Sukiyaki Recipe

Posted on Jan 19 2013 - 9:52pm by Demelza Young

When I first decided I no longer wanted to eat meat, I was interested to hear that my mother had been a vegetarian at one point in her life.  She encouraged me to learn more about the lifestyle, and even unearthed some of her old vegetarian cookbooks for me to pick through.  You know how sometimes you’ll browse different blogs or websites, bookmarking dozens of recipes that sound or look good even though you’ll probably never get around to making them? Well, that’s basically what I did with her cookbooks.  I stuck little post-it note pieces between the pages of every single recipe that sounded remotely appealing.

One particular recipe that stood out to me right away was a sukiyaki recipe.  I’d never heard of the dish before, but I’d been a long-time lover of all things Japanese, so of course I wanted to try it out.  My mom helped me assemble the ingredients and cook it the first time, and it’s been a keeper ever since because my family thought it was so delicious.  It does take a bit of work to prepare, so I’d recommend enlisting some help for at least cutting all the vegetables.  It’s not one of those quick, thirty-minute recipes to whip up, so you may want to save it for a day you’ll have some extra time to allot to dinner.

Sukiyaki Recipe


  • 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil Canola, Vegetable, or Olive Oil
  • 1 lb Firm or Extra Firm Tofu Cut into 1/3 inch slices
  • 4 Cups whole white button mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms (if available) I actually like to slice these in half, to make them more bite-sized
  • 1/2 Butternut Squash
  • 2 Zucchini cut into thick slices
  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 1 Cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 Cup Dry Sherry
  • 1/2 – 1 Cup Water
  • 6 Cups Coarsely chopped kale, mustard greens, or collard greens I’ve tried using several different greens in it, but the kale option is my all-time favorite. Also, I love vegetables, so I probably use closer to 8 cups of kale…or maybe 10, I don’t really measure it, I just keep going until it looks right to me.
  • 1 Onion or 4 bunches scallions, both the green and white parts, cut into 3-in lengths
  • 1 Teaspoon Ginger
  • Cooked Rice for serving


  • Assemble your ingredients. Chop all the vegetables and slice the tofu (believe me, this makes things much easier on you later, rather than trying to chop the vegetables as you go along). Press your tofu a bit first, to help get rid of some of the extra moisture in it.

  • Heat about 1.5 t of the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Cook the tofu slices on both sides, stirring, until well browned (about 15 to 20 minutes). You’ll be able to tell when it’s time to flip the pieces over because the edges start changing color (as circled in red).

    Don’t freak out if your tofu breaks up on you. As you can see, mine isn’t perfect either. I promise it’ll still taste delicious.

  • Slide the tofu to one side of the pan (or if the pan you use is too small for both the mushrooms and tofu, you can always take it out and add it back in later). If need be, add another teaspoon of oil and then add the mushrooms, cooking until browned.

  • Push the mushrooms to the side, then add the squash, onion, and zucchini.

  • Combine soy sauce with the honey, sherry, and ½ c water; pour over vegetables, and bring to a boil.

  • Lower the heat and simmer until squash is tender, about 5 minutes. I actually had to transfer everything to a larger pot, because all the kale wouldn’t fit! This entire pot was filled to the brim. You can see how much it all cooked down.

  • In separate piles, add as many of the greens (and scallions and bean sprouts, if using) as will fit in the pan. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes more.
  • Stir in the ginger and cook another minute, adding more water (up to the remaining ½ c) as necessary.
  • And you’re done! Not the most photogenic dish, but it sure is tasty. Serve over rice.

Source: Adapted from the (1995) Vegetarian Times Complete Cookbook, by the editors of the Vegetarian Times and Lucy Moll.


Demelza Young is an alumni of Northern Kentucky University. She currently enjoys volunteering her time in her local community, reviewing online content with her cat, and sharing quality recipes.

45 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Tamara January 19, 2013 at 10:24 pm - Reply

    This looks super yummy, I love finding new recipes thank you for sharing

  2. jheylo January 19, 2013 at 11:09 pm - Reply

    it must be so hard to become vegetarian but that's good for our body though. Thanks for sharing this recipe

  3. April Wray January 20, 2013 at 12:46 am - Reply

    Great Review! Thanks for all the different pics! I am going to have to try this!

  4. Jennifer Comet Wagner January 20, 2013 at 1:23 pm - Reply

    I don't know if I've ever had Sukiyaki. Whenever I get Japanese food I get either Teriyaki or rolls. I'll have to give it a try.

  5. Shydub January 20, 2013 at 1:23 pm - Reply

    wow. this looks healthy. i haven't tried or taste tofu in my entire life. would like to try this sometime. Thanks for sharing the recipe

  6. maria @close to home January 20, 2013 at 1:25 pm - Reply

    wow this sounds great.  I was also a vegetarian for a few years during and after college.  Slowly I added meat back in but wish I had more veggie recipes to share with my family

  7. Alaina Bullock January 20, 2013 at 10:39 pm - Reply

    I love , love , love Japanese food!  Thanks for a great recipe!  I especially love all of the yummy veggies in this one!

  8. lelaniedenso @ tosewwithlove January 21, 2013 at 10:04 am - Reply

    Oh my! Now I miss having this! Thanks for sharng your recipe!

  9. Paula January 21, 2013 at 10:15 am - Reply

    This really looks delicous! Thanks for sharing this great recipe, will try it out for sure.

  10. mitchelle January 21, 2013 at 10:51 am - Reply

    Wow! such a mouth watering site! 

  11. Angela Kinder January 21, 2013 at 10:51 am - Reply

    I may be a meat eater, but that recipe looks darn good! So good that I may consider making it. Only problem- I've never had tofu. 

  12. Katherine January 21, 2013 at 11:22 am - Reply

    Awesome share! Thank you. We just bought some tofu so I'd love to give this a try.

  13. Chelsea Klassen January 21, 2013 at 11:32 am - Reply

    This is a great recipe! I will have to try it!

  14. Annabelle January 21, 2013 at 11:42 am - Reply

    Since my oven just stopped working , this recipe is going to come in very handy! I love kale too.

  15. Melanie January 21, 2013 at 11:55 am - Reply

    This looks super healthy~ Thanks for sharing!

  16. Kelly R January 21, 2013 at 12:10 pm - Reply

    This looks really good. Thank you for sharing.

  17. Alicia January 21, 2013 at 12:42 pm - Reply

    I would be a reluctant vegetarian, but this looks yummy!  I do like to incorporate vegetarian meals every one a while.

  18. Tom Shewbridge January 21, 2013 at 3:36 pm - Reply

    Fantastic share you have here.  Thanks so much.  While I will be honest an say I could not solely become a vegetarian, it is appreciative to know that recipes like this exist that sound flavorable and would provide a great deal of nutrition.  Woot!

  19. Amy S. January 22, 2013 at 10:34 am - Reply

    I attended NKU also!  Loved it!  I don't think I could go vegetarian but I know it's a very healthy lifestyle or at least can be.

  20. Faith January 25, 2013 at 7:08 am - Reply

    Vegetarian fare goes well as an accompaniment or stands on its own. Everyone in our family enjoyed this one! It is delicious and satisfying.

  21. Amanda January 28, 2013 at 11:24 pm - Reply

    I just went back to being a  vegetarian this year as part of my new years resolution. So I really appreciate a new vegetarian recipe to try ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Lenora D March 15, 2013 at 8:23 am - Reply

    This looks great.  I love new recipes

  23. candess phillips March 19, 2013 at 10:05 pm - Reply

    Your right!  The dish is not really photogenic but it bursts with nutrients.  The only ingredient I wouldn't have on hand is the dry sherry.  Is that a cooking sherry or something to be picked up from the liquor store?  I wonder what could be used as a substitution.  (some of the family are on meds that dont allow spirits)    I do really like that you took step by step pictures.  It's like your mom is helping us too!   A website that has great veggie dishes is AllRecipes….and of course the blog my vegan gluten free blog and steamy kitchen (you tube or web) for excellent meat free dishes.

    • Susan Bewley March 19, 2013 at 10:42 pm - Reply

      Yes, a dry sherry is fine. ๐Ÿ™‚ I love All Recipes ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Karen Glatt March 24, 2013 at 12:57 pm - Reply

    This recipe called the Sukiyaki looks so healthy and delicious to make. I like that it has a healthy tofu, and that it is easy to make. Thanks for this awesome recipe!

  25. Bobby Tarumi March 26, 2013 at 3:30 am - Reply

    Wow, I'm Japanese and I always thought Sukiyaki required beef. Born US though.


  26. Jane Bohn March 30, 2013 at 10:50 am - Reply

    This looks so good I'm going to have to try it.

  27. Heather Diotte April 6, 2013 at 7:57 am - Reply

    I have not touched red meat in quite awhile, and don't miss it that's for sure! This recipe looks killer, thanks for sharing!

  28. Maria Iemma April 23, 2013 at 6:05 am - Reply

    My daughter in law is a vegetarian and we are not so I am always struggling to find recipes that we can all share. This one sounds great —

  29. md kennedy April 26, 2013 at 12:18 am - Reply

    My husband and I are trying to eat as meat-free as possible, but I never thought of Sukiyaki!  One thing I do with tofu if I am going to fry it is to soak it in very salted water for at least 30 minutes before I need it – this seems to draw out additional moisture without me having to squeeze the life out of it (when I sometimes mash it to bits instead by mistake!).

  30. Krystal V. May 18, 2013 at 11:26 pm - Reply

    looks so good! gonna try the recipe soon ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Emily June 20, 2013 at 10:22 am - Reply

    Yumm Looks Good !

  32. Emily June 20, 2013 at 10:22 am - Reply

    Yum looks Good 

  33. Mer June 27, 2013 at 12:12 pm - Reply

    Yum! I'm trying to get myself out of cooking rut–it's so easy to fall into the routine of making the same stuff–and this sounds different and delicious.

  34. Andreea Toderoiu July 15, 2013 at 7:11 am - Reply

    This is an interesting recipe.It looks so delicious.

  35. Aubrey July 26, 2013 at 2:29 pm - Reply

    this looks really good

  36. sam dock August 5, 2013 at 9:31 am - Reply

    We dont do tofu, but other than that this sounds really good!

  37. lee liet November 2, 2013 at 9:49 pm - Reply

    thank you for sharing this lovely recipe, the photos are very helpful. Sukiyaki tastes nice

  38. Paula Weintraut November 10, 2013 at 6:55 pm - Reply

    This would all be for me . Noone will eat the Squash and mushooms in this house!  Yummmy can't wait to make it !

  39. Jen Rodrigues November 10, 2013 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    Yummy this sounds delicious!! Thanks for sharing. ๐Ÿ™‚ 

  40. Carly November 19, 2013 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    I'm always looking for recipes that include tofu. This one's a winner!

  41. Nena Sinclair November 19, 2013 at 5:03 pm - Reply

    I LOVE Sukiyaki! Thanks so much for the recipe! I'll be making this very soon! ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Shannon April 16, 2014 at 4:47 am - Reply

    Pinning this one for later, thank you for sharing.

  43. Paula Ball June 14, 2014 at 11:15 am - Reply

    Sukiyaki was m dad’s favorite thing to cook when I was a child. We had it probably a couple of times a month at least. This is a healthier version & sounds so delicious & totally worth the time it takes to prepare.

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