15 Best of Local Japanese Food Offered by Tokyo

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Asia, Street Food

Japan is a beautiful country but what makes it extraordinary is its capital Tokyo. It belongs to the category of the exciting dining destinations of the world. Tokyo cuisine is considered to be a fancy one for it has amazing high-end restaurants but also inexpensive yet filling local food. You name a famous Japanese dish and Tokyo has definitely got it for you. Never miss their awesomeness in food when in Tokyo.

The Best of Local Japanese Food Offered by Tokyo

1. Tempura

Source – allrecipies.com

Tempura is a local Japanese dish made up of fish and other seafood, vegetables and other ingredients dipped in light batter and deep fried. Tempura originally consisted of vegetables but later on due to some kind of developments it underwent major changes and seafood came into the picture. The ingredients like squids, shrimps, crabs, and other veggies are all battered in eggs and flour and then fried in vegetable oil to give a crispy texture. There are special tempura food joints that offer this dish with multiple variations.

2. Soba Noodles

Soba Noodles

Soba is the Japanese name for buckwheat. It means noodles made from buckwheat which are thin and also include wheat flour in it. People of Tokyo believe in eating chilled versions of the Soba noodles. It is usually eaten with soy sauce which is either placed on the side or a boiled cup of noodles. Being extremely popular and a highly consumed dish, it is also highly nutritious.

3. Sukiyaki


The name that typically reminds us of Japanese cuisine is Sukiyaki. It is a very different dish which is cooked in a sweet salty soy sauced broth and is full of bold flavors straight from the pot. The main ingredient is beef which is a real treat for passionate beef lovers and other ingredients like leafy vegetables, tofu, negi, sugar, and mirin are added. The ingredients are usually dipped in a small bowl of raw beaten eggs cooked in a pot and then served hot. Sukiyaki is considered to be a winter dish, and most perfect for warming up eaters on the inside. 

4. Sushi


Sushi, perhaps, is the most iconic and popular dish belonging to the Japanese cuisine. It is not always about raw fish but the other ingredients that play their role in making this dish super tasty and so awesome. It is made with medium grain white rice and seafood like squid, eel, salmon, crab, and meat, which act as filling to this dish. The sushi is prepared by rolling up the sushi in a round roll and dipped in soy sauce. There are so many sushis in Tokyo, that you’ll go crazy while trying and tasting them.

5. Okonomiyaki


When we talk about pancakes in Tokyo, we aren’t talking about the usual sweet ones. Okonomiyaki is a Japanese savory pancake containing a variety of ingredients. It is a pancake consisting of all sorts of fillings like pork, shrimp, or cabbage and topped with mayonnaise sauce and dried seaweed. Toppings and various seasonings are used in this dish depending on which part of Tokyo you are in. Some street vendors even ask the customers to cook this dish by themselves.

6. Monjayaki


It can be called a weird cousin of Okonomiyaki and also one of the famous dishes that Tokyo offers to you. The gooier and softer texture of this savory dish will just make your mouth water. It is made out of a batter cooked on a griddle but has more liquid consistency than Okonomiyaki. Although it has all the ingredients like cabbage cooked with seafood that Okonomiyaki has, what makes it different is raw Manja which makes the dish crispier and also caramelized. Monjayaki is considered to be tasty only when it’s piping hot and served directly from the teppan plate cooked on a hot grill.

7. Unagi


It is a Japanese dish that is made of broiled freshwater eel and is served over rice in a fancy lacquer box. This dish is made of eels that are put on the base of cooked or steamed rice where the eels are split and skewered broiled over a charcoal grill and then basted with a sweet soy sauce. In Japan, people have eels as an important part of the cuisine served with tare sauce. One needs to try this dish for it is sometimes eaten as a luxury item. Izanagi is considered to be a dish that helps in boosting stamina.

8. Ramen

Haven’t we all heard about ramen noodles? So where do they come from? They are a Japanese adaptation of Chinese noodles. Served in a chicken broth, these are thin and curly noodles flavored with soy. The toppings are usually sliced pork, egg, spinach and nori. Every part of Tokyo serves different types of ramen including tonkotsu or kyushu. Ramen is a very popular fast food that makes an affordable meal in the whole of South East Asia.

9. Chankonabe


A Japanese stew that was originally cooked for sumo wrestlers to accommodate their weight gain diet. The reason why this dish has become popular is that people are becoming more health conscious and this is a dish that does the work. It is a hot pot dish made from chicken-based broth, vegetables, tofu, and/or fish. There are no fixed ingredients for this dish as it all depends on the vegetables available. It is a healthy dish where the power of proteins plays an integral role. It is very easily available with street vendors and is super quick to make. 

10. Tsukudani


Japanese always prefer to have something along with their rice that is more liquid or saucy. Tsukudani is a small seafood dish, as one would say, that is simmered in soy sauce and mirin, to accompany the bowl of rice. Small pieces of seafood like shellfish, small fish, and seaweed are cooked with a bit of sugar and soy sauce. Considered to be a dish that can also be preserved, it goes great with liquor.

11. Ningyo Yaki

Ningyo Yaki

When it comes to sweets, Japanese people in the region of Tokyo offer such a variety of sweets that you’ll definitely want to try all. One of them is the Ningyo yaki, a baked snack cake that is traditionally cooked in an iron mold and has the shape of a Japanese doll. Ningyo yaki is made of flour, eggs, butter, sugar, and red bean paste called ‘anko’ which is sweet and delicious. The cake is also very fluffy and not dry at all and just melts in your mouth. Many bakery shops and cafes offer this dish and it can also be purchased as a gift for a loved one, for they don’t lose their shape easily.

12. Anmitsu


An icy cold, classic Japanese dessert that is supposed to be enjoyed in the warmer months of spring and summer, it is very popular in Tokyo.  It is a delightful combination of different ingredients that give an edgy texture to this sweet dish like firm kanten agar jelly, fruits, ice creams, and kuromitsu (caramelized sugar syrup), a scoop of anko along with mochi balls. The presentation of this dish will make you think of at least trying it once.

13. Taiyaki


A Japanese fish-shaped cake is made by using the regular waffle or pancake batter. It is a common street vendor of food in Tokyo and also in various regions of Japan, South Korea, and other Southeast Asian countries. It is a traditional batter that is poured into a fish mold that imitates the shape of the Tai fish in Japan. The fillings of this dish include red azuki bean paste, custard, chocolate, cheese, sausage, or gyoza fillings. Some street sellers add ice cream, fruits, and a variety of other ingredients, especially when it is the festive season. 

14. Amazake


A traditional sweet, low-alcohol Japanese beverage that was first made during the Kofun period. It is a drink that is made of fermented rice, which is either with no alcohol content or low alcohol content so that even children can drink it. It is made using koji mold, miso, soy sauce, and sake. Amazake is often consumed to relieve summer fatigue due to its nutritional content and also to boost stamina. Amazake can be used in many forms like baby food, salad dressing, or smoothies. 

15. Mugicha


Considered to be a drink of the summertime, it is Barley tea. Mugicha is traditionally made by simmering roasted barley grains. The drink has a toasty, smooth, nutty flavor without any bitterness and is caffeine-free. The best part is that whenever you visit Tokyo, you’ll find this drink for it can be consumed in hotter as well as colder months. Mugicha comes with several health benefits like weight loss, immunity boosting, improved blood flow and circulation and so much more. Ask yourself, why won’t you try such a drink? 


amazake / anmitsu / Chankonabe / japan / monjayaki / mugicha / ningyo yaki / okonomiyaki / ramen / soba / sukiyaki / sushi / taiyaki / tempura / tokyo / Tsukudani / unagi

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