8 Best Okonomiyaki Toppings and Fillings
Okonomiyaki, famously known as the Japanese Pizza, is one of the most versatile meals you can whip up for yourself.
More than half of the base ingredients can be used with alternatives, and the fillings and toppings are all up to you!
With so many choices, it’s easy to get confused about which one to choose. So, today we’ve listed the top Okonomiyaki toppings and fillings that will tantalize your taste buds and fulfill your foodie soul.
We have you covered with our favorite toppings and fillings to make your Okonomiyaki from meat lovers to all vegetarian folks. So, let’s dive in!
In this post we'll cover:
Best 8 Okonomiyaki Toppings and Fillings You Need To Try
While you can put any and everything on top of your Okonomiyaki, certain variations are just superior. After countless taste tests and plenty of topping combos, here are our top filling and topping combinations you need to try.
The first is katsuobushi because these shaved bonito flakes must be on there for even hopes of getting it traditional.
There’s so thin and airy that you hardly taste them individually, but they do give a lot of umami to your okonomiyaki pancake.
Mix it up with some shrimp
Shrimp goes well with anything, and that’s a fact. In fact, shrimp is one of the most popular toppings for this cabbage pancake, but some combos taste even better.
Some of our top Okonomiyaki combos were actually based around combining shrimp with other meats. These shrimp variations include:
- Only Shrimp: Just add shrimp on (or in) your okonomiyaki. The tender meat mixed with the crunchy cabbage will be a delight to devour.
- Shrimp and Pork: Whether you have some minced pork or are looking to incorporate a crispy bacon strip, the best way to do it is with some shrimp to complement it. The soft meat of the shrimp paired with the chewy chopped pork tastes absolutely heavenly.
- A Seafood Fiesta: Alongside shrimp, you can also add meats of other seafood. From prawns to crabs to calamari, if you’re feeling fancy, this cabbage treat is superb when served with some seafood.
Eggs on Top
Eggs are the breakfast essential, and pairing them up with anything enhances the flavor immediately. So, eggs paired with Okonomiyaki is one of the most well-balanced combos to have.
You can combine eggs in endless varieties with the pancake. You could place a sunny side up on top of the Okonomiyaki and watch the golden yolk ooze out and coat each bite.
You can also whip up your favorite omelet recipe and cook it onto the pancake. Mix it up with your Okonomiyaki and some mayo and soy sauce to get the perfect creamy blend.
You can also add crunch and some salty flavor to the Okonomiyaki by adding noodles on top. While have the occasional stir-fry with it can be a treat in itself, try frying up some of the noodles.
This will cook them thoroughly and add a beautiful crunchy texture that will complement the cabbage’s mild crunch.
Aonori, also known as seaweed powder, is a common ingredient in okonomiyaki. If you’ve ever had okonomiyaki at a restaurant, you’ve probably noticed the green powder sprinkled on top.
While it may look like a garnish, aonori plays an important role in the dish, adding flavor and texture.
If you want to make okonomiyaki at home, you can find aonori powder at most Asian markets. When sprinkling it on the pancakes, be generous – aonori adds a lovely umami flavor that makes the dish sing.
Pickled ginger is a vital ingredient to make the other flavors come out even more. But what if you don’t have any pickled ginger on hand? No worries – here’s how to use regular ginger to create a delicious and pungent condiment that will take your okonomiyaki to the next level.
Simply peel and thinly slice a piece of fresh ginger, then soak it in vinegar for about an hour. The vinegar will pickle the ginger and give it that signature tangy flavor. You can then use this ginger as you would pickled ginger – add it to your okonomiyaki batter, or use it as a topping.
If you haven’t tried tenkasu on your okonomiyaki before, you’re missing out! Tenkasu are crispy fried bits of batter that add a delicious crunch to the savory Japanese pancake.
Some Essential Sauces
While the toppings themselves can add intense flavor, sauces accentuate and bring out the extra oomph in the Okonomiyaki. Here we have our top 3 favorite sauces that anyone would love at any time, plus I even have an entire article written about okonomiyaki sauces right here.
- Mayo: Mayonnaise (kewpie mayo vs regular American though!) is the original Okonomiyaki sauce that binds all the flavors together with its creamy texture and tangy, salty taste. You can add seasonings and herbs of your choice to make the mayo sauce according to your likes and enjoy the sweet tartness with this sauce.
- Soy Sauce: If mayo is too heavy for you, soy sauce is a great alternative. The sauce brings out a tangy and mildly spicy flavor, which tantalizes your taste buds perfectly. It holistically combines the mellow flavors in your Okonomiyaki to make the perfect treat.
- Cheese Sauce: Staying loyal to the Japanese Pizza brand, cheese sauce is a fantastic topping to give you that pizza taste. Besides, who doesn’t love some good old cheese on everything?
We hope that with these toppings and fillings, you get to make the perfect Okonomiyaki for yourself. Happy cooking!
Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.