The Best Taste: What does Sushi taste like?

What does Sushi taste like

If you loved the Japanese culture, then you should never miss tasting this authentic Japanese food called sushi. 

If you haven’t tried it yet, have you ever wondered how sushi is being prepared? Or how people eat them? Or even how does sushi tastes like? If you asked some first-timers who just tasted sushi they might give you an answer like ‘it doesn’t taste good’ mainly because they don’t know the different types and forms of sushi.

In this article, I will share you everything you need to know what does sushi taste like and its different variations.

What is sushi?

Sushi can be considered as one of the worlds first nouvelle cuisine as it focuses on how the food looks and how it tastes. Sushi is a common food originated from Japan and it mainly refers to the rice (made from a good quality rice cooker) used and not the ingredients included.

What does Sushi taste like?

This Japanese dish has something that makes people want more. It usually comes in a bite-size (finely sliced with sharp knife) and different ingredients and varieties (more on that later). In Japan, sushi making is considered an art, which is why sushi earns its popularity in the cooking world mainly because a quality one can be made by a good chef that dedicates their life mastering sushi making.

A bite of Sushi history

Japan is composed of different coastal water areas that are surrounded by ocean which is why seafood like fishes are very common in the Japanese diet and that includes sushi. In addition, the term sushi means ‘sour-tasting’ or fermented food.

How to know the real taste of sushi?

The question is, how does sushi taste like? Sushi is all about the balance and harmony of different flavors from its different ingredients. The common sushi is made up of fish and rice, the taste of sushi doesn’t have any specific taste, mainly because it comes in different variations and uses different ingredients and condiments.

  • The art of making sushi:

As the harmony of flavors is the key for a quality sushi, if one of the ingredients are strongly flavor, then it cannot be considered a good sushi.

What are the different types of Sushi?

What does Sushi taste like?

1. Maki Sushi

The makizushi or ‘rolled sushi’ is the most popular variety of sushi all over the world. The ingredients such as cucumber, seafood, omelet, mango, and rice are commonly wrapped in dried seaweed called nori but it can be wrapped in other things as well. The maki sushi is prepared by placing it on a wooden mat and rolled and turned into a cylindrical shape and it is sliced before eating.

Maki Sushi

Soy sauce and wasabi is the perfect match for Maki sushi. Several variations include: Hosomaki (thin roll), Chumaki (medium roll), Futomaki (thick roll), Uramaki (Inside-out roll), and Temaki (Handroll).

2. Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri sushi means ‘hand-pressed’ sushi. It comes in a rectangular shape and commonly topped with seafood like tuna, shrimp, crab meat, and octopus. Some chef also topped nigiri sushi with a swipe of wasabi and other condiments.

3. Chirashi Sushi

Chirashi sushi literally means ‘Scattered sushi’, this type of sushi will look like a burrito bowl but with sushi ingredients such as shrimps, tuna, salmon, sea urchin, and other seafood. This type of sushi very common in Japanese meals and it is an ideal dish for leftovers.

4. Inari Sushi

Inari Sushi

Inari sushi is made up of fried tofu and stuffed with sushi rice. It a type of rice-only dish but it can be topped with different ingredients as well such as boiled prawn, mushroom, chives, and shredded omelet. It is simmered in soy sauce, mirin, and sugar to balance the taste.

What Sides and condiments can be partnered with sushi?

To balance and maintain the harmony of flavors in sushi, here are some common condiments that can be added in sushi:

1. Wasabi

The Best Taste: What does Sushi taste like? 2 #cookymom

Wasabi is known for its spicy taste. It is also used by some chefs to kill and smother any bacteria that can linger in raw fish or any seafood toppings. If you’re a first-timer in tasting sushi, you might need some time to adjust.

2. Pickled Ginger

The sweet, spicy and tangy taste of pickled ginger or ‘gari’ can add more excitement to your sushi.

The Best Taste: What does Sushi taste like? 3 #cookymom

3. Soy Sauce.

One way to enjoy the taste of sushi is to add a little bit of Japanese soy sauce into your sushi to balance its flavor. Japanese soy sauce contains mirin or sweet rice wine which is why it is the best to use compared to regular soy sauce.

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How to properly eat sushi?

If you’re a first timer just like me, here are some steps you should follow on how to properly eat sushi.

  • First, to avoid ruining the form of sushi, pick it up with your hands, not chopsticks.
  • Make sure that the amount of soy sauce or wasabi will not touch the rice. You can do this by slightly tilting the sushi when dipping it into the soy sauce or wasabi plate.
  • To get the full flavor of sushi, place it face down in your mouth. It comes in bite-size so you can eat the whole sushi piece.
  • You can give the chef a praise and drink it with a glass of sake or Japanese wine.
  • Here’s an informative video on how to correctly eat sushi:

What can you get in eating sushi?

Eating sushi can have a beneficial effect on your overall health. Sushi is usually made up of seafood which is known to have omega-3 fatty acid that can lower your cholesterol level and prevent any clogging in your heart’s artery that can lead to heart attack and stroke. It also improves blood circulation, improved skin tone, accelerates the healing process, and for hair growth as well.

The nori or the seafood wrapping can also help in regulating hormonal balance primarily because of its iodine content. The anti-carcinogenic and anti-mutagenic found in wasabi and ginger can also lessen the risks of cancer and boost your digestion and immunity at the same time.

  • Bonus: How to make sushi at home

Important facts

  • Choosing the best topping such as salmon, shrimp, and other seafood is a good start if you like to try something new.
  • If you’re a first timer, starting with raw seafood might not be a good idea because it will give you a not-so-appealing taste.
  • If you’re on a vegetarian diet, you can add cucumber, mango, or any vegetables in your sushi.
  • Sushi can be safe during pregnancy only if the fish is properly prepared.
  • Soy sauce and wasabi should not be mixed together.
  • Sashimi is different from sushi.
  • It is better to start with maki roll sushi if you’re a first-timer.


The process of sushi making really is a fascinating process that requires dedication. Learning how does sushi really taste like will give you spark to try this delicious and delicate Japanese food.

Did you like this article? If yes then share this article with your friends and family to surprise them what does sushi taste like. And oh, if you have any suggestions or concerns, let us know by commenting below.

Now you can definitely answer the question: What does sushi taste like?

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Nancy Lee

Nancy Lee

Hey there, I'm Nancy, founder and editor in chief here at Cooky Mom, and I’m absolutely in love with food and health blogs. I'm on a mission to share my insider cooking, food and health tips with all of you...

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