Glossary - Ingredients



A seaweed-based thickening agent. A great addition to salads as well!


“Kanten” (agar-agar) is a gelatin extract derived from drying out seaweed mucilage. Add it to warm liquids (after soaking in water) and it will dissolve, and in room temperature it will solidify. It can be used in jellies as a plant-based thickening agent substitute for gelatin. Re-hydrated kanten can be used in salads or as an ingredient in miso soup.


Available in a variety of forms, including bars, strands, and in powdered form.


Approximately 80% of kanten is comprised of dietary fibers that are beneficial to the total digestive system, and it contains both soluble and insoluble fibers. In addition, at 3 calories per 100g, it almost has zero calories. Kanten also contains other minerals, such as calcium and potassium.


Since kanten is a dried product, it will keep for several years if stored in a cool, dark place with low humidity and at room temperature. Use a resealable bag or storage container to keep out moisture. It can sometimes look yellowish, but it will return to its original white color when dissolved in water.


Production of kanten began around 200 years ago. It is said to have originated from when a noodle product made from seaweed mucilage called “Tokoroten” was inadvertently frozen and dried out.

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