Updated: April 17, 2018
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Dagashi: Old-Fashioned Japanese Candy That Is So Cheap!

Do you have any childhood memories of munching on penny candy? We associate candies and snacks as a treat or as a reward for something, so it often gives us a pleasant feeling eating them. This article will introduce dagashi, or old-fashioned Japanese candies!

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What Is Dagashi?

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Dagashi is a Japanese term for cheap candies and snacks. The word "da" means negligible and "gashi" means snack. During the 1950s and later on, young children used to go to local candy shops called "Dagashiya" to buy cheap snacks as an after school activity with their friends. The prices are super cheap, with the price of each candy/snack being around ¥10-¥40 only.

Ramune (ラムネ)

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Ramune is a candy that is in a container that is shaped just like the drink. The candy is lemonade soda flavored and it is a candy that melts instantly in your mouth.

Kinako Bou (きなこ棒)

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Kinako bou is a soy bean powdered snack, and is typically sold in a dagashi store on a stick. If you pull out the stick and the tip is red, you can get another one for free. The inside of this snack is soft and chewy. Typically one kinako bou is sold for ¥10.

Ame Dama/ Drops (あめ玉、ドロップス)

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Ame dama means candy balls, and it can come in various shapes and colors. Drops are also candies, but the most old-fashioned candy is the "Sakuma drops" in the photo above. It comes in a can and the candies have different fruit flavors.

Fugashi (ふ菓子)

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Fugashi is a type of cylindrical snack that is flavored with brown sugar. It has a fluffy texture to it and is super addictive!

Kompeito (金平糖)

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Kompeito is a type of candy that comes in various colors, and is uniquely shaped with bumps on a circular shape. It literally tastes like sugar blocks, so if you are a sweet tooth who munches on sugar, you will like this.

Umai Bou (うまい棒)

The literal translation of Umai Bou means delicious stick and is the name of a corn snack. One stick is sold for ¥10 and you can even find it in convenience stores too! The original flavors are corn potage and grilled chicken but they have many more flavors!

Cocoa Cigarette (ココアシガレット)

Cocoa cigarette is a cigarette shaped candy. It is cocoa flavored, and many kids used to hold this candy like a cigarette, as smoking was seen as "cool" and "adult-like."

Dagashi Bar

In Tokyo, they have dagashi bars located in various places such as Ebisu, Shibuya, and Ikebukuro. You can enjoy these dagashi while enjoying your drink. The stores have a very retro atmosphere and you can eat as much dagashi as you want with ¥500. They have snacks like Umai Bou, gummy, ramune, candies, and more!


I hope you were able to learn some famous dagashi. There are so many dagashi and each are packaged, shaped and flavored very uniquely, so I definitely recommend going to dagashi bars or discover local dagashi stores when you are in Tokyo!
I love eating good food and discovering new places to eat. I hope to share with all of you some of the places that I recommend!

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