Dictionary

Below is a list of some useful words for vegans in Japan (however Ruth Ablett’s Complete Japanese-English Food Index is more comprehensive).

The following apps may also be helpful:

Imi wa? (free app) – Works offline and has a kanji radical look up feature.

Worldictionary (paid app) – Uses your smartphone camera to ‘read’ Japanese words and translate them into English. Good for food labels and menus.

Japanese (paid app) – You can draw kanji to look them up.

Jisho – This website can be used like an app when opened on a smartphone, and you can also draw kanji.

VEGAN DICTIONARY

animal 動物 dōbutsu
plant 植物 shokubutsu

vegan 完全菜食主義者 kanzen saishoku shugisha OR ビーガン bīgan
vegetarian 菜食主義者 saishoku shugisha OR ベジタリアン bejitarian

Food Origin

organic 有機 yūki
not genetically modified 遺伝子組換えでない idenshikumikae denai
domestic 国内 kokunai

Meat (肉 Niku)
meat 肉 niku OR ミート mīto
chicken 鶏肉 toriniku OR チキン chikin
beef 牛肉 gyūniku OR ビーフ bīfu
pork 豚肉 butaniku/tonniku OR ポーク pōku
bacon ベーコン bēkon
ham ハム hamu
minced meat ひき肉 hikiniku
processed meat 精肉 seiniku
sausage ソーセージ sōsēji
pepperoni ペパロニ peparoni
salami サラミ sarami
lamb / mutton 羊肉 youniku
lamb ラム ramu
mutton マトン maton
horse 馬肉 / 桜肉 baniku / sakuraniku
deer 鹿肉 shikaniku
duck 鴨肉 kamoniku
quail 鶉 ウズラ uzura うずらの肉 uzura no niku
turtle 亀 kami カメの肉 kami no niku

Seafood (魚介類 Gyokairui)
seafood 魚介類 gyokairui OR シーフード shīfūdo
fish 魚 sakana OR フィッシュ fisshu
bonito 鰹 katsuo
dried bonito かつお節 katsuobushi
flaked bonito 削り節 kezuribushi
fish paste 練り物 nerimono
salmon 鮭 sake OR サーモン sāmon
tuna 鮪 マグロ maguro OR チューナ chūna
sardine 鰯 イワシ iwashi OR サーディン sādin
shellfish 貝 / 貝類 kai / kairui
shrimp / prawn 海老, 蛯, 鰕 エビ, えび ebi OR シュリンプ shurinpu
small shrimp 桜蝦 sakuraebi
crab 蟹, 蠏 kani
lobster うみざりがに umi zarigani / いせえび isēbi OR ロブスター robusutā
octopus 章魚, 蛸 tako OR アクトパス akutopasu
squid 烏賊 いか,イカ ika OR スクイッド sukuiddo
eel 鰻 ウナギ unagi
whale 鯨肉 geiniku OR ホエール hoeru
dolphin 海豚肉 イルカ肉 iruka niku OR ドルフィン dorufin

Stock (出汁 / 出し Dashi)
stock 出汁 / 出し だし / ダシ dashi
seaweed stock 昆布出し こんぶだし konbu dashi
vegetable stock 野菜ストック yasai sutokku
fish stock 魚のだし sakana no dashi
chicken stock 鶏がらスープ niwatori-gara sūpu
pork stock 豚肉の株式 butaniku no kabushiki
beef stock ビーフストック bīfusutokku

Animal Extracts (エキス)
fish extract 魚のエキス sakana no ekisu
shellfish extract 貝類エキス kairui ekisu
meat extract 食肉エキス shokuniku ekisu
beef extract 牛肉エキス gyuniku ekisu
chicken extract 鶏肉 toriniku ekisu (or チキンエキス chikin’ekisu)
pork extract 豚肉エキス butaniku ekisu (or ポークエキス pōkuekisu)
liver extract 肝エキス kimo ekisu

Egg (卵 Tamago)
egg 卵 tamago OR エッグ eggu
chicken egg 鶏卵 keiran
quail egg 鶉卵 ウズラの卵 uzura no tamago
(see also the list of common ingredients below)

Dairy Products (乳製品 Nyūseihin)
milk 乳 nyū
soy milk 豆乳 tōnyū
cow’s milk 牛乳 gyūnyū OR ミルク miruku
butter 乳酪 / 牛酪 nyūraku / gyūraku OR バター batā
cheese 乾酪 kanraku OR チーズ chizu
condensed milk 練乳 ren’nyū OR コンデンスミルク kondensumiruku
cream クリーム kurimu
milk powder 粉ミルク konamiruku
(see also the list of common ingredients below)

Fats and Oils (油脂 Yushi)
vegetable oil 植物油 shokubutsuyu
refined edible oil (plant or animal) 食用精製加工油脂 shokuyō seisei kakō yushi
corn oil コーンオイル kōn’oiru
cottonseed oil 綿実油 menjitsuyu
olive oil オリーブ油 orību-yu OR オリーブオイル orībuoiru
peanut oil ピーナッツ油 pīnattsu-yu
soybean oil 大豆油 daizuyu
sunflower oil ひまわり油 himawariyu
fat 脂肪 shibō
animal 動物油脂 dōbutsu yushi
beef fat 牛脂 ぎゅうし gyuushi
lard ラード rādo
shortening ショートニング shōtoningu
vegetable shortening 植物性ショートニング shokubutsu-sei shōtoningu
animal shortening 動物性ショートニング dōbutsutachi shōtoningu

Common Ingredients
adzuki beans 小豆 azuki
baking powder 膨らし粉 fukurashi-ko OR ベーキングパウダー bēkingupaudā
baking soda 重曹 jūsō
bamboo 竹 take
bean paste (strained) 漉し餡 / こし餡 / こしあん koshian
bran ふすま fusu ma
butterfat 乳脂肪 nyūshibō
butter oil バターオイル batāoiru
carrageenan (from red seaweed) カラギナン karaginan
cocoa ココア kokoa
cocoa butter ココアバター kokoabatā
cocoa mass ココアマス kokoamasu
egg white 卵白 / 白身 ranpaku / shiromi
egg yolk 黄身 kimi
fermented soy milk 発酵豆乳 hakkō tōnyū
flavoured fried tofu 味付油揚げ ajitsu aburaage
fruit juice 果汁 kajū
ginger 生姜 shōga
high fructose corn syrup ぶどう糖果糖液糖 budōtō katōekitō
honey 蜂蜜 はちみつ hachimitsu OR ハニー hanī
malt extract 麦芽エキス bakuga ekisu
milk fat 乳脂 chichiabura
milk powder 粉ミルク konamiruku
mineral salt 無機塩 muki shio
non-fat milk solids 無脂乳固形 mushinyū-kokei
onion 玉葱 / タマネギ tamanegi
peanut 落花生 rakkasei
powdered skim milk 脱脂粉乳 dasshifun’nyū
powdered soy pulp 粉末おから funmatsu okara
red bamboo beans 竹小豆 takeazuki
rice (brown) 玄米 genmai
rice flour 米粉 beifun
rice oil 米油 komeyu
rolled barley 押麦 oshimugi
salt 塩 shio
salt (sun dried) 天日塩 tenpijio
seasoning 調味料 chōmiryō
seaweed 海藻 kaisō
seaweed extract 海草抽出物 kaisō chūshutsu-mono
soy beans / round soy beans 丸大豆 / 大豆 daizu
soy flour 大豆粉 daizu-ko
soy flour (toasted) きな粉 kinako
spice 香辛料 kōshinryō
spice extract 香辛料抽出物 kōshinryō chūshutsu-mono
sugar 砂糖 satō OR シュガー shugā
sugar (brown) 黒砂糖 kurozatō
sugar (non centrafrugal) 含蜜糖 ganmitsutō
sugar (wasanbon) 和三盆糖 wazanbon-tō
vinegar 酢 / 醸造酢 su / jōzōzu
wheat 麦 OR むぎ mugi
wheat flour 小麦粉 / 麦粉 komugiko / mugiko
whole milk powder 全粉乳 zen fun’nyū
yeast 酵母 kōbo OR イースト īsuto

Setting Agents
gelatine ゼラチン zerachin
agar agar 天草 / 寒天 てんぐさ / かんてん tengusa / kanten
gelling/setting agent ゲル化剤 gerukazai (both animal and plant)

Food Additives
acidity regulator 酸味レギュレータ sanmi regyurēta OR 酸味料 sanmi-ryō
anti caking agent 抗粘結剤 kō nenketsuzai
anti foaming agent 抗発泡剤 kō happō-zai
antioxidant 酸化防止剤 sanka bōshi-zai
aspartame アスパルテーム asuparutēmu
bulking agent 増量剤 zōryō-zai
calcium carbonate 炭酸カルシウム tansan karushiumu
calcium phosphate リン酸カルシウム rinsan karushiumu
calcium propionate プロピオン酸カルシウム OR プロピオン酸Ca puropion san karushiumu
caramel colour カラメル色素 karameru shikiso
cellulose セルロース serurōsu
coagulant 凝固剤 gyōko-zai
coloring 着色料 chakushoku-ryō
conditioning agent 調整剤 chōsei-zai
dextrin デキストリン dekisutorin
emulsifier 乳化剤 nyūkazai
flavouring 香料 kōryō
flavour enhancer 調味料 chōmiryō
food acid 食品酸 shokuhin san
glazing agent 艶出し剤 tsuya-dashi-zai
glucose ぶどう糖 Budōtō
glycerine fatty acid ester グリセリン脂肪酸エステル guriserin shibōsan esuteru
gum 粘剤 neba-zai
humectant 保湿剤 hoshitsuzai
isomalto oligosaccharide イソマルトオリゴ糖 isomarutōrigo-tō
lecithin レシチン reshichin
magnesium chloride 塩化マグネシウム OR えんかマグネシウム enkamaguneshiumu
maltose 麦芽糖 bakugatō
modified starch 加工でんぷん / 加工でん粉 kakō denpun
oligosaccharide オリゴ糖 origo-tō
ph adjusting agent ph調整剤 ph chōsei-zai
phosphoric acid リン酸 rin san
polysaccharide thickener 増粘多糖類 zōnentatōrui
potassium 酸カリウム san kariumu
potassium chloride 塩化カリウム enkakariumu
potassium citrate クエン酸カリウム kuen san kariumu
preservative 防腐剤 bōfu-zai
propionic acid プロピオン酸 OR プロピオンさん puropionsan
protein hydrolyzate たんぱく加水分解物 tanpakukasuibunkaibutsu
sorbitol ソルビトール sorubitōru
stabilising agent 安定剤 antei-zai
starch 澱粉 でんぷん denpun OR スターチ sutāchi
starch syrup 水飴 OR 水あめ OR みずあめ mizuame
stevia ステビア sutebia
sucrose 蔗糖 shotō OR スクロース sukurōsu
sweetener 甘味料 kanmi-ryō
thickener 増粘剤 zōnenzai
tofu coagulant 豆腐用凝固剤 tōfu-yō gyōko-zai
vitamin C ビタミンC bitaminshī
vitamin D ビタミンD bitamindī

Clothing and Shoe Materials
Animal origin
leather 革, 皮 かわ kawa OR レザー rezā
wool 羊毛 youmou OR ウール ūru
lambswool ラムウール ramuūru
cashmere カシミヤ kashimiya
pashmina パシュミナ pashumina
mohair モヘア mohea
angora アンゴラ angora
silk 絹 kinu OR シルク shiruku
fur 毛皮 kegawa OR ファー fā
feathers 羽 hane OR フェザー fezā

Non-animal origin
synthetic leather 合成皮革 gōsei hikaku
imitation leather 擬革 / 擬革紙 gikaku / gikakushi
cotton 綿 men OR コットン kotton
linen 麻布 / 亜麻布 mafu / amafu / 麻絲 asaito OR リネン rinen
polyester ポリエステル poriesuteru
acrylic アクリル akuriru
rayon 人絹 jinken OR レーヨン rēyon
spandex スパンデックス supandekkusu

6 thoughts on “Dictionary

  1. lcapobianco

    Thanks for this! I’m moving in two days to Yakushima, Kagoshima-ken.

    Suggestions for foods at konbinis that are vegan-friendly? I’m trying to compile a list of things I can order at restaurants (or modify easily) and things I could pick up quickly.

    Reply
    1. isitveganjapan Post author

      There are actually quite a few things you can get at konbinis. Some examples are onigiri (plain, red bean, ume, seaweed etc **but be careful as some contain fish), inari zushi, edamame, salads (best to use your own dressing), soba and udon (again use soy sauce rather than the sauce that comes with the noodles), nuts, chestnuts, bananas and other fruit/veg, tofu, fruit jelly cups (using agar rather than gelatin), red bean ice-cream and traditional Japanese sweets. The major Konbinis have websites with pictures of many of their products so you can check them out online. Good luck!

      Reply
  2. Leia

    I was wondering how you actually say the word “vegan” in Japanese? I try to describe the concept to friends but they don’t really understand, I was wondering if there was a word or phrase I could use.
    Thank you very much for the list of ingredients, not only am I vegan but I’m highly allergic to cow’s milk. My first time in Japan, I accidentally misread a label and had a serious reaction and ended up spending the majority of my stay in a hospital. This list is extremely helpful, I’ll never make the same mistake again! ^_^

    Reply
    1. isitveganjapan Post author

      Oh no!! That sounds like an awful experience! There a few different ways to express the idea of being vegan in Japanese. First, you could try the katakana word ビーガン (bīgan). Unfortunately veganism is not well known in Japan, so this word is meaningless to most Japanese people. Second, you could try 完全菜食主義者 (kanzen saishoku shugisha), however this concept is usually associated with Buddhist monks, so it may cause more confusion. Last, you could say you are vegetarian, but explain this in a way consistent with veganism (e.g. I am vegetarian and don’t eat meat, fish, eggs, dairy products etc). I have found the last way to work the best in places like restaurants. If speaking to your friends you could perhaps give them more information in Japanese so it is easier for them to understand the reason/s why you are vegan (e.g. http://www.abolitionistapproach.com/media/pdf/ARAA_Pamphlet_A4_Japanese.pdf). Good luck!

      Reply
  3. Marco

    i want to ask…. is stuff like チキンエキス actually vegan??

    i mean, chicken powder and other such things usually are vegan elsewhere, but i have my doubts in japan…

    Reply

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