What is Natto Kombu? and How to Use it

As you know, natto (納豆) and kombu (昆布: also known as kelp) are different things. 

Natto Kombu from Yamanaka Foods

But what I introduce here, natto kombu (納豆こんぶ), is not a combination of fermented soybeans and kelp seaweed.

Natto Kombu (納豆こんぶ)

Natto Kombu Shredded Dried Kelp

Natto kombu is shredded dried kelp, which becomes slimy like natto beans when water is added and stirred.

The reason why these kelp shreds take on a slimy consistency is that gagome kombu (がごめ昆布) from the Donan region (southern part) of Hokkaido is used.

Natto Kombu dried Kelp Strips

The kelp variety gagome kombu can also be the ingredient of tororo kombu, and unlike ma-kombu (真昆布), it has a strong stickiness.

In Japan, natto kombu is available at supermarkets, and this one from Yamanaka Foods is priced at 140 yen or so (about 1.1 USD) per 21 grams.


Slimy and Crunchy Natto Kombu Kelp Shreds

These dried kelp strips need to be rehydrated before use. The preparation is easy.

Add twice the amount of water compared to the prepared natto kombu and give them a good stir until slimy. That’s all you have to do.

Nutritional Values 

Natto Kombu Ingredients Nutrition Facts Calories Label

Natto kombu is a rich source of minerals and fiber.

Specifically, based on the nutrition facts label on the back of the package, the nutritional values are as follows.

Nutritional Values per 100 Grams
Calories 147 kcal
Protein 4.2 g
Fat 1.4 g
Carbohydrates 42.4 g
– Sugars 16.6 g
– Dietary Fibers 25.8 g
Salt Equivalents 6.48 g

How to Use

Natto Kombu Rice

The prepared natto kombu has a pleasantly crunchy texture and goes perfectly on a bowl of white rice.

It is often seasoned with soy sauce, but this time I used the sweet and umami-rice Kaki Dashi Shoyu I introduced in the previous post.

Natto Kombu Natto Gohan

Also, these kelp shreds make a good pair with natto (literally), nametake mushrooms, okra, tororo grated yam, or daikon-oroshi grated radish.

(Reference Page: Macaroni )


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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