Saturday, November 26, 2011

Gyudon Recipe

Gyudon(牛丼)is a popular dish which was made even more popular by chains like Yoshinoya, Tsukiya and Matsuya, which make delicious Gyudon for very reasonable prices in Japan.  Gyu牛 means beef and don丼 means rice bowl (with something on top).  In other words, Beef Rice Bowl.  
Basic gyudon may be topped with beni-shoga (pickled ginger), sliced negi (shallots/spring onion) and is also delicious as Tsukimi Gyudon(月見牛丼)(with a raw egg on top) if you're feeling adventurous.
This recipe is adapted from the gyudon recipe by taka_jam on cookpad:

Gyudon Recipe  serves 4
  • 2 cups boiling water and 2 tsp Dashi powder
  • 1-2 Onions, sliced
  • 400g Beef, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Sake (optional)
  • 1/3 cup Japanese Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 tsp grated fresh Ginger
  • Steamed Rice and Beni-shoga, to serve.
Step 1
  1. Place water, dashi powder and onions in a saucepan and boil 3 min.
  2. Add sugar, sake, soy sauce, beef, and stir to combine well.  Bring to the boil and simmer 10min.
  3. Stir in freshly grated ginger and simmer another 5-10 min until beef has absorbed the flavour, onions are caramelised and liquid is reduced to half.
  4. Serve on a bowl of steamed rice and top with beni-shoga if desired.

    Step 2
    Step 3

Step 4
Tsukimi Gyudon: Crack a fresh egg on top for a more adventurous version (my favorite).  This adds a creamy element to the flavour, similar to sukiyaki.
Gyudon tips:
(At step three) One of the keys to perfect gyudon is cooking time.  If it is undercooked, the flavour hasn't developed enough and the onions are sharp.  If it is overcooked, the onions will become too soft and the flavour too strong.


  1. おいしそう!Recipeどうもありがとうございました。

  2. @Miss M ~신희
    Thanks Miss M♡ Let me know how it went!

    @lindberg どういたしまして! You're welcome!

  3. Great Recipe! Yoshinoya's Beef bowl has always been my favorite dish.. Now I can try to cook it myself! Thanks for the recipe!

  4. what can i replace sake if i dont have it?

    1. FYI you can also use dry sherry for Sake and sweet cooking sherry for Mirin. I found this out when I moved, and the prices for Japanese ingred. above my "budget".

      hope this helps.

  5. @Anonymous Thanks for your question! Actually you can leave out the Sake if you don't have it, it doesn't make too much of a difference. Or, if you have Mirin, you can replace Sake with Mirin and reduce the Sugar to 2 Tbsp instead of 3, as Mirin is sweet. Enjoy your Gyudon!❤

  6. Great recipe can't wait to try ! thanks for posting.

  7. Hi little Japan mama! I lived in Japan for over 10 years and now it has been 3 years since I left and I sure miss all the delicious dishes available in Japan, what kind of beef would you suggest I use for this?
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Dani, Thanks for your comment☆ As long as the beef is very thinly sliced, it will be fine, and the cooking time will soften it a little. You might find it in the freezer of your Asian grocery store or at an Asian butcher. It might be called "shabu-shabu beef".

  8. If you're in Australia, Woolworths has beef "sizzle steaks" which are quite thinly sliced and well-priced too.

  9. Your delicious recipe was so easy to follow, so I can make it often - crucial point since there isn't any Yoshinoya around here - とてもおいしいかた。

  10. Melodie K, I'm glad you enjoyed it!☆

  11. Thanks! I'm a big fan of the fast food (Yoshinoya) Gyudon that I ate many years ago in SoCal. No such thing - that I can find, in the Pacific Northwest and so I'm trying to make my own. The rice, beef, onions, ginger and careful simmering are no-brainers and I've got them covered. The Dashi confuses me. I know little of what it is or how to use it and the varities in big Asian stores are endless - and I cannot read the instructions.Your recipe calls for 2 tsp "Dashi Powder" in a pint of water, but what kind of Dashi? If possible, can you recommend a specific brand, at least as a place to start? I suspect that the flavors imparted by the Dashi are essential to the dish, but the choices are overwhelming. I'd like to get the box-stock recipe right before I venture into any modifications or omissions. I note that some Gyudon recipes don't even use Dashi and perhaps the obtain the essential flavors from other ingredients. If yo have any thoughts, please share them with me. I'm lost... Thank you. -C.

    1. Hi Cedarglen, thanks for your question ^_^ Yes, there are many brands of Dashi-no-moto or Hon-dashi, but as long as you buy a Japanese brand, they really all taste basically the same, and are the same concentration. They come in sachets which help keep them fresh for longer, or they are cheaper if you buy a large packet, but you must keep it well sealed to prevent moisture from getting in. I don't have any brand preference. Dashi powder contains glucose, salt, bonito (katsuo) extract and MSG. The other way I've been making it recently it is instead of using dashi powder, I boil a large pinch of katsuobushi (dried bonito shavings) in the water for a few minutes, then scoop it out with a sieve before adding the onions. If the dashi step is too much of a bother for you, it probably wouldn't hurt too much to simply leave it out - the dashi just adds a subtle flavour enhancement, but it's not major. Good luck with your gyudon!☆

  12. Oh my favourite dish when i was in japan. I wish i can make some bowl of gyudon.

  13. Hi Jane, what does one do with the soup? I drank it and it tasted *amazing* like the rest of the recipe, but is there another use for it?
    Thanks for publishing this recipe! :)

  14. Thanks Jason! You pour some of the soup over the top of each bowl when you serve it. Sorry I forget the little details like that☆

  15. simple and so good even if I did not have dashi powder. I used sushi paper instead which melted in the boiling water. I am glad I stumble upon your website.

  16. Hi there,
    just returned from Japan (Tokyo) last night, one of the first things I wanted when I went there was gyudon..I lived there many years ago for a few years and was always busy so Yoshinoya was always my quick & inexpensive dinner so many salary men do..
    Was looking around for recipes and found your site..thanks so much for the great work you are doing..

  17. can i replace beef with pork ,instead of beef?

  18. Thank you! Glad to find an easy, clearly explained & photographed recipe for this :-)

  19. )": Overcooked it a little but still very tasty! Thanks for the recipe~ Since I didn't have dashi stock, I used chicken bouillon and it tastes great. ^_^

  20. This is my recipe of choice for gyudon. If you don't have sake or mirin, or the usual substitute (white wine) try using a light-bodied beer like Corona and add only two tablespoons of sugar instead of a 1/4 cup. It really brings out the umami flavor! also, add half a teaspoon of shichimi when you're ading the ginger to give it an extra kick.

  21. hi
    thanks for posting this the pork gyudon in yoshinoya is always my favorite. is this really the same taste in yoshonoyas gyudon?

  22. Just made this as per your recipe. When my four year old son asks for seconds, I know I've got something right. My seven year old said it was nearly as good as Sukiya's so what can I say but thanks so much for publishing and keep up the excellent work!


    mom, dad, kids, everyone wiped it out. lol i trippled the recipe too and still nothing left.

    cracked an egg over each serving too.

    total devastation.


  24. i just made this using your recipe this morning. my husband has been wanting it for so long! it tasted good! thank you!

  25. So yummy! Just made this yesterday with a porterhouse that lingered too long in the fridge, it was superb. I sprinkled half the dashi granules in at the start to simmer with the onions, and threw in a square of konbu . The flavor of dashi evaporates if it is cooked too long, so stir in the rest of the granules at the very end when the meat is tender, and remove from the heat, this will preserve the sabor!

  26. I tried it last night,

    I was a huge hit with my husband! Though I served it with a soft boiled egg instead of a raw one, since my husband is not keep on raw eggs...

    It was delicious thanks!

  27. We have made this a few times before, but were out of dashi powder when I looked! We substituted with beef broth and bonito flakes with just a touch of Filipino patis (fish sauce). We love this recipe!!!

  28. i love your website
    the recipes are so delicious

  29. I use this recipe all the time! Thanks!

  30. Can you use fish sauce instead of the dashi or bonito flakes?

  31. This brings back memories of having breakfast at matsuya after a night of karaoke! Thank you!!!

  32. Thank you for posting this recipe, I made it last night and it was delicious! :)

  33. Great recipe! Just finished devouring it and I think I'll be making it a lot during this semester.. Thanks for posting!

  34. It's a regular dish at home in Sendai, especially with the egg. And it's divine!

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