What is Japanese Curry?

Japanese curry is, without a doubt, a favourite national dish. Since curry paste and curry powder were first introduced to Japan by the British during the Meiji era (1868-1912), the Japanese have adapted and developed their curry to make it the dish it is today; something strikingly different from the Indian curries with which those of us in the UK are more familiar. Japanese curry is milder and sweeter than most Indian curries, and it is commonly made at home by stewing together chunks of meat and vegetables before adding blocks of Japanese curry roux, a mixture of curry powder, flour, oil, and spices that dissolves easily in water to make a curry sauce. This basic curry dish is called curry rice, and it is a delicious and filling meal frequently enjoyed all over the country.

Japanese cuisine also enjoys a variety of other Japanese curries and curry-flavoured foods, including katsu curry, curry udon, curry pan, and curry korokke. Japanese curry sauce is a versatile ingredient and can be used in just about any savoury dish to make a curry flavoured version.

Click through the other tabs to learn more about Japanese curry. Alternatively, if you are on the market for curry making ingredients and equipment, including golden curry roux, curry kits, and instant vegetable curries, be sure to take a look at japancentre.com’s great range of curry items.

Buy Japanese curry >

How to Make Katsu Curry

This yasai katsu curry sauce recipe combines a yasai (vegetable) curry sauce with a crispy pan-fried chicken katsu cutlet. It’s a Japanese household favourite and is very easy to make. With the correct Japanese ingredients; including plenty of easy-to-use curry roux, you will be showing others how to make katsu curry in no time.

Japanese Katsu Curry Recipe


4 Blocks Japanese Curry Roux
80g Panko Bread Crumbs
4 Tbsp Plain Flour
4 Chicken Breasts
1 Egg, Whisked.
1 Large Onion
1 Large Potato
1 Carrot
Vegetable Oil, for Deep-Frying
Cooked Rice, for Serving


1. Cut onion, potato and carrot into small chunks and add to a large saucepan half filled with water.

2. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes, or until vegetables soften. Add curry roux and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Stir until thick and smooth.

3. As curry sauce cooks, season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Cover with flour, then egg, followed by panko breadcrumbs.

4. Heat up oil in a frying pan and carefully add cutlets. Cook for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown.

5. Slice cooked katsu into strips and lay over a bed of rice. Add curry sauce on top.

Popular Curry Food

As well as Japanese katsu curry, there are a number of other favourite Japanese foods that can be made with curry roux or curry sauce. Read about some of the most popular curry foods below.

Curry Udon

Curry udon is thick, chewy udon noodles served in a curry flavoured soup with assorted toppings. To make it, curry sauce is mixed with noodle soup that has been flavoured with tsuyu soup base. Udon noodles are then added, along with suitable toppings such as hard boiled eggs and chopped spring onions. Curry udon is best served for lunch or dinner on cold days.

Buy curry udon >

Curry Pan

Curry pan (with ‘pan’ pronounced as though it rhymes with ‘run’ in Southern British dialects) is a soft bread bun filled with curry sauce, covered in panko breadcrumbs, and deep fried. They are perfect for enjoying as part of a larger lunch, or maybe for morning or afternoon tea. There are a number of different ways to make curry pan, but the basic steps are as follows:

1. Make a bread dough, separate into bun-sized portions, and roll out.
2. Add dollops of thickened curry sauce to the middle of each portion and wrap up in the rest of the dough to make a filled bun.
3. Cover each bun in flour, then whisked raw egg, then panko breadcrumbs.
4. Deep fry until golden brown in colour.

Buy curry pan >

Curry Korokke

Curry korokke are patties made out of a mashed mixture of minced meat (normally pork or beef), potatoes, onion and curry sauce. These patties are then covered in panko breadcrumbs and deep-fried until golden brown. Like other types of korokke, curry korokke can be enjoyed in a number of ways. They can be served for dinner with brown sauce and salad. They can be enjoyed as part of a bento lunch box. They can even be used as a sandwich filling.

Recipe Ideas