Many Japanese meals consist of multiple healthy components. So, a particular recipe or meal may at first appear to consist solely of vegetarian ingredients. However, there is a chance it was flavored with dashi, a broth that utilizes bonito (tuna) fish flakes as one of its ingredients.
While in the past it was difficult to find a true Japanese vegetarian recipe, recent years have seen a proliferation of vegetarian restaurants in Japan. Or at the very least, a number of vegetarian options on the menu. Following are a few healthy Japanese vegetarian recipes you can easily make for yourself!
Tofu & Tomato Caprese Salad
Chef Kaku of Wasan Brooklyn serves up a delightful and delicious Japanese fusion variation of a classic Caprese Salad, replacing the cheese with tofu and utilizing Japanese greens and seasonings such as salted kombu, as well as a little bit of soy sauce to give that salad some extra umami. The chef’s recipe also adds anchovies. However, you can eliminate these to ensure a completely vegetarian recipe, without sacrificing any flavor.
Fresh Fruits and Mashed Tofu Salad
Also served at Wasan Brooklyn, this bright and refreshing salad perfectly captures the essence of a bright and crisp spring day. The abundance of fruits paired with tofu, soy sauce and tahini makes this vegetarian Japanese salad a great option as both an appetizer or a dessert.
Tofu Teriyaki Sandwich
Try this healthy vegetarian sandwich for a great meal you can enjoy anywhere while on the go. Containing tofu as the base of the sandwich, some vegetables, and a delicious teriyaki sauce, this sandwich is both comforting and packed with umami. Eliminate the cheese for a vegan option as well.
Green Tea Banana Smoothie
Another great recipe you can make and take on the go, this Green Tea Banana Smoothie is light and refreshing! It uses a green tea powder called matcha to subtly infuse the crisp, woodsy flavor of green tea.
Banana Tofu Dessert Wrap
A great vegetarian dessert or a sweet snack, this Banana Tofu Dessert Wrap is sure to become a delectable favorite. Think of it as a fusion of a crepe, a veggie wrap, and a burrito. But with distinctive Japanese flavors that are addictive as they are sweet!