What Makes a Japanese Meal Typical?

Rice, soup, pickles, salad, and other protein and vegetable dishes make up a typical Japanese supper. Dessert and beverages, including tea, beer, and sake, may be offered after the meal. The menu features traditional Japanese fare, and many contemporary recipes also draw inspiration from other Asian and Western cuisines.

The various courses often found in Western and European cuisine, where each class is presented separately, are slightly different from the meal format in Japan. The typical home-cooked Japanese meal, or Gohan, consists of one course with several items served simultaneously, with dessert serving as the second course.


In almost all Japanese meals, rice is present. This could be any number of rice meals, such as brown rice, steaming white rice, or white rice that has been blended with barley (Takumi) (Chennai). Takikomi Gohan is a seasoned rice dish that boils rice with vegetables, seafood, or other proteins. An example of one of these dishes is the katsudon pork cutlet rice bowl.

Furikake, Nori, or Tsukudani

At home, plain rice is frequently served with seasoned seaweed (nori) and rice seasoning (furikake), a concoction of dried vegetables, an egg, seaweed, bonito flakes, and eggs or sesame seeds. Another well-liked topping for rice is tsukudani. This wet seasoning is frequently made of kelp or seaweed and may be combined with other seafood or dried fish.


Every Japanese dinner includes soup in addition to rice. Almost generally, it is served hot. The most popular type of soup is a miso shirt, and the only restriction on the ingredients is the chef’s imagination. Subashi jiru, a dashi-based soup that is also well-liked, can contain a variety of vegetable, protein, and seafood combinations. The third and least popular soup is consomm√©, which is based on a protein and mirepoix broth and is more Westernized.


A salad in Japanese cuisine might be a fresh salad prepared in the Western style. However, it will also feature veggies marinated in vinegar, such as sunomono (seaweed, cucumber, and ginger). Salads of cooked vegetables, such as Ohashi, frequently include spinach. Additionally, you can come across hijiki (seaweed salad), kinpira gobo (braised burdock root), and a straightforward Japanese okra salad.