Japanese Kombu

Kombu is an essential ingredient for making dashi, and adding umami to Japanese cuisine. It is a healthy and tasty ingredient with rich dietary fibers and minerals.

Harvesting Kombu

Kombu is harvested along the coastline of Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido. This region’s waters are where warm and cold currents mingle, and are ideal for growing nutrient-rich Kombu.

After harvesting, Kombu is dried in the sun until it is ready for market. The process of farming Kombu is unique as there are no by-products as a result of the harvest and drying process.

There are four major types of Kombu: Rishiri Kombu, Ma Kombu, Hidaka Kombu, and Rausu Kombu. These varieties differ by region and how they’re used in recipes.

Kombu contains glutamic acid, a kind of amino acid that contributes to the taste of umami. A chef can increase the taste of umami in a dish with Kombu by combining it with inosine acid, which is found in dried bonitos.

Cooking Japanese Kombu

There are many ways to cook with Kombu. Use the seaweed to make Dashi broth, use it in simmered dishes, or wrap raw fish with it to add extra flavor.

There are also processed Kombu products like Shio Kombu, and thinly-shredded Kombu that can be used as garnishes or mixed into rice.


Shio Kombu


Kombu Rolls


Video Series: Innovative and traditonal Cooking of Japanese Kombu 

Award-winning chefs demonstrate new ways to prepare premium Japanese ingredients:

Chef Mike Bagale and Hisanori Yamamoto

Owner of Super Food Concept / Culinary Director of Icca

Chef Hirohisa Hayashi

Owner & Chef of Hirohisa and Sushi Ikumi

Chef Nobu Yamazaki and Masaya Kitayama

Owner & Chef / Executive Chef of Sushi Taro

How To Make Umami Dashi

Mizu Dashi

Kombu Dashi

Ichiban Dashi

Kombu Artisan: Hand Shredding

Interested in high-quality Japanese Kombu?

Interested in high quality Japanese Kombu?