8 Creative Ways to Eat Edamame

Edamame on a plate

Getty Images / Robynne O'Halloran

Edamame, also known as soybeans, is one of the world's most widely used and versatile foods. Not only are they eaten whole out of their pod, but they are also processed into tofu, soy protein, soybean oil, miso, soy sauce, and tempeh. While edamame originated in Asia, the soybeans' popularity has increased in Western diets as well. It's commonly eaten as an appetizer at your favorite sushi restaurant, a topping for poke bowls, or roasted for a crunchy and satisfying snack.

One cup (160 grams) of shelled, cooked edamame contains 224 calories, 18 grams of protein, and 8 grams of dietary fiber. They are also a good source of potassium, folate, and vitamin K. You can buy edamame fresh in the pod, shelled, or frozen. They have a mild, slightly sweet, and buttery flavor.

Edamame is high in plant-based protein and fiber, and an excellent addition to a plant-based diet. It provides all of the essential amino acids that the body cannot produce itself and is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants.

Health Benefits of Edamame

  • May lower cholesterol.
  • High in protein and contains all nine essential amino acids.
  • May promote blood sugar regulation.
  • May reduce the risk of breast cancer.
  • May reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

For more information on the benefits of edamame, please refer to Edamame Nutrition Facts.

How to Use Edamame

Steamed with Salt

Enjoy your edamame simply steamed and flavored with salt for a quick snack or appetizer. Since you don't eat the pods, you get the delicious salty flavor while popping the beans out with your teeth. They are both fun and flavorful to eat!

Steamed Edamame with Salt

In a medium pot with a lid, place 1 inch of water and 1 pound of frozen edamame in their pods. Place the lid on the pot and turn to high heat. After steam starts coming out from the lid, cook the beans for 10 minutes. Drain the beans, place them in a bowl, and sprinkle with salt to serve.

Nutrition per serving: 124 calories, 5g total fat, 8g carbohydrates, 5g fiber

Chili Garlic Edamame

Spice up your simply steamed edamame with some chili garlic flavor.

Chili Garlic Edamame

Sauté 2 cloves of minced garlic in sesame oil. Add garlic to a medium bowl with chili sauce (like sriracha) and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce. Toss steamed edamame in garlic chili sauce and season with sesame seeds.

Nutrition per serving: 149 calories, 8g total fat, 9g carbohydrates, 5g fiber, 12g protein

Salads

Shelled edamame are a great way to add plant-based protein, flavor, and hearty texture to a salad. Keep frozen shelled edamame as a freezer staple for a quick and easy no-cook protein.

Asian Edamame Salad

In a large bowl, combine one head chopped romaine lettuce, 12 ounces shelled edamame, 1 cup diced cucumbers, 1 diced red pepper, 2 thinly sliced green onion, and 2 teaspoons sesame seeds. In a small bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 2 teaspoons honey, 1/2 teaspoon sriracha, and 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and toss to coat.

Nutrition per serving: 110 calories, 5g total fat, 14g carbohydrates, and 4g protein

Grain Bowls

If you love a quick grain bowl for lunch or dinner, try adding shelled edamame into the mix. They will add beautiful green color, crunchy texture, and a healthy dose of protein and fiber. Edamame can be a stand alone protein or pair them with fish, chicken, or tofu.

Quick Ahi Poke Bowl

Toss cubed sushi grade ahi tuna in mixture of 2 tablespoons yuzu juice, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and, 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil. Divide 2 cups of cooked sushi rice, 1 cup chopped cucumbers, 1/2 cup shelled edamame, 1 sliced avocado, and 1 sliced jalapeño between four bowls. Top with tuna mixture.

Nutriton per serving: 583 calories, 14g total fat, 6g fiber, 30g protein

Dip

Blend edamame into a dip for chips, veggies, or pita and you can bet it will be a crowd pleaser for your next get-together. Edamame dip is loaded with protein and healthy fats.

Edamame Avocado Dip

In a food processor, place 12 ounces cooked and shelled edamame, 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, 1/2 cup plain yogurt, 1 peeled and pitted avocado, 1/2 cup water, 1/4 lime juice, 1 teaspoon salt, a few shakes of hot sauce, and 3 drops of sesame oil. Pulse several times until ingredients are well pureed. Add more water for a smoother consistency and adjust seasonings to taste. Serve with pita, chips, or vegetables.

Nutrition per serving: 150 calories, 13g total fat, 3g fiber, 4g protein

Veggie Burgers

Vary your veggie burgers by adding edamame as a protein source. Edamame changes it up with a different texture, flavor, and color.

Edamame Veggie Burger

In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, saute 6 ounces of chopped mushrooms, 1 chopped zucchini, and 1/2 chopped yellow onion. In a food processor, pulse 12 ounces shelled edamame, 1/4 cup chia seeds, 1 tablespoon mustard, 1 tablespoon tomato paste, 1 tablespoon liquid aminos, and 1/3 cup water until it forms a smooth paste. Add edamame mixture to vegetables and add in 1/2 cup almond flour and 1 tablespoon psyllium husk. Mix together until fully incorporated. Divide the mixture into 6 patties and bake in a 325-degree oven for 40 minutes.

Nutrition per serving: 200 calories, 10g total fat, 13g carbohydrates, 11g protein

Roasted

Roasting shelled edamame turns them into a crunchy, flavorful, and nutrient-dense grab-and-go snack. Make a big batch for easy snacking all week long.

Roasted Edamame

On a sheet pan, toss together 1 pound shelled edamame, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix well and spread them evenly on the sheet pan. Roast in a 375-degree oven for about 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.

Nutrition per serving: 169 calories, 9g total fat, 11g carbohydrates, 6g fiber, 12g protein

Stir Fry

Edamame makes a great protein and pop of color to bulk up a stir fry. Keep frozen, shelled edamame around to whip up a quick weeknight dinner.

Edamame Stir Fry

Prepare 2 cups of soba noodles according to the package. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 2 tablespoons honey, 2 tablespoons rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon chili garlic paste, and 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger root. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute broccoli florets, chopped peppers, chopped onions, and 12 ounces of shelled edamame. Add the sauce and noodles and toss to coat. Top with chopped peanuts, cashews, or scallions.

Nutrition per serving: 500 calories, 9g total fat, 3g fiber, 23g protein

A Word From Verywell

Edamame is a versatile and nutrient-dense food that is an easy addition to meals and snacks. If you are not sure if edamame is suitable for your diet or if you have specific questions about edamame, be sure to speak with a doctor or a registered dietitian. They can provide you with individual recommendations for your health and nutrition goals. Seek guidance if you have food allergies, dietary restrictions, or health conditions.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Are you supposed to eat the whole edamame?

    The outside pod of the edamame is not edible and should not be eaten. When steamed or boiled, the pod softens and it is easy to extract the 2-4 beans inside. These soft and creamy beans are edible.

  • Is edamame easy to digest?

    Edamame are high in fiber, which can make them challenging to digest for some people. Foods that are high in fiber may cause gas and bloating. Some individuals have an easier time digesting edamame than others.

  • Do you have to cook edamame beans?

    Yes, edamame beans need to be cooked before eating. The beans inside the pod are very difficult to remove when raw and the boiling or steaming process softens them to make removal of the pods simple.

8 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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