Takoyaki is a wildly popular Japanese street food originating in Osaka. It consists of dashi flavored pancake balls filled with octopus and other ingredients, smothered in sauces and toppings. This version replaces the octopus with cubes of spam for a neat twist.Jump to Recipe
Things you might need
There’s a ton of variations on takoyaki with a wide array of ingredients. This recipe is cut down to just the essentials, but you will still need some ingredients and equipment that might be uncommon in your area. I have listed these below as well as sources to acquire them.***
I don’t usually buy kitchen gadgets that can only be used in a few very specific situations, but this takoyaki pan is compact, cheap, and gets the job done. I’ll also be experimenting with it to make more recipes in the future. It’s important to note that this type of pan only works on a gas burner. Click here for an alternative self-powered takoyaki pan.
2. Dashi Powder
Dashi powder is instant bonito soup stock. It’s an amazing base for so many different Japanese dishes. It’s also the primary flavor component for the takoyaki batter itself. You could make dashi broth from scratch, but this is so much easier. Save the from-scratch broths for soup. Use the powder for takoyaki.
The acidity and spice from the pickled ginger pairs really well with the rich salty flavors from the batter and spam. Underrated ingredient that makes this recipe super addictive.
Toppings are a very important to the flavor and presentation of takoyaki. I wouldnt recommend leaving any of these out.
- Kewpie Mayo (Japanese Mayo) – Thicker and richer than American mayo. I use this in place of American mayo in pretty much all recipes. A game changing condiment.
- Takoyaki Sauce – A thick sauce flavored with worchestershire and other flavors. There are recipes online to make your own, but I buy it online. Can also substitute with okonomiyaki sauce or bulldog sauce.
- Furikake – Seasoning mix made from primarily dried seaweed and sesame seeds. Dangerously tasty on rice with an egg.
- Katsuobushi – Dried bonito flakes. Full of flavor and super versatile in the kitchen
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup water
1 large egg
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp dashi powder
1 tsp soy sauce
1/2 can of spam
1 green onion
1 tbsp beni shoga
- Cut the spam into half inch cubes. Fry in a heated pan on medium heat until all sides are brown. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together water, egg, soy sauce, and dashi powder until fully homogenous
- Add in flour and baking powder. Whisk just until there is no dry flour visible.
- Heat the takoyaki pan on medium-low heat. Once up to temp, drizzle in a neutral cooking oil of choice. Add enough oil that a little bit of oil pools into each divot.
- Pour in your batter, and add one chunk of spam into each divot. The batter is supposed to flow out of divots. Do not worry this is a normal part of the takoyaki making process.
- Finely chop green onion and beni shoga. Spread on top.
- Divide the cooked batter by sliding non-plastic chopsticks or skewers across the pan in the space between the divots.
- Flip each ball 90 degrees and tuck excess batter underneath. The ball should flip with minimal effort. If not, let it cook for longer.
- Keep flipping and tucking until the spheres have formed and are golden brown. Should be around ten minutes of total cook time.
- Transfer to a plate. Top with takoyaki sauce, mayo, furikake, and katsuobushi. Enjoy!
- Takoyaki has many variations. Experiment! Use the batter recipe as the base, and then add whatever your heart desires!