Japanese Shishito Pepper Stir Fry

Come in and savor the delicious flavors of my Japanese Shishito Pepper Stir Fry! This appetizer or side dish features tender shishito peppers sautéed with savory bacon and crisp asparagus, all tossed in a delectable sweet and savory yakitori sauce. It’s a simple yet flavorful dish that showcases the versatility of shishito peppers in Japanese cuisine! So, if you’re craving something deliciously easy and authentically Japanese, this recipe is a must-try!

Japanese izakaya style shishito pepper stir fry served on a white plate being picked up with a pair of white chopsticks.

Why I Love This Recipe

What makes my shishito pepper stir fry recipe so special is it’s a creation straight from my kitchen! It’s effortlessly put together and captures the true essence of Japanese stir-fry, blending the vibrant flavors of shishito peppers, crispy bacon, and fresh asparagus in a delicious Japanese-inspired dish. Crafted from my beloved izakaya-style sauce like the one used in my Bean Sprouts and Pork Stir Fry, Japanese Pork Stir Fry and Pork and Vegetable Stir Fry dishes, this recipe showcases my take on a innovative Japanese recipe!

I’ve built upon the winning combination of bacon and veggies from my Asian Style Green Beans With Bacon and Brussels Sprout Stir Fry, adding the unique flavor of shishito peppers and coating it all in my homemade izakaya sauce. Ideal as a side dish or appetizer, this stir fry delights the palate with its savory profile, complemented by subtle hints of sweetness and garlic. It’s a dish that’s perfect for anyone looking for a simple yet authentic Japanese culinary experience centered around the delightful shishito pepper!



  • Bacon – standard bacon of choice.
  • Asparagus – freshly asparagus trimmed. Smaller to medium-sized asparagus works best.
  • Shishito Peppers – fresh shishito pepper that should be green in color.
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds – optional garnish.
  • Soy Sauce – low-sodium Soy Sauce preferred. Can also use tamari for gluten-free.
  • Japanese Sake – typically will come in a large bottle labeled junmai sake. Can also substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine, found at local grocery stores or Asian markets. 
  • Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
  • Bonito Flakes – made from shaved Dried Bonito fish. Commonly used to make broth and responsible for giving Japanese cuisine that signature umami flavor. Can replace with Hondashi.
  • Garlic fresh finely diced garlic.

🌶️ Shishito Fun Fact

Here’s a fascinating insight about shishito peppers – while they’re typically not spicy, there’s an exciting twist—about 1 out of every 25 Peppers packs a surprising kick of heat! So, if you happen to bite into one of these spicy peppers, consider yourself fortunate!

Japanese izakaya style shishito pepper stir fry served on a white plate top down shot.

Essential Kitchen Equipment

  • Wok or Deep Large Skillet


☑ Before Getting Started

Use a roomy Wok or Deep Skillet. Opt for High-Temperature Cooking Oil to achieve that classic stir fry result.

Step 1 Prep shishito peppers by cutting off the stem-end and chopping them into pieces.

Chopped shishito.

Step 2 Next, combine soy sauce, sake, water, sweetener, bonito flakes or hondashi, and garlic in a stovetop pot and to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to simmer.

Sauce for Japanese shishito pepper stir fry.

🥢 Sauce Pro Tip

For easier sauce preparation, consider using Hondashi, which eliminates the need for straining and streamlines the process.

Step 3 Cook chopped bacon to the desired tenderness and place on hold plate while reserving the bacon oils.

Bacon being cooked in a frying pan.

Step 4 Add a small amount of bacon oil to a frying pan and preheat it. Once preheated, add chopped shishito peppers and asparagus to the pan over medium-high heat and cook for 2 minutes.

Japanese shishito pepper and asparagus in a frying pan.

💡 Cooking Oil Pro Tip

You have the option to use Neutral Cooking Oil instead of bacon oil if you prefer.

🍳 Stir Frying Pro Tip

When stir-frying, it’s important to Stir & Mix the ingredients Frequently to achieve an even cook throughout. This technique ensures that all the components are cooked uniformly and prevents any unevenly cooked or burnt spots.

Step 5 Lastly, add in bacon and sauce while sautéing and transfer to a plate.

Japanese shishito pepper stir fry in a frying pan.

🌿 Garnishing Pro Tip

For an added touch of presentation, consider sprinkling Toasted Sesame Seeds, Black Pepper, or even Togarashi red pepper for some extra flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

To enhance your meal, serve this shishito stir fry with complementary Japanese dishes like Japanese Bacon Spinach Salad or Japanese Miso Eggplant Stir Fry. Pair it with rice and Tofu Miso Soup or Japanese Chicken Soup for a complete and Japanese inspired dining experience.

Japanese izakaya style shishito pepper stir fry served on a white plate being picked up with a pair of white chopsticks.

Frequently Asked Questions

How spicy are shishito peppers on average?

On average, shishito peppers are typically not spicy, resembling the mildness of a bell pepper. However, it's worth noting that there is a chance that some peppers may have a bit of heat to them. These spicy ones are rare, so most of the time, you can expect a mild and enjoyable flavor from shishito peppers.

Do I need to remove the seeds from the shishito peppers before cooking?

No, you don't need to remove the seeds from the shishito peppers before cooking. Simply remove the stem, and you're good to go. The seeds can be left intact as they won't affect the flavor or texture of the dish.

Can I use frozen asparagus instead of fresh?

While you can technically use frozen asparagus instead of fresh, it's recommended to stick with fresh asparagus for this recipe. Fresh asparagus provides a crisp and crunchy texture that is important to this recipe.

Storage Tips

To store leftovers, transfer them to an airtight container and refrigerate. Leftovers can be safely stored in the fridge for 3 to 5 days.

Other Recipes You Might Like

25 of our BEST ASIAN RECIPES Sent Directly to Your Inbox!

Plus Monthly NEW RECIPES Exclusively from LCA!

By subscribing you agree to receive our promotional marketing materials and agree with our Privacy Policy.

Watch How To Make It

Japanese izakaya style shishito pepper stir fry served on a white plate top down shot.

Japanese Shishito Pepper Stir Fry

Discover the perfect Japanese Shishito Peppers recipe, offering a delightful blend of tender peppers, savory bacon, and crisp asparagus tossed in a sweet and savory yakitori sauce. Elevate your culinary skills with this authentic Japanese dish!
5 from 6 votes
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: Japanese shishito peppers recipe, sauteed shishito peppers, shishito pepper stir fry
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2
Print Recipe
Calories: 393kcal


Stir Fry

  • 1 Cup Shishito Peppers
  • 3 Slices Bacon
  • 6 Stalks Asparagus
  • 1/2 tsp Toasted Sesame Seed optional


  • 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 3 tbsp Japanese Sake can substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine
  • 1 tbsp Water
  • 1 tbsp Sweetener your preferred sweetener
  • 1/2 Cup Bonito Flakes can sub with 1/8 tsp of hondashi
  • 3 Cloves Garlic


  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for Japanese shishito pepper stir fry.
  • Finely dice garlic.
    Diced garlic.
  • In a stove-top pot, combine soy sauce, Japanese sake, water,sweetener, bonito flakes, and diced garlic. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 7-10 minutes until slightly reduced. If using Hondashi, no need to strain the sauce. Otherwise, strain the sauce through a strainer, pressing to extract any excess sauce from the bonito flakes.
    Sauce for Japanese shishito pepper stir fry.
  • In the meantime, cut bacon into 1/2 inch lengths.
    Chopped bacon.
  • Wash and cut asparagus and shishito peppers into 1-inch lengths and set aside. Note - you can keep shishito whole if you prefer, just remove the top stem.
    Chopped shishito.
  • Place a large fry pan on medium heat and add bacon. Cook bacon until preferred doneness (about 3 minutes for medium and 6 minutes for extra crispy). Transfer cooked bacon to one holding bowl and the bacon oil to another holding bowl.
    Cooked bacon.
  • Take 1 tablespoon of bacon oil and add it back to the frying pan over high heat. Discard the remaining bacon oil. Once the oil is hot, add asparagus and shishito peppers. Stir and cook for 1.5-2 minutes until the asparagus is tender. Add cooked bacon, pour sauce, and mix for 15 seconds. Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle optional toasted sesame seeds.
    Japanese shishito pepper stir fry in a frying pan.


Calories: 393kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 1385mg | Potassium: 738mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 363IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 2mg
*Values Based Per Serving
Looking for Other Recipes?Sign Up to Get RECIPES Sent Directly to Your Inbox!


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *