Onomatopoeia of foods in Japanese 1

Do you know Onomatopoeia? This means  sound effects often used in manga, like “bang” ,”boon”.

We use onomatopoeia in ordinary conversation.

For example, crunchy is often expressed by Japanese as “Kari kari”,”Pori pori “,”Bori bori”,and”Gari gari”. We use different expressions depending foods.

I can not introduce all of them, because, there are approx. 4500 expression in Japanese!

So, I introduce 10 onomatopoeia of foods that Japanese uses well.

1. Crispy, Crunchy


Saku saku,Zaku zaku,Pari pari, Pori pori

We often express the texture of potato chips, pie dough,toast, or baguettes.

Kari kari, Kori kori

The overseas people often say “Crispy bacon”, but Japanese bacon usually cooks rare, so we don’t use this expression to bacon.

When we usually express eating a hard candy ,pizza thin crust, or Granola.

Gari gari, Shari shari

When we eat ice cubes or ice pops well.  But when eat a shaved ice, we often say   “Shari shari”.

There is a popular ice pop firm in Japan, the name of “GariGari-kun”.(“kun” is one of a suffix to a guy’s name)” 

We love this ice pop very much! Because, this ice cream company launches unique ice pops every year. I thought the corn potage taste was mad,though…

Just try it out😉

Bari bari,Pori pori

The sound of eating  cucumbers or hard snacks like cookies.

Shaki shaki

This expression is used only fresh leaves.

2. Thick,Mushy


Doro doro

This expression is used a porridge, chyme or thick soup.

3. Fluffy


Fuwa fuwa, Mofu mofu, Fukkura,Fuka fuka

When we express fluffy things like a cotton candy. Japanese women like this texture very much, especially.

4. Chewy, Al dente

Mochi mochi, Mocchiri

Japanese people most like this chewy texture.

I have ever heard that Japanese are apt to like foods kind a “moist” and “chewy”, it’s related to Japanese climate.

Shiko shiko

Carbohydrates such as noodle,rice (and bread even! )have this tendency. “Al dente” is used in pasta only, not Japanese foods.

5. Fizz

Shuwa shuwa

This is used bubbles such as beer and soda water.

6. Piping hot

Atsu atsu, Hoka hoka, Hokka hokka

This words are often used very hot foods and drinks, or just freshly cooked,

There are a fast deli bento stores called “Hokka hokka Tei” in Japan. This means that you can get just freshly cooked bento! Actually they begin to cook after order.

7. Sticky, Gooey,Gummy,Viscous


Neba neba, Beta beta, Bettori, Beto beto, Becha becha, neto neto

This does not mean “Never never”.This means sticky foods. Texture like brownie,okra, or toffee pudding also.

Do not give up eating!😁

8. Slimy,Slippery


Nuru nuru,Nume nume

Seaweed, nameko mushroom, eels and fishes before cooking. kind a slimy…😅
I found the name of “Nuru Nuru” sexual massage in Berlin. Girls are not Japanese. Is it yet there?

9. Sleeky,Shiny,Glossy

Tsuya tsuya, Teka teka

These are often expressed in teriyaki, cake nappage, or fresh foods. We often use this phrase referring to the skin of young people.Of course good mean!

10. Champ chomp,Nom nom

Mogu mogu, Musha musha, Moku moku, Paku paku

Masticating, The state of chewing their foods well. However, when eating noodles, we use the word “Zuru zuru” instead of “mogu mogu”.

This is one of the expressions that foreigners hate. Because when eat noodles, we make a noise.

These onomatopoeia I have introduced today is only one part.
I will introduce these on another occasion.
Let’s try using Japanese these words😀

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