Top 10 Street Foods You Must Try In Shibuya, Japan - Updated 2024

street food in shibuya
| 6 min read

Shibuya is widely famous for the exciting blend of businesspeople strutting up and down the streets and the chic colourful fashion and culture that are splashed all around. Yet the city still holds many secrets waiting for you to explore. To name a few, there’s the famous crossing area and the statue of the world’s most loyal pup, Hachiko. Then as you keep strolling along, you will soon realise that the local street food is something that you can’t simply walk past. You might not be able to pronounce the names correctly—or not know what they are made of—but the range of food choices available and how they are presented will surely make you pause. Keep reading to find out about the top street foods you must try in Shibuya, Japan—all famous for their tastiness!

1. Nikuman (steamed bun)

Fluffy comfort food for winter

You might be already familiar with this particular food, with its appearance that looks very much like a pao at dim sum places. Nikuman is the Japanese name for this Chinese-style steamed bun. It’s usually filled with pork and a variety of spices to give a distinct taste. This street food is best enjoyed during wintertime, with its juicy taste, fluffy feel, and comforting warmth.

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2. Tomorokoshi (grilled corn on the cob)

Light and healthy snack on the go
Source: Pxhere

If you’re looking for a light and healthy street food to snack on, then tomorokoshi is the answer. It is charcoal-grilled corn on the cob covered with soy sauce, butter, and mirin. Mirin is a sweet Japanese rice wine that gives a distinctive taste to almost all Japanese food. You can find tomorokoshi at street-food stalls almost anywhere in Japan.

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3. Takoyaki (octopus spheres) (from USD 125.0)

Iconic grilled octopus balls
Source: Pixabay

Takoyaki is probably one of the most familiar Japanese snacks, especially if you’re an otaku—someone who’s very passionate about manga (Japanese comics) and anime (Japanese animation). Takoyaki’s tasty flavour is one thing to enjoy, and watching the sellers flaunt their talent in making takoyaki is another experience. The dough is cooked in special iron pans, and the vendor will turn and roll the batter into the perfect spheres with impressive technique and speed.

byFood Experience

1) Have takoyaki and other Japanese food in Shibuya

This four-hour food tour includes a taste of the Takoyaki, a street food originating from Osaka, but also includes so much more. What better way to start a Japanese food tour than with sushi? You’ll go to a relatively quiet sushi restaurant before heading to an izakaya (pub) offering food and drinks such as karaage (fried chicken) and grill-it-yourself Wagyu beef, as well as takoyaki.

Have fun at a gaming centre playing crazy arcade games and enjoy the bustling and vibrant atmosphere all around you. You’ll end the tour with a sumptuous local dessert at a traditional Japanese wagashi sweets shop.

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Shibuya Food Tour With An Expert Guide

Duration: 4hours

19 reviews

4. Dango (sweet treats)

Mitarashi dango 001
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ocdp used under CC0

At first glance (and perhaps, taste), dango can be easily mistaken as mochi for non-Japanese people. Both dango and mochi are round sweet snacks and might pass as twins, but they require different methods for making. Dango is prepared by adding water to glutenous rice flour (while a special kind of glutenous rice called mochigome is used to make mochi), and the mixture is later steamed and pounded until soft and stretchy. There are many varieties of dango, along with its toppings, and if you’re feeling adventurous on your Japan holiday, you can try to hunt for all kinds. This sweet treat is available at any wagashiya (Japanese sweet store) or convenience store.

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5. Okonomiyaki (Japanese-style pancake)

Okonomiyaki in Osaka
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user ZhengZhou used under CC BY-SA 4.0

This popular street food is probably most recognisable by the abundance of salmon flakes. As a savoury pancake, okonomiyaki is an ultimate favourite—some Japanese restaurants will even give you the option to prepare your own version. Although this dish is usually associated with the Kansai region, the most popular styles of okonomiyaki actually originated from Osaka and Hiroshima. The traditional and more familiar version that you already know is from Osaka. The Hiroshima style usually adds yakisoba noodles and more cabbage, and the garnish is layered on top of the pancake.

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6. Kobe beef skewers (from USD 155.0)

Be prepared for ultimate foodie experience
Source: Pexels

Kobe beef is highly popular due to the stories that come with it—known as one of the best beef out there, with its distinct natural marbling and taste. The juiciness and deliciousness of the meat are said to be the results of the cows’ treatment—it is said that they are massaged every day and given Japanese beer to drink. The reputation of Kobe beef also comes with a hefty price tag. Some might say it’s an overpriced gastronomic experience, but it doesn’t stop tourists from trying out Kobe beef skewers and having a few minutes in foodie heaven.

byFood Experience

1) Explore underground food halls in Shibuya

Kobe beef skewers are also on the menu on this three-hour tour of Shibuya’s most scrumptious food offerings. An English-speaking tour guide will take you on a culinary adventure through the district’s vibrant culture and fashion while finding secret food spots to experience Shibuya like a local.

Go underground, literally, to find some of the best spots at ‘depachika’ (departmental store) food basements. You’ll stop by five different locations to enjoy Kobe beef skewers, Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki, Kare pan, different sushi varieties, and a traditional Japanese dessert.

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Street Food Hunt in Shibuya

Duration: 3hours

4 reviews

7. Taiyaki (fish-shaped snack)

Taiyaki baking by ope in Tokyo
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user ope used under CC BY 2.0

If you’re visiting Japan in winter, you might come across this sweet snack more often, since taiyaki is best served warm to give comfort in cold weather. The adorable fish shape is well-known and eye-catching, so it’s impossible to miss. Note that every taiyaki stand has its own version. For instance, one place in Shibuya would serve taiyaki in a cup with vanilla ice cream, and the fish looks like it’s diving into the ice cream.

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8. Yakitori (chicken skewers)

Have it on the go or dine-in

Another must-try street food during your culinary visit to Japan is yakitori. It is chicken meat on a bamboo or steel skewer and traditionally grilled on charcoal. This snack is usually sold at a yakitori-ya or street-food stalls called yatai, and it is often enjoyed straight off the skewer while having a nice walk. Afterwards, you can stop by the nearest convenience store for a cold beer to wash it down.

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9. Kakigori (icy treat)

Macha kakigori snow cone
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user [Unknown] used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Kakigori is actually a dessert that’s well-known around the globe, only by different names. Each country seems to have its own version and name for this shaved ice sweetness—which is most popular during summer, especially at festivals. There is a variety of topping syrups that you can choose to sweeten your icy dessert, along with condensed milk to enhance the flavour. A well-recognised variation of kakigori is called shirokuma, which when translated means “white/polar bear.” Some stories say that the name comes from the shape this dessert has when seen from above.

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10. Yakisoba (fried noodles) (from USD 155.0)

A familiar food for an exciting adventure

Originating from China, this variety of fried noodles found its fame in Japan, where it’s served with a mix of meat and vegetables. The kind of noodle used is the unique signature of this dish. You can choose between ramen noodles (wheat-based) or soba noodles (buckwheat-based). Either way, you’ll have delightful yakisoba. There are two ways to serve this dish. The conventional way is to place the fried noodles and condiments on a plate. The other is in a sandwich form, where yakisoba is served in a special bun along with the garnishes.

byFood Experience

1) Drink in Shibuya and enjoy ramen from a 60-year-old shop

Speaking of noodles, what can be more authentic than ramen from a 60-year-old ramen shop? But first, this four-hour tour will take you to some of Shibuya’s most vibrant streets and visit spots that have existed since the Showa era. Have a drink at a Tachinomi, a Japanese standing bar, and mingle with locals and tourists alike. The tour includes a supply of sake, beer, and three other beverages for you to enjoy.

After a few drinks, you’ll appreciate delicious and hearty authentic ramen at the vintage eatery. Afterwards, you’ll even get treated to a dessert!

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Retro Shibuya Food Tour

Duration: 3hours

4 reviews

Gotta try them all in the streets of Japan

One of the interesting highlights in Japan is its cuisine, and that includes street food—and Shibuya is the perfect place to try them. We have curated the most popular street food in Shibuya for you. Now it’s your turn to plan your Japan holiday!

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Elmira, also known as Elmo, is a dedicated travel writer who lives by the belief that visiting at least one new place each year broadens knowledge and enriches the heart. Her passion for exploring...Read more

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