How to Thicken Japanese Curry (5 Best Ways Explained!)

Japanese curry is a famous Asian dish usually consisting of potatoes, carrots, and onions. The sauce itself is usually very thick, with near stew-like consistency, which is one of the key characteristics of Japanese curry. Hence, it is undoubtedly very disappointing to see your Japanese curry turn out to be slender. There’s no need to cry yet, though, since there are some ways to fix that:

How to thicken Japanese curry? When you’re making Japanese curry, getting just the right consistency is a crucial thing – if it is too thin, try adding some store-bought roux to make it thick. Another way to thicken a Japanese curry is by mixing it with some cornstarch, but using this one might not unlikely alter the final taste a bit.

But this was just to put it very briefly, and if we really want to understand this topic, we will have to dive into it a bit deeper.

So what are we waiting for? Let’s just get started!

How to Thicken Japanese CurryPin

How to thicken Japanese curry?

Japanese curry is one of the most famous dishes originating in Japanese cuisine, which is most often made out of some vegetables and meat mixed in a sauce with a very thick consistency that looks similar to a stew. 

Since this consistency is one of the most characteristic things about Japanese curry, it might be a bit disappointing when your Japanese curry turns out to be thin. However, don’t give up yet, and instead, try some of these ways to fix it:

Adding roux

The absolutely most common way to thicken Japanese curry that is very often used while preparing the original product in the first place as well, is to add some roux into the sauce. While you can prepare your own roux at home, our experience suggests using the store-bought one might have even better results, so you don’t have to worry about that.

No matter what kind of roux you decide to use, though, never forget that you have to heat the sauce throughout the process of mixing in the flour. You don’t have to boil it, just a little bit of heat should be enough.

Adding beurre manié

If you’re not a fan of roux, you can try to use beurre manié instead of it – just like roux, this french thickening is made by mixing equal parts of butter and flour, but in this case, they don’t get heated. However, while adding beurre manié into your Japanese curry, you should once again be heating the soup so that it will indeed get thick.

Adding cornstarch

Maybe the reason you’re not a fan of roux is the fact you simply can’t stand either butter or flour, though – if that’s the case, you can choose cornstarch as a thickener. To mix your Japanese curry with cornstarch, first, mix the cornstarch with some water. Then just start heating your soup and slowly pour the mixture in.

Adding vegetables

Besides using traditional thickeners, you can try to make your curry thicker by adding some more vegetables as well. Ideally, these should be cropped into as small pieces as possible and added while the sauce is being heated as well so that they get mixed in really nicely.

Cooking it again

But what if you don’t wish to add anything to your curry? Well, then you can only try to cook it once again – provided that your curry wasn’t too thin in the first place, this process should make it fairly thick given enough time. Don’t forget to whisk the sauce the whole time, though, because otherwise, it could get easily burnt.

Why is my Japanese curry not thick?

There are a couple of reasons that can stand behind why your Japanese curry has not gotten thick. Still, the main one is undoubtedly not cooking it enough after adding the thickener – especially if you’re using flour, heating the sauce enough throughout the whole process of mixing it in is necessary if you want it to be thick.

Does boiling curry thicken it?

Even though boiling curry can thicken it by a fair bit, if you have made it really thin, you’re most likely going to have to do something else as well. If just boiling the curry doesn’t make it as thick as you would wish, try adding some flour into the pot as well, and in a while, you should have the results you were looking for.

Frequently asked questions

How to thicken Japanese curry without cornstarch?

As many of you may know, thickening things with cornstarch is maybe quick and foolproof, but at the same time, it might also mess with the taste of the final product. Because of that, you might want to try something else. One way to thicken Japanese curry without cornstarch is by mixing some roux in instead – never forget to heat the sauce while doing so, though!

How do you thicken Japanese golden curry?

There are several ways to get your Japanese golden curry thicker, but we would definitely recommend you the one where you mix it with a little bit of roux. Cornstarch can be used instead of roux as well, but since that is most likely going to change the taste, we wouldn’t really recommend this option to you.


Since Japanese curry is a dish that’s very characteristic of its thick consistency, you definitely don’t want it to turn out thin. However, when that happens, it doesn’t mean everything’s ruined – by heating the Japanese curry and mixing it with some roux or maybe cornstarch if you wish, you should be able to easily make it as thick as you want it to be.



Image credits – Canva

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