Yakitori: Meaning, Unusual Types And Preparation Tips

Are you a fan of Japanese food? If not yet, I believe it’s high time you got at least a little bit acquainted with it. Japanese chefs tend to make the most delicious dishes and they usually pride themselves in both the ingredients and the techniques they use. A lot of people are often puzzled with the names of their dishes, as well as the taste and the way they are prepared.

Today, we’re here to learn about a specific dish that has become rather popular recently. It’s called Yakitori and, as you can see here, it is basically a type of skewered chicken. If you are a food enthusiast and love spending your time in the kitchen, you might be willing to learn how to prepare this dish on your own and I might be able to help you. Before we get to the preparation tips, however, we will need to take a quick look into a couple of different types of this meal. Since I am pretty sure that you are curious about the name of this dish, I’ll also quickly explain what it means.

The Meaning Of Yakitori

It sounds rather unusual, exotic and powerful, doesn’t it? That’s because it probably is like that. Although, that could probably be the English-language speaker thinking on your behalf. It’s completely normal that certain words from other languages sound unusual to you. When you continue hearing them without discerning the meaning, you will probably make your own associations in your brain.

Those associations might or might not have to do something with the truth. It all depends on your relationship with this language and the level of your overall sense for languages in general. Furthermore, it also depends on the experience you had when you first heard this word and, of course, on the experience you had while eating the dish. Overall, your associations are based on a set of your experiences and they might not be correct at all. We’re not here to explore those associations, though.

Instead of exploring what you might be thinking, I’ll simply let you know what “Yakitori” actually means. The meaning might not be as exotic and as powerful as you might have wanted it to be, but I cannot exactly invent new meanings in order to satisfy your expectations. The word “yaki” means burn or grill and “tori” means bird. That leads us to a simple conclusion. Yakitori means burnt or grilled bird.

Which bird is in question, though? Are you going to eat pigeons or something? Don’t worry, things are much simpler than that. The bird in question is chicken and we all love how it tastes. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that this is a simple chicken-made dish, because there is definitely nothing simple about it.

Read this to learn a bit more about Yakitori.

Types Of Yakitori

As you might have guessed, the type of this dish depends on the type of the chicken meat that is used. Of course, the meat is also seasoned with a particular sauce, with “tare sauce” being the most popular option and used widely in Japanese cuisine. When I mentioned the “type of chicken meat” above, you might have thought about the breasts and the wings only, but there are a lot more parts of chicken that can be used in the preparation of this meal. Let’s check out some of the types of Yakitori that you might not have expected to see on the list.


Believe it or not, this type of Yakitori is prepared with chicken liver. It takes a real wizard in the kitchen to prepare it perfectly, since it should be left rare in the center for the best flavor. Reba has a rich and creamy texture and it should be eaten immediately after being served, because that’s when it tastes best. I bet you didn’t expect to see liver on the list, huh?


If you were surprised with liver, then you are about to get shocked right now. Have you ever thought that you could eat the tail of a chicken? I am pretty sure that this hasn’t occurred to you before, unless you have experience with the Japanese cuisine. Bonjiri is a type of Yakitori made from the meat taken from the tail of the chicken. This meat is very tender and people seem to fall in love with it after trying it.


Here’s another completely unexpected Yakitori dish. It’s made from the crown of the chicken, the meat of which is also rather tender and it is proved to be an excellent source of collagen. This meat is grilled until it becomes crispy, which is probably why a lot of people enjoy its taste. If you come across this dish in a restaurant, do give it a try.

Preparation Tips

The above mentioned dishes are rather rare and it’s best if you look for them in a Japanese restaurant toowong or any similar place you come across. Preparing them yourself might turn out to be a rather complicated endeavor. Even professional chefs have a hard time preparing this. You should, however, feel free to try and prepare chicken breasts this way. All you need to do is follow a few important tips and your dish will be a success.

For starters, you will need to cut the meat in even sized stripes. Of course, you don’t have to be extremely precise, but being as precise as possible will help make sure that the meat is cooked evenly. You will need some bamboo skewers too and you’ll have to soak them in water before preparing them. This is so that they don’t burn.

It’s also important that you skewer the chicken tightly and leave no gaps in between. After it’s almost cooked, you should brush it with the tare sauce that you have prepared. One last tip I have to give you is not to move around the skewers a lot. Instead, you should wait until one side turns brown and then turn it over. If you follow those simple tips, you’ll definitely make a successful dish.

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