kinoko pasta japanese mushroom pasta closeup side

Kinoko Pasta | With 9 Tips to Make this a Success

Kinoko pasta is a Japanese style pasta is made with three types of mushrooms and the magical combination of bacon, butter, soy sauce. Throw on some freshly cracked pepper and green onions and you have a pasta that is sure to impress even those with the dullest sense of taste. Why? Because this pasta is packed with tons of umami and flavor!!  Read on for 9 tips on making this pasta a success! 

kinoko pasta japanese mushroom pasta closeup side

Japanese style pasta

Have you had it yet?

If not, let me tell you a little about it.

It has been, and always will be my favorite ways to satiate my carb cravings.

I love the fusion of flavors.

And yes, most times (to me) fusion is a dirty word, but not in this case.

Japanese style pasta takes Italian pasta (the noodles) and uses Japanese ingredients for the sauce.

Hence, the “Japanese style”.

In Japan, you can find restaurants that specialize in ‘Japanese style’ pasta and true Italian pasta/food.

If you’re ever in the country you should make an effort to try both.

The Italian restaurants in Japan rival some of the best Italian I’ve eaten in Italy.

And the Japanese style Italian foods are delicious in their own unique way.


kinoko pasta japanese mushroom pasta closeup

My favorite Japanese style pastas

This kinoko pasta (きのこパスタ) or Japanese style mushroom pasta is probably my favorite.

With mentaiko pasta coming in at a close second (see my recipes below)

This particular mushroom pasta is my go to and the one I make most frequently.

Just thinking about this makes my mouth water.

And no I didn’t watch anyone bite into a lemon.

Oh and by the way, if you’ve never bitten into a lemon… you should try it sometime.

It really does make your mouth water.

Sound unappetizing?

Well, I don’t think I’d do it without flavor tripping.

That’s the smart and fun way to do it. Magic berries.

It really does make everything magically sweet.

Perhaps, I’ll host a flavor tripping party on my youtube channel sometime.

Let me know if you wanna come.

Meanwhile, have a close up look at the ingredients I used for the pasta –


How to make this kinoko pasta a success

I’ll tell you.

Use plenty of thick cut bacon, a good serving of butter, and lots and lots of mushrooms.

You can mess around a little with the mushrooms, as in, use what you can find, but!

My recommendation is to go with maitake, shittake, and shimeji mushrooms as they make a wonderfully earthy trio.

This is a great dish to have year round, but for some reason mushrooms always remind me of Fall.

Could be because Fall is mushroom picking season? hmmmm

Anyways, while I’d love to go and pick mushrooms myself with the added excitement I could kill myself.

I got my mushrooms at the local market, where I’m sure they were grown on a commercial mushroom farm.

One day I’ll get around to growing my own, but for now the market will suffice.

If you’ve never made Japanese style mushroom pasta before, I promise you’ll not be disappointed.

**Disclaimer- you must like Japanese mushrooms + bacon and the magical combination of butter and soy sauce. I mean why else would you make this!? …. 


Nine tips for making Kinoko Japanese mushroom pasta

  1. One of the dominant flavors in this pasta is the bacon. Crisp the bacon so you get a nice crunchy texture with each bite
  2. Make sure to brown your mushrooms, the browning adds a lot of flavor thanks to the Maillard reaction
  3. The mushrooms may seem like a lot, but don’t worry, they’ll cook down!
  4. Never cook your pasta until al dente in salted water. The best tasting pasta IMO is pasta that’s finished in it’s sauce. That means draining the pasta just before it’s about al dente. Finish cooking this pasta in the mushroom, soy sauce, butter mixture.
  5. Reserve pasta water and add a little with the pasta into the mushroom pan if you like your sauce to be ‘saucy’
  6. Use low sodium soy sauce (which is what I generally use) if you’re trying to watch your salt intake
  7. Use a good quality pasta, one of my favorites is Rustichella. Reminds me of the pastas I ate in Italy. Thick with good flavor and made with bronze dies which makes an uneven texture on the pasta so the sauce will adhere better~! If you’ve found an even better pasta I’d love to hear about it!! 
  8. Top this with fresh black pepper to add kick
  9. Add green onions to get some aromatics and a slight onion flavor to add contrast the rich butter, bacon and mushrooms notes

japanese style mushroom pasta with spaghetti - all day i eat like a shark

And if you’re a visual learned here’s a video I made to show you how I made this exact kinoko pasta!


Have you made a kinoko or mushroom pasta before? If so, what did you put in it?

Share your tips and techniques in a comment below, perhaps there’s something I could incorporate on my next mushroom pasta eating adventure!


japanese style mushroom pasta with spaghetti - all day i eat like a shark (2)


Kinoko pasta | Japanese style pasta with shiitake, shimeji and maitake mushrooms

kinoko pasta japanese mushroom pasta closeup side

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  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 2 people 1x
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Japanese


  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 34 slices thick bacon (chopped ~1 cup)
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 cup Green onion (chopped)
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup shimeji mushrooms
  • 1 cup maitake mushrooms
  • dash of salt
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 lb Spaghetti (cooked until just before al dente, pasta water reserved)
  • pasta water reserved


  1. First, add about 1 Tbsp olive oil to pan on medium high heat and saute bacon until crispy.
  2. Add all the mushrooms with a dash of salt and cook until reduced in volume by at least half. Allow mushrooms to brown and stir occasionally to prevent burning.
  3. Add crushed garlic and cook for about a minute.
  4. Next add in pasta (do in 2 batches if your pot/pan is small) + 1/4 cup of pasta water, soy sauce. Mix to distribute sauce evenly.
  5. Mix in green onions and cook for another minute.
  6. Remove from heat and serve with freshly cracked black pepper and more green onions!

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11 thoughts on “Kinoko Pasta | With 9 Tips to Make this a Success”

  1. Doggone, the bacon is a red line for me (no animals, though I am not vegan). Any substitution…you seem to be suggesting it’s the dominant flavor, so I may need to move to the next recipe. Your thoughts?

    1. if you want the smokey notes bacon usually provides you could try a dash of smoked paprika or a few drops of liquid smoke for a similar effect, have you tried using either as a sub for bacon?

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Konnichiwa! (Hello!) I'm Pat Tokuyama, a Japanese tofu cookbook author, who travels for music, food, and adventure. If you like Japanese tea, checkout some of the newestorganic japanese tea, matcha bowls and noren and more!

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