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Types of Yakitori Explained – 11 Most Popular

Trust us when saying that you never tasted chicken properly until you tried Yakitori, which is a type of a traditional Japanese grilled chicken recipe, and this recipe is usually done by using a portable charcoal grill for preparation. It consists of step by step procedures which sometimes call for special techniques to be implemented.

There are many ways to prepare Yakitori which usually constitutes using different parts of a chicken which then is usually skewed with sticks, finally, the seasoning which can be salty or sweet and salty will determine the final result. There are a lot of options to consider with divergent outcomes but we wanted to showcase you with a couple of them. Also, we created infographic of types of Yakitori at the bottom of this article. Check it out!


Sunagimo is a great place to start, its best seasoned with salt due to its peculiar strong base because of the dry cut. The Sunagimo roughly translated means sand liver but it’s actually the stomach of the chicken where food gets processed that is being cooked due to the fact that chickens have no teeth, once cooked simple additions like peppers and onions yield the best results, the recipe is pretty simple and you can do it at home, simply place the Sunagimo into a fry add some Yuzugosho(sesame oil) with peppers and salt , after that simply transfer the dish to a pan and fry. The variations of spicing and adding flavor after are plenty and remember if you don’t feel like cooking it yourself head to any Japanese restaurant and try it for yourself.



Tsukune is no more than chicken meatballs and some minced meat mixed with all sorts of ingredients combined. Simple yet incredibly tasty! It’s a great appetizer and can be baked or cooked but the best way is to do it is yakitori style where sweet soy sauce is added which people often mistake for teriyaki sauce. Before the meat is grinded and shaped into a ball some thickeners are added often times these include crumbs, eggs, and crushed yam, some fine vegetables are also added to the mix including occasionally welsh onions and even a chopped cartilage which give that excellent crunchy sensation.



For all you fried chickens lovers out there Tebasaki Is certainly something to inspire too. The spicy taste goes great with Japanese red wine or even bear. A Tebasaki professional usually crunches the cartilage and then eats the wings. Nowadays they are not limited to adults featuring a vast array of snacks and ice cream which resemble Tebasaki flavoring. You can even make them at home and they are at their best when they are fresh, however, it’s a little bit hard to cut the parts which look like miniature drumsticks requiring you to cut the part where the bone is mellow and then simply cut through.

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Nothing brings more the fine taste of chicken skin than the Yakitori Kawa, It belongs both on the sweat and salty spectrum because the chicken skin and sometimes neck is fried using salty and sweat tar sauces, some restaurants even serve the Kawa with the chicken neck making it’s delicacy even more appealing, however due to the amount of collagens and rich fats used in its preparation your best course of action would be to limit yourself to only one per week as it’s crispy texture and fine buoyant taste may prove to be a bigger bite than they can’t handle too much greasy food.



Mune is the most common type of yakitori around, In case you wondered, its grilled chicken breast and it’s good for you. It comes with a variety of additions but if you are a true gourmet connoisseur we suggest adding grated wasabi which will spice up the Sasami quite nicely, it goes great also with plum sauce and some shiso leaves. There are several recipes which include Mune or sometimes called Sasami when the tenderloin is cut out of the breast and the best thing about it you can make it yourself, you can haggle for mune and get them at a good price at your local market.


6.Buta bara

Did you know that the Yakitori skewed meat selections are not limited to only meat from chickens but from pork too? Introducing the Buta bara which comes from the belly of pork. These pork ribs come thinly sliced then are barbequed to perfection before a vast array of seasonings can be applied, salt being the usual one which doesn’t deter its rich taste and also freshly squeezed lemon will yield great results. However, even though the Buta bara is the most common Yakitori made from Pork meat it’s not always included in the menu but it does have its place solidified in the Fukuoka area.



Something a bit different is the Nankotsu Yakitori which is a very common item among Yakitori Bars. The cartilage of the chicken is usually extracted from the knee or the breast from a chicken and sometimes even the throat or the esophageal which comes rich in collagen the most abundant protein in our system, eating a lot of Nankotsu is great for the joints and skin. Although crunchy it doesn’t come with a particularly strong flavor so if you are new to Yakitori it’s a great start, you can make your way up to other Yakitori as well.



Negima is also one of the most popular type of yakitori. Chicken thigh alternately threaded onto a skewer with green onion or scallion. Truth be told, Negi means grean onion and ma is the abbreviation of maguro(tuna). However, people substitute chicken for tuna because it is cheap, and finally it becomes common yakitori staple. It tastes really refreshing due to green onion so better as palate-cleansing side dish.



Hatsu is chicken heart also called kokoro, is both crunchy and soft. It is actually luxurious skewer because only one heart can be taken from one chicken and a few chickens are required for a skewer. It tastes bland so basically eaten with thick sauce or rough salt. Because of law fat and calories, it is popular for a diet.



Bonjiri is around tale and for more precisely, a very few part of chicken at coccyx covered with mass of fat. It is juicy and melts in a mouth so a connoisseur of yakitori really like this skewer. Probably, chain yakitori restaurant doesn’t have it so go to middle or high rank yakitori restaurant if you wanna try this one.



Seseri is also luxurious skewer in addition to Hatsu because it can be removed from a neck a little. Acutually, it is said that seseri is the best part for cooking yakitori because it is chewy and the more you chew, the flavor bursts in a mouth. It taste firm-textured because it is a part chicken always use muscles to move.


If you happen to be interested in a quick snack or maybe you are planning a full dinner at a Japanese restaurant, you can never go wrong with the Japanese Yakitori. There are more than 19 types of different Yakitori recipes to consider from which we only named a few. Keep in mind that Japan has plenty to offer when it comes to delicious food on a stick.