These snacks, both salty and sweet, will be sure to satisfy anyone. 

These days, when looking for the best food gifts, it’s a lot easier to find something online than it is to go out and shop for something. Japanese e-commerce site Fujin Gaho, for example, has over 2,300 food-based gift options for sale. In fact, they just released lists of their top products in the categories of sweets and Japanese snacks for the year 2022, and some of them look downright delectable!

The top-selling sweet was Fluffy Pancake Sandwiches, which come in a box of 10 for 3,980 yen (US$30). These pancakes, made super fluffy with milk collected from Kyoto cows, are a beloved menu item at the Lion Cafe, a popular cafe in Kyoto. They come in two varieties: Premium Whipped Cream filling and Chocolate Truffle Cream filling.

Coming in second is a longtime big seller for Fujin Gaho, a 230-gram (8.1-ounce) can of Egg de Chat cookies (2,700 yen). These langue de chat cookies are made with high-quality eggs from Ranmeisha, an egg-specialty shop in Utsunomiya, Tochigi Prefecture, that has been a family-owned business since 1935. They’re buttery, crunchy, and light enough to almost melt on your tongue.

Third on the sweets list the Mariebell Japan’s Pandora Box (Gold version) (5,400 yen). Mariebell is a chocolatier originating in New York but also with branches in Kyoto and Osaka, and this box is packed with some of their best chocolate treats. Four baked nut-and-chocolate delights are contained inside: Pecan Nut Florentines (a chocolate cookie with pecans), Engadina Chocola (a Swiss-style sweet made with organic walnuts and caramel), Fruit Pate (made with granola, spicy chocolate, and honey), and Citrus Dacquoise (made with citrus flavors and a chocolate cream filling).

The fourth most popular sweet sold by Fujin Gaho in 2022 was the Ice Pop to Rois (3,240 yen), from ice cream specialty shop POIRE des rois GINZA. These come in a box of nine, with three each of three different flavors: strawberry, lemon, and pistachio. These mini ice pops are not only super cute, but also packed with flavor, and even include actual strawberries, lemon slices, and pistachios inside. They’re small but fully satisfying!

And ranking in at number five for the most popular sweets at Fujin Gaho was the Kyoto Gion Cookie tin (5,500 yen). These cookies are made by Shinmonzen Yonemura in Kyoto and are said to be loved even by maiko. There are 12 cookie flavors, ranging from Japanese flavors like black sesame and kuromitsu kinako to western-inspired flavors like coconut and hazelnut.

The Japanese snacks category includes even more sweets, with the occasional salty snack mixed in. The most popular Japanese snack from Fujin Gaho was Peanut Mochi (2,000 yen) from Japanese sweet specialty shop Kasugai Yoshino. A traditional mochi shape with a peanut paste filling topped with coarse-ground peanuts, these unusual mochi are the ultimate salty-sweet dessert.

In second place was the MOCHI cube (2,700 yen) from Tottori-based Japanese confectionary Hogetsudo, which comes as a set of twelve with four different flavors. These mochi are stylishly molded into a perfect cube and made with domestic ingredients. They have a melt-in-your-mouth consistency since they’re filled with whipped cream made from pasture-raised cow’s milk. Around the whipped cream is a layer of chocolate truffle, coffee, matcha, or azuki bean, which is then wrapped in mochi. It sounds as delicious as it is pretty!

The third most popular Japanese snack of 2022 was the Fukeyoshi Ama-joppai Can (2,592 yen), which is cleverly named, as “Fukiyose” can mean both “mixed medley” and “to drift and blow together,” and this is a box of sweet and salty rice snacks shaped like leaves and flowers blown together by the autumn wind. There are crackers made from soybeans, seasonal vegetable chips, plum blossom-shaped unpei (made from glutinous rice and sugar), flower-shaped bolos (a confectionary inspired by Portuguese sweets) made from buckwheat, and karinto (deep-fried dough covered in sugar). This is a box chock full of Japanese flavors and aesthetics!

No list of Japanese sweets would ever be complete without sembei rice crackers, and that’s what came in fourth this year. Arare Cafe’s 28-piece Variety Pack (2,613 yen) includes seven different packs of rice crackers, but each “stick” contains three different kinds, with altogether 14 completely different rice crackers included in this box. With basic flavors like soy sauce and shrimp and original flavors like pepperoncini, basil, and onion garlic, this box offers a delicious array of rice cracker flavors to satisfy any sembei fan.

Last but not least in the Japanese snack category was Tarafuku Monaka (3,100 yen), which is sold as a set of two boxes of six. Monaka is a wafer sandwich, often filled with red beans or other tasty morsels. These monaka, which are shaped like lucky cats and made by Tokyo-based confectionary Shirakaba, which was founded shortly after World War II, are filled with anko made from white azuki beans for a delightfully sweet and crunchy snack.

If you have plans to visit in-laws, the families of friends, or anyone else this holiday season, you’ll definitely want to bring a gift as thanks for their hospitality, as is the custom in Japan. Or maybe you’re visiting Japan on vacation, and looking to bring something home for your family and friends. In either case, you’re guaranteed to impress everyone with these stylish and delicious snacks and sweets.

If you don’t have time to order, there are also a number of shops in Tokyo and around Japan that you can buy souvenir-quality sweets from. We recommend these five, but there are so many to choose from, so you’ll undoubtedly be able to find something!

Source, images: PR Times
● Want to hear about SoraNews24’s latest articles as soon as they’re published? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
[ Read in Japanese ]