A Guide to Japanese Ingredients

Here is the list of common ingredients I use to cook my food. In order to make good and authentic Japanese food, you will need to purchase these from a local Japanese store or online. I link some products on Amazon if there are availabilities. Korean/Chinese grocery stores also carry some of these products.

だし dashi (Japanese soup stock made from fish and kelp.)

This is the secret of Umami. You don’t need to add MSG to have Umami taste.

** Available on Amazon here

醤油/しょうゆ shoyu (soy sauce)

** Organic Soy Sauce Available on Amazon here

酢/す su (vinegar)

** Organic Rice Vinegar Available on Amazon here

味醂/みりん mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)

** Organic Mirin Available on Amazon here

酒 sake/料理酒 Ryorishu (Cooking sake)

マヨネーズ Mayonnaise – Japanese mayonnaise tastes a bit different from other ones like more sour.

I assume you think of Kewpie brand mayonnaise when you hear “Japanese mayonnaise”. There is no doubt that Kewpie mayonnaise tastes good! But I personally prefer other brand ones which don’t contain MSG. And if I can’t get one of those, I just make that regular American mayonnaise into Japanese mayonnaise with some super easy secret tips. The recipe is gonna be posted soon so be sure to stay tuned!

胡麻油/ごま油 Goma-Abura (Toasted/Roasted Sesame Oil)

** Organic Toasted Sesame Oil Available on Amazon here

春巻きの皮 Harumaki-no-Kawa (Spring roll wrappers)

As I’m generally trying to use organic ingredients as much as I can when I cook, I at least try to find a additives free stuff when I can’t get an organic product of the item. And this egg roll wraps I’ve recently found at a local store made me happy as it doesn’t contain any additives such as Sodium Benzoate which is often used as a preservative for most of those egg roll wrap products. The surface is not gonna be smooth texture when you fry it but I prefer not to have those toxic additives into my body. 😉 You can find this at Ralphs or Target.

春雨/はるさめ Harusame (Thin noodles made from bean starch)

** Available on Amazon here

片栗粉/かたくり粉 Katakuriko (Potato starch)

** Organic Potato Starch Available on Amazon here

鰹節/かつお節 Katsuobushi (Dried bonito flakes)

** Available on Amazon here

味噌/みそ Miso (Fermented condiment made from soybeans)

** Organic Dashi Miso Available on Amazon here

** Organic Red Miso Available on Amazon here

こんにゃく Konnyaku (Konjac)


海苔/のり Nori (Dried black sea weed sheet)

** Organic Nori Available on Amazon here

パン粉 Panko (Breadcrumbs)

** Organic Panko Available on Amazon here or here

いりごま(白) Irigoma (Roasted white sesame seeds)

** Organic Roated White Sesame Seeds Available on Amazon here

豆腐/とうふ Tofu (Bean-curd)

** Organic Soft Tofu Available on Amazon here

つゆの素 Tsuyu-no-moto (Soy sauce mixed with soup stock made from fish and kelp)

**No MSG Tsuyu-no-moto Available on Amazon here

ポン酢 Ponzu

** Organic Ponzu Available on Amazon here or here

白だし Shiro-Dashi

とんかつソース Tonkatsu-sauce

**Organic Tonkatsu Sauce Available on Amazon here

お好みソース Okonomi-Sauce

**Organic Okonomi Sauce Available on Amazon here

大葉/おおば Oba (Japanese Shiso herb leave green)

梅干/うめぼし Umeboshi (Dried Japanese plum)

**Umeboshi with No Additives Available on Amazon here

しいたけ Shiitake (Shiitake mushroom)

わかめ Wakame (Seaweed)

**Organic Wakame Available on Amazon here

青海苔/あおのり Aonori (Dried green sea weed powder)

**Available on Amazon here