Traditional Japanese New Year Dish: O-Zoni

A happy new year to all of you!

In Japan, we traditionally eat three celebratory meals on January 1–3: 

  1. New Year dishes
  2. Ozoni
  3. Toso

My favorite is Ozoni. It is a traditional Japanese dish eaten on New Year's Day to pray for the year's safety.

Ozoni is accompanied by Mochi (rice cakes), a popular food for Japanese to eat on celebrations and special occasions. Before celebrating the New Year, people prepare various offerings for the Gods. One of these items is Mochi. 

When eating Ozoni, we thank the gods for the past year's harvest and safety and pray for the same for the new year.

The shape and ingredients of the Mochi used for Ozoni vary from region to region in Japan.

For example, Ozoni in Kyoto is made by adding round rice cakes, Kintoki carrots (thin and sweet carrots that appear only during the New Year), and radishes and seasoning with white miso. At my home, we add dried bonito flakes and Yuzu.


I love Mochi and Ozoni, so I had a lot this new year! If you get a chance, do try it at least once!

Get ready for the next New Year's celebration with these home items.