10 Tasty (& Healthy!) Japanese Restos

London’s Japanese food scene just keeps getting better and better, with ramen hangouts and sushi temples popping up everywhere from Mayfair to Hackney. We don’t claim that these spots are a surefire bet if you’re counting calories, but when you're making dinner plans there are definitely a few choices here that are healthier than one of the zillion burger, pulled-pork, and rib joints that our fair city has to offer. And, let’s be honest, it makes a welcome change from pizza or a wedge salad.
Ahead, our 10 favourite Japanese joints in all London town, whether you’re in the mood for funky (and tasty) fusion, raw-fish delicacies, or a steaming bowl of noodles. Grab your chopsticks and dig in!
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Photo: Courtesy of Sake No Hana.
Sake No Hana
This Mayfair establishment is part of the Hakkasan group, so it's no surprise that it's all about slick and well-heeled glamour (sportswear is not tolerated). It also serves some of the city’s best sushi, and offers a tempting selection of cocktails (to be avoided by the calorie-counting, dry January set). Stop by for lunch — the menu is an excellent value.

Sake No Hana, 23 St James’s Street, SW1A 1HA; +44 (0) 207 925 8988.
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Photo: Courtesy of Koya.
Koya
Koya might be a one trick pony, but it does its trick so darn well. Serving up brilliantly authentic udon, this place has been awarded every foodie title imaginable — and it's well deserved praise. The mushroom-and-walnut miso is a near-perfect bowl of goodness.

Koya; 49 Frith Street, W1D 4SG; +44 (0) 207 434 4463.
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Photo: Courtesy of Dinings.
Dinings
No pomposity or trendiness here, just a no-nonsense restaurant that serves up incredibly fresh sushi and Japanese tapas. Run by ex-Nobu wonder-chef Masaki Sugisaki, Dinings is the place to enjoy a top-notch meal at a fraction of the cost of his former establishment.

Dinings, 22 Harcourt Street, W1H 4HH; +44 (0) 207 723 0666.
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Photo: Courtesy of Roka.
Roka
Sure, the prices here might be a bit steep, but each dish is pretty much impeccable, and there are plenty of delicious highlights if you want to stick to something healthy. These include scallop skewers with wasabi and shiso, black cod marinated in yuzu miso, and sea bream sashimi with pickled cucumber and plum. If you’ve got something (anything!) to celebrate in January, head here.

Roka, 37 Charlotte Street, W1T 1RR; +44 (0) 207 580 6464.
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Photo: Courtesy of SushiSamba.
SushiSamba
SushiSamba sits pretty on the 38th and 39th floors of the Heron Tower in the City, and the views are so fantastically distracting it's easy to forget you came here to dine. The mushroom tobanyaki with garlic crouton and yuzu soy and the asparagus with sweet soy and sesame are just two of our favourite dishes. There are also dedicated gluten-free and vegan menus.

SushiSamba, Heron Tower, 110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY; +44 (0) 203 640 7330.
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Photo: Courtesy of Bone Daddies.
Bone Daddies
This Soho spot is considered the daddy of London’s ramen joints, and rightly so. The sweet miso ramen with chicken is a good option if you’re looking for a healthy angle — or if you really want to be virtuous, order the ramen salad. One thing to note: Bone Daddies only uses meat-based stocks, so it's not a good option for vegetarians.

Bone Daddies, 31 Peter Street, W1F 0AR; +44 (0) 207 287 8581.
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Photo: Courtesy of Flesh & Buns.
Flesh & Buns
Don’t get us wrong, there are a few highly calorific items on the Flesh & Buns menu — but there are so many ridiculously good and healthy options to choose from it makes the guilty pleasures easy to skip. The grilled sea bass and teriyaki salmon are incredible, as are the fresher-than-fresh small plates of sashimi, sushi, and ceviche.

Flesh & Buns, 41 Earlham Street, WC2H 9LX; +44 (0) 207 632 9500.
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Photo: Courtesy of Chotto Matte.
Chotto Matte
Peddling Japanese-Peruvian fusion (better known as Nikkei), Chotto Matte opened during London Fashion Week back in September, and it’s still serving up hipster crowd-pleasers. We love the black cod and yellow chilli miso and the scallops with quinoa and blackberry-chilli salsa. Here's proof that fusion cuisine is not a stale leftover of the '90s — and that healthy eating needn’t be a total drag.

Chotto Matte, 11–13 Frith Street, W1D 4RB; +44 (0) 207 042 7171.

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Photo: Courtesy of Sticks N Sushi.
Sticks 'N' Sushi
You might feel like you’re getting a bit of Tokyo, but Sticks 'N' Sushi is actually a Danish import. Don’t let that put you off though: The chain now has two outposts in the capital, both of which serve up excellent value, super-fresh sushi with a slice of Scandi charm.

Sticks 'N' Sushi, 58 Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 7PA; +44 (0) 203 141 8800; and 11 Henrietta Street, WC2E 8PY; +44 (0) 203 141 8810.
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Photo: Courtesy of Shoryu.
Shoryu
Part of the Japan Centre’s growing empire, Shoryu’s two outposts specialize in Hakata tonkotsu ramen. For a dose of healthy awesomeness try the Natural, a shiitake and konbu gluten-free soy broth, with tofu, beansprouts, sweet corn, spring onion, sesame, and spinach. You won’t regret it.

Shoryu, 9 Regent Street, SW1Y 4LR, and 3 Denman Street, W1D 7HA. No telephone.
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