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【Japanese winter food】Oden warms us from the inside


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1 What is Oden?

Oden is enjoyed as a winter dish in Japan. Vegetables,eggs,fish cakes,meats are stewed in a pot.  Oden is affordable and delicious food. It warms us from the inside.The oden soup is made of  seaweed stock or bonito, and then adding soy sauce and sugar etc.


2 Common ingredients of Oden

2-1 Daikon

Daikon is one of the most popular ingredents. Daikon looks like a huge,white carrot. It is delicious both raw and cooked.  Raw daikon is hard and spicy. Stewed daikon gets sweeter and becomes soft.

2-2 Tamago

Tamago is boiled eggs. It is also a popular ingredent like daikon. The surface of tamago is light brown.



2-3 Konnyaku

Konnyaku is a traditional Japanese jelly-like health food made from a type of potato called “Konnyaku potato” Konnyaku gives the feeling that the stomach is full,and it also cleans toxins the intestines. Konnyaku is a popular food to keep a good shape.



2-4 Shirataki

Noodle type of Konnyaku is shirataki. This healthy,jiggly noodle gives the feeling the stomach is full and cleans toxins the intestines of  as konnyaku does.



2-5 Chikuwa

Chikuwa is an already-cooked Japanese fish cake in the shape of a tube. It is eaten both raw and cooked.


2-6 Ganmodoki

Ganmodoki is a fried tofu dumpling made with vegetables such as carrots and sesame seeds. Ganmodoki in an oden pot is very soft and tasty.



2-7 Kinchaku

In oden, there are little pouches are called Kinchaku. Kinchaku of Oden is  rice cake wrapped with deep fried tofu. Rice cake of Kinchaku is melted by stewing and it is very tasty.



3 Regional difference of oden

Oden ingredients and seasoning vary from region to region. If you have an opportunity to travel in Japan in fall or winter, I strongly suggest that you try oden in each place you visit. I will introduce you to different types of famous regional oden.

3-1 Kanto’s Oden

The taste and the color of the broth are strong. The unique ingredients are fluffy fish cake called hanpen and flour paste cake called chikuwabu.

Kanto's oden


3-2 Sizuoka’s Oden

The broth of Shizuoka’s oden is completely black. The black broth is made with dark soy sauce and dashi of beef tendon and chicken. The unique ingredient is fish cake called kuro hanpen. Dried green seaweed and dashi powder is put on Shizuoka’s oden.


Shizuoka Oden


3-3 Nagoya’s Oden

Haccho miso is put into the broth of Nagoya’s oden,so the color of the broth is brown. Taro is a unique ingredient of Nagoya’s oden.

Nagoya Oden


3-4 Ishikawa’s Oden

Ishikawa is the prefecture where there are lots of oden shops. Also,Ishikawa is famous for its delicious seafood. Various seafood such as crabs and shellfish are put into Ishikawa oden.


Kanazawa Oden


3-5 Kansai’s Oden

Compared to Kanto’s oden, Kansai’s oden has light taste. The unique ingredients of Kansai Oden are octopus tentacles and beef tendon.

Kansai Oden


3-6 Hakata Oden

Chicken is put into the broth and the taste is mild. Groza maki, is a food that is gyoza wrapped in fish cake,and is famous.

Hakata Oden


4 Oden of convenience stores

Oden is often cooked at home,but you can also buy freshly cooked oden at convenience stores. The price of oden is approximately 100 yen. You can get condiments for oden such as karashi,japanese musterd,and yuzu citrus pepper called yuzu koshou. Check the convenience store staff which condiments are available when buying oden.


5 How to make oden at home

When it gets cold, oden sets start selling at supermarkets. There are oden sets that contain not only oden ingredients but also soup.The only thing you need to do to enjoy your oden is placing it into a pot and warm it up!



Oden is the great dish to eat in a cold weather. You should try it while staying in Japan!