledge SIM Card
    • Use Google Translate
    • Beware Dashi
    • Plan Forward
    • Go to Kyoto, Tokyo or Osaka
    • Eat Shojin Ryori in Temples
    • Keep in a Ryokan
    • Self-Cater
    • Take a Cooking Class
  • Vegetarian Japanese Meals
    • Tempura
    • Tsukemono
    • Zaru Soba
    • Soba or Udon Noodles
    • Ramen
    • Miso Soup
    • Okonomiyaki
    • Japanese Curry
    • Sushi
    • Nasu Dengaku
    • Gohei Mochi
    • Dango
    • Yaki Onigiri
    • Umeboshi Onigiri
    • Sekihan Onigiri
    • Different Comfort Retailer Snacks
    • Oyaki
    • Kabocha Korroke
    • Naigamo Yam
    • Konnyaku
    • Mos Burger
    • Rice Crackers
  • Vegetarian Tofu Dishes
    • Goma Dofu
    • Yuba
    • Koyadofu
    • Yudofu
    • Dengaku Tofu
    • Inarizushi
  • Our Favorite Vegetarian Eating places in Japan
    • Tokyo
    • Kyoto
    • Osaka
    • Koya-San
    • Nikko
    • Kawaguchiko
    • Takayama
    • Kanazawa
    • Naoshima Island and Okayama
  • Abstract

Video for Japan Inspiration

Watch our video to find the very best issues to do in Japan.

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Ideas for Vegetarians in Japan

Be taught Some Japanese

Simon translating a Japanese menu
Simon making an attempt to translate a Japanese menu in 2011. Now we now have Google Translate—a lot simpler.

Not many Japanese individuals communicate English (though that is bettering) and studying a number of phrases is crucial to creating your wants as a vegetarian understood.

Don’t be too anxious although—though studying to learn Kanji takes a whole lot of time, the spoken language is less complicated to choose up that I anticipated. I used the Pimsleur Japanese audio course.

You possibly can attempt telling individuals that you’re vegetarian (“Watashi wa bejitarian des”) however they most likely gained’t perceive precisely what this implies. It’s higher to be clearer and as a substitute say “watashi wa niku toh sakana wo tabemasen” which implies I don’t eat meat or fish.

We discovered this phrase very helpful and efficiently used it in eating places to get a vegetarian meal.“Tabemasen” means “I don’t eat” so you’ll be able to add any phrase in entrance of that.

Just a few different helpful phrases and phrases:

yasai – greens tamago – egg katsuobushi nashi de onegai shimas – with out bonito (fish) flakes please …arimas ka? – do you could have…? nan des ka? – what’s it? oishikatta des – that was scrumptious. This at all times made individuals smile. arigato gozaimas – thanks sumimasen – excuse me

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On our second go to to Japan we discovered it was a lot simpler to clarify what we couldn’t eat by displaying restaurant workers a card we’d printed from Simply Hungry—they’ve choices for quite a lot of dietary necessities.

We used the vegetarian card that mentioned we couldn’t eat meat, fish or dashi (fish inventory) and it saved us from dashi quite a few occasions (this was at all times the toughest factor to clarify verbally).

Vegetarian ryokan dinner at Hotel Musashiya, Hakone
Our vegetarian feast at Lodge Musashiya in Hakone. Ryokans are sometimes nice locations for veggie meals in the event you clarify your necessities.

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Purchase a Japanese Knowledge SIM Card

I extremely suggest taking an unlocked telephone to Japan and shopping for an information SIM card while you arrive. We purchased one from the Umobile merchandising machine at Tokyo Narita airport.

Being linked will make it simpler to seek out vegetarian eating places utilizing Google Maps and Glad Cow and it additionally permits you to use Google Translate.

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Use Google Translate

Packaging in comfort shops is sort of solely written in Japanese so it’s troublesome to know the elements of a snack or rice ball.

We used Google Translate’s picture function to translate ingredient lists on packaging simply by pointing our telephone’s digital camera lens at it and urgent the digital camera icon within the app.

The moment translate view doesn’t at all times work, so for a extra correct translation take a photograph of the packet and spotlight along with your finger the textual content you need to be translated.

This works for restaurant menus too, though we discovered most locations we visited had English menus.

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Beware Dashi

It’s typically attainable to seek out meals with out meat or fish in them or at the very least eating places could also be prepared to adapt meals for you, however the largest downside is that fish inventory or dashi is utilized in many dishes.

Soups, noodles in broth, and dipping sauces in non-vegetarian eating places will seemingly comprise dashi, and also you’ll have to determine whether or not this bothers you or not.

On our first journey to Japan, we tried to keep away from dashi as a lot as attainable, however there have been occasions after we didn’t have a lot alternative so determined to be versatile about it.

On more moderen journeys we’ve discovered it simpler to keep away from dashi. The easiest way is to eat at a vegetarian restaurant—that is best in Kyoto, Tokyo and Osaka the place there are many choices.

We’ve additionally discovered that non-vegetarian eating places are more and more providing dashi-free choices, however you do have to hunt these locations out upfront.

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Plan Forward

Vegetarian hoba miso at Sukuya in Takayama
Vegetarian model of native speciality hoba miso at Sukuya in Takayama

Though you possibly can use the advisable phrase or vegetarian card above and switch up in any Japanese restaurant and hope you get a meal, we discovered it far more satisfying to eat stress (and dashi) free at vegetarian eating places or Japanese locations with vegetarian menus.

It’s greatest to do a little analysis on-line on websites like Glad Cow and plan forward the place to eat. See the underside of this publish for our favorite vegetarian eating places in Japan in addition to our information to Kyoto vegetarian eating places.

If you happen to get caught, like we generally have when the vegetarian restaurant I researched was closed, attempt on the lookout for Indian or Italian eating places which at all times have meat-free choices.

Bakeries are additionally a superb place for a snack. The Vie de France chain is discovered in lots of practice stations and has choices like margherita pizza slices, cheese rolls, garlic bread, and pastries. We’d somewhat eat a Japanese meal, however when that’s not attainable it has stopped us from going hungry.

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Go to Kyoto, Tokyo or Osaka

Japan’s three main cities for vacationers are the very best locations to seek out vegetarian Japanese meals and the choices are rising on a regular basis. See our advisable eating places in every of those cities under.

All of them have plenty of solely vegetarian or vegan eating places. We particularly love the wholesome and reasonably priced set lunches that the majority of those locations provide that includes rice, miso soup, pickles, and an array of tofu and vegetable dishes.

Cafe Atl vegan menu in Osaka
Vegan set lunches at Cafe Atl in Osaka

Vegetarian set lunches are a good way to discover Japanese meals as you don’t have to fret about having the ability to learn a Japanese menu and you may make sure that the whole lot is meat-free.

Kyoto is particularly price visiting, as Japan’s historical capital has an extended custom of shojin ryori or Zen Buddhist temple delicacies, which is solely vegan.

That’s to not say it is best to solely go to the large cities. There are a lot of wonderful locations to go to in Japan and you’ll find vegetarian choices in smaller cities. It’s simply good to have the ability to pattern the broader array of veggie-friendly eating places within the cities for at the very least a part of your journey.

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Eat Shojin Ryori in Temples

Shojin Ryori lunch at Shigetsu, Tenryuji Temple, Kyoto
Shojin Ryori lunch at Shigetsu, Tenryuji Temple, Kyoto

Shojin ryori or Zen Buddhist temple delicacies is the beacon of hope for a vegetarian in Japan. The monks make it attainable to take pleasure in scrumptious, wholesome, inventive Japanese meals and make sure that it’s all vegan.

These multi-dish meals are fantastically introduced and use seasonal elements. They normally embrace varied forms of tofu, an array of greens, rice, pickles, miso soup, and extra uncommon objects such because the jelly-like konnyaku (constructed from the konjac plant).

The very best locations to eat shojin ryori are in temples in Kyoto similar to Shigetsu in Tenryuji and within the mountain city Koya-san the place you’ll be able to even spend the evening in a temple.

It’s not simply restricted to temples, although, as we noticed shojin ryori supplied in conventional eating places in lots of locations round Japan together with Nikko, Takayama, and Kanazawa. We had a incredible fucha ryori meal, which is a model of shojin ryori with a deal with tea, at Bon in Tokyo.

Though it may be costly—our lunch at Bon was 5000 yen ($47) every—it’s price splurging on shojin ryori at the very least as soon as because it’s an expertise as a lot as a meal. Lunch is normally less expensive than dinner.

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Keep in a Ryokan

Simon wearing a yukata and enjoying our vegetarian feast in our ryokan room in Hakone
Simon sporting a yukata and having fun with our vegetarian feast in our ryokan room at Lodge Musashiya in Hakone

A fantastic alternative to attempt do-it-yourself kaiseki, a connoisseur, multi-course conventional Japanese meal, is in a ryokan or conventional inn. Meals are normally served in your room and they’re among the greatest meals we’ve had in Japan.

Not all ryokans cater for vegetarians, so verify with them earlier than you e-book or see if the evaluations point out vegetarian meals. Be sure you specify no dashi.

We use takeoutfood.greatest to seek out ryokans in Japan—tick the Ryokan button in Property Sort within the filter checklist to seek out them.

We used them to e-book our keep at Lodge Musashiya, a stunning ryokan overlooking Lake Ashi in Hakone, the place you’ll be able to see Mount Fuji. They’re comfortable to cater to vegetarians and served us an unbelievable meal in our tatami room.

We additionally had a few scrumptious meals in our room at Morizuya Ryokan in Kinosaki Onsen, a small city a number of hours from Kyoto or Osaka the place you’ll be able to hop between the city’s seven onsen (scorching spring baths) in a kimono.

Simon wearing a kimono for our vegetarian sushi feast at Morizuya Ryokan in Kinosaki Onsen
Our vegetarian sushi feast in our room at Morizuya Ryokan in Kinosaki Onsen

Staying in a ryokan is expensive, however it’s a novel expertise and one among our favorite issues to do in Japan.

Learn our comparability of various lodging in Japan for extra particulars.

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Self-Cater

We normally keep in a self-catering residence for at the very least a part of our journeys to Japan. Self-catering helps lower your expenses and we get a break from worrying about the place to eat.

We discovered the array of recent noodles and tofu in supermarkets to be scrumptious and fairly priced. Add some greens and you can also make a straightforward stir-fry. We’re additionally a fan of T’s Tantan on the spot ramen pots after we’re in Tokyo for a fast meal.

The very best locations to remain in flats are the larger cities like Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka the place there are many choices.

Search on Vrbo for flats in Japan right here.

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Take a Cooking Class

Taking a vegetarian cooking class in Japan is a superb method to be taught extra about Japanese delicacies, make sense of the complicated elements, and be taught what you’ll be able to and might’t eat as a vegetarian. Plus they’re a whole lot of enjoyable and also you’ll get to take pleasure in a scrumptious meal.

We beloved this Kyoto cooking class with Uzuki. Emi teaches small teams of 2-3 individuals in her own residence and gives many vegan choices.

Subsequent time I’d like to do that vegan ramen cooking class that’s listed on Airbnb Experiences and has incredible evaluations. It’s in Ibaraki which is 12 minutes from JR Osaka station or 20 minutes from JR Kyoto station by practice.

Different choices are this ramen and gyoza cooking class in Osaka with vegan and halal choices.

Read more: Healthy vegetarian air fryer recipes

In Tokyo, you’ll be able to be taught to create a five-course vegetarian meal in Ikebukuro.

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Vegetarian Japanese Meals

These are some vegetarian Japanese meals and snacks to look out for. Bear in mind that something that features broth is prone to be fish dashi except you might be consuming in a vegetarian restaurant or the menu says it doesn’t use dashi.

Tempura

Vegetable tempura at Bon vegetarian restaurant, Tokyo
Somen noodle and vegetable tempura at Bon in Tokyo

Tempura, deep fried greens in batter, is the simplest vegetarian Japanese meals to seek out. Most tempura eating places have a vegetable choice or you’ll be able to ask for greens solely.

We had tempura donburi, tempura on high of rice, at Tendon Tenya, a reasonable tempura chain. We skipped the included miso soup because it accommodates dashi.

For a extra upmarket however nonetheless moderately priced tempura meal, we loved Tsunahachi in Shinjuku, Tokyo the place we had a vegetable solely model of their lunch set. In addition they have branches in Kyoto and Hokkaido.

Fuji Tempura Idaten in Kawaguchiko (close to Mount Fuji) was one other great place with a vegetable-only tempura choice.

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Tsukemono

Tsukemono, Japanese picklesTsukemono or Japanese pickled greens are an important a part of a Japanese meal and are at all times included in set meals.

I really like the crunchy texture and salty, candy and bitter flavour that gives a distinction to the extra delicately flavoured dishes. In a worst-case situation, you possibly can at all times order tsukemono and rice for a easy meal.

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Zaru Soba

Zaru Soba, a Japanese vegetarian foodChilly soba (buckwheat) noodles are common in the summertime served on a bamboo tray with nori seaweed, spring onion, wasabi, and a soy sauce dipping sauce that we skipped because it has dashi in it. If this doesn’t fear you then go forward and dip the noodles in.

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Soba or Udon Noodles

Noodles in broth are discovered all over the place and are constructed from soba (buckwheat) or udon (wheat) with a spread of fillings.

If you happen to clarify you don’t eat meat or fish, it is best to be capable to get a vegetable-only model, though the inventory will seemingly be fish based mostly. To keep away from this order zaru soba (above), chilly noodles that don’t are available broth. Udon eating places may have a chilly broth-free model.

In Kyoto there are a few udon eating places that make vegan udon—we particularly love the curry udon at Mimikou.

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Ramen

Midori vegetarian ramen in Tokyo at T
Midori vegan ramen at T’s Tantan

An rising variety of ramen retailers in Japan now provide vegan ramen, so you’ll be able to take pleasure in this traditional noodle soup with out meat.

The very best place to attempt ramen is T’s Tantan, a wholly vegan ramen store in Tokyo Station with tons of choices in addition to on the spot ramen to remove.

Ramen chains which have vegan ramen are Chabuton, Kyushu Jangara Ramen, and Afuri. Our restaurant guides to Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka checklist extra choices (see under).

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Miso Soup

Miso and tofu soup in JapanMiso soup (typically with tofu and inexperienced onions) is a part of each set meal together with breakfast. Chopsticks are used to eat the elements and the broth is sipped instantly from the bowl.

We solely eat miso soup in vegetarian eating places the place we all know they haven’t used dashi.

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Okonomiyaki

Vegetarian okonomiyaki in HiroshimaOkonomiyaki is a sort of Japanese savoury pancake made with a base of egg and milk batter and shredded cabbage plus different elements.

Though it normally isn’t vegetarian, it may be tailored to be by utilizing vegetable fillings. It’s not normally vegan-friendly except you attempt it at a vegan restaurant.

Okonomiyaki being made at Rie, Hiroshima
Okonomiyaki being made at Rie, Hiroshima

In Tokyo we love the tomato and cheese okonomiyaki at Zen in Shinjuku. They’ve a vegetarian part of their English menu that explains the elements of the several types of okonomiyaki and we acquired ours with out dashi by displaying our vegetarian card.

In Osaka, Okonomiyaki Chitose can do a vegetarian model (together with one with noodles) in the event you ask.

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Japanese Curry

Japanese vegetarian curry at CoCo Ichibanya, a cheap place for vegetarian food in Tokyo
Vegetable and eggplant vegetarian curry at CoCo Ichibanya

Curry is admittedly common in Japan. It’s totally different from the Indian model however nonetheless tasty. Many Japanese curry locations will provide a vegetable curry, however it’s seemingly the roux was made with meat.

For a wholly vegan curry head to Coco Ichibanya, Japan’s largest curry chain, and search for the separate inexperienced vegetarian menu with a spread of various curries. It’s an inexpensive and engaging meal and you may customise your stage of spice and elements.

Vegetarian menu at CoCo Ichibanya curry house in Osaka, Japan
Vegetarian menu at CoCo Ichibanya

The vegetarian menu will not be accessible in all their branches, however most of them appear to have it lately. The best method to verify is to look the evaluations of your nearest department on Google Maps and see if the vegetarian menu is talked about.

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Sushi

Vegetarian sushi with pickled vegetables at Komekichi Kozushi in Nikko, Japan
Pickled vegetable (carrot) sushi at Komekichi Kozushi in Nikko

Vegetarian sushi will not be straightforward to seek out in Japan, however it’s attainable.

Look out for kappa-maki (seaweed rolls with cucumber) and takuan-maki (pickled daikon radish roll). It’s also possible to discover sushi rolls made with umeboshi (pickled plum), natto (fermented soybean), and egg. Inarizushi is rice stuffed in a tofu pocket—simply verify it wasn’t made with dashi.

We had glorious vegetarian sushi at Komekichi Kozushi in Nikko, Little Heaven in Kyoto, and Morizuya Ryokan in Kinosaki Onsen.

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Nasu Dengaku

Nasu Dengaku
Nasu Dengaku

Eggplant is grilled till comfortable and melty with a candy caramelised miso topping. Nasu dengaku is a scrumptious consolation meals that we ate at Shigetsu temple restaurant in Kyoto.

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Gohei Mochi

Gohei mochi is a speciality of the Kiso Valley space that we sampled within the small, conventional village Tsumago. They’re scrumptious grilled rice dumplings served on a stick in a sesame and walnut sauce. Don’t miss them in case you are within the space.

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Dango

Mitarashi dango - a vegetarian Japanese food served on the street in Takayama, Japan
Simon along with his mitarashi (soy sauce) dango in Takayama

One other variation of the rice ball on a stick avenue meals is dango, which we tried in Nikko and Takayama. The dumplings are smaller and are brushed with miso or soy sauce.

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Yaki Onigiri

Yaki Onigiri
Yaki Onigiri

Grilled rice balls in a soy sauce glaze are served with tofu, chilly greens, and pickles on the facet. They’re fairly plain however nonetheless a superb vegetarian choice. We ate yaki onigiri at an izakaya (Japanese pub).

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Umeboshi Onigiri

Umeboshi Onigiri
Umeboshi Onigiri

Onigiri (rice balls) are discovered at each comfort retailer and grocery store and make good low cost packed lunches.

The issue is the labels are normally in Japanese, so it’s troublesome to see which of them are vegetarian. Household Mart and 7-Eleven now have the names in English, which makes issues a lot simpler.

Plain and umeboshi (pickled plum) are the commonest vegetarian onigiri. Umeboshi packaging is normally pink and plain ones are clear. You possibly can additionally use Google Translate (see above).

I’ve additionally requested a close-by stranger in pigeon Japanese “Dore umeboshi des ka?” (which one is pickled plum?) and she or he identified the best one.

Rice balls at Family Mart Japan
Onigiri at Household Mart in Japan. The umeboshi (pickled plum) is on the highest proper.
Plain vegetarian onigiri in 7-11 convenience store Japan
The plain onigiri in 7-Eleven are simply seasoned with vinegar and salt (they’re now additionally labelled in English as Salted Rice Ball).

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Sekihan Onigiri

Sekihan Onigiri
Sekihan Onigiri

Pink rice and adzuki bean balls are one other tasty packed lunch you’ll be able to decide up from a comfort retailer. The packaging is evident so it’s straightforward to establish with out studying Japanese.

Sekihan Onigiri packaging
Sekihan Onigiri packaging

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Different Comfort Retailer Snacks

Vegetarian snacks at 7-Eleven Japan including onigiri, pickles, edamame, and pineapple
A vegan picnic from 7-Eleven together with pickles, edamame, pineapple, plain onigiri, and adzuki bean onigiri

Comfort shops in Japan are wonderful and ideal for stocking up on snacks for a picnic or practice journey (sadly bento containers in practice stations are usually not going to be vegetarian).

In addition to onigiri, you’ll find inarizushi (sushi rice in a tofu pocket), edamame beans, pickled greens, boiled eggs, french fries (which weren’t as unhealthy as you’d suppose), fruit together with bananas and minimize pineapple, salads (however watch out of the elements and dressing), plain cooked noodles, and plenty of rice crackers and crisps.

7-Eleven, Lawsons, and Household Mart are the commonest comfort shops and also you’ll discover one on each block in cities. Household Mart and 7-Eleven now have English labels on their salty snacks so it’s simpler to seek out plain crisps and keep away from the various shrimpy issues.

We had been tempted by the tubs of spicy cucumber at 7-Eleven, however sadly they comprise fish sauce.

In Pure Lawson, the more healthy model of Lawsons, you may need extra luck discovering vegetarian-friendly snacks. In addition they inventory the vegan T’s Tantan on the spot ramen. They aren’t as frequent as the opposite shops although.

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Oyaki

Oyaki
Pumpkin Oyaki

Oyaki is a speciality of the Nagano prefecture and we tried it in Matsumoto. Wheat buns are crammed with totally different greens—we tried pumpkin (kabocha).

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Kabocha Korroke

Kabocha Korroke, Pumpkin Croquettes
Kabocha Korroke (Pumpkin Croquettes)

Pumpkin croquettes may be discovered within the deli part of supermarkets and a few eating places and make a scrumptious, low cost vegetarian meal. We heated ours up at residence and served with a salad.

Watch out of croquettes although—Simon purchased a potato croquette from a stand and it turned out to have chunks of meat in it.

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Naigamo Yam

Nagaimo yam with nori and wasabi
Nagaimo yam with nori and wasabi

This uncooked salad dish turned up in a number of of our meals. Naigamo yam is somewhat uncommon and wasn’t just like the dense, heavy yam that we’re aware of however as a substitute was mild, crunchy, sticky, and watery. The principle flavour got here from the salty nori seaweed and scorching wasabi that it was served with.

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Konnyaku

Konnyaku at Yoshuji in Kurama
Konnyaku at Yoshuji in Kurama

Read more: Ben and jerry’s phish food vegetarian

Konnyaku is thought in English as Satan’s Tongue. It’s a jelly-like substance constructed from the foundation of the tuberous plant konjac.

It doesn’t have a lot flavour however is valued for its texture, which we discovered somewhat unusual. It typically options in shojin ryori (Buddhist vegetarian) meals. Within the picture above konnyaku was served like sashimi with a darkish miso sauce.

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Mos Burger

Vegetarian rice burger at Mos Burger
Vegetarian rice burger at Mos Burger

Mos Burger is a fast-food chain, however the Japanese are somewhat pleased with it and an area identified that the meals is made to order and delivered to your desk not like in McDonald’s. In addition they promote themselves on being wholesome and have quite a few vegetarian burgers on the menu—level to the image menu to order.

The kinpira rice burger is made with sautéed greens and seaweed inside two rice buns. It was surprisingly good, however it isn’t that filling so we had been glad we had fries and onion rings with it. It’s an honest, fast and low cost meal when you’ll be able to’t discover anything.

Mos Burger now additionally gives soy patty burgers however these aren’t vegetarian. I don’t suppose any of the burgers are vegan however apparently, you’ll be able to ask them to print out an inventory of elements to verify.

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Rice Crackers

Chilli rice cakes
Chilli rice crackers at Nishiki market in Kyoto

Rice crackers (senbei) can be found all over the place from market stalls to comfort shops. Simply ensure you don’t purchase a packet containing dried fish or shrimp.

We picked up this crunchy, chilli-covered rice cracker on the Nishiki market in Kyoto.

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Vegetarian Tofu Dishes

There may be loads of tofu in Japan and it’s a lot increased high quality than wherever else on the earth. There are even eating places that solely serve tofu in numerous types for multi-course meals.

Watch out in tofu eating places, although, as they aren’t normally vegetarian, and even when they’ll make a vegetarian meal for you, they may most likely use dashi.

Sorano is an effective tofu restaurant in Tokyo with vegetarian choices marked on the menu and Tosuiro Gion in Kyoto can do a vegan set in the event you order upfront. We tried many of those tofu dishes in shojin ryori eating places.

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Goma Dofu

Goma dofu, sesame tofu
Goma dofu (sesame tofu)

This chilled sesame tofu is among the most typical dishes in shojin ryori.

It’s truly not tofu in any respect because it isn’t constructed from soy milk however from sesame paste, water and kuzu, a thickening powder.

It definitely has a special texture from the tofu we’re used to because it’s comfortable, creamy, and melts in your mouth. It’s a refreshing dish on a scorching summer season’s day. It’s normally served with a dab of scorching wasabi.

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Yuba

Yuba, soymilk skin tofu
Yuba (soymilk pores and skin tofu)

Yuba is constructed from the skinny pores and skin that types on the floor of boiled soy milk—it sounds bizarre however it’s scrumptious, creamy, and light-weight. It’s an area speciality in Nikko.

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Koyadofu

Koyadofu and yuba, vegetarian Japanese fooods
Koyadofu (high) and yuba

This freeze-dried tofu originates from the temple-filled Mount Koya. It’s reconstituted in water and turns into springy and sponge-like, absorbing the flavours it’s cooked in.

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Yudofu

Yudofu in Kyoto, Japan
Yudofu

A tofu and vegetable hotpot that’s simmered at your desk.

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Dengaku Tofu

Dengaku tofu is great for vegetarians
Dengaku tofu

Agency tofu served on sticks dengaku fashion. It’s coated with a candy miso sauce and grilled till it caramelises and turns into golden and barely charred.

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Inarizushi

Inarizushi
Inarizushi

Vinegared sushi rice stuffed in a fried tofu pouch. We tried this at Tosuiro tofu restaurant in Kyoto and Komekichi Kozushi sushi restaurant in Nikko. It’s additionally offered in comfort shops.

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Our Favorite Vegetarian Eating places in Japan

Fucha ryori dish at Bon vegetarian restaurant Tokyo
One of many 12 programs of our vegan feast at Bon in Tokyo

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Tokyo

Tokyo has many choices for vegetarians. Our favorite vegetarian restaurant is Bon, which serves beautiful multi-course fucha ryori in stunning tatami rooms.

We beloved the vegan ramen at T’s Tantan and Ramen Ouka. Milk Land in Shinjuku does a wonderful worth vegetarian lunch set. Zen is a vegetarian-friendly okonomiyaki place.

Learn our information to vegetarian eating places in Tokyo for extra particulars.

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Kyoto

It’s straightforward to be vegetarian in Kyoto. We suggest Shigetsu for shojin ryori at Tenryuji temple. We love the vegetarian set lunches at Hobodo Cafe, Veg Out, and Padma.

Mimikou does scrumptious vegetarian curry udon and Gyoza ChaoChao has a vegetarian gyoza menu.

For extra of our favourites, see our vegetarian Kyoto information.

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Osaka

Osaka could be very vegetarian-friendly in the event you plan upfront. There are an rising variety of vegan eating places together with Inexperienced Earth, Rocca, and Cafe Atl.

You possibly can attempt native specialities at Matsuri and Okonomiyaki Chitose.

See our vegetarian Osaka information for extra scrumptious choices.

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Koya-San

In Koya-san you will get shojin ryori meals for dinner and breakfast by spending the evening at a temple.

We additionally ate the set lunch at Bon On Shya Worldwide Cafe on the principle avenue which is vegetarian however serves worldwide meals somewhat than Japanese.

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Nikko

Yasai Cafe Meguri in Nikko serves vegan lunch units and Komekichi Kozushi has tasty vegetarian sushi choices and is among the few locations open within the evenings.

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Kawaguchiko

If you’re heading to Kawaguchiko to see Mount Fuji, you’ll find a number of vegetarian choices.

Fuji Tempura Idaten has a vegetable tempura set (skip the miso soup) and Peace Kawaguchiko has a vegetarian scorching pot and some noodle soups. We additionally had a break from Japanese on the glorious Pizzeria Onda.

See our publish about Lake Kawaguchiko for extra particulars (together with the very best locations to see Mount Fuji).

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Takayama

Heinraku is an excellent small restaurant in Takayama run by the friendliest girl and has pages of vegetarian choices on the menu—I beloved the Hida miso ramen.

Sukuya is an effective place to attempt a vegetarian model of the native speciality hoba miso—greens and tofu cooked with miso paste on a magnolia leaf.

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Kanazawa

In Kanazawa we struggled to seek out Japanese vegetarian meals so ended up consuming Western meals. Style and Scent is generally vegetarian and has a superb worth set lunch with rice and varied salads.

Sluggish Luck is a tiny place targeted on utilizing greens in inventive methods and has a vegetarian menu. The meals was Italian-inspired and totally scrumptious together with a pesto, potato and mascarpone pizza and grilled greens with an unbelievable pesto dip.

See our 2 week Japan itinerary for extra particulars about what we ate in Nikko, Takayama, and Kanazawa.

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Naoshima Island and Okayama

Naoshima Artwork Island is thought for its modern artwork museums and iconic yellow pumpkin sculpture.

This small rural island doesn’t have many vegetarian choices, however we did have a incredible lunch at Aisunao, which focuses on brown rice. Their tasty lunch set is vegan and the miso soup is made with out dashi (the noodle soups are usually not).

In close by Okayama Metropolis there are a number of choices for vegetarians particularly Yasai-Shokudo Koyama, which is a restaurant that focuses on greens and might make a vegan set meal.

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Abstract

Though Japan may be difficult as a vegetarian in the event you simply wander into any restaurant, with some planning you’ll find some wonderful meat-free meals. The scrumptious meals is among the causes we hold returning to the nation. I hope this publish helps you take pleasure in it as a lot as we do.

For extra Japan suggestions see our publish on planning a visit to Japan for the whole lot it’s worthwhile to know.

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