I’ve heard some amazing things about Japanese Convenience Stores. I know David Chang is a big fan of their fried chicken and Anthony Bourdain approves those egg salad sandwiches. There are a few chains, but the big three are FamilyMart, 7-Eleven, and Lawson. You’ll find conbini on almost every block throughout Tokyo and most are open 24/7.
Food from a convenience store may be the last thing we think about consuming, but they are nothing like the stores in the states. The food and snacks are great quality and the value is unbeatable.
I was excited to finally explore all the different items in a Japanese convenience store. We went to the major ones in various locations. You’ll find bento boxes, noodle bowls, buns, ice cream, hot and cold drinks, onigiri (Japanese rice ball), corn dogs, fried chicken, candy, chips, oden (hot pot), sake, and the beloved sando (sandwiches).
I stopped by 7-Eleven one morning to pick up a few sandwiches. The egg salad and tonkatsu (pork cutlet) ones are especially popular. The crust is neatly cut off each one and the bread is pillowy soft.
I also tried some of the fried chicken. It was crispy, hot, and the meat was so tender. Delicious!
During the colder months, oden is offered in the stores. The one-pot dish offers various ingredients such as eggs, tofu, fish balls, daikon, and fishcakes simmering in a light, soy-flavored dashi broth.
There’s a wide selection of hot and cold drinks.
The bakery section had some unusual offerings.
The sushi rolls and onigiri (Japanese rice balls) were great and made the perfect handheld quick snack on various occasions. I enjoyed a tasty spicy tuna one while riding the train one afternoon.
There was a wide selection of ice cream as well. I randomly picked one and it was a nice late-night treat.
I had to try the spicy nuggets from Lawson.
When it comes to Japanese convenience stores, I’m a big fan!
What are your favorite Japanese convenience store items? Reply below!