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Ota Yakisoba (太田やきそば): Ota-style Stir Fried Noodles

Ota Yakisoba (太田やきそば) is a local style of yakisoba (i.e. stir fried noodles) from Ota City in Gunma Prefecture (Kanto Region).

There are actually no “rules” as to what Ota Yakisoba is, except that it is from Ota City. Every restaurant will have their own unique variation.

Ota Yakisoba is considered one of the “big three” local type of yakisobas in Japan. The other two are Fujinomiya Yakisoba from Fujinomiya (Shizuoka prefecture), and Yokote Yakisoba from Yokote (Akita prefecture) 1

Read on for more interesting info about Ota yakisoba:


The main ingredients of Ota Yakisoba are:

  • Ramen Noodles

The appeal of Ota Yakisoba is that each restaurant has a different taste, so you can always enjoy fresh Yakisoba.

There are literally no standards as to what Ota Yakisoba is.

Every restaurant that serves Ota Yakisoba has its own sauce, seasonings, and toppings. The only thing consistent between them is that noodles are used (i.e. ramen noodles / chuuka-men 中華麺).

Typically, Ota Yakisoba has thicker noodles than standard yakisoba, though that is not always the case.

Location / Where to Eat

ota city gunma shrine

Ota Yakisoba can only be eaten in Ota City (Gunma Prefecture), which is about 80km (50 miles) northwest of Tokyo City.

Ota is known as an industrial town, and is most famous these days as the home to major car manufacturer Subaru. Its industrial history is also part of the reason Ota became a “yakisoba town” (read more about its interesting history below).

If you happen to be in Ota City, there are many restaurants to try. Each restaurant has its own style, so you can never get bored!. According to the official Ota Yakisoba Association, there are 22 restaurants “officially” listed by the Ota Yakisoba Association, though there are many more not listed.

Here are the top 3 according to the restaurant rating website, tabelog:

Iwazakiya (岩崎屋)

iwazakiya yakisoba

Iwazakiya has been open since 1955, and is famous for its super dark colored yakisoba. Their yakisoba has no meat, and only uses cabbage. A small plate of yakisoba starts from only 250 yen ($1.67 USD)!

Iwazakiya is also famous for its yaki manju.

Visit Iwazakiya –> Google Maps link

Sukebe-ya (助平屋)

助平屋 ota yakisoba

Sukebeya is more famous for its yaki manju, but also has some great yakisoba. They have a few different styles/variations of yakisoba — topped with egg; wrapped with egg (i.e. omu-soba); or topped with cheese. Try them all!

Visit Sukebeya –> Google Maps link

Minegishi Yamato-ya (峯岸大和屋)

minegishi yamato ya ota yakisoba

Minegishi Yamato-ya sells yakisoba, as well as various sweets / baked goods like dorayaki and daifuku.

Their yakisoba features thick noodles, cooked in a slightly sweet sauce.

Visit Minegishi Yamato –> Google Maps link

History / Origin of Ota Yakisoba

subaru 360
We can thank workers from Subaru for Ota Yakisoba

Ota, Gunma is one of the top industrial cities in the northern Kanto region. It was originally one of the main spots for airplane production (i.e. Nakajima Aircraft Company). After the war, it transformed into a major automobile production area (i.e. for Subaru).

During the economic boom after the War, many people from nearby regions came to Ota for work.

Some were from the Tohoku region, and some were from Yokote City (Akita Prefecture). Yakisoba was already popular in these areas, and it is thought that these migrant workers originally brought yakisoba to Ota.

Yakisoba was popular with factory workers because it was easy, and fast to eat (i.e. there’s no soup). It was also cheap, and filling.

Its popularity grew, and eventually became a signature food of Ota.

Ota Yakisoba Recipe

There are no rules for making Ota Yakisoba, so technically you can do any sort of stir-fried noodle you want. You just need to be in Ota when you make it. 😂

Here is a nice recipe I found on Cookpad to make the dark colored yakisoba, like the one at Iwazikiya

Ota Yakisoba Recipe (太田やきそば)

Recipe by Chef GokuCourse: Gunma, Ingredients, Japanese Foods, Kanto, Location, Noodles, Noodles


Prep time


Cooking time





Dark-style Ota Yakisoba recipe via Odenoden on Cookpad


  • Main Ingredients
  • Raw yakisoba noodles (i.e ramen noodles) … 220g

  • Cabbage (chopped) … 120g

  • Steaming Ingredients
  • Apple juice … 2 tablespoons

  • Water … 2 tablespoons

  • Lard … 1 tablespoon

  • Sauce ingredients
  • Worcestershire sauce … 5 tablespoons

  • Natural caramel … Less than 1 teaspoon

  • Sake … 1 tablespoon

  • Ajinomoto seasoning … a little

  • Garnish
  • Aonori (seaweed flakes) … Appropriate amount

  • Benishoga (Red ginger) … Appropriate amount


  • Heat a pan on medium heat.
  • Loosen the noodles in the pan with some water. Add cabbage, and steaming ingredients. Cover and steam.
  • When the cabbage has softened, add all the sauce ingredients and mix well until the noodles have turned a dark color.
  • Plate, add garnish, and enjoy!


Have you ever tried Ota yakisoba before? What did you think of it?

Leave your thoughts and comments below!

Chef Goku

Chef Goku

Chef Goku is the founder and sole operator of The Chef Dojo. He loves Japanese food, and has lived in and out of Japan for many years. He started this blog in 2018 to share everything he learns about Japanese food and cooking. He is also a self-certified Japanese knife nerd. Contact Chef Goku

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