También puedes leer este artículo en: Español
Warning: this article will leave you with hunger and minor spoilers. Proceed with caution.
It is time to enter the manga kitchens to discover the secrets behind a delicious meal. Sometimes we will encounter ordinary ingredients. Peeled potatoes in a corner, bubbling broth, an herb or two, colorful powders… but how do we put it all together? Well, even if you don’t have a clue about cooking, Food Wars leaves us thrilled with the knowledge, skills and enthusiasm of its protagonist. However, Souma is not the first nor the last in the tradition of food and competition manga. Let’s take a look at 6 manga like Food Wars that will make you feel hungry at the first glance!
Similar Manga to Food Wars
1. Yakitatte!! Japan
- Mangaka: Takashi Hashiguchi
- Genre: Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Parody, Shounen
- Volumes: 26
- Published: Mar 18, 2002 to Jan 10, 2007
Takashi Hashiguchi has some experience in the shounen department, especially in sports manga. It is interesting how he deviated from that formula in his most successful work. We start strong with a delicious manga that was baked into an anime :p Yakitatte!! Japan tells us the adventures of Azuma Kazuma, a guy who loves bread and dreams to make the quintessential Japanese bread, which he calls “Japan”. To achieve his dream, he makes the hard tests to enter to the best bakery of the country, Pantasia. Together with his best friend/rival (Kawachi) and the granddaughter of the bakery’s owner (Tsukino), Kazuma will face stronger and stronger rivals that will put his baker skills to the test.
If you like Food Wars because of the positive and effort seeking protagonist, you must know that Azuma came first. The format of the series, with cooking battles and increasingly difficult levels of rivalry, is also similar. The main difference is that Yakitate!! Japan is all about bread, while Food Wars is more focused on full meals. There is also the ecchi part of the later which is absent in the first one.
2. Kitchen no Ohime-sama (Kitchen Princess)
- Mangaka: Miyuki Kobayashi and Natsumi Ando
- Genre: Drama, Romance, School, Shoujo
- Volumes: 10
- Published: Aug 3, 2004 to Sep 3, 2008
Miyuki Kobayashi wrote Delicious!, another food themed manga before she perfected the recipe for Kitchen Princess. As for Natsumi Ando, she debuted winning a price in Nakayoshi back in 1994. Since then, Ando has illustrated several shoujo manga with diverse focuses like romance, comedy and adventure. Together, these duo created a very sweet recipe.
Najika loves to cook to show her feelings for those around her. However, the truth is that she is looking for the owner of a spoon, who fed her the most delicious pudding when she was a little girl. This spoon carries her to a prestigious cooking school called Seika Academy. Will Najika be able to pass the hard tests while she looks for the person who saved her life? We are not going to tell 🙂
Meet the female version of Souma, who was created before him too. We could say this is the most similar manga to Food Wars, but don’t expect it to be boring. Especially if you are more into shoujo, you will love the tone of this story. Najika is a person who befriends people with food instead of being super competitive (but yes, there is competition in the manga). Also, if you would prefer your Souma without ecchi, you will love Kitchen no Ohime-sama. The manga includes easy cooking recipes, in case you would like to give them a go.
3. Mixed Vegetables
- Mangaka: Ayumi Komura
- Genre: Comedy, Romance, Shoujo, Slice of Life
- Volumes: 8
- Published: Oct 25, 2005 to Nov 22, 2007
Ayumi Komura has a long experience in creating shoujo that ranges from slice of life to the supernatural. She has published both one shots and full volumes. Thus, Komura has the flexibility to offer us an interesting take on food. So, cake or sushi? For some of us it is an easy choice, but for others, it means to betray the family legacy. Mixed vegetables is about the comical tribulations of a couple of High School students: Hanayu Ashibata and Hayato Hyuuga. Hanayu’s family owns a pastry shop, but she dreams to be a sushi chef, while Hayato is exactly the opposite case. That is why they start dating, but things won’t be that easy for these two.
More shoujo with food? Yes, please. The competition here is more focused on the love department, but that does not mean that there is lack of action or comedy, which is abundant in Food Wars. The drawing style is also similar, and we have the strength of family traditions reflected in how the young generation projects their future too.
Any Manga Like Food Wars ?
4. Nobunaga no Chef
- Mangaka: Mitsuru Nishimura and Takurou Kajikawa
- Genre: Comedy, Historical, Seinen
- Volumes: 17
- Published: Mar, 2011 to present
Mitsuru Nishimura has written four mangas on various themes related to food, so… he is an expert 😉 As for Takurou Kajikawa, this is his debut as illustrator. Anyway, there is a saying that recommends us to play by our strengths. In the case of Ken, who wakes up with amnesia in the middle of the 16th century, the only thing he remembers is how to cook. Thus, he cooks his way up until Oda Nobunaga hears of his fame. Now Ken will serve the great shogun! Will he survive the war between the states? We can’t tell you, the end of this manga is still to be seen :p
One thing that we can notice in both Nobunaga no Chef and Food Wars is that the protagonist, although highly skilled, aspires for more and more. They are challenged constantly and live surrounded by rivals. The main difference is the light hearted tone of Souma, which also has ecchi. In contrast, Nobunaga no Chef can turn pretty serious and deadly. Nevertheless, if you love historical manga and/or samurais, you have to check it up.
5. Dungeon Meshi
- Mangaka: Ryoko Kui
- Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Seinen
- Volumes: 4
- Published: Feb 15, 2014 to present
Ryoko Kui has created several stories combining bizarre supernatural elements and a sense of realism. Her speciality are short manga, so this is the first time she offers us a well developed long story. Let’s pretend you are part of an epic group of adventurers who enter into a dungeon. Your sister is swallowed by a dragon, but you hope you can help her escape before she is digested. That, otakus, is the life of Laius, a warrior that now runs against the clock. When the food of the party runs out, they find a dwarf who teaches them to survive through the dungeon creatures. Expect the most interesting meals here!
This manga is a clear invitation for fans of Dungeons and Dragons. And who could resist the food premise? Both Dungeon Meshi and Food Wars are very detailed on the characteristics of food that can entice the senses. They also describe the helpful properties of each meal and offer a challenge to cook them right. The main difference is that we will not be able to reproduce Laius food unless we find all sorts of supernatural creatures in real life :p
6. Isekai Izakaya "Nobu"
- Mangaka: Natsuya Semikawa and Virginia Nitouhei
- Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Seinen
- Volumes: 3
- Published: Jul 4, 2015 to present
Natsuya Semikawa is a rather new pen in the manga world, with only two works inspired in the high fantasy genre. As for Virginia Nitouhei, details about her are a mystery. These two have joined forces to create a relatively novel approach to food in manga. If you ever wanted to be spirited away to another world, maybe you should find the city of Aiteria. This is a place that is somewhat similar to medieval Europe. People say that on such city, there is a bar called Nobu that serves strange meals and drinks that are literally out of this world. To tell the truth, Nobu is a japanese chef and the bar is a traditional restaurant that serves japanese food in the middle of a Western Nation.
So you are into Japanese food… or perhaps want to know more about it. In both of those cases, this is the manga for you. Both Food Wars and Isekai Izakaya “Nobu” give detailed descriptions of meals, ingredients, flavors and how to accompany or eat them better. The main difference is that the later is more focused on Japanese food, while Souma goes well beyond the boundaries of his own country.
Manga, food and competition have offered quite a lot in recent years. We hope that the success of Food Wars will bring us even more manga and anime with food topics. What can be better than rediscover the simple pleasures of life in the otaku world? Tell us, have you read any of our recommendations? Which type of foods would you like to see depicted in manga? Don’t forget that we are open to all your comments and suggestions. See you soon!