Why You Should Take A Japanese Cooking Class in Japan


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Japanese food is renowned for being healthy and is increasing in popularity worldwide.  Tokyo is known as one of the world’s best food destinations and is a great place to take a Japanese cooking class in Japan.

We firmly believe that you truly experience a country by immersing yourself in their cultural traditions.  One of the best ways to experience Japanese culture is to understand the food and how the signature Japanese dishes are made.  This is an awesome way to get to know Japanese cuisine and also engage with Japanese locals at the same time.

Taking a Japanese cookery class while in Japan gives you a unique Japanese cultural experience while giving you a skill that you can share and continue to grow when you return home.   Read on to find out how you can learn to cook traditional, authentic dishes from local experts – in many cases in the home of your Japanese host!

What can you learn to cook in a Japanese Cooking class?

Japanese cooking classes are available for many different dishes, traditional and avant-garde, the choice is yours.  Cooking classes in Japan are available for (but not limited to)

  • Sushi cooking class
  • Ramen cooking class
  • Udon cooking class
  • Okonomiyaki cooking class
  • Tempura cooking class
  • Gyoza cooking class
  • Vegetarian Japanese cooking class

The Best Cooking Classes in Japan

The best way to pick a cooking class to take in Japan is to pick your favourite Japanese food – or – be daring try something new!  There are a huge variety of classes available and the beauty of an AirKitchen class is that you’ll learn your new cooking skill alongside your host in their own home. Check out AirKitchen here! As well as preparing the food, you’ll sit down and eat with your host and their family too.   A Japanese cooking class with AirKitchen’s hosts is a superb way to interact with locals while enjoying amazing Japanese food.

Book The Most Popular Japanese cooking class in Japan

Handmade Udon, Dashi and Vegetable Tempura Course

In this, the most popular cookery class in Japan you’ll learn to make three dishes that complement each other.  You’ll start by making handmade Udon – a traditional Japanese noodle dish.   You’ll also make dashi – a Japanese soup stock that Japanese chefs must master as one of their primary Japanese cooking skills.

udon cooking class

You’ll complete your masterpiece by making fresh seasonal vegetable tempura.  And then, you get to eat it.  Nom Nom.

Top 5 Make Your Own Sushi Cooking Classes

If you’ve always dreamed of being able to make your own sushi, then this is for you.  An authentic sushi-making class in Tokyo. These sushi making lessons are both in professional restaurants and private homes.   Whether you choose to take a cooking class at the Nobu restaurant or in a more informal environment at a home cooking class in Japan the choice is yours.  Here are some of our top picks for the best sushi classes in Japan.

Tokyo Sushi Making Class at Nobu Restaurant

Join sushi chefs and learn the concepts as well as get involved and make your own sushi in this sushi-making class.  You’ll make vinegared rice, rolled sushi and nigiri sushi.  In this class where you’ll learn how to use a Japanese knife, you’ll prepare sashimi and then make it into nigari.

learn to make sushi in japan professional restaurant

You’ll also make your own wasabi paste and prepare makimoto rolls.  As if that’s not enough while you eat your creations, the professional sushi chefs will prepare a special sushi for you to enjoy.  A real treat!

Traditional Sushi Making class at Home in Tokyo

Learn to make sushi the traditional way in the home of Mikako in Tokyo.  This class will teach you to make 3 different types of sushi – Nigiri sushi, Gunkan sushi and Maki sushi.    You’ll also make sushi rice from scratch and sushi vinegar.   This is a great opportunity to work with a home chef in Tokyo and learn the basics of making delicious sushi.

Learn How to Make Temaki Sushi and Nigiri Sushi in Kyoto

Located just 15 minutes walk from Kyoto’s Fushimi Inari Shrine, this sushi-making class will walk you through the steps of making sushi.  You’ll start with your English speaking tutors by preparing slightly vinegared rice and then go on to make several types of sushi.

sushi making course in japan

Amaze your friends with your California roll sushi making skills and also learn about the history of Japanese cuisine.

Make Kawaii Sushi in Osaka – Artistic and Fun Sushi

This 3-hour lesson will teach to make artistic Sushi – you’ll choose between making sushi animals – including Octopus, Pandas and Penguins, Flowers and Anime Sushi – so you can eat your favourite minion!

artistic sushi making in japan

As well as making this delightful and fun sushi you’ll also get miso soup, and egg roll and dessert during your sushi-making class in Osaka.  Take home recipe and design cards and a whole new skill set!

Sushi Chef Experience in Osaka

Focusing on Nigiri Sushi, this sushi-making class in Osaka is located very close to the fabulous Kuromon Market, which is where all your ingredients will come from.  You’ll get to change into professional sushi chef clothing and start to prep all the ingredients and then you’ll learn how to make sushi.  Nigiri sushi is one of the more popular types of Japanese sushi and combines specially prepped vinegared rice with a variety of ingredients including fish, seafood, vegetables and sometimes tropical fruits.   Take home recipe cards after you’ve enjoyed your creations with your chefs!

Top 3 Japanese Noodle Based Cooking Classes

Noodles are one of the staples of Japanese food and ramen is the most famous of Japanese noodles.   Where better to learn how to make Japanese noodle dishes than Japan!  Here are some of our top picks for the best Japanese noodle cooking classes in Japan.

Handmade Udon, Dashi and Vegetable Tempura Course

Udon is a white wheat noodle and in this cooking course, you’ll make Udon from scratch – using particular tools and learning how to knead and cut the dough.

In this, the most popular cookery class in Japan you’ll learn to make three dishes that complement each other.  You’ll start by making handmade Udon – a traditional Japanese noodle dish.   You’ll also make dashi – a Japanese soup stock that Japanese chefs must master as one of their primary Japanese cooking skills.  You’ll complete your masterpiece by making fresh seasonal vegetable tempura.  And then, you get to eat it.  Nom Nom.

Make Ramen Noodles from Scratch + learn to make Gyoza too!

In this Tokyo based cooking class, you’ll learn to make Chicken Ramen Noodle from scratch – starting with the noodle dough.

Making ramen in japan

You’ll also make 2 different types of gyoza and a delicious avocado or white chocolate dessert called yo-kan.

Make Soba buckwheat noodles cooking class in Osaka

In this Osaka cooking class, you’ll learn to make a Japanese favourite – soba noodles.   As well as learning to mix the dough and shape it, you’ll cut the soba noodles and make soba soup to eat with the noodles.

how to make soba noodles in japan

Top 3 Speciality Japanese Cooking Classes

Japanese cooking comes in many flavours.  Here are just some of our favourite Japanese dishes and where you can learn to make them in Japan.

Learn how to make Japanese Tonkatsu in Japan

Katsu curry sauce is eaten with rice on top of a crispy fried pork cutlet and it’s one of the most popular dishes in Japan.

learn to make tonkatsu in japan

In this cooking class in Tokyo, you’ll learn how to ensure the cutlet is juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside and how to make creamy Japanese curry.

Learn to Make Okonomiyaki in Japan

Okonomiyaki is a seriously popular dish in Japan.  It’s often (wrongly in my opinion) called Japanese pizza, but in reality, it’s a savoury pancake with noodles.  It’s made with eggs, flour, shredded cabbage and then whatever toppings you want from vegetables to meat.

learn to make okonimiyai in osaka

The name, okonomi actually means “to one’s liking”.   Okonomiyaki is popular in Hiroshima and Osaka – which produce different styles of Okonomiyaki.

Read more about Okonomiyaki here

Learn to Make Japanese Gyoza from Scratch

In this awesome course on how to make amazing Japanese dumplings from scratch, you will be picked up from Shin-Osaka station and taken to your host’s house, where you’ll learn to make Japanese fried dumplings – Gyoza as well as Japanese omelette.

learn to make gyoza in japan

Your host, Naomi will also make miso soup for your lunch.

Top Vegetarian Cooking Classes in Japan

Many of the cooking classes you can take in Japan can be taught as vegetarian or vegan classes, you just need to ask when you book.  However, here are some that are vegetarian from the beginning – and we think, the best vegetarian Japanese cooking classes in Japan.

Traditional Buddhist Cuisine – Vegetarian Japanese Cooking Class

Originating from Buddhist monasteries, Shojin Ryori is a type of traditional Japanese cooking.  No animal products are contained in this type of cuisine, so this class is also a vegan Japanese cooking class.

learn to make shojin ryori in japan

In this vegan cooking class, you’ll learn how to make seasoned vegetable tempura, sesame tofu and miso soup.

Why Take a Japanese Cooking Class in Japan

Learning to cook dishes from different cultures helps you to expand your understanding of those cultures. Japanese food is primarily extremely healthy and pretty easy to cook – once you’ve learned the techniques.

We think that there’s no better way to try and embrace the culture of Japan than to take a Japanese home cooking class in Japan and then bring your skills back home!

Another awesome cultural thing to do in Japan is to stay in a ryokan- you can learn all about ryokan etiquette here

Still have more questions?  Here are our favourite FAQs about learning to cook in Japan.   If we missed anything, then please let us know and we’ll address that straight away for you!

FAQs about Learning to Cook in Japan

Got any questions about taking a Japanese cooking class?  Here’s just a few frequently asked questions.  If you have more, or we haven’t answered your burning questions about how to learn to cook in Japan, then ask in the comments and we’ll update this post!

What languages are Japanese cookery classes taught in?

It’s easy to take a cooking class in Japan, classes are taught in Japanese and English.  If you have other language requirements, then please ask!

Can I take a vegetarian cooking class in Japan?

Yes absolutely.  You can take vegetarian cooking classes in Japan, you can also take Japanese vegan cooking classes, halal Japanese cooking classes and kosher Japanese cooking classes.  If you see a class you like and have specific dietary requirements just ask!

Where can I take a Japanese cooking class?

Classes to learn to cook Japanese food are available in all major cities.  You can find a Tokyo cooking class, a cooking class in Osaka, lessons in cooking in Kyoto – just use the search here to find where you’d like to take a class.  If you want to take a class to make a specific regional dish note that you might need to travel to that area.  For instance, okonomiyaki cooking classes are most likely to be found in Hiroshima and Osaka.

Finally…

All that remains is to ask – what are you going to learn to cook in Japan?

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About Sarah Carter

Sarah Carter is an avid reader, writer and traveller. She loves hiking, sailing, skiing and exploring the world through food. She left a successful career in IT security and compliance in both the UK and US to travel the world with husband and partner in adventure, Nigel.

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