Nikujaga - Meat and potatoes

Nikujaga does not seem typically Japanese since the main ingredients niku (meat) and jagaimo (potatoes) are historically not traditional Japanese foodstuffs. But Nikujaga is a popular meal especially at home. It is a typical "mother's taste" meal. The taste of Nikujaga may surprise you because of the ingredients sugar and soya sauce, and I am sure that the surprise will be a positive one.


  • Potatoes
  • Beef or pork: thin sliced
  • Onion
  • Sugar
  • Soya sauce
  • Japanese katsuo soup stock (bonito)*
* This ingredient may not be available in Western supermarkets, but you should be able to find it in Japanese grocery stores that exist in most large European and American cities.


  1. Cut the onions and potatoes in about 2x2x3cm pieces.
  2. Cut the sliced meat in about 5x4cm pieces.
  3. Fry the potatoes, onions, and the meat in a fry pan.
  4. After about two minutes add water. Everything should be more or less covered with water.
  5. Add two tablespoons soya sauce and the same amount of sugar. Add also a little bit of Japanese fish soup stock.
  6. Cover the pan with a lid, and let it cook for about twenty minutes or until the potatoes are soft.