3 Types of Monaka Rice Wafer Snacks

When you think of traditional Japanese confections or Wagashi with sweet red bean paste “Anko (餡子)“, what comes to mind? 

As for me, what pops into my head right away are “Manju (饅頭)“, “Daifuku (大福)“, “Dorayaki (どら焼き)“, “Yokan (羊羹), and “Monaka (最中)”.

As the green links above show, I posted articles about Manju, Daifuku, Dorayaki, and Yokan before, so today I will talk about the rest, Monaka.

Basically, Monaka consists of 2 thin crisp rice wafers with some food in between. The filling is usually Anko sweet red bean paste, but various ingredients can be used in the filling.

Wagashi Monaka Sweets

Wagashi Monaka

Actually, based on the filling, Monaka can be roughly divided into 3 types. The first type is the regular Monaka known as a traditional Wagashi sweet. Various food materials, such as chewy Mochi rice cake and boiled chestnuts, are used with Anko in the confection and sandwiched between 2 thin crisp rice wafers.

Monaka Ice Cream

Monaka Ice Cream

The second type is the Monaka treat known as ice cream. This type consists of 2 thin crisp rice wafers filled with ice cream, typically vanilla or matcha ice cream. Additionally, some Monaka ice creams have a thin chocolate bar in the middle.

Monaka in Japanese Cuisine

Monaka Suimono

The last one is the Monaka used in Japanese cuisine, and its filling isn’t limited to sweet things. In general, this type consists of 2 thin crisp rice wafers filled with ingredients for some dish, whose representative examples include Monaka Suimono I introduced before in this article.


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

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