What Is The Most Popular Traditional Japanese Food Besides Sushi?

14 March 2019 0 By Brenda C.
What Is The Most Popular Traditional Japanese Food Besides Sushi?

Are you planning on a trip to Japan? And is having a taste of all the real Japanese food on top of your agenda? Well, we can’t deny that we love Sushi and Sashimi. But how about we try something unique? Here is a guide that assists you to explore some meals to try in Japan.

Fried Gyoza

If you are looking for traditionally made dumplings or potsticker filled with minced pork, green onion, soy sauce, nira chives, ginger, garlic and sesame oil, then Japan should be your next stop. There are several variations of gyoza in different countries but here is the best that you can ever taste. Their actual origin is China where they are known as jiaozi but have become a popular dish in Japan. There are several types of gyoza such as the Yaki Gyoza which is pan-fried, the boiled Sui gyoza and the deep fried Age gyoza. Other variations include the steamed or soup gyoza. The most common homemade gyoza is the pan fried one that is commonly served with a bowl of rice and a dipping sauce as a side dish. An example includes the Hamamatsu gyoza believed to have started as common street food. Get a taste of them if you can!

Japanese Curry

Another popular dish is Japanese Curry. It can be served as curry rice, curry over noodles or curry bread. This meal is among the best you can ever have in Japan. It is a little bit spicy but deliciously sweet. You may try the fried pork, Katsu curry that is common in most local places in Japan and international chains such as the Coco Ichibanya. Other variations that might spice up your day include the beef one that will definitely warm you up in your visit to amazing regions like Okinawa or Ishigaki.


One of the most popular noodle soup in Japan is Ramen. If you are craving for something that is comforting and wholesome yet light, then this should be your favourite meal other than sushi. It a really good choice when travelling to Japan and you might try the unique local varieties commonly served in Nagasaki on Kyushu Island, the yuzu ramen. You can also have a taste of the classic tonkotsu, a common pork-bone broth soup that is also a common region such as Tokyo.

Soba and Udon

Soba and Udon may be served differently but are among the most popular food in Japan. You will definitely fall in love with the beef flavoured udon soup in Marugame and the fried Yakiudon or Yakisoba on the Japanese street. They serve the soba noodles with a hot soup or a dipping sauce. You may even skip the second-to-last dinner with such a nutritious, healthy and traditional Japanese food. Udon, another favourite dish in Japan, is characteristically pure white and glossy and is also renowned for its quality of being easy on your stomach. They are thicker and chewier compared to the soba noodles. So why don’t you get soba noodles served with a hot soup or a sanuki Udon with a cold tsuyu from Kagawa on your visit to Japan?

Soft Cream Dessert

On our list of the most favourite Japanese dessert is the soft ice cream. There are different iterations as far as we are concerned with regard to this dessert. You can try out the seasonal sakura flavours during the cherry blossom season, a Kanazawa gold-leaf soft cream or the Hokkaido lavender with milk that is served mixed with a juicy cantaloupe. This dessert is truly a revelation in Japan that you will definitely fall in love with.


Try out the real Osaka takoyaki octopus fritters and you won’t be disappointed. After all, Osaka is famous for being a street food capital! One of the best bites of a takoyaki is having it without the mayo on top of it. Try it out and we think you will love it too! However, besides the takoyaki, you might be tempted to have a bite a the Dotonbori sushi because there are many restaurants around offering the same.


Tempura is also among the most popular dishes in Japan that comes in different forms. It usually consists of seafood or some vegetables that are deep fried after battering. You will most likely encounter shrimps and mushrooms in a tempura basket, but you may try out some flash-fried maple-tempura famous in the Kansai region with some matcha-seasoned salt.


The list of this information would not be complete without mentioning the tender pork cutlet that is coated in panko crumbs of bread. This dish is fried golden brown and usually served with a tangy brown sauce. The fillet and the loin are the two main types of the best homemade tonkotsu in Japan. In fact, these family favourite meal is referred to as crispy on the outside but very juicy inside.


There are many iconic foods in Japan that you may consider as good as sushi or even better. But with such a list, you assured of having the best real traditional Japanese food. Furthermore Japanese is a land of discovery from culture, amazing sceneries to history. No matter what your preferences are, Japanese food is truly Oishi.