As a half-Asian raised in Hawaii, and living on and off in Thailand, I’ve had more than my fair share of Asian snacks. Some aren’t so good, but other’s are totally fire. If you happen to be traveling to Asia – or just happen to be near a Chinatown or an Asian grocery store – you should pick some of these snacks up.
You won’t regret it.
1. Glico Pocky & Pretz.
If you haven’t tried these before, you’ve been seriously missing out. Pocky is a sweet snack consisting of a perfectly thin biscuit covered in some kind of chocolate glaze. Pocky comes in a variety of flavors including milk chocolate, strawberry – my personal favorite -, cookies and cream, and even almond.
If you prefer your snacks on the savory side try Pretz instead. It’s a version of Pocky that only includes the flavored biscuit and comes in flavors like pizza.
No, I’m not talking about the root vegetable. These savory snacks will take some time to get used to, but they’re totally worth it. Made out of dried fish – yum! – these thin strips have an ocean-y quality that will leave you smelling bad, but feeling good.
3. White Rabbit.
Imagine a saltless version of taffy with a subtle milky-vanilla flavor. That’s White Rabbit. These candies are essentially the only way my mom could shut me up as a kid (they require a lot of chewing) and I think they took out at least two of my baby teeth.
While there are over a dozen White Rabbit flavors, including lychee, mango, and matcha, the best is definitely vanilla, which sorta reminds me of drinking a warm glass of milk.
4. Hello Panda.
Besides being utterly adorable, these creme filled cookies are also crazy delicious. The biscuits are shaped like bears and also include little drawings with pandas on them. With three flavors, including chocolate, strawberry and vanilla, you’re sure to find a panda for you.
5. Nongshim Shrimp Crackers.
Put down the sour cream and onion potato chips and start chowing down on these instead. With the perfect hint of shrimp, these crispy crackers will become your new go-to snack.
6. Yan Yan.
These are basically the Asian version of Dunkaroos. The box is split into two compartments, one for the biscuit sticks and one for the flavored frosting. From there you dip as you please – as a kid I would only get through two biscuits before I used all the frosting.
While eating Yan Yan you also have the chance to learn; the crackers are covered in fun animal facts!
American parents used to reprimand their kids if they swallowed gum while the Japanese found a way to make it edible. This is maybe one of the most famous Asian snack brands to-date.
With countless flavors and new additions rolling out yearly, this ooey-gooey candy is sure to please anyone who tries it.
8. Wasabi peas.
Forget salted peanuts, wasabi peas are the bar snack of the future. With a spicy kick from the Japanese wasabi, this snack is the perfect pick-me-up when you’re feeling down.
Plus, it manages to make peas, which are arguably the worst vegetable, taste delicious.
9. Tao Kae Noi Seaweed Snacks.
This is nothing like the seaweed you’d find on your sushi rolls. Tao Kae Noi has a bunch of different seaweed snacks with various flavors and levels of spiciness, and as a Thai brand you can bet your ass that they’re actuallyspicy.
10. Lychee Jelly.
I can’t even begin to explain how important these were to me as a kid. I practically used them as a form of currency on the playground. The delicious jellies were loaded with fruity flavor and even had chunks of reallychee in them. Take thatI, Kraft.
A popular children’s drink, this yogurt-based beverage is also a great probiotic – aka, it makes you poo. With a slightly sweet and sour flavor, you won’t be able to stop chugging down all the bottles you can get your hands on.
I wish they’d start making them bigger already.