Umaibo: The Top 10 Most Popular Flavors in Japan
When it comes to snacks for kids, Japanese children especially like “Dagashi (駄菓子)”. Have you ever heard of that? For the unfamiliar, Dagashi is the word for cheap and unique Japanese snacks and candies.
The price of the Dagashi treats ranges from 10 yen (about 0.1 USD) to about 100 yen (about 1 USD) so children can buy various varieties even with their small pocket money. Among such Dagashi snacks, “Umaibo (うまい棒: literally Delicious Stick)” is especially famous.
What kind of Dagashi Snack is Umaibo?
As you may already know, Umaibo is a corn puff stick with a slightly hard texture manufactured by Riska and sold by Yaokin, which comes in many unique flavors.
A stick of Umaibo is so cheap, sold for just 10 yen (about 0.1 USD) in Japan, that the Dagashi snack is especially popular with children. Amazingly, the price of 10 yen has never changed since it was first introduced in 1979.
Even now, the puffed corn snack Umaibo is one of the top-selling Dagashi series and is widely loved by not only children but also adults, which is why some Japanese Dagashi lovers call the corn puff “The King of Dagashi”.
In fact, it is no exaggeration to say that Umaibo is one of the best and tastiest Dagashi snacks. It is really yummy and satisfying for the price of 10 yen, so I have also loved it since I was small.
Flavors of Umaibo
According to the official website of Yaokin, Umaibo comes in the following 19 regular flavors as of today (10/15/2020). Some have flavors of savory Japanese foods widely enjoyed in Japan, while some others are available only locally with flavors of regional specialties.
19 Regular Flavors
- Tonkatsu Sauce (とんかつソース: Pork Cutlet Sauce)
- Salami (サラミ)
- Cheese (チーズ)
- Teriyaki Burger (テリヤキバーガー)
- Corn Potage (コーンポタージュ)
- Yasai Salad (やさいサラダ: Vegetable Salad)
- Mentai (めんたい)
- Takoyaki (たこ焼: Octopus Balls)
- Chicken Curry (チキンカレー味)
- Ebi Mayonnaise (エビマヨネーズ: Shrimp Mayonnaise)
- Gyutan Shio (牛タン塩: Salted Beef Tongue)
- Natto (なっとう: Fermented Soybeans)
- Sugar Rusk (シュガーラスク)
- Yakitori (やきとり: Grilled Chicken)
- Chocolate (チョコレート)
- Lemon (レモン)
- Satokibi (さとうきび: Sugarcane)
- Cinnamon Apple Pie (シナモンアップルパイ)
- Nori Shio (のり塩: Seaweed and Salt)
4 Premium Flavors
In addition to the above 19 regular flavors, Umaibo has another 4 flavors in its Premium line and a stick of Premium Umaibo is priced at 20 yen (about 0.2 USD).
- Mozzarella Cheese & Camembert Cheese (モッツァレラチーズ&カマンベールチーズ)
- Mentaiko (明太子)
- Wafu Steak (和風ステーキ)
- Dragon Bisque (ドラゴンビスク)
The Top 10 Most Popular Flavors in Japan
According to the survey conducted in 2017, answered by 1,381 men and women between 20’s to 60’s, the top 10 most popular Umaibo flavors in Japan are as follows.
#10: Pizza (ピザ)
Umaibo Pizza was a savory stick with a slightly tangy tomato and rice cheese flavor to it.
#9: Yasai Salad (やさいサラダ)
Umaibo Yasai Salad might be somewhat different from what you expect. It is actually a savory corn puff that’s loaded with umami from vegetables, such as potato, cabbage, and garlic.
#8: Chocolate (チョコレート)
Umaibo Chocolate is slightly smaller in size than other Umaibo sticks. The puffed corn is coated in a thin layer of milk chocolate.
#7: Teriyaki Burger (テリヤキバーガー)
Umaibo Teriyaki Burger has the perfect combination of sweet and savory tastes and is accented with tomato’s fruitiness.
#6: Tonkatsu Sauce (とんかつソース)
#5: Takoyaki (たこ焼)
#4: Salami (サラミ)
Umaibo Salami is very fragrant and flavorful just like real salami.
#3: Mentai (めんたい)
#2: Cheese (チーズ)
Umaibo Cheese also features its nice fragrance. It is a very tasty snack packed with the delicious flavor of cheese.
#1: Corn Potage (コーンポタージュ)
Umaibo Corn Potage smells and tastes just like corn potage soup. The corn puff has such a good taste that it never lets snack lovers down.