Though food and snack options for a person going gluten-free may be limited in Japan, there are still some options available to you, provided you make an effort to find them and finally eat it! However, irrespective of the food stalls or 7-11 stores that you’ll visit in Japan, make sure you check the ingredient checklist or at least take the help of a knowledgeable local in finding out whether the food option you’ve chosen or about to choose, contain gluten or not.
Here is a brief list of top 5 incredible gluten-free snack and food options available to you while traveling to Japan:
1] Sea creatures, Sashimi, and Sushi
Having a gluten free card with you wherever you’re traveling in Japan helps a lot, especially when you’re visiting markets and food stalls. If you love gorging on sea creatures then Japan does have quite a few gluten-free sea foods as an option for you.
For example, when you’re ordering a Donburi bowl in Japan, make sure you show your gluten free card to the waiter so that he doesn’t use soy sauce on top of your rice as a tastemaker before placing the fish on it. A Donburi bowl sans any soy sauce is a very good gluten-free food option for you in this country. Sashimi is another incredible food that can be a healthy option for you. If possible, avoid unagi as it can be marinated using soy-blend. Sushi is another brilliant option for you, assuming that malt is not used alongside the rice vinegar.
2] Green tea
You shouldn’t find it really tough to find green tea in Japan. If you’re comfortable doing your own tea, then you can always find the ready-to-use green tea bags across 7-11 stores and others and try them out. However, there are ample food stalls and hotels across the length and breadth of Japan that do serve this kind of tea. However, as a word of caution, stay away from Mugicha tea or barley tea.
3] Granola bars and Roaster chestnuts
Having chestnuts as they’re may not be delicious to many, therefore, when you’re in Japan, consider having them right after they’re grilled. Yes, they’ll be rich in calories. However, they’re gluten free. Similar is the case with Soyjoy granola bars. They may not necessarily be the most delicious food out there in Japan, but they can help your cause, especially when you want to stay gluten free.
4] Daifuku or Mochi
For those traveling to Japan for the first time, Mochi or Daifuku can come to their rescue as they’re largely made of arrowroot flour or rice flour dusted in rice flour. Not only are these foods delicious to eat, they’re gluten free as well. However, make sure you purchase them only from a supplier that specializes in Daifuku. Local convenience stores in Japan may include starch syrup in these foods that contain gluten.
5] Hard-boiled eggs
The humble hard-boiled eggs can come to your rescue no matter where you’re in Japan. In most places in Japan, they come in packages of one or two – boiled perfectly and pre-salted inside the shell.