Coco Ichibanya Curry, or simply Coco Curry, is a popular Japanese dish known for its rich flavors and customizable spiciness. This article will guide you on recreating the Coco Ichibanya Curry experience in your own kitchen.

Coco Ichibanya Curry is a flavorful Japanese curry known for its thickness and delicious taste. It is a hot and satisfying meal that you can customize to your preferred level of spiciness. Coco Ichibanya Curry, or CoCoICHI, is a popular Japanese curry restaurant known for its tasty and customizable curry dishes. Originally from Japan, Coco Ichibanya Curry has become famous globally for its flavorful curry sauce and a variety of toppings.

A standout feature of Coco Ichibanya curry is its thick and savory curry sauce. It has a unique taste distinct from traditional Indian or Thai curries. Japanese curry tends to be milder and sweeter, making it more appealing to those who prefer less heat. The sauce is crafted from a mix of spices, including curry powder, giving it a special flavor.

Typically, the curry is served with a generous portion of steamed white rice, perfectly complementing the rich sauce. You can further customize your curry with extra toppings like pickled vegetables, fried protein (known as furai), boiled eggs, or even cheese, adding more texture and flavor to the dish.

Coco Ichibanya’s curry is not just tasty but also caters to various dietary preferences. They provide vegetarian and vegan options, ensuring everyone can enjoy a flavorful curry meal.

Whether you like a mild and comforting curry or prefer a spicier kick, Coco Ichibanya curry has something to offer. It is a hearty and satisfying meal that warms your soul, making it a top choice among curry lovers in Japan and beyond.

The story behind the recipe

Coco Ichibanya’s curry story began in 1978 in Ichinomiya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan, founded by brothers Kunio and Koichi Matsuda. They wanted to create a place offering delicious and affordable curry dishes. Japanese curry came to Japan in the late 19th century through British colonial influence.

Coco Ichibanya took Japanese curry and created its unique recipe. The chain became famous for letting customers customize orders, and choosing spice levels, proteins, and toppings—a feature that set it apart.

Over time, Coco Ichibanya grew rapidly, becoming one of Japan’s largest curry chains with many locations. It also expanded globally, with franchises in the United States, Thailand, Singapore, and South Korea.

How to make Coco Ichibanya’s curry


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder (Japanese curry roux blocks are also available in stores)
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper according to taste
  • Optional: You can add extra veggies like peas, bell peppers, and mushrooms. if you like.
  • Optional: You also have the option to include cooked meat or your preferred protein, such as chicken, beef, or shrimp.

Step-by-step instructions for making Coco Ichibanya’s curry

  1. Heat some vegetable oil in a big pot or pan on medium heat.
  2. Put in the diced onions and minced garlic, cooking until the onions turn clear and smell good.
  3. Add the carrots and potatoes, cooking for a few more minutes.
  4. Sprinkle flour and curry powder over the veggies, stirring well to cover everything evenly.
  5. Slowly pour in vegetable or chicken broth while stirring lots to avoid lumps.
  6. Put in a bay leaf and add salt and pepper to your liking.
  7. If you’re using extra veggies or cooked meat, add them now.
  8. Lower the heat and let the curry simmer for 20-30 minutes until the veggies are soft and the flavors mix well. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  9. Take out the bay leaf.
  10. Serve the curry on top of cooked rice and add Fukujinzuke (Japanese pickles) and Furai (breaded and fried protein) if you want.

Tips for making Coco Ichibanya’s curry

  • The thickness of the curry is up to you. If you want it thicker, simmer it longer. For a thinner curry, reduce the simmer time or add a bit of water.
  • If you want a heartier curry, add protein and veggies.
  • Test the spice level of the store-bought roux, as they vary from mild to very hot.

Flavourful substitute

  • Flour: To make the curry sauce thicker, you can use cornstarch or arrowroot powder instead of flour. Mix the starch with a bit of water to create a slurry before adding it to the sauce.
  • Vegetable oil: you can use sunflower oil, olive oil, or canola oil instead of vegetable oil.
  • Garlic: you can use garlic powder instead of fresh garlic.

Serving suggestions

  • Traditional Style: Serve Coco Ichibanya Curry over a bed of steamed white rice for a classic and satisfying meal.
  • Spice it Up: Customize your curry with additional toppings like pickled vegetables, boiled eggs, or cheese to enhance the flavors and textures.
  • Tempura: Try adding tempura to your Coco Ichibanya Curry meal. Tempura is a popular Japanese side dish made by lightly battering and deep-frying vegetables or shrimp. The result is a crispy and flavorful addition that pairs well with the curry, offering a delightful mix of textures and tastes.
  • Gyoza: Elevate your Coco Ichibanya Curry experience with Japanese dumplings, known as gyoza. You can either purchase pre-made gyoza and cook them following the package instructions or make your own, filling them with a choice of vegetables or meat. Enjoy them steamed or pan-fried for a tasty and satisfying accompaniment to your curry.
  • Protein Boost: Add your favorite protein, such as chicken, beef, shrimp, or tofu, to make it a hearty and protein-packed dish.
  • Curry Fried Rice: Mix the curry into fried rice for a tasty and fulfilling twist on the classic fried rice dish.
  • Side of Japanese Pickles: Garnish with Fukujinzuke (Japanese pickles) for an authentic touch and a burst of tangy flavor.


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