Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Snacks You Won't Believe Exist
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Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Snacks You Won't Believe Exist

VOICE OVER: Y WRITTEN BY: Laura Keating
Script written by Laura Keating


Ever heard of these japanese snacks? Snacks like Tuna Doritos, different pepsi flavours, Eel soda, Squid Jerky, Roasted crabs, Curry Lemonade, Meat Flavored Ice Cream? Prepare to learn some new snacks you've probably never heard of!
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Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Snacks You Won't Believe Exist


While different cuisines from around the world have a lot to offer, some choices can’t help but feel more odd than appetizing. Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Snacks andDrinks. 

For this list, we’re looking at food and beverage products from Japan that make us wonder why they were invented in the first place. These strange consumables may be distinctly Japanese, or products by well-known companies that have received a unique twist for the Japanese market. 


#10: Cheese Drink



Many drinks, especially wine, pair nicely with cheese. It seems like someone in marketing decided to cut the middleman right out on this one in order to make a cheese beverage... but not like you might think. Nomu Cheese uses milk from Noboribetsu City and Muroran City to create this creamy drink, which tastes similar to yogurt but with a consistency similar to that of cream cheese. It makes for a delicious breakfast or a rich snack.

9: Tuna Doritos 


This brand of powdered cheese-covered nachos comes in an assortment of flavors. Though they’ve done some experimentation in North America, Cool Ranch is about as adventurous as they’ve been, and – all things considered – that’s actually pretty tame. However Doritos in Japan took a sharp left turn with this tuna-flavored variety. Fish tacos might be a popular menu item, but these promise to be a little different, with the packaging describing them as “tuna mayonnaise” flavored. 

#8: Different Pepsi Flavors 


Be warned: this entry features a large cast of characters. You might be aware of Japan’s unique take on Kit-Kat bar flavors, but another common comestible to undergo tweaking is Pepsi. The company has a history of changing the drink’s taste entirely – with some admittedly varied results. From cucumber and “salty watermelon” to baobab—as in the tree—this drink goliath isn’t afraid to go where no one’s gone before. However the flavors are often seasonal, meaning you can’t try them all in one sitting, and once they’re gone, they may never come back. 

#7: Scallops & Mayo Flavored Chips 


Believe it or not, chips aren’t as popular a snack item in Japan as they are in the West. And so, amid heavy competition from other products, manufacturers often venture into uncharted territory to catch a shoppers’ eye. Produced by Calbee, a company that holds 50% of the Japanese snack market, these toasted scallop chips are proof of concept. Add to that the fact that Calbee has formed a partnership with Pepsico in Japan and you begin to see a distinct marketing strategy take shape. But who knows, scallops are a delicacy, and scalloped potatoes are a thing, right? So maybe this was the next logical step, right?

#6: Eel Soda 


The “Surging Eel” fizzy drink is a carbonated drink made out of eel. Shocking, we know. Introduced back in the summer of 2008, Unagi Nobori was specifically launched to coincide with the start of eel season. Apparently, locally, people eat eel to keep their energy up and to help stay cool during the hot summer months, so someone came up with the inspired idea of taking everything people love about eel and putting it into a beverage… including its distinct taste. According to the company’s spokesman, it’s “mainly for men who are exhausted by the summer’s heat.” Hey, whatever works. 

#5:Squid Jerky


A dried and packaged squid that you can eat it like candy, if that’s your thing, this seafood treat is like the Japanese alternative to beef jerky. It’s offered in an array of serving options, including large packages where you rip off little chunks of the Mollusks off yourself to popcorn sized bites, there’s theoretically a jerky squid option for everyone. Well, except anyone who doesn’t like preserved squid. If you are a fan of salted seafood then this may very well be the unique snack you’ve been looking for. Word to the wise: the flavor and smell can be exceptionally strong, meaning if you're about to try it for the first time, arm yourself with a glass of water, or roll down a window, if you decide to indulge.


#4: Roasted Baby Crabs 


Usually spiced and sometimes seasoned with rice puffs or sesame seeds, these crabs are roasted whole and offered in bite-sized packages. Mild in flavor, they’re actually marketed more like a cracker than bite-sized seafood, and have a similar taste and consistency to a shrimp tail – and we mean the bit still in the shell, FYI. They can be found in most convenience stores and are a pretty common sight, making this a less-than-ideal destination for Sebastian from “The Little Mermaid” to take his summer holiday. 

#3: Curry Lemonade 


Ever drink lemonade and think to yourself, “if only this drink could taste more like Indian cuisine”? No? Then this drink is probably not for you. Curry Lemonade (or Kari Ramune) is about as far from the old summer standard as you can get. In fact, although the name “Ramune” is taken from the English word “lemonade,” the base is more of a 7-Up or Sprite-type soda. So while there is a bit of a lemony taste, yellow curry is the predominant flavor to hit your palate. Ramune, like Pepsi and Calbee chips, comes in a wide variety of flavors, many of which sound like a dare in a bottle, so enjoy!

#2: Genghis Khan Caramels 


Japanese snacks are known to be wild, but sometimes they can be downright intimidating. Or at least when they’re advertised like this. And no, these aren’t caramelized warlords, but rather grilled lamb caramels. These Genghis Khan Caramels, which feature a plate of mutton on the packaging, are a limited product found in Hokkaido, the northernmost prefecture of Japan. The name, Genghis Khan, is derived not only from the famous warlord and founder of the Mongol Empire, but also from a popular dish in that region. This localized confectionary may sound strange, but when in Rome—or Hokkaido—right? 

#1: Meat Flavored Ice Cream 


Why save it for dessert, when you can make it the whole meal? Not only can you find ice cream in delicious chocolate and vanilla varieties throughout Japan; you can also get this frozen treat in beef, chicken, or basashi—which isn’t just horse, but raw horse. If none of those flavor options whets your whistle, then you can also give octopus or pit viper a try. And while there’s always less intimidating and delicious ice cream flavors available, like matcha and black sesame, if you’re feeling especially brave and adventurous then they’ve certainly got you covered too.

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