• Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More) 1
  • Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More) 2
  • Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More) 3
  • Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More) 4
  • Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More) 5

Top 10 Best Packs of Wasabi in 2021 - Tried and True! (S&B, House Foods, and More)

If you’re a big sushi or soba eater, you know that some foods just don’t taste right without good wasabi. But wasabi done badly can be biting, astringent, and downright horrifying, so it makes sense you’d want to do your research before waltzing into a Japanese supermarket and buying a pack.

To save you the trouble of testing out various brands, we ordered the 10 most popular packs of wasabi found in Japanese supermarkets and on Japan’s e-commerce sites (such as Amazon, Rakuten, and Yahoo Shopping) and tested them all. We also invited three certified seasoning sommeliers and asked them to taste each product. The three experts then compared the following:

  1. Spice
  2. Fragrance
  3. Flavor
  4. Compatibility With Other Foods
  5. Aftertaste

This is how we tested and found the most exceptional wasabi.

Experts featured in this article

Megumi Yoshida
Etsuko Makino
Takayo Ishikawa
Kara Swanson
  • Last updated: 06-09-2021
  • 12,388 views
Table of Contents

Top 10 Best Wasabi

Now to introduce the 10 best packs of wasabi available online. They were ranked by how well they did on our tests and given an overall grade ranging from 1.0 to 5.0.

1
Kameya Wasabi Araoroshi 1

KameyaWasabi Araoroshi

3 pack

$10.87

Japaneseカメヤ わさび粗おろし
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedReal
Spice3.0
Fragrance2.0
Flavor5.0
Compatibility with food5.0
Aftertaste5.0
Overall score5.0
2
House Foods Ryoutei Nama-Wasabi 1

House FoodsRyoutei Nama-Wasabi

$2.21

Japaneseハウス食品 料亭 生わさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedReal
Spice4.0
Fragrance3.0
Flavor3.0
Compatibility with food3.0
Aftertaste4.0
Overall Score4.0
3
S&B Meisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi 1

S&BMeisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi

2 pack

$6.72

JapaneseS&B 名匠 にっぽんの本わさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedReal
Spice3.0
Fragrance2.0
Flavor4.0
Compatibility with food4.0
Aftertaste4.0
Overall score4.0
4
Kameya Oroshi Hon-Wasabi 1

KameyaOroshi Hon-Wasabi

4 pack

$18.51

Japaneseカメヤ おろし本わさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedReal
Spice2.0
Fragrance3.0
Flavor4.0
Compatibility with food3.0
Aftertaste3.0
Overall score3.0
5
House Foods Tokusen Hon Kaori Nama-Wasabi 1

House FoodsTokusen Hon Kaori Nama-Wasabi

$1.59

Japaneseハウス食品 特選本香り 生わさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedReal
Spice3.0
Fragrance5.0
Flavor2.0
Compatibility with food3.0
Aftertaste2.0
Overall score3.0
6
JapaneseS&B おろし生わさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedWestern, Real
Spice2.0
Fragrance1.0
Flavor2.0
Compatibility with food2.0
Aftertaste2.0
Overall score2.0
7
S&B Taberu Wasabi 1

S&BTaberu Wasabi

$10.67

JapaneseS&B 食べるわさび
TypePaste (Tube)
Wasabi usedWestern
Spice2.0
Fragrance3.0
Flavor2.0
Compatibility with food2.0
Aftertaste2.0
Overall score2.0

Compare the Best Japanese Wasabi

Image
1
Kameya Wasabi Araoroshi 1

Kameya

2
House Foods Ryoutei Nama-Wasabi 1

House Foods

3
S&B Meisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi 1

S&B

4
Kameya Oroshi Hon-Wasabi 1

Kameya

5
House Foods Tokusen Hon Kaori Nama-Wasabi 1

House Foods

6
S&B Oroshi Nama-Wasabi 1

S&B

7
S&B Taberu Wasabi 1

S&B

Name

Wasabi Araoroshi

Ryoutei Nama-Wasabi

Meisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi

Oroshi Hon-Wasabi

Tokusen Hon Kaori Nama-Wasabi

Oroshi Nama-Wasabi

Taberu Wasabi

Features

Fresh Wasabi and a Botanical Scent and Just the Right Amount of Spice

Has a Refined Flavor That Brings to Mind Traditional Japanese Restaurants

More Fragrant Over Time, Bringing Your Meal to an Elegant Finish

Refreshing Flavor That Balances With Other Foods

Invigorating Aftertaste and a Heat that Leaves Your Tongue Tingling

Gentle Heat that Warms Up Your Whole Mouth Upon First Bite

Plays the Lead Role in Adding Umami Flavor

Price$10.87$2.21$6.72$18.51$1.59$1.09$10.67
Japaneseカメヤ わさび粗おろしハウス食品 料亭 生わさびS&B 名匠 にっぽんの本わさびカメヤ おろし本わさびハウス食品 特選本香り 生わさびS&B おろし生わさびS&B 食べるわさび
TypePaste (Tube)Paste (Tube)Paste (Tube)Paste (Tube)Paste (Tube)Paste (Tube)Paste (Tube)
Wasabi usedRealRealRealRealRealWestern, RealWestern
Spice3.04.03.02.03.02.02.0
Fragrance2.03.02.03.05.01.03.0
Flavor5.03.04.04.02.02.02.0
Compatibility with food5.03.04.03.03.02.02.0
Aftertaste5.04.04.03.02.02.02.0
Overall score5.04.03.03.02.02.0
Link

Products That Didn't Make The Cut

And why they didn't quite make it.

Products That Didn't Make The Cut

House Foods Hon Kizami Aragiri ~Rough Cut~ Wasabi was so crunchy that it didn’t go with a lot of foods. It wasn’t that spicy, but the flavor was overall so bold that it could overpower all the other ingredients in a dish. In short, this may not be the best choice for delicate foods like fish.

Products That Didn't Make The Cut

Another overpowering wasabi, House Foods Wasabi Powder, was spicier than just typical wasabi you’d find at the supermarket, and if you aren’t wise about how much you use and what foods you pair it with, all you’ll be tasting in your dish is spice. It does have a long shelf life and a clean aftertaste, though.

Products That Didn't Make The Cut

MUSO Umami Honrai Nama-Wasabi Tube was largely horseradish. It had a real kick to it and a spiciness that tingled for a long time, which made this product hit or miss. Fragrance-wise, we were getting a lot of acidity, which blotted out the natural smells of wasabi. It’s worth a try if you’re someone who just wants to keep cranking up the heat.

Introducing the Experts Who Lent Us Their Knowledge

We invited three specialists, each known for her expertise in seasonings, to help us try out all the wasabi.

For those that are unfamiliar with seasoning sommeliers, they are professionals that have passed an exam proctored by the Japan Seasoning Meisters Association.

Introducing the Experts Who Lent Us Their Knowledge
{Left: Etsuko Makino}
She uses her knowledge as a vegetable sommelier pro and seasoning sommelier to develop new recipes and products, introducing the charm and flavor of fruits and vegetables to all generations. She's very active, making appearances on NHK Radio's "Saitamazu" and Television Saitama's "Machikomi."

{Middle: Takayo Ishikawa}
She's a food expert that's a certified vegetable sommelier and seasoning sommelier pro. You may see her at workshops or nutrition lectures, elucidating the relationship between housewives and seasonings. She's also well-versed in kitchen appliances and oversees the development of various condiment-related items. And to top off her wide-ranging lists of accomplishments, she also helps craft recipes for condiment brands and pens food columns.

{Right: Megumi Yoshida}
She's a food expert that's a certified vegetable sommelier pro and seasoning sommelier. She wears many hats, crafting and publishing family-oriented recipes, writing columns, teaching at a cultural center, running the Aomori Vegetable Marché, and making radio appearances.

How We Tested the Wasabi

We gathered 10 popular Japanese wasabi from various e-commerce sites and tested them for their spice, fragrance, flavor, compatibility with other foods, and aftertaste. Finally, we looked at how all the elements worked together and gave each wasabi an overall score.

Test ① How Strong the Spice was

Test ① How Strong the Spice was
We had our three seasoning sommeliers taste all the wasabi. They then shared their impressions on wasabi’s defining characteristic: spice.

We then graded each product on a five-step scale from 1.0 to 5.0. A 5.0 score simply means the wasabi was extremely spicy, which isn’t necessarily a good thing.

The Spiciest Wasabi by Far was MUSO’s Umami Honrai Nama-Wasabi Tube

The Spiciest Wasabi by Far was MUSO’s Umami Honrai Nama-Wasabi Tube
All three of our experts gave this wasabi a 5.0 for spice. It was made up largely of horseradish, with some Japanese-grown real wasabi mixed in.
It was not only hot but also extremely fragrant, so it may overpower some foods – the natural spice of horseradish came out full force. Get it if you’re specifically looking to crank up the heat, but unless you’re a spice-addict or looking to prank your friends, MUSO’s wasabi may be a bit too much to handle.
Megumi Yoshida
Seasoning Sommelier, Vegetable Sommelier Pro
Megumi Yoshida
The more you eat, the more the heat intensifies. It also has a sourness to it that reminds me of Western mustard, so it might be lacking a bit in authenticity.

Test ② How It Smelled

Test ② How It Smelled
Most people only think about heat when shopping for wasabi, but fragrance is just as important. Before you even put anything to your lips, smell shapes your expectations of the food and how you’ll perceive its taste.

We had the three sommeliers do a smell and taste test. They judged how well-balanced the smells were and then graded each product on a five-step scale from 1.0 to 5.0.

House Foods’ Tokusen Nama-Wasabi Had the Sharp Fragrance Expected of Wasabi

House Foods’ Tokusen Nama-Wasabi Had the Sharp Fragrance Expected of Wasabi
This was real wasabi, pure and authentic. It had that crisp scent characteristic of wasabi, which we found invigorating.
It smelled neither too strong nor too weak but was in that sweet spot that whets that appetite and makes eating all the more pleasurable.
Etsuko Makino
Seasoning Sommelier, Vegetable Sommelier Pro
Etsuko Makino
House Foods' Tokusen Hon Kaori Nama-Wasabi smells as real wasabi should smell—light and clean and not overwhelming.

Test ③ How Rich the Flavor was

Test ③ How Rich the Flavor was
When wasabi has well-balanced flavors, it helps other foods express themselves in deeper and richer ways – that is, it makes everything more delicious.

Our experts tried the wasabi and weighed all the flavors, then graded each product on a five-step scale from 1.0 to 5.0.

S&B’s Meisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi Tasted the Richest

S&B’s Meisho Japanese Hon-Wasabi Tasted the Richest
We agreed that S&B’s hon-wasabi balanced flavors very well.
Generally speaking, products that were all or mostly real wasabi were rated highly, as their flavors weren’t as overpowering as those of horseradish. We thought it appealed to Japanese sensibilities. Real wasabi has a brilliant scent that makes itself apparent in every bite, as well as a chilling taste that clears the sinuses.
Megumi Yoshida
Seasoning Sommelier, Vegetable Sommelier Pro
Megumi Yoshida
It's a bit spicy but has a good balance of fragrance and flavors. It just feels very pure.

Test ④ How Compatible With Food It was

Test ④ How Compatible With Food It was
If Japanese food were a movie, wasabi would win best supporting actor. After all, no one eats wasabi alone–its charm lies in how it complements other ingredients. Should the taste of wasabi grow either too strong or wane too weak, the balance of your entire dish will be thrown off.

We served wasabi with kamaboko (processed fish paste) to our experts and had them judge how well the flavors worked together. They then graded each wasabi on a five-step scale from 1.0 to 5.0.

Kameya’s Oroshi Hon-Wasabi Complemented Most Anything

Kameya’s Oroshi Hon-Wasabi Complemented Most Anything
This tubed wasabi had a sharp spiciness to it and a refreshing aftertaste. The rich flavor of real wasabi brought out the umami of the entire dish.
It had quite a bold flavor, so it never paled in comparison to other ingredients.
Takayo Ishikawa
Vegetable Sommelier, Seasoning Sommelier Pro
Takayo Ishikawa
Kameya's Oroshi Hon-Wasabi strikes a good balance between its scent and flavors and light aftertaste. You'll get a lot of use out of it, as it tastes good with pretty much anything.

Test ⑤ How Refreshing the Aftertaste Was

Test ⑤ How Refreshing the Aftertaste Was
Your eating experience doesn’t end once you’ve swallowed; it’s important you find a wasabi with a clean, refreshing aftertaste. You could say that searching for wasabi that is subdued and refined even as it lingers, in its own way, represents the Japanese sensibility of wabi-sabi.

We had our experts grade the aftertaste each wasabi left behind when eaten with other foods, using a five-step scale from 1.0 to 5.0.

The Product With the Most Refreshing Aftertaste Used Only Real Wasabi

The Product With the Most Refreshing Aftertaste Used Only Real Wasabi
Kameya Wasabi Araoroshi was all very authentic. It was roughly grated, so there was also some bite to it. The more we chewed on it, the more we could taste the root’s delicate sweetness.
This was true of most products made of real wasabi, but there was a sweetness and clear aftertaste that lingered even after we finished eating. It was a dining experience we found ourselves craving more of.
Etsuko Makino
Seasoning Sommelier, Vegetable Sommelier Pro
Etsuko Makino
The harder you chew, the more this wasabi will heat up. However, afterward, you're just left with a light sweetness, so it pairs well with other foods.

How to Choose Wasabi – Buying Guide

Wasabi is more than just a notoriously spicy condiment. Depending on what kind of wasabi you choose, you can get a completely different level of spice and flavor.

Know What Goes into Your Wasabi and How Spicy It is

Not all wasabi is actually real wasabi. There are two types, “real” wasabi, which is actually made from wasabia japonica, and “Western” wasabi, which is just grated horseradish. They taste differently and burn in completely different ways.

“Real” Wasabi From Japan Has a Light, Refreshing Bite

“Real” Wasabi From Japan Has a Light, Refreshing Bite
Depending on how it was cultivated, Japanese wasabi can either be classified as “water wasabi“ or “field wasabi.”

Water wasabi can only thrive in the presence of clear water, such as near a running stream or in a valley. Land for its cultivation, even in Japan, is extremely limited


Field wasabi, too, has its own conditions; it can only be grown where the air is humid and the temperature cool. Therefore, you could say that real wasabi is a semi-rare and precious food.

“Real” Wasabi From Japan Has a Light, Refreshing Bite
When you grate wasabia japonica, it comes out to a pale yellow-green; when you taste it, the spice is elegant, with a clear, refreshing note winding through it. Real wasabi will never overpower a food, but rather enhance its flavors. Therefore, products made from wasabia japonica are in high demand, which has driven prices up.
Wasabi japonica is also cultivated in China; however, if you mean to be picky about flavor, try to stick to Japanese-grown wasabi.
If you do manage to get your hands on real wasabi, make sure of the following as well. For fish such as sashimi or sushi, use wasabi that’s finely grated; for meats, use wasabi that’s more roughly grated.

Western Wasabi Can Be Used Not Only as a Condiment, but for Cooking as Well

Western Wasabi Can Be Used Not Only as a Condiment, but for Cooking as Well

Western wasabi is made of horseradish, largely grown in the States or Europe. And as you may know, horseradish is a popular spice to be had along with roast beef.

In order to meet the growing demand for wasabi, most of the condiments you see in the supermarket have horseradish in them, even in Japan. Horseradish is about 1.5 times as spicy as real wasabi, and it’s what gives your nose that burning sensation.
Because it’s so strong, if we had a choice, we’d pair it only with meats – that is, foods that are bolder in flavor.

Consider Other Flavor Profiles as Well

Consider Other Flavor Profiles as Well
Like we mentioned before, wasabi isn’t all about spiciness. It has its own flavor and aftertaste, both of which you should pay close attention to.
If you can, taste the wasabi—if not, read reviews—to make sure that you enjoy every bit of the eating experience.

Think About What Form the Wasabi’s in

The first thing that comes to mind when you think about wasabi is likely some form of green paste; but, actually, wasabi can also come as a powder. Think about how you mean to store and use the wasabi when deciding between the two forms.

Paste that Comes in a Tube or a Jar Makes Enjoying the Umami of Wasabi a Simple Task

Paste that Comes in a Tube or a Jar Makes Enjoying the Umami of Wasabi a Simple Task
If you have wasabi at home, it’s likely in a tube. Tubes are convenient because you can squeeze out as much product as you’d like. 

You can also find a great variety of tubed wasabi; for example, there is the grated kind, made by grating the wasabi root, and the kneaded kind, in which wasabi powder is mixed with water and kneaded into a kind of dough.

Paste that Comes in a Tube or a Jar Makes Enjoying the Umami of Wasabi a Simple Task

You can also get authentic wasabi made from the real root or products that have had their flavor deepened with the addition of soup stock. 


Tube wasabi varies greatly in both taste and texture, so you should be able to find something you like. If you like a crisp crunch to your wasabi–something you can chew on–you can also find roughly chopped wasabi in a jar.

Wasabi that’s been made into a paste has a relatively short shelf life. To enhance umami, brands also tend to add in salt and other flavorings, so if you’re looking for clean wasabi, make sure you read the ingredients list.

Powdered Wasabi Has Fewer Additives and a Longer Shelf Life

Powdered Wasabi Has Fewer Additives and a Longer Shelf Life
With a powder, all you would have to do is mix some with water, and you’ve got yourself kneaded wasabi. By adjusting how much water you put in, you can also make the paste thicker or thinner. Powdered wasabi gives you more freedom to play around and change its make-up to match the dish you’re making.
Powdered wasabi’s pretty much guaranteed to be made from horseradish, so it’s going to be spicy. It won’t ever be able to measure up to the full and mellow spice of real wasabi.
However, it contains less extra flavors and keeps for longer. Try getting powdered wasabi if you’re worried about preservatives or you can never seem to finish tubed wasabi before the expiration date. It’s also a great gift to bring or send back to the States for friends and family.

Does Wasabi Really Provide Health Benefits?

Does Wasabi Really Provide Health Benefits?
Wasabi provides a healthy dose of minerals like calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, and iron. Of course, you can only eat so much wasabi in a single sitting, so we wouldn’t say it’s a food that provides a whole lot of nutritional value, though.
When you grate wasabi, you break its cell walls and catalyze the release of an enzyme called myrosinase. This then mixes with the wasabi and produces an organic compound known as allyl isothiocyanate (AITC), which is what makes wasabi spicy. AITC also has strong antimicrobial properties and is even said to fight bacteria that cause food poisoning.
Wasabi is also known to increase appetite, improve blood circulation, and detox, so see if you can give it a bigger place in your diet.

Why Not Incorporate More New Flavors Into Your Dishes?

Why Not Incorporate More New Flavors Into Your Dishes?

Cooking is more than just a way to put food on the table. You can experiment with flavors, electric devices, and amazing ingredients to make a great tasting dish. It can get a bit monotonous to eat similar flavors all the time, though, so why not experiment with some Japanese ingredients?

Summary

We invited three experts, purchased the 10 top selling packs of wasabi, and tested them all.

You don’t need to buy a new recipe book to spice up your life. Just by switching out one condiment for another, you can breathe new life into your kitchen and your family dinners. Hopefully, we’ve been able to encourage you to get excited about your next trip to the supermarket.

Author: Yoshiko Ito/Translation: Jasmine Li


Spices Recommended by an Expert

Spices are essential for making flavorful dishes and they can also have various health benefits when consumed. Nutritionist Kara Swanson recommends a half teaspoon of turmeric per day to help with inflammation. Why not give it a try?

Expert's
pick

Navitas OrganicsOrganic Turmeric Powder

8 oz.

$8.66

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