Glossary - Ingredients

Negi / Japanese Long Onion


An aromatic vegetable having a characteristic sharp and spicy flavor that is widely used as both a condiment and ingredient in various dishes

What is negi?

Negi / Japanese long onions (ねぎ in Japanese) , including spring onion, green spring onion, and baby scallion, are a variety of long, thin onions with a characteristic sharp spiciness. They are used in a wide variety of dishes from Japan, China, and the West, as a condiment, and in grilled dishes, stews, deep-fried foods, stir-fries, "nabe" (refers to a variety of communal hot-pot meals), and soups.
There are many types of negi, some of which are listed below.
- Spring Onions / Naganegi
Also known as white scallions, the tender white leaf sheaths from the soil being heaped up as the leaves grow are the portion primarily used in cooking.
- Green Spring Onions / Aonegi
The green leaves of this variety are eaten. Since these onions are grown without covering in soil, the plants are many and easily separated and it is leaves sprouted from these separated plants that are used in cooking.
- Baby Scallions / Asatsuki
Primarily used as a condiment as these slender onions have a strong, sharp spiciness, and are the thinnest edible Japanese onion.
- Scallions / Wakegi
This variety is a hybrid between shallots and Japanese long onions, has a tender texture and a sweet flavor.

(From left to right)Aonegi, Asatsuki and Wakegi

Nutrition facts

Allicin, the irritant in onions, promotes the absorption of vitamin B1, which aids in fatigue recovery. It is also an antibacterial with germicidal action that can help remedy sore throats or indigestion. The green portion is rich in beta carotene and vitamin C, and this is more plentiful in green spring onions / aonegi.

How to storage: not to waste the ingredient

Divide white scallions into thirds lengthwise, then wrap in a paper towel and refrigerate placed vertically in a storage bag to keep fresh longer. Thinner green spring onions should be finely chopped and refrigerated in a storage container lined with paper towel.


There are many varieties of Japanese long onions throughout Japan, including Kujo-negi from Kyoto, Shimonita-negi from Gunma, Koshizu-negi from Aichi, Aka-negi from Ibaraki, Kaga-negi from Ishikawa, and more.


Fresh onions are a strong stimulant, and as such eating too many may cause stomach aches or other gastrointestinal distress.

Cooking Basics

Japanese long onion - thinly sliced

Remove the roots of the Japanese long onion. Then thinly slice up diagonally from end to end.

Japanese long onion - finely chopped

Remove the roots of the Japanese long onion, and insert vertical cuts. Then chop up finely at right angles from end to end.

Japanese long onion - matchstick juliennes

Cut the Japanese long onion into 5 cm (2 in.) pieces, cut vertically in half, and then slice up thinly lengthwise from side to side.

Japanese long onion - julienned ultra-fine

In Japanese, this style of cutting up long onions is called "white-hair slicing", in the image of slicing up the onion into such fine strips that these are similar to white (gray) hair.
Chop up into 4 cm (1.6 in.) lengths, slice each vertically and remove the soft core. Stack the outer layers and starting at one edge, julienne across into ultra-fine strips. These ultra-fine strips are not cooked when used as garnish. If placed in water for about 10 minutes, drained and squeezed of any excess moisture, these strips will be fresh and crunchy yet mellow in flavor.

Japanese long onion - cutting into thin rounds

Slice up from one end to the other at consistent widths.

Japanese long onion - cutting into chunks

Cut up from one end into about 3 cm (1.2 in.) lengths.

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