Where can I look up calorie information for typical Japanese foods?
April 10, 2009 10:24 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a website or perhaps a printed book that gives typical nutritional values for a large variety of Japanese foods.

I'm counting calories, and logging everything I eat. For most typical American foods and restaurants, it's pretty easy to get a rough estimate of the nutritional value of what I eat. If I eat out, most major restaurant chain provide nutritional info on their websites. And if not, or I'm eating at home, places like The Daily Plate and Calorie King can be used to find similar foods and make a reasonable estimate.

But, when I eat Japanese foods, I'm totally lost. The above sources might be useful for foods well-known in America, like "california roll" or "shrimp tempura". But what about okonomiyaki? unagi? katsu curry? chanpuru? natto? I'm lost. Does anyone know where nutritional information for these sorts of foods might be obtained? A website is preferable, but if there's some sort of guidebook or something I could buy that'd be helpful too.

I read Japanese at perhaps a 5th-grade level and I have dictionary tools to help me out, so I don't mind using a Japanese website if you know of one.
posted by Vorteks to Food & Drink (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I use the USDA's database extensively, though it's cumbersome and focused more on whole food items. It has an entry for natto, but not for your other dishes. One thing may be that they seem to be prepared of many many ingredients.

I would recommend that if you're making it at home you measure each ingredient (by weight tends to be more accurate) and then calculate total calories per dish/serving. You can't really expect any website or guidebook to list accurate calorie counts for these kind of dishes. One chef may add more meat, or more vegetables, or down it in a sauce while another person leaves a sauce on the side.
posted by Science! at 10:34 AM on April 10, 2009

Response by poster: @Science!

Yeah, I know about the USDA's database. I don't prepare the foods at home, so I don't really know what's in them. I'm mostly concerned about restaurant food, and food I eat at other people's homes.
posted by Vorteks at 10:40 AM on April 10, 2009

Best answer: 目で見て楽しいカロリー図鑑

For restaurants, places like skylark gusto have the calories on the menu.
posted by betweenthebars at 2:14 PM on April 10, 2009

This is what you want. Just click the checkbox and it will add up everything in the box to the left.
posted by armage at 5:05 PM on April 10, 2009

Maki of justhungry prepares a lot of traditional Japanese dishes and posts calorie counts for many of her recipes - she could probably direct you towards good online resources for Japanese foods. You can ask her questions here.
posted by insectosaurus at 3:48 PM on April 12, 2009

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