Vegan Japanese Curry (easy and gluten free friendly)

Once upon a time, I was obsessed with Indian curry. Shortly after, I fell head-over-heels with Thai curry and enjoyed both heartily whenever and wherever I could. Instantly, curry became my favorite meal of all-time and I seized to try all types of renditions of this lovely dish. The first time I ever tried Japanese curry was in Little Tokyo, and the second time was actually in Tokyo! Ever since, I’ve fallen in love with it.

Because of this quarantine, my mother and I have been experimenting much more broadly with all kinds of recipes, specifically Japanese and Korean dishes. This Japanese curry was a MASSIVE hit amongst our family, but also friends we’ve brought over pre-lockdown. Hearty, inexpensive, fantastic for meal prep, and customizable, you cannot do any wrong! It can be served with rice, over greens, with steamed vegetables, or sauteed eggplant like how I have in the pictures!

Make sure there is NO honey nor milk in the curry mix to ensure it is vegan. A lot of curry mixes out there contain them! Additionally, I have included gluten free options as curry mixes contain wheat. Feel free to substitute the vegetables listed for any others that you’d wish, such as cauliflower, Russet potatoes, broccoli, eggplant, and more!

RECIPE (serves 10-12)

  • 1 box of vegan-friendly S&B Golden Curry sauce mix; for a gluten free version, use a Japanese curry spice mix and pair with corn starch or a gluten free and vegan roux
  • 28 ounces of extra firm tofu or 14 ounces of Beyond Meat sausage, cubed or sliced
  • 2-2 1/2 lbs kabocha squash, de-seeded and chopped (peeled is optional)
  • 2-2 12 lbs Japanese sweet potato, chopped (peeled is optional)
  • 2 orange bell peppers, chopped and de-seeded
  • 1 1/2 lb mushrooms
  • 1 lb carrots, sliced
  • 1 large white onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 6 cups of water
  • Green onions to garnish
  • Oil to grease the pan

PROCEDURE

  1. Grease a large saute pan or large pot and set on medium heat.
  2. Saute onions, garlic, and protein of choice, except if using tofu until translucent and the protein is fully cooked.
  3. Integrate the mushrooms, bell peppers, and carrots until soft.
  4. Pour in the water and incorporate the chopped Japanese sweet potatoes and kabocha.
  5. Simmer until the starches are fully cooked, depending on how small or large the pieces of starchy vegetables are.
  6. Break the curry mix into rectangular or square shapes and fully mix into the water, vegetables, and protein until the color, thickness, and consistency are uniform and the curry mix has melted completely.
  7. If integrating tofu, do so at this step.
  8. Simmer until thick and the curry sauce is no longer translucent.
  9. Serve warm with brown rice or vegetables or store in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.

Have you ever tried Japanese curry? Isn’t it the best?


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