Japanese Appetizer Recipes

Gyoza, yakitori, and tempura are a few of the easy and delicious Japanese appetizers you'll find at Allrecipes.com.

Staff Picks

Tofu Hiyayakko

Rating: 4.68 stars
This is one of the really traditional easy dishes in Japan. My dad likes it so much. We often eat this dish with the rice, miso soup, grilled fish and Japanese pickles in the morning.

Vegetarian Nori Rolls

Rating: 4.27 stars
Delicious nori rolls that look great too. Even people who haven't eaten Japanese before liked these. Impress your friends!


Rating: 3.9 stars
'Okonomi' means 'whatever you like' and 'yaki' means 'cook or fry.' Serve with your favorite sauce: sweet and sour, Tonkatsu, sweet chili, etc.

Yakitori Chicken

Rating: 4.39 stars
Chicken is marinated in a soy sauce, sake and ginger sauce, then threaded onto skewers and broiled with leeks for an easy, tasty and fun meal.

Chakin Sushi

Rating: 4 stars
This is Japanese girl's festival food. This sushi is wrapped in very thin egg sheets. Inside is a vinegar rice ball. I used an Italian parsley sprig as the tie. The look is so cute!


Rating: 4.43 stars
I learned this recipe for pot stickers while living in Japan. They're great hot or cold, and may be eaten plain or with the dipping sauce. Any ground meat can be substituted for pork.

Beef Kushiyaki

Rating: 4.67 stars
A Japanese favorite.

Crispy Shrimp Tempura

Rating: 4.08 stars
Shrimp tempura, Japanese style. Serve this at dinner as an appetizer or to your party guests as finger food.

Perfect Sushi Rice

Rating: 4.12 stars
Here is my recipe for the perfect sushi rice. You can eat this alone or roll into your favorite sushi roll with ingredients of choice. I use strips of carrots, cucumbers and slices of avocado. You can adjust the amount of vinegar in this recipe to suit your taste.

Japanese Tamago Egg

Rating: 4.58 stars
Tamago egg is classic Japanese folded omelet sometimes called tamagoyaki. The omelet is sweet, has a light texture, and works well when served over sushi rice and with soy and wasabi sauce for dipping. Tamago is the Japanese word for egg. Mirin is sweet rice wine and dashi is traditional Japanese soup stock (make from kelp or shiitake). These ingredients are now carried in most larger grocery stores or at Asian markets.
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Cream Cheese and Crab Sushi Rolls

Rating: 4.63 stars
Delicious and surprisingly simple to make. Sushi is expensive to buy at the supermarket, so making your own will save you tons of money. My husband is a sushi freak! I make this for him all the time.

Cucumber and Avocado Sushi

Rating: 4.35 stars
Cucumber and avocado sushi! These rolls are easy to make and you can add either fake crab or smoked salmon. Serve with teriyaki or soy sauce and wasabi!
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Inspiration and Ideas

The Best Japanese Street Food Snacks, Appetizers, and Small Bites
We're takin' it to the street! From classic skewers like yakitori to super-simple pre-dinner snacks like edamame, explore the best of Japanese street foods and small nibbles.
Sweet Potato Tempura
Rating: Unrated
Uses just one sweet potato! Cheap, easy, and delicious! Broccoli pieces, mushrooms, or onions can also be used.

Yummylicious Japanese Beef Croquettes

Rating: 4.15 stars

Yummy Japanese croquettes combine ground beef with mashed potatoes and onions; formed into patties, then coated with panko and deep fried to a golden brown. Absolutely mouth-watering! They make a delicious snack! I prefer to make them in smaller bite-size pieces so it's easier to pick up with fingers. Serve with Tonkatsu sauce available at Japanese stores or major supermarkets.