Soba and Udon – quick noodles for a few dollars

soba_japanese_noodlesCheap and simple, everyone likes Soba and Udon. Soba is thin noodles made from buckwheat, while Udon is thick white flour noodles. They sometimes come in soups, or sometimes you dip them into a little pot of soup. Both hot and cold versions are available, so these noodles make for a perfect light meal any time of the year.

Various toppings are also available, such as tempura, seaweed, pork or egg. Often you may come across special varieties according to the area you are in, so try Soba or Udon out a few times!

Price: From around 300 yen (about 3 dollars), more with extra toppings.

Name in Japanese: Soba/そば, Udon/うどん


Curry Udon

Where can I buy it?

All medium to large train stations will have a little Soba and Udon bar, usually where customers stand up while eating. They are also scattered around towns and cities, and the cheap ones will boldly display pictures or plastic food models, so it is easy to know what you are getting. If there is no Japanese, try to match the pictures/models with the Japanese characters!

Staff will sometimes ask whether you want Soba or Udon, so if you hear these words tell them what you want!

Published by Matthew Baxter

Matthew Baxter is a British travel author who has lived in and visited Japan for over a decade. Having traveled across the country, without much money, he has built up an extensive knowledge of budget travel here, and has also worked for many leading tourism companies. He also writes professionally for several websites and publications, such as the GaijinPot, All About and the Japan National Tourist Association.