10 Best Japanese Cookbooks in 2023
Do yourself a favor and pick up one of these Japanese cookbooks so you can teach yourself how to make all of your favorite Japanese cuisines, from ramen and sushi to savory Japanese comfort foods.
It is easy to feel scared while attempting to prepare Japanese food on your own because Japanese cuisine is one of the most well-known, attractive, and respected cuisines in the whole world. It is common for Japanese cuisine to appear hard to recreate at home. However, this is not the case since many meals are deceptively straightforward and only require a few fundamental components.
A whole new world will become available if you access the appropriate Japanese cookbooks. Because these books focus on many aspects of Japanese food, you will quickly become an expert in Japanese cooking at home after reading only a few of them.
Our Top 10 Picks for the Best Japanese Cookbooks:
Detailed Review of 10 Best Japanese Cookbooks:
1. Mastering the Art of Japanese Home Cooking:
Masaharu Morimoto, a participant in “Iron Chef” and “Iron Chef America,” has garnered a great deal of acclaim for the contemporary Japanese cuisine and restaurants he owns and operates.
In Perfecting the Art of Japanese Home Cooking, Morimoto’s second cookbook, he aims to demystify Japanese cuisine and make it more approachable to home chefs.
Cooks of all levels will be astonished to find simple foods that are easy to create since the book has 150 recipes and vivid illustrations.
You will acquire the skills necessary to create everything from scratch, including dashi stock. The directions are clear and concise, and they provide photographs that show each step along with a Japanese ingredient list that allows for alternatives.
You’ll be able to appreciate beautiful tidbits of cooking advice known as Japanese Grandmother Wisdom, which is characterized by an excellent blend of art and tradition.
You will learn to prepare some of the most delicious traditional Japanese dishes with only a few basic ingredients. Yasai or vegetable fried, spicy tuna temaki, or nabe yaki udon noodles are some delicious Japanese home dishes that you should try.
Book Author: Masaharu Morimoto
2. Takashi’s Noodles:
The lifelong passion heavily influences the dazzling contents of this cookbook that award-winning chef Takashi Yagihashi, born in Japan, has had for noodles.
With seven chapters, each devoted to a different type of noodle and even the occasional dish concentrating on packet noodles, Takashi’s Noodles wants to demonstrate to Westerners how fast and easy it is to prepare traditional Japanese food.
The in-depth recipes that Yagihashi provides for iced crab and prawn ramen salad, packed chicken wings, and beef stew with rice noodles deserve your attention.
Yagihashi utilizes this book to instruct viewers about traditional Japanese additives and cooking techniques and provides lots of advice on choosing the type of noodle to go with each dish. In addition to the hot and cold recipes, the book also includes various noodle options.
Book Author: Takashi Yagihashi
3. Japan: The Cookbook
This is one of the greatest Japanese cookbooks available, with more than 400 dishes. This well-known cookbook has an incredible amount of different recipes, far more than any other books on our list combined.
This is another one of the greatest Japanese cookbooks, and it was written by Nancy Singleton Hachisu, who was nominated for a James Beard Award. It has more than 400 recipes.
Anyone who aspires to become an expert in the art of Japanese cooking for everyday use has to have Japan: The Cookbook.
Nancy, who resides in Japan, conducted interviews with grandmothers in various parts of the nation for more than ten years to collect traditional Japanese recipes.
And in this classic book on Japanese cooking, Nancy captures the subtleties of the food in a way that makes it approachable to people who aren’t from Japan.
Along with stunning photographs of the finished dishes, she discusses the many food preparation methods, how to strike the right balance of tastes, and various cooking techniques.
The recipes from the various regions are organized into the several courses of a meal and include notes and directions on how to duplicate them at home.
The chapters on sweets are quite interesting, and they transport you to an entirely new world of regional treats. She expands upon her previously lauded cookbook, Japanese Farm Food, by providing details on her time spent living in Japan, as well as the culture and customs of the country.
For the home cook interested in delving further into Japanese cuisine, this cookbook is an authoritative yet user-friendly reference covering various topics. This book is your ticket into the nation for those interested in Japanese culture and cuisine.
Book Author: Nancy Singleton Hachisu
4. Washoku: Recipes from the Japanese Home Kitchen
In 1975, Elizabeth was the first writer to succeed in having a series on traditional Japanese cuisine published in Gourmet’s American culinary magazine.
She is regarded as an authority on Japanese cuisine in English because she is a graduate of the famed Yanagihara School of traditional cuisine in Tokyo.
She takes younger viewers closer to the secrets of preparing superb washoku, which may be loosely translated as traditional Japanese cuisine, through the Washoku cookbook.
There is a wonderful introduction to Japanese ingredients and a technique for cooking that is suitable for use in a western kitchen. A comprehensive assortment of pantry essentials, cooking gear, and recipes are all simple to execute.
The book Washoku is not only a collection of recipes; rather, it is an homage to a particular culinary culture. You will learn the fundamentals and the historical and cultural backdrop of Japanese food and recommendations on how to perfect this type of home cooking.
There are approximately 140 different dishes included, ranging from rice and noodles to meat and seafood, soups and desserts, and even condiments and sauces.
This cookbook is an excellent choice for your home because it was written by Elizabeth, widely considered one of the most well-known culinary writers specializing in Japanese cuisine.
Book Author: Elizabeth Andoh
5. Atsuko’s Japanese Kitchen:
While Japanese restaurants provide more refined and delicate dining experiences, traditional Japanese comfort cuisine is heartier, more naturally healthy, and less complicated to prepare. Atsuko, who teaches culinary classes in London, includes recipes for dishes like this in her book.
Atsuko’s Japanese Kitchen transports you to the kitchen of a typical Japanese family and provides you with traditional recipes and instructions for preparing food.
On the other hand, the recipes are laid out in a straightforward way to understand, and they include both traditional and contemporary takes on the meal.
Izakaya cuisine, consisting of tiny portions meant to be shared, can be found throughout Japan’s eight most important culinary areas. Many traditional Japanese recipes for noodle dishes, beef dishes, seafood dishes, and decadent desserts are featured in this book.
Everything there is to know about traditional Japanese home cuisine, including the many styles and seasonal products sourced from the various areas.
We recommend this Japanese cookbook most highly to home chefs interested in preparing authentic Japanese cuisine.
Book Author: Atsuko Ikeda
6. Japanese Soul Cooking:
If you are ready to expand your culinary horizons beyond sushi and ramen and want to learn more about traditional Japanese home cooking, then Japanese Soul Cooking is your book.
The almost one hundred recipes have been retained as accurately as possible while also including elements of the local culture of Japan.
This Japanese cookbook explores contemporary cooking practices, including novel ingredients and methods and the worldwide inspirations and backstories of well-known recipes.
Noodles, gyoza, and tempura all have their appropriate place among the recipes. Still, you’ll also discover popular dishes like donburi, karaage, soba, and many other foods.
These foods are rich in taste and are typically produced in homes or served in restaurants tucked away in back alleyways called yokochos in Japan. Along with the beautiful picture set in Japan, the extraordinary tale that Tadashi Ono and Harris Salat have created will draw you in.
These Japanese recipes, which feature clear and precise directions, are designed to be used by any home chef interested in preparing authentic Japanese soul cuisine.
Book Author: Tadashi Ono
7. Japanese Home Cooking:
You will learn how to produce everyday Japanese meals, ranging from the most basic to the most advanced, from Sonoko, a New York-based author and culinary instructor.
The book “Japanese Home Cooking” provides a wealth of knowledge, including specifics on the methods and components of making mouthwatering Japanese dishes.
We admire how much attention is paid to traditional Japanese farm food and the cultural setting of the cuisine, starting with the philosophy that underpins the cuisine.
The more than one hundred recipes have been developed with great care and contain instructions for making distinctive broths, sauces, and seasonings.
You will learn the principles of Japanese cuisine, from the preparation of temaki sushi, also known as hand-formed sushi, to mochi waffles with Tatsuta, often known as fried chicken.
This comprehensive book caters to home chefs of varying skill levels. There are simple recipes for everyday lunches and more difficult dishes when you have more cooking expertise and want to challenge yourself.
Sonoko, an expert in Japanese cuisine in the United States, has created a book that exquisitely depicts the many gems in traditional Japanese home cooking. One that pays homage to the author’s culinary roots and background in the industry. The inclusion of fascinating anecdotes about food producers and stunning food photographs is a major benefit.
Book Author: Sonoko Sakai
8. Sushi Cookbook for Beginners:
Get yourself a copy of Chika Ravitch’s cookbook as soon as possible if sushi features prominently in your culinary fantasies. The author provides various recipes for making wonderful food art in the kitchen, ranging from traditional to contemporary and fusion sushi.
The Sushi Cookbook for Beginners includes more than one hundred straightforward recipes and instructions for preparing sushi in Japanese homes.
The inventive dishes in this cookbook are sure to please even the most seasoned of home cooks, but the book’s primary audience is those who are not yet familiar with creating sushi.
This is a wonderful cookbook that includes a wide variety of sushi preparations. There are recipes for folded sushi, pressed sushi, and even filled sushi that you may discover here.
The author has dedicated enough pages to the process of creating sushi, and they have included a beautiful picture to accompany each dish. You will also discover helpful information on basic tools, supplies for the pantry, and strategies for preparing sushi and designing it.
Book Author: Chika Ravitch
9. Nanban: Japanese Soul Food
Nanban: Japanese Soul Food is the ultimate introduction to authentic Japanese food for the Japanophile Westerner. The book was written by the individual who won the UK’s 2011 Masterchef competition with a recipe for a fancy burger.
Anderson spent his teenage years immersed in a world of Nintendo, J-pop, and anime and taught himself to appreciate sushi. He had an early fascination with Japanese culture and developed this interest at a young age.
Later on, during a trip to Japan with his family, he decided to study Japanese culinary history. As part of his coursework, he spent four weeks in Japan researching the local noodle culture.
After spending an additional two years in Japan and already holding the title of Masterchef, Anderson established his extremely well-liked restaurant in the style of Japanese street cuisine in London.
Nanban is the name of his cookbook, which includes a vast assortment of recipes for his favorite ramen and other out-of-the-ordinary foods like shrimp gyoza, chicken livers grilled with umeboshi, and Kanimeshi.
Book Author: Tim Anderson
10. Ramen Obsession:
Get this cookbook right away if eating ramen is your breakfast, lunch, and dinner staple and you’re tired of the same three or four variants on the dish.
Ramen Obsession is a cookbook written by Naomi Imatome-Yu that has 130 different recipes for savory and sophisticated ramen dishes.
It is quite detailed and thorough, and it is full of comments on cooking techniques, directions for recipes, shopping lists, and ideas for stocking the pantry.
You may easily impress your loved ones and friends with plenty of warm bowls of ramen by following only a few simple recipes and acquiring a few Japanese ingredients.
The author doesn’t only provide recipe notes; she also discusses the origins of ramen, its complex regional tastes, and its development through time as a noodle meal.
Construct bowls of noodles from scratch, together with sauces and hearty broths that have been tried and proven. Try toppings from different parts of Japan, or use the ones recommended by the author as a starting point.
We ranked this book third on our list says all that needs to be said about it. You may confidently refer to it as the only book about ramen that you’ll ever require.
Book Author: Naomi Imatome-Yun
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do you organize the many cookbooks?
Cookbooks must be arranged in a fashion that is understandable to the one doing the organizing. The experts, however, suggest organizing cookbooks according to the cuisines they cover.
What should I do with the old cookbooks I’ve collected?
If your cookbooks are still in usable shape but have lost most of their value over the years, you could consider donating them.
How many different recipes may be found in a single cookbook?
While Morris Press Cookbooks claims that the typical cookbook has between 300 and 400 recipes, other sources indicate that the typical cookbook has about 150 dishes.
We hope that our post about the top Japanese cookbooks was enjoyable to you. We are confident that, armed with this information, you will be able to make the most of the recipes easily.