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+ servings
Prep Time
6 mins
Cook Time
6 mins
Total Time
12 mins

Edamame is served at Japanese restaurants, usually listed under appetiser but you can make it easily at home and it’s much cheaper. Perfect snack for a crowd. It goes very well with drinks, particularly beer.

I will show you two different ways of cooking edamame - the boiling method and the sautéing & steaming method with flavouring.

Prep Time and Cook Time are based on Sautéing & Steaming Method. The boiling method takes less than 5 minutes to cook in total.

Recipe Type: Appetiser
Cuisine: Japanese
Serves: 4 servings as appetiser
Author: Yumiko
Ingredients (tbsp=15ml, cup=250ml)
  • 400 g (0.9lb) unsalted frozen edamame (note 1)
Boiling Method
  • ½ - 1 tsp salt
Sautéing & Steaming Method
  • 2 tsp olive oil (note 2)
  • 1 tsp salt diluted in 200ml water
  • Flavouring (optional, note 3)
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • Pepper
Boiling Method
  1. Boil water in a large sauce pan. Add a pinch of salt (not in ingredients) and frozen edamame pods.
  2. When pods start floating, cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then drain.

  3. While edamame pods are still steaming, sprinkle salt and toss to coat salt evenly.

  4. Cool them down quickly with a fan or by leaving them in the cold place. (note 4)

  5. Serve chilled (or room temperature) edamame in a bowl or a plate (note 5).
Sautéing & Steaming Method
  1. Place frozen edamame on a large plate and defrost them in microwave (note 6). It took about 5½ minutes in my microwave using the defrost feature.
  2. Add oil to a large fry pan over medium high heat. Add edamame pods and sauté for about one minute, shaking fry pan and flipping pods occasionally, until the pods start getting burnt where the surface touches the fry pan.

  3. Reduce the heat to medium and add water with salt. Place a lid on and steam for about 2 minutes. Shake the fry pan occasionally.
  4. Remove lid and continue to stir until the water evaporates completely.
  5. Sprinkle lemon zest and pepper, mix and turn the heat off.
  6. Cool them down quickly with a fan or by leaving them in the cold place. (note 4)

  7. Serve chilled (or room temperature) edamame in a bowl or a plate (note 5).
Recipe Notes

1. You can buy frozen edamame at supermarkets and Japanese/Asian grocery stores. Do not buy salted edamame if you have a choice. If you can only find salted edamame, omit salt from the ingredients in both methods.

2. You can use a different oil. Plain oil such as vegetable oil is OK. Sesame oil would give an Asian touch. You could also use chilli infused oil, etc. in which case, you need to adjust your flavouring accordingly.

3. Other suggested flavouring includes garlic with/without chilli, shichimi tōgarashi (Japanese spice mixture with chilli), soy sauce (used with sesame oil), garlic+chilli+anchovies (like Italian pasta!).

4. The faster the edamame cool down the better but do not run cold water to cool them down as they become soggy. You can serve hot edamame but if you are having them in summer, cold edamame is the best.

5. It is a Japanese tradition to supply a trash bowl to go with edamame so that the empty pods can be placed in a separate bowl to the serving dish. Please refer to the section Origami Trash Bowl in this blog with step-by-step photos if you are interested in making a disposable origami trash bowl.

6. Instead of defrosting in the microwave, you could run cold water over the frozen edamame bag to defrost them if you like.