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Kombu, "the King of Seaweeds" - Its Flavor and Nutritional Value

Seaweed is recognized as a healthy food ingredient, low in calories, and rich in mineral content. Kombu kelp in particular, possesses a flavor and nutritional value unlike any other seaweed, earning it the title – "the king of seaweeds."


The All-important Dashi

Kombu Dashi Stock Unlike other seaweed varieties, kombu can be used to make dashi. Dashi is a soup stock that tastes of umami, famously known as the fifth taste. It is the foundation of the delicate flavor of Japanese cuisine.
No other seaweed can be used to make dashi. The characteristics of kombu are an indispensable element of Japanese cuisine.

Kombu as an Ingredient

Kombu Simmered Dish Apart from being used to make dashi, kombu can be eaten as a culinary ingredient just like other types of seaweed. It has a very distinctive texture. Depending on how it is cooked, kombu can either be firm and almost crunchy, or soft and pliable. Another feature of kombu is that it extracts the inherent delicious flavors of the other ingredients with which it is being cooked.


Rich in Iodine

Kombu Seaweed Kombu is abundant in nutrients such as calcium, vitamins, and dietary fiber. It is particularly rich in iodine. Iodine is an essential nutrient for maintaining thyroid function and producing thyroid hormones. Iodine deficiency can cause goiters, and, in severe cases, can even lead to hypothyroidism.
Kombu has higher iodine content than other seaweed, approximately 95 times that of nori and 4.4 times that of hijiki seaweed. Hence, one can understand why it is worthy of the title – "the king of seaweeds."
  • Excessive intake of iodine can have detrimental effects on health.
  • If you have a thyroid disorder, consult your physician before eating kombu.
Click here for more information on the nutritional and health benefits of seaweed
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