Easy Vegetarian Niku Jaga Recipe with Konjac Noodles

Looking for a hearty and delicious meal featuring Japanese flavors? Then look no further than this Vegetarian Niku Jaga With Konjac Recipe.

Traditionally, niku jaga is a Japanese meat and potato stew made by simmering thinly sliced beef with potatoes, carrots, and onions in a savory-sweet dashi broth. But with this version of the recipe, we can make it vegan by replacing the meat with konjac, also known as “yam cake.”

Konjac is a low-calorie, high-fiber root vegetable that offers a satisfying texture and neutral flavor that absorbs any seasoning or sauce. The combination of konjac with potatoes, carrots, and fried tofu creates a flavorful vegetarian niku jaga that will satisfy your craving for Japanese stew.

With the help of soy sauce, sake, sugar, and dashi broth, this dish is not only easy to make in one pot but also has complexity in its umami-rich taste. I recommend adding shirataki noodles or other favorite vegetables to make it even more nutritious.

Whether you are looking for a vegan alternative to traditional nikujaga or simply want to try something new in the kitchen, this recipe is sure to become one of your go-to comfort meals. So why wait? Gather up the ingredients and let’s get cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegetarian Niku Jaga With Konjac
Vegetarian Niku Jaga With Konjac

Are you tired of eating the same old boring meals every week and looking for something new and exciting to try? Look no further than this Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac Recipe!

Niku Jaga is a traditional Japanese beef and potato stew, but this version is made completely meat-free. The addition of konjac noodles and fried tofu adds both texture and protein, making it a filling and satisfying meal.

But what really sets this recipe apart is the unique combination of savory-sweet flavors from the soy sauce, sugar, and dashi broth. It’s perfectly balanced to satisfy your taste buds without being too overpowering.

And not only is it delicious, but it’s also incredibly easy to make in just one pot. With only a handful of ingredients, you can have a wholesome and flavorful meal on the table in no time.

Plus, this recipe can easily be customized to fit your dietary preferences. If you’re vegan, simply swap out the dashi broth for a plant-based alternative. Want to add even more veggies? Throw in some onions, carrots, or any other vegetables that you have on hand.

So if you’re looking for a dish that’s both tasty and unique, give this Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac Recipe a try. It’s sure to satisfy both your hunger and your taste buds!

Ingredient List

 A hearty and flavorful dish that will leave you feeling satisfied and happy!
A hearty and flavorful dish that will leave you feeling satisfied and happy!

Here’s what you’ll need to make this vegetarian niku jaga with konjac recipe:

Vegetables and Tofu

  • 200g konjac noodles
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 carrot, sliced into thin rounds
  • 3 deep-fried tofu, sliced

Seasonings and Spices

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sake
  • Dash of salt

Dashi Broth

  • 2 cups of water

Optional: Add onions, carrots, or any other vegetables you like.

Most of the ingredients in this niku jaga recipe can be found at a Japanese or Asian grocery store. One of the essential ingredients is konjac noodles, which are also called ito konnyaku. They are highly absorbent and great for soaking up all the savory and sweet dashi broth. You can also find them in various shapes and colors at your nearby Asian market.

The Recipe How-To

 Warm up your taste buds with this comforting Japanese-style stew.
Warm up your taste buds with this comforting Japanese-style stew.

Now that you have gathered all the ingredients, let’s get to cooking our Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac Recipe! This dish only requires one pot, making it a perfect weekday dinner option.

Preparing The Ingredients

  1. Start by peeling and cutting 2 large potatoes into 1 inch cubes.
  2. Next, cut 1 carrot into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Open the package of konjac noodles, rinse under cold water, and set aside.
  4. Cut 200g of fried tofu into bite-sized pieces.
  5. Thinly slice the sliced beef pork, which is an excellent meat substitution for this vegetarian recipe.

The Cooking Process

  1. Heat a pot over medium-high heat and add in the sliced meat, stirring occasionally until fully cooked.
  2. Add in 2 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and 2 tablespoons of sake in the pot with the meat.
  3. Mix everything together and add in the cubed potatoes and carrots.
  4. Stir all the ingredients together over medium heat and let sit for about 10-15 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
  5. Once the vegetables are cooked, add in the prepared konjac noodles and deep-fried tofu and let them simmer for another five minutes.

Finishing Touches

Once everything has simmered on a low-medium heat, your Niku Jaga Konjac Recipe is ready to be served! The dish should now have a savory-sweet aroma delivered by dashi broth from the vegetables.

Serve hot and garnish with chopped green onions or sesame seeds for extra flavor.

Enjoy and happy cooking!

Substitutions and Variations

 The perfect vegetarian twist on the popular Japanese dish.
The perfect vegetarian twist on the popular Japanese dish.

If you’re looking to switch things up in your nikujaga stew, there are plenty of variations and substitutions that you can experiment with. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

– Protein: While this recipe calls for fried tofu, you can also swap this out for other vegetarian proteins like seitan or tempeh. Additionally, if you want to add some more traditional protein sources, you can substitute the tofu for slices of beef or pork.

– Vegetables: This recipe includes potatoes and carrots, but you can add in other vegetables such as onions, mushrooms, or green beans to change up the texture and flavors. For a lower-carb option, consider swapping the potatoes for yam cake or more konjac noodles.

– Broth: The savory-sweet flavor of dashi broth pairs perfectly with nikujaga stew, but vegetable broth or chicken broth would also work well. Experiment with different types of broth to find your favorite combination.

– Konjac Noodles: If you can’t find konjac noodles, you can substitute them with shirataki noodles or ito konnyaku.

– Sweeteners: This recipe calls for sugar, but if you prefer a less sweet taste, try using mirin instead. You could also use maple syrup or honey if you’re not strictly vegan.

Remember that these variations and substitutions are just suggestions – feel free to get creative with your own additions and swaps to make your perfect vegetarian niku jaga stew.

Serving and Pairing

 Konjac, a healthy and low-calorie substitute for meat, turns this traditional recipe into a vegan-friendly version.
Konjac, a healthy and low-calorie substitute for meat, turns this traditional recipe into a vegan-friendly version.

One of the best things about this vegetarian niku jaga with konjac recipe is that it is already a balanced and hearty meal on its own, complete with protein, carbs, and veggies. But if you want to take it a step further, here are some serving and pairing suggestions:

Firstly, I recommend serving this dish hot off the stove, straight into bowls or deep plates. Dig in with a spoon and fork and savor the savory and sweet dashi broth, the tender potato chunks, the carrots’ sweetness, the chewy konjac pieces, and the umami-packed fried tofu bits. It’s truly a comforting and satisfying meal.

Secondly, you could add a side dish or two to complement the niku jaga. Some simple steamed rice is always welcome to soak up the flavorful sauce. You could also make a quick cucumber salad by slicing some cucumbers thinly and tossing them with a sprinkle of salt and some rice vinegar. The coolness and acidity of the salad will cut through the richness of the stew.

Thirdly, if you want to pair this dish with a beverage, go for something light and refreshing. A cold glass of unsweetened green tea would be perfect – it’s both hydrating and palate-cleansing. Alternatively, if you’re in the mood for an alcoholic drink, try some sake or beer. The subtle sweetness of sake echoes that of the nikujaga sauce, while a light lager or pilsner would balance out the richness.

Lastly, time to invite your friends over for dinner! This vegetarian nikujaga with konjac is a crowd-pleaser that works for casual or formal occasions alike. Serve it family-style in a big pot or individual portions; either way, your guests will appreciate the flavors and textures of this unique Japanese stew. Don’t forget to show off your culinary skills by introducing them to some Japanese food culture trivia or language tips while you eat!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A bowl of this savory and nourishing stew will keep you warm on a chilly day.
A bowl of this savory and nourishing stew will keep you warm on a chilly day.

This Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac recipe is the perfect dish for meal prep or busy weeknight dinner. You can easily make this meal ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

To reheat the nikujaga, you can simply heat it up on the stove in a pot or microwave it until it’s hot all the way through. If you find the stew to be too thick after storing it in the fridge, add a bit of water to thin it out before reheating.

The konjac noodles have a unique texture that can become soft and mushy if overcooked or stored in liquid for too long. To maintain their texture, you can store them separately from the stew and mix them in before serving.

If you plan on making this dish ahead of time, keep in mind that the fried tofu may not be as crispy after sitting in the stew for a while. You can add freshly fried tofu right before serving to retain its crunchiness.

Overall, this recipe is great for meal prep and makes a delicious and comforting meal that can easily be reheated and enjoyed throughout the week.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Get ready for a mouthwatering experience with each bite of this delicious Niku Jaga.
Get ready for a mouthwatering experience with each bite of this delicious Niku Jaga.

To make the most out of your Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac Recipe, there are a few tips I recommend following. These simple steps can take your dish to the next level and enhance the flavors of your ingredients, creating a harmonious balance that will impress your guests or simply satisfy your own taste buds.

Firstly, when making the dish, ensure that you use good quality and fresh vegetables. The potatoes and carrots especially should be peeled and cut into thin slices of equal size for even cooking. If you don’t have a mandolin to slice them evenly, try to slice them as thinly as possible with a sharp knife.

Secondly, make sure to drain the shirataki noodles thoroughly before adding them to the pot. This will prevent excess water content from making the stew soupy and diluting the flavor.

Thirdly, when cooking the konjac, ensure that it is well rinsed and blanched in boiling water for at least 2-3 minutes before adding it to the stew. This will remove any bitterness and give it a firmer texture.

Fourthly, use a combination of soy sauce, sake, and sugar in equal amounts to create a savory sweet dashi broth that will enhance the flavors of all the ingredients in the dish. Be sure not to add too much soy sauce as it can overpower all other flavors.

Fifthly, let the stew simmer for at least an hour to give all the ingredients enough time to absorb each other’s flavors. This will allow for a more cohesive and flavorful dish.

Lastly, if you prefer a thicker soup consistency, try mashing some of the potatoes with a fork towards the end of cooking or add some cornstarch slurry. For an added umami flavor boost, sprinkle some black pepper or sesame seeds on top before serving.

By following these simple tips, you can elevate your Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac recipe from good to great! Happy cooking!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Vegetarian Niku Jaga with Konjac recipe is a perfect alternative to the traditional Japanese meat and potato stew. It is a delicious and savory sweet dish that is easy to prepare in just one pot. With this recipe, you can enjoy the flavorful taste of niku jaga without any meat.

I hope you enjoyed reading through the recipe article and found everything you need to create your own vegetarian niku jaga konjac dish at home. Experiment with the ingredients and feel free to make substitutions or variations as per your taste.

This recipe is perfect for family dinners, meal prep, or even potluck gatherings. You can store and reheat it without losing its taste, which makes it ideal for busy days when you don’t have much time to cook.

Overall, this vegetarian niku jaga with konjac recipe is not only delicious but also healthy as it contains all-natural plant-based ingredients. It’s an ideal way to introduce more greens into your diet while still enjoying a hearty meal.

So, what are you waiting for? Head to the kitchen, gather the ingredients from the list above, and start cooking! You won’t regret trying out this flavorful and tasty Vegetable Niku Jaga with Konjac recipe. One Cookbook is sure that you’ll love every bite of it!

Vegetarian Niku Jaga With Konjac

Vegetarian Niku Jaga With Konjac Recipe

I got this recipe off a Japanese Cooking Show called Dosanko Cooking, which is the longest running cooking show in Asia and has won a Guinness Record.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Japanese
Calories 326.1 kcal


  • 200 g konjac
  • 2 large potatoes
  • 1 carrot
  • 200 g deep fried tofu
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sake
  • 1/2 cup water


  • Rub konjac in salt to soften and rinse it. Cut into cubes.
  • Dip tofu in hot water to get rid of excess oil. Cut into cubes also.
  • Cut carrots into chunks and potatoes into quarters.
  • Dump all ingredients, including seasoning and water into rice cooker and cook under "rice" setting.
  • Mine didn’t stop cooking, so I turned it off after the potatoes and carrots were very soft and tender, about 30 minutes.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 306gCalories: 326.1kcalCarbohydrates: 46.4gProtein: 13.9gFat: 10.3gSaturated Fat: 1.5gSodium: 784.4mgFiber: 6.5gSugar: 10g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Asian, Beans, Egg-free, Free Of…, Japanese, Lactose-free, One-Dish Meal, Potato, Small Appliance, Soy/Tofu, Vegetable
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