Asia Destinations

I Love Japanese Convenience Stores! Complete Review

Japanese convenience stores are a big deal. They are not like the 7-Eleven stores you find in the US.  It’s possible to eat 3 meals a day just at convenience stores in Japan. These meals actually taste good! Popular convenience stores in Japan include 7-Eleven, Lawsons and Family Mart.

I’m going to break down all the best snacks, desserts and drinks I had from convenience stores in both Tokyo and Kyoto. Japanese convenience stores are called “konbinis” in Japan. Save this post if you have plans to visit Japan.

Japanese Convenience Stores: Seasonal Flavors

Each season in Japan comes with a special theme. For example, in the Spring, it’s Sakura (cherry blossom) season.  Everywhere from Starbucks to dollar stores to your convenience store will have cherry blossom themed items.  I visited Japan in September, the Fall season.  The theme was all about sweet potato.

My favorite sweet potato item, hands down, was the sweet potato waffle.  It was soft and sweet and filled with a delicious cream.

My sister bought this bread (below) that is supposed to mimic an actual sweet potato.  It looks so realistic. However, it’s a piece of bread with sweet potato flavored cream. 

My sister was determined to buy every sweet potato item at every convenience store. And it was fun helping her in her hunt.


The sweet potato doughnut, below, tasted anything but fresh. It was probably one of the only things I ate from the Japanese convenience stores that did not meet my expectations.


The sodas and juices were so delicious. My favorite one was this mango juice. I can’t remember how many bottles I purchased while I was in Japan, but I kept going back to it for a reason.

The salted lychee drink, below, was a close second. The sweet lychee flavor, mixed with the sea salt, was such an interesting combination.

I bought a vitamin C drink at one point, since I was trying to build up my immune system. We were busy and running around like crazy and I needed a boost. It’s basically like a little vitamin c shot. It was tasty and just what I needed.

I was hesitant to buy this milk fruit drink, below. It turned out to be really good. It was flavored with pineapple and orange. It had a very fruity tropical taste that I liked.


I also bought a carton of apple juice, which is not pictured. The apple juice in Japan and Korea is unmatched. Throughout the whole trip I drank Pocari Sweat. I circled it in the photo below. It’s similar to Gatorade and kept me hydrated throughout the whole trip.

Many of the Japanese convenience stores also had smoothie machines. You purchase a cup of fruit and ice. Then put it into the machine. Watch as your smoothie is made.



Every night we were tempted to run into 7-Eleven and get a dessert.  What is a vacation if you’re not eating dessert every night?

The popsicles were very good, and they had lots of unique flavors. I have pictured, the muscat (green) grape and the GariGarikun soda flavor. The convenience stores in Japan have lots of popsicles and ice creams to choose from.

You can go back every single night and find something new each time. My favorite dessert were these frozen grape balls. They were small round ice pop balls. The outside had a thin shell, and the inside was soft and smooth.  It was unlike anything I had ever had before.  The brain freeze they gave was crazy though. I could only eat a few at a time.


As I said before, it’s possible to eat three meals a day out of a Japanese convenience store. Maybe you’re interested in a rice ball.  Or if you need a quick snack, eat a pizza bun. It’s a bun filled with cheese and tomato sauce.


In the mood for ramen? Try the ramen.  If it’s on the package it’s in the box. No serving suggestions here.  There was a picture of pork on the package and there was a piece of pork inside the package.

Other items

Japanese convenience stores have lots of edible items. Besides buying those, you can find things like t-shirts and socks.


ATM, etc.

This was primarily where I took out cash while I was in Japan. It was the only reliable place I could find an ATM machine.

There are also copy machines and mailing services. 

The idea for late-night snacking came from the late-night convenience store hauls on the Sam and Victor YouTube channel.


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