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Umai Crate Subscription Box Review + Coupon – December 2017

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Umai Crate by Japan Crate focuses on bringing you Japanese-exclusive instant noodles. Each month, you’ll receive 7-8 instant noodles to try, along with a bonus collectible!

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My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).

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About Umai Crate

The Subscription Box: Umai Crate

The Cost: $25 a month + free shipping

COUPON: Use code MSA3 to save $3 off your first Japan Crate Premium, Doki Doki Crate, Umai Crate, or Kira Kira Crate

The Products: 7-8 Japanese-exclusive instant noodle dish + a bonus collectible

Ships to: Worldwide

Umai Crate December 2017 Review

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This month’s Umai Crate booklet is a bit smaller than previous month’s that I have received. You still get that detailed look at each ramen featured for the month, which I always find to be super helpful. The last page highlights a recipe that you can use with one of your ramen packets; this month is for a Japanese style mushroom pasta. I just might have to try it! 

Time to get cooking!

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Kenko Foods Yakisoba

Our first bowl is from Kenko Foods, a brand I am starting to become familiar with! They tend to make “healthier” noodles that don’t have all of that extra salt. The monthly card notes that you could even use this packet to make a stirfry with! I noticed last month from a reader’s comment that I was making my yakisoba wrong. So this month I drained the water and added my seasoning packets to the noodles. Wow, what a difference! The noodles in this dish were so fluffy and filling. The sauce tasted more like an A1 steak sauce, which I loved, and it had a nice tart finish to it. The dry packet was more of an herbal flavor that really rounded out the sauce. I could see this being great as a stir fry like they suggested or by adding a simple hard-boiled egg to the bowl. I ate this one as is and boy was it delicious!

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Kenko Foods Hot Dry Noodles

This bowl is a Japanese take on Sichuan style dry noodles. So what would normally be a stir-fried dish is now a bowl of ramen, yum! Another Kenko Foods dish for us that we know is going to be on the healthier side as well. There was a light saltiness to the broth that made it so bold. The noodles were rich and fluffy, such a filling bowl. This really tasted very traditional so I didn’t want to add too much to it. All I did was add some chicken and hot sauce, bam the best bowl of the month for me!

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Michio Kawamura’s Sesame Sauce Ramen

Hey, its Michio Kawamura again, we met him last month! If you don’t remember he is a radio personality that focuses on health and nature. All ingredients in this sesame ramen are 100% natural and sourced in Japan. The broth in this bowl is so bold and comforting. The sesame flavors are strong so it is very nutty. The fluffy noodles really soaked in the broth nicely as well! My husband loved this bowl and claimed it has his own for dinner the other night. All he added were some green onions and an egg for an extremely filling dinner.

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Kinokoan Mushroom Udon

According to the monthly booklet, Udon is a staple food during the winter months. I can totally get behind that because this broth really warmed me all the way through! The mushrooms in this cup are shiitake and maitake so you get a good bit of earthy flavors and saltiness. The little slices of egg make this super rich and filling as well. I loved the flat noodles that were so creamy. With a little bit of hot sauce, this made for the perfect lunch on a super cold afternoon.

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Umaitsuyu Tempura Soba

This broth is known for its low sodium content and is made with “Umamii Tsuyu” stock. There was a lot of tempura in this little cup so much that I almost made it overflow when cooking! The tempura in these cups really gets a bit too soft for me as they retain so much of the water. I got a mixture of fish flavors mixed with a bold veggie flavor. The noodles were very much like a wheat noodle so they had a bit of a crunch to them. I am sad to say that this cup really wasn’t for me, with the amount of tempura, the flavors overall fell a bit flat.

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Umaitsuyu Kitsune Udone

According to the monthly card Kitsune Udon translates to fox udon. The name comes from a folktale about a fox that enjoys deep fried tofu that is featured in this udon. My son’s name is Fox so I always enjoy a funny fox story! The tofu in this udon left a really bold flavor and texture. The noodles were flat and soft and paired nicely with the tofu as well. The broth overall fell a bit flat for me, but I added some hot sauce to jazz it up a bit. Overall, this was a really yummy cup that  I enjoyed for lunch.

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Kinokoan Mushroom Soba

This soba is filled with maitake and shiitake mushrooms, plus there is yuzu in it which I didn’t know has a citrus flavor. The noodles are what really stood out to me because they had such a bold crunch to them! They were wheat an just so delicious. The broth had a strong onion flavor that paired so well with the noodles. I added some shrimp to this cup and it was so good!

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Bonus Item – Mini Ramen Bowl

The bonus item for the month is this cute little ramen bowl keychain! I thought my son would really love this so I gave it to him to play with. Unfortunately, he thought it was real and licked it so now it is mine. I love how authentic-looking the bowl is and just thought it was so cute! 

Verdict: This month’s Umai Crate really had a healthy note to it! I loved trying the different bowls that are made with locally sourced ingredients and that have the sodium content in mind. Sometimes ramen can be so salty that you don’t want to eat too many, but these are ones you can enjoy without the guilt or puffiness from the salt content. Since you receive so many packets in one month’s box, we love picking which ones we are going to eat for dinner and adding our toppings. There are always leftovers and cups that we can eat for lunch. Umai Crate continues to delight and fills my tummy with delicious ramen bowls that I know I would never have a chance to try without receiving this monthly box! 

To Wrap Up:

Can I still get this box if I sign up today? No, order by the end of December to receive the January box.

Coupon – Use code MSA3 to save $3 off your first Japan Crate Premium, Doki Doki Crate, Umai Crate, or Kira Kira Crate

Value Breakdown: This box is $25 a month with free shipping. I received seven ramen bowls which comes to an average of $3.57 per item. Each ramen featured are flavors that you will not find at your local grocery store. The overall value is absolutely worth it since you are getting really unique bowls, and are spending less if you were to get these to order online or to eat out at a specialty ramen restaurant. Plus, many of the packets they are featuring lately have been on the healthier side so you are really getting a new look at ramen!

Check out all of the Umai Crate Reviews to get more information on this subscription. Check out all of our Food Subscription Boxes in the Subscription Box List. Rate, review, and follow this subscription on the Umai Crate profile page.

What was your favorite bowl from the December Umai Crate

Written by Taryn Lowman

Taryn Lowman

Taryn’s passion for subscription boxes started when she was gifted a monthly Birchbox. She is excited to discover more Mom and baby boxes to share with her family!

All views in this review are the opinion of the author. My Subscription Addiction will never accept payment in exchange for a review, but will accept a box at no cost to provide honest opinions on the box. This post may contain affiliate/referral links. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.

2 Comments

  1. I love your reviews and suggestions and I love this sub. I buy tons of ramen from a nearby Korean market and they are not cheap. This sub has so many brands that I haven’t tried. I have got to start adding egg and chicken to my ramen because it sounds delicious.

    • Thank you so much, I am happy to hear you have been enjoying the reviews and sub!

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