Tarako Spaghetti

Come in and savor the authentic flavors of my Tarako Spaghetti, a classic Japanese pasta dish that boasts the briny richness of salted cod roe combined with the satisfying texture of spaghetti! If you’re craving the taste of Japan’s beloved cafe restaurant staple, this simple recipe is perfect for recreating it at home!

Tarako spaghetti served on a white plate topped with shredded seaweed being picked up with a fork.

Why I Love This Recipe

As a lover of Japanese cuisine, I’m always on the lookout for authentic recipes that I can recreate at home with ease, and this Tarako Spaghetti hits the mark perfectly! Just like my Mixed Seafood Pasta and Vongole Clam Pasta, I created this dish to embody the essence of Japanese-style pasta, featuring a creamy sauce infused with the briny goodness of tarako roe!

The tarako sauce, made by combining tarako, heavy cream, mayo, and soy sauce, infuses with the hot al dente spaghetti enhancing every bite with rich briny tarako flavor! With minimal ingredients and straightforward instructions, it’s a breeze to whip up this savory delight, making it ideal for anyone craving a taste of Japan in their own kitchen. Dive into a bowl of creamy, briny goodness that’s sure to satisfy your cravings and transport you straight to the bustling streets of Japan.



  • Spaghetti – your preferred spaghetti of choice. Use Shirataki Noodles for low carb and gluten-free recipe.
  • Butter – salted or unsalted.
  • Heavy Cream – use whipping cream or heavy cream. Double cream if in the UK.
  • Mayonnaise – use Japanese Kewpie Mayo. Can substitute with regular mayo but will alter flavor.
  • Soy Sauce – low-sodium Soy Sauce preferred. Can also use tamari for gluten-free.
  • Tarako Roe Sack – salted pollock cod roe. Can be purchased fresh or frozen at most Asian or Japanese grocery stores.
  • Seaweed  dried and shredded seaweed used for optional garnish.

🥢 Tarako Note

If you prefer a spicier option, you can substitute Mentaiko for tarako in this recipe. Mentaiko offers a similar texture to tarako but comes with an added kick of spiciness, providing a unique twist to the dish.

Tarako spaghetti served on a white plate topped with shredded seaweed, top down shot.


Step 1 Start by cooking your preferred spaghetti until al dente according to the package instructions.

Drained spaghetti in a bowl.

🍲 Boiling Spaghetti Pro Tip

Don’t forget to add a Pinch of Salt to the water before boiling the spaghetti. Use a Large Pot to boil the spaghetti, giving it plenty of room to cook evenly.

🍝 Spaghetti Pro Tip

Ensure the spaghetti or pasta is Drained Thoroughly to avoid watering down the tarako sauce.

Step 2 Next, use a spoon to remove the tarako from the outer membrane and combine and stir the roe with heavy cream, mayo and soy sauce.

Tarako sauce in a mixing bowl.

Step 3 Place the drained spaghetti in a bowl with tarako sauce and top it with butter. Mix the spaghetti until the butter is melted, then serve.

Tarako spaghetti served on a plate.

🌿 Garnishing Pro Tip

Garnish with optional Shredded Seaweed before serving.

Recipe Variations

For a delightful twist on this classic dish, you can also use udon instead of spaghetti to create a Tarako Udon dish. The thick, chewy texture of udon noodles pairs perfectly with the creamy tarako sauce, creating a comforting and satisfying meal.

Pairing Recommendations

To complete your meal with Tarako Spaghetti, consider serving it alongside a simple green salad dressed with Japanese Wafu Salad Dressing or Japanese Spinach Salad for freshness. Additionally, enjoy it with either Clam Miso Soup or Japanese Chicken Soup for a comforting start.

Tarako spaghetti served on a white plate topped with shredded seaweed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is tarako and where can I find it?

Tarako is a special ingredient in Japanese cooking made from salted cod roe wrapped in a thin membrane. It has a salty, briny flavor that adds a unique taste to dishes. You can eat it alone by peeling off the skin or with the skin for more flavor. It's important to know that tarako is different from mentaiko, which is spicy because of added red pepper and spices. You can find tarako in the frozen section of Japanese grocery stores, keeping it fresh for your cooking needs.

How do I know when the spaghetti is cooked al dente?

To determine if spaghetti is cooked al dente, cook it for about 8-12 minutes. At around the 8-minute mark, take out a strand and taste it. It should be slightly firm when bitten into, offering a bit of resistance. Adjust the cooking time as needed based on the taste and texture.

Can I use a different type of pasta instead of spaghetti?

Certainly! While spaghetti is traditionally used for this recipe, you can absolutely experiment with different types of pasta according to your preference. However, for an authentic rendition, spaghetti is the go-to choice.

Can I make the tarako sauce ahead of time?

Absolutely! You can prepare the tarako sauce ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, ensuring it's properly sealed in an airtight container. Just remember to give it a gentle stir before using to ensure it's well combined.

Storage Tips

To store leftovers, place them in an airtight container and store it in the fridge. Properly stored, the leftovers will maintain their quality for 3 to 5 days.

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Watch How To Make It

Tarako spaghetti served on a white plate topped with shredded seaweed.

Tarako Spaghetti

Indulge in the savory flavors of Tarako Spaghetti, a classic Japanese pasta dish featuring salted cod roe. This authentic recipe provides a delightful twist to your pasta night, perfect for those craving a taste of Japan. Experience the briny richness of tarako roe in every bite with this simple yet satisfying dish.
5 from 5 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: tarako pasta, tarako spaghetti
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes
Servings: 1
Print Recipe
Calories: 398kcal


  • 4 oz Spaghetti use shirataki noodles for low carb and gluten-free
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 3 tbsp Heavy Cream
  • 1 tbsp Kewpie Mayo can sub with regular mayo but will alter taste
  • 1 tsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 Sack Tarako Roe
  • 1/4 tsp Shredded Seaweed optional


  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for tarako spaghetti.
  • Use a spoon to carefully scrape out the roe or eggs from the sack of the tarako, leaving the outer membrane intact. Discard the membrane.
    Tarako roe on a cutting board.
  • Combine tarako roe, heavy cream, soy sauce, and Kewpie mayo in a small mixing bowl.
    Tarako sauce in a mixing bowl.
  • Cook spaghetti according to the package instructions. After cooking, strain the spaghetti to remove all water and serve it in a bowl while hot.
    Drained spaghetti in a bowl.
  • While the noodles are still hot, add in butter, combine until melted and pour tarako sauce on top. Coat well and transfer to a serving plate topped with optional seaweed.
    Tarako spaghetti served on a plate.


Calories: 398kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 101mg | Sodium: 537mg | Potassium: 59mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1011IU | Calcium: 34mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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