Can You Name All of These Japanese Dishes?


By: Elizabeth Lavis

6 Min Quiz

Image: ShyMan / E+ / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Japan is home to some of the best foods in the world. 

From silky tofu to pungent natto, Japan is a land of delicious flavors and inventive combinations of foods that have been delighting people from all over the globe for decades. Sushi and sashimi are now commonplace in Japanese American restaurants, but new foods are cropping up all of the time. We are learning about the restorative and rich broth that makes up miso soup. Mochi has entered the world stage as a dessert to watch, and matcha is gaining prominence as a hot new flavor. 

Who remembers those salty bricks of inedible noodles from college that dared to call themselves ramen? Japan has the real thing: silky wheat noodles that soak up flavorful sauce and pair perfectly with vegetables and meat. 

Speaking of meat, Japan has some of the best beef in the entire world. Anyone who has ever drooled over a Kobe steak knows that the Japanese take the quality of their beef very seriously. They are truly a cut above the rest.

Japan is a land of layered flavors, unique foods and a culinary culture that is proud and varied. Who knows it backward and forward? It's time to find out!

What is another word for this Japanese staple — also known as the first rice of the season?

Shinmai rice refers to the first crop of the season and is a special kind of rice in Japan. It is generally plumper and more delicately flavored than other types of rice and is usually eaten plain.


This vegetarian delicacy is a major part of Japanese cuisine. What is it?

Tofu is prepared in a number of different ways in Japan. You can have fresh tofu, tofu that is deep-fried or firmly pressed tofu. This plant-based protein is used in so many different dishes, all over the world.


Can you name this comfort food staple of Japanese cuisine?

Japanese curry is often served over rice, but it can also be a welcome accompaniment for udon or soba noodles. The curry is deeply flavored with vegetables and includes a rich sauce.


This grilled street food is a Japanese favorite. What is it?

Yakitori is skewers of chicken that are grilled over coals and infused with special spices. These skewers make the perfect street dish and are a very popular late-night food in Japan.


What famous noodle is the basis for many Japanese dishes?

Udon noodles are thick, made out of wheat flour. Udon is generally served with a delicate broth and makes a hearty but simple meal. Some people think that a steaming bowl of udon is the best way to cure a cold.


This snack is not only famous in Japan, but also loved worldwide! What is it?

Edamame is essentially unripe soybeans, often served in their pods. The beans or pods are generally steamed and served piping hot with a lot of salt. Edamame is an addictive and delicious snack that is now enjoyed worldwide!


What Japanese one-pot meal is pictured here?

Oden is a one-pot Japanese meal that combines all of the good stuff together in a flavorful dashi broth. Each family has a different recipe, and you can find anything from fish cakes to hard-boiled eggs in a bowl of oden.


Do you know the name of this delectable Japanese egg omelet?

Tamagoyaki is unlike any omelet that you have ever seen unless you've wandered through the streets of Tokyo. The cooked egg is rolled and formed into a rectangular shape for a unique taste and texture.


Which rice bowl dish is an amazing combination of Japanese flavors?

Donburi is the Japanese name for a rice bowl topped with a combination of vegetables and meat. You can use just about anything to make an amazing donburi, as long as the ingredients are cooked low and slow together.


Can you name these famous Japanese rice cakes?

Mochi are small cakes made from glutinous rice. They are sometimes served plain, but they can also contain all sorts of different delicious fillings. They make a perfect on-the-go food!


These noodles are not the ones you remember from college. What are they?

Real ramen is a thing of beauty. The thin noodles are wheat based and light enough to soak up some of the flavorful broth. Ramen is served with a variety of vegetables and meats.


Which delicious Japanese street food is pictured here?

Okonomiyaki is a giant savory pancake that can be loaded up with virtually any ingredient you can imagine. They vary depending on the region of Japan you're visiting, but all of them are tasty!


What is the name of this hearty potato-based Japanese dish?

Nikujaga is a savory dish that will totally stick to your ribs. This regional favorite is generally a combination of onion, potatoes and meat. Potatoes make up the bulk of the dish, making it filling and tasty.


What salty fish egg specialty is a favorite dish in Japan?

Tarako is salted cod roe. It's a uniquely Japanese dish that has been embraced in other parts of the world. Many sushi restaurants will serve a variation of tarako on their menus.


This snack favorite is beloved in Japan. Can you name it?

Dried squid is a popular snack in many coastal Southeast Asian countries, including Japan. Sometimes referred to as dried cuttlefish, this food makes a salty and tasty snack that will cut through cravings.


Do you know the name of this prized beef from Japan?

Wagyu is simply any cattle that is raised in Japan. Kobe beef is a special strain of Wagyu, and it is one of the most prized proteins in the entire world. Wagyu is known for being exceptionally flavorful and having an amazing texture.


This crunchy sushi accompaniment is used as a palate cleanser. What is it?

Pickled ginger, called gari, is generally served alongside sushi or sashimi. It is crunchy and delicious and has a slightly spicy, tart flavor. Ginger is also very good for your overall health, so chow down on it!


Can you identify these thin noodles that can be enjoyed hot or cold?

Soba noodles are thinner than their counterpart, udon noodles. Soba are thin buckwheat strands that can be enjoyed hot or cold. They are generally served with sauce or as a bed for veggies or meat.


This Japanese sweet treat is actually made with red beans. What is it?

Azuki ice cream is a cold treat made with red beans and flavored with plenty of sugar. Red beans are used to make many desserts and fillings in Japan, while they're usually reserved for savory dishes in the West.


What roasted sweet potato dish is a Japanese street food favorite?

Yaki-imo is a roasted Japanese sweet potato that is famously eaten in Japan during the winter. it is a comforting and flavorful dish that makes the perfect snack for people on the go.


These dumplings are either boiled or fried, then eaten with soy sauce. What are they?

Gyoza are popular all over Southeast Asia, where they go by many different names. The general concept is the same, however. Basically, gyoza are dumplings that are boiled or fried and served with a tasty sauce.


Which Japanese pickled favorite makes the perfect side dish?

Nukazuke is actually a technique for pickling vegetables, which involves curing them in rice bran. It is the perfect preparation for just about any vegetable you can imagine, including eggplant, cucumber and radishes.


This dish is made at the table, making for a fun and interactive meal. What is it?

Sukiyaki is a favorite Japanese dish that is cooked right at the table. Thin strips of beef simmer away in a flavorful broth studded with vegetables until it's ready to be eaten by the guests.


Which Japanese staple can you find in bakeries all across the country?

The Japanese sweet roll, or kashi pan, is a bakery delicacy. There are several different variations, and they can be filled with just about anything, from raisins to red bean paste.


Can you name this savory custard dish?

Chawanmushi is a savory custard that is popular in Japan. It is thick, decadent and filled with a vast variety of scrumptious ingredients. Each region has its own version of this dish.


This popular Japanese dish has crossed the pond. What is it?

Sushi is one of the most popular dishes in the world, and it comes in seemingly infinite varieties. Although sushi usually includes raw fish, that's not always the case. Eel, for example, is always cooked, even when served as sushi.


What fermented soybean dish is a bit of an acquired taste?

Natto is certainly an acquired taste. It is made of fermented soybeans and served with onion, soy sauce and mustard. The flavor is strong, and the beans can be on the slimy side, but people totally swear by it!


This DIY Japanese favorite involves thin slices of meat and veggies cooked in water. Do you know what it's called?

Shabu shabu is the ultimate dish for a crowd because it is interactive and delicious. You cook thin slices of meat and vegetables in a communal hot pot of water, then eat them with a variety of different condiments.


Which famous soup is the traditional starter for Japanese meals?

Miso soup is made by stirring miso paste into dashi flavored broth. It is generally eaten with scallion greens and tiny cubed pieces of tofu, although it can contain mushrooms or other extras as well.


Can you name Japan's most famous beverage?

Green tea has been a staple of Japanese cuisine for centuries. This good-for-you beverage is delicious served hot or cold, and green tea is even used to flavor many Japanese dishes and desserts.


Which octopus-filled street food staple is pictured here?

Takoyaki is one of the most beloved foods in all of Japan. Every stall has its own variety, but all contain the same basic ingredients. Lighter than air dough is filled with minced octopus, scallions and ginger.


Do you know the name of this spicy condiment?

Wasabi is the bright green spicy condiment that is the perfect companion for sushi or sashimi. It is often served alongside soy sauce and pickled ginger for a completely satisfying flavor experience.


This Japanese street food is essentially rice wrapped in nori. What is it?

Onigiri is rice balls, often with a filling, that are wrapped in nori. The result is an easy to eat, quick snack that is perfect for people on the go. Onigiri totally hits the spot.


Which Japanese favorite is pictured here?

Vegetable tempura is comprised of vegetables that are thinly sliced, coated in tempura batter and deep fried. It is generally served piping hot, with a side of soy sauce for dipping.


What is the name for this traditional Japanese multi-course dinner?

Kaiseki is the name for a multi-course Japanese dinner that really allows the chef in question to show off their skills. It is usually reserved for formal occasions and events.


Which salted Japanese plum, pictured here, has a unique taste?

Umeboshi are salted pickled Japanese plums. They have a distinct flavor that might be a little off-putting for some. Many Japanese people love the contrast of umeboshi, and it's considered to have health benefits.


Do you know the name of these delicate Japanese candies?

Wagashi are delicate treats, often served with Japanese tea. They are usually handcrafted and very beautiful. Wagashi are generally made with bean paste and echo the traditional flavors of Japan.


This Japanese breaded pork classic is the ultimate comfort food. What is it called?

Tonkatsu is a breaded and fried pork cutlet — the ultimate comfort food from Japan. It is generally served with a savory sauce and a slaw, as well as a heaping serving of rice.


What freshwater eel is known as a Japanese delicacy?

Unagi is a type of Japanese freshwater eel that is often included as a major protein in many Japanese dishes. It can be fried, steamed, used in stir-fries or eaten by itself. Unagi is a staple of Japanese cuisine!


Can you name the raw fish dish pictured here?

Unlike sushi, sashimi does not include rice. The dish features slices of raw fish or perhaps other raw meat, and it is served with the same accompaniments as sushi, such as pickled ginger and wasabi.


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