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Japan Crate Premium Box January 2023 Review

Japan Crate
4.8 overall rating
524 Ratings | 504 Reviews

Japan Crate is a Japanese snack subscription box that sends you snacks, candies, and beverages. Each box comes with 15 to 20 full-size sweets and snacks that are tricky or impossible to find outside Japan.

This review is for the Japan Crate Premium Box, starting at $49.95 per month.

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

First Impressions


This month's Japan Crate box theme was: New Year's! I was excited initially because I thought this box would be filled with unique snacks Japanese eat to bring in good luck or something like that. But the box is more about having sweets and snacks for the holiday season and your New Year's party.

What's Inside: Japan Crate December 2022 Box

Vinegar Chips


What is it with Japanese and vinegar-flavored snacks? These sour chips are not for the faint of heart. While one or two chips are fine, by the time you reach the 8th or 10th, you'll be puckering like a baby!

Maple Butter Chocolate


This mini chocolate bar needs to be indulged with tea or coffee. It's absurdly sweet, most likely the maple butter action! Thankfully, they're pretty small, so anyone with a sweet tooth can eat these.

Salty Caramel Puffs


Crunchy, slightly sweet, and also salty, these puffs are by far the best option in this box. I really liked the balanced flavor, and the crunchiness makes them uber-addictive.

Chocolate Chestnut


I wasn't prepared for these chocolates to be stiff, but I think that works to their advantage. The chestnut flavor is nutty and pairs well with the thin layer of chocolate. Plus, I love how they come wrapped – perfect for giving to someone!

Koala's March


Previous Japan Crate boxes have included these adorable koala-shaped cookies, and they never disappoint! I'm officially the #1 fan of these cookies, and I need to figure out how to get a massive box of these!

Delivery Car Strawberry Mint


It was pretty fun to see that these are mini versions of Japan's mail couriers, so you get a little glimpse into Japan's life. The mints are lightly strawberry flavored and a fun candy to have around.

Chocolate Ice Cream Marshmallow


A chocolate-filled marshmallow…not tasty. The texture of the marshmallow was very rubbery, and the chocolate inside was kind of like syrup. Then, the cone is softer than I expected, so overall, not my favorite.

Acorn Gum Cola


This was a fun surprise! It's a tough candy, but the moment you bite it, you get this gum explosion of cola that instantly turns into a chewy, juicy treat. What a fun concept!

Tokyo Revengers Chewing Gum


One of my favorite gums so far. The flavor is an excellent energy-drink flavor that's citrusy and somehow effervescent. The flavor lasts for hours; I wish gums around here were like this.

Skal Energy Drink


Okay…this is a milk-based energy soda. It's a limited-edition soda that has a somewhat citrusy flavor, and it's incredibly foamy. Expect it to be a bit sweet, but it doesn't feel effervescent like your average energy drink.

Orion Mini Fresh Ramune


A super cute small bottle filled with ramune candies. They recommend you use these as toppings for cookies or cakes – not sure how that would work. But I ate them just like candies, and they have that telltale ramune flavor that I really like.

Panda and Piglet Mints


Unfortunately, my piglet arrived broken, but the mints stayed inside. They're soda-flavored mints, honestly, nothing unique or memorable.

Gabrichu Soft Cola


Another cola-flavored candy. This is a chewing stick with a cola flavor. It does taste as if you were biting cola! So if you're a big cola fan, you'll love this one.

Petit Fortune Strawberry Milk

These are adorable, mini-sized strawberry milk chocolate candies. They literally pop into your mouth once you bite into them. The packet comes with a couple of New Year's fortune!

Whistle Gum


Another candy that transforms into the gum. These classic whistle candies start as your usual sucker candies, and as you soften them, they turn into gum. The flavor wasn't my favorite. To me, it tasted like old gum.

Long Chew Cider


This chewy candy is supposed to be cider-flavored, but to me, it was more like citrus-flavored candy. Nothing special here.

Bonus Item: KitKat Coffee Break


These mini KitKats are addictive! They have a soft coffee flavor but are not so overpowering that you wouldn't taste the chocolate. I need to find these in the US because I'll have them with my coffee like…always!

DIY: Sumikko Gurashi Purunchuchu!


What a fun candy! I really enjoy DIY gummies if you've read my previous Japan Crate reviews. This one was amazing! The kit has everything you need to create a 3D Sumikko Gurashi jelly. While the flavor isn't out of this world memorable, making the jelly definitely is!

My Verdict

Overall, this box only has 18 snacks. However, at least three were gum, and two were mini versions of candies. I also felt this box didn't include as many cookies, cakes, and chips as previous boxes. I didn't see as much value in selecting the snacks for this box as in previous editions. Nonetheless, the KitKat alone, I guess, makes it worth it?

To Wrap Up

Can I still get this box if I sign up today? Yes! Crates are shipped on a rolling schedule with three shipment dates every month.

Value Breakdown: This box costs $49.95 monthly (including free shipping), and I received 18 items. That breaks down to a value of $2.77 per item.

Check out all of our Japan Crate reviews!

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Japan Crate is a monthly candy and snack subscription box! The company’s HQ is based in Tokyo, where they handpick unique candy, snacks, drinks, DIY kits, and more. Each box contains between 5-20 full-size candies and snacks that are difficult or impossible to find outside of Japan for as low as ... read more.

Geraldine Orentas
Geraldine Orentas

Hi there, I'm Geraldine! I'm a Florida-based copywriter and content creator at MSA. When I'm not going through my skincare routine or diving into the latest trending products, you'll find me writing for online publications about home decor, wellness, and lifestyle. When I'm not writing or creating content about all things that bring me joy, you can find me flowing on my yoga mat, cooking up a new recipe in the kitchen, or walking my German Shepherd Cora. 

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