Simple Hibachi Vegetables (Sautéed Zucchini and Onions)

Make these homemade hibachi vegetables in just 15 minutes! With a simple ingredient list, these sautéed zucchini and onions are just like the hibachi veggies you’d find at a Japanese steakhouse like Benihana!

Sautéed zucchini and onions in a white bowl with black and gold serving spoons.

This post may contain affiliate links. That means if you click on the link and make a purchase, I will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain my own. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

When I write a recipe, I’m usually tempted to dress it up. What ingredients can I add to make this dish even better? For veggies, that’s usually some fresh garlic or interesting spices.

But sometimes that’s not the right question to ask. Sometimes the right question is how to simplify the recipe to keep the focus on the main ingredients and make it as easy as possible to cook.

That’s the case for the hibachi fried rice and it’s the same for these hibachi vegetables. When you go to a Japanese steakhouse and they cook the zucchini and onions on that big flat top in front of you, sure there’s a lot of showmanship, but the ingredients themselves are soooo simple.

Close up of hibachi veggies (zucchini and onions) with sesame seeds on a gray plate.

I think they have like four bottles of stuff behind the counter that they use for every part of the meal: water, oil, soy sauce, and teriyaki sauce. Plus a shaker of salt and pepper and a shaker of sesame seeds.

If you add anything besides those ingredients it’s not true Japanese steakhouse style, at least the ones I’ve been to.

These hibachi style vegetables are more than the sum of their parts. Simple to make and perfect on their own or, if you’re like me, dipped in plenty of hibachi white sauce.

Hibachi style vegetables in a white bowl with black and gold serving spoon and sesame seeds.

Ingredients

These hibachi vegetables have a super short ingredient list. Two types of vegetables (zucchini and onions), some cooking oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, and sesame seeds. I also like to add a touch of sesame oil to bump up that sesame flavor (I know, I know, it’s an extra ingredient but I couldn’t help myself. You don’t have to add it).

Hibachi vegetable recipe ingredients with zucchini, onion, and sesame seeds.
  • Vegetables: Zucchini and onions are all you need for this simple recipe. I’d use about 2/3 zucchini and 1/3 onions. You can just eyeball it.
  • Vegetable oil: This can be something neutral like canola oil or whatever you usually sauté in (that’s olive oil for me).
  • Soy sauce: The main flavoring in the veggies.
  • Salt and pepper
  • Sesame seeds
  • Sesame oil: If you want to keep it simple like they do in the Japanese steakhouses, you can leave this out. But I like a little extra punch of sesame flavor.
Hibachi vegetables in a white bowl with black and gold serving spoon and sesame seeds.

Equipment

Surface area is the name of the game here. You want the vegetables to sauté, not steam, so they get a little brown on them instead of getting soggy. You can use a large flat-bottomed sauté pan or a wok if you have one.

A large frying pan or cast iron skillet will work too but having slightly higher sides is helpful.

How to make hibachi vegetables

First, cut the vegetables. For this recipe, I trim off the ends of the zucchini, cut in half or thirds, and then cut each chunk into nine sticks (six sticks for a smaller zucchini).

Step by step photos for cutting zucchini for hibachi vegetables.
Step by step photos for cutting zucchini for hibachi vegetables.

For the onion, you’ll want to cut it in quarters from root to end and then into slices about half an inch wide.

Step by step photos for cutting onion for hibachi vegetables.

Preheat your pan or wok to medium high heat. When it’s hot, add the cooking oil and heat until it shimmers, about 30 seconds.

Then add your veggies. You can add them all at once or give the onions about a 2-minute head start if you like them a little more tender.

You want to cook the zucchini and onions for a bit before adding the soy sauce so they get a bit of color on them instead of steaming. Sauté them for about five minutes, stirring only occasionally. They need to rest for a bit between stirs so they can start to brown where the vegetables are touching the pan.

Step by step photos showing how to make hibachi vegetables.

Then add your seasonings: salt and pepper, soy sauce, sesame oil, and sesame seeds. Cook for another couple minutes just until the vegetables are tender-crisp — careful not to overcook these! Nobody wants a limp zucchini stick.

Step by step photos showing how to make hibachi vegetables.

And that’s all there is to this recipe! It’s so simple.

What should I serve with hibachi veggies?

For a full hibachi style dinner at home, serve this zucchini and onions recipe with simple hibachi fried rice, Japanese white sauce or ginger sauce, and the protein of your choice. My favorites are hibachi steak and mushrooms, teriyaki chicken, and hibachi shrimp and broccoli!

Hibachi vegetables (zucchini and onions) with fried rice on a gray plate.

FAQs

I’ll start by saying I think simplicity is the beauty of this hibachi vegetable recipe, so I’d personally stick with zucchini, onions, or maybe yellow squash. Yellow squash would be easy to add to this recipe, cut the same as the zucchini and added at the same time.

If you wanted to add mushrooms, broccoli, or carrots, please note: different vegetables require different cooking treatments to be at their best. Carrots take a bit longer to become tender, broccoli ideally should steam for a bit first, and mushrooms should be cooked like a steak, with plenty of surface time and no crowding in the pan.

If you wanted to add these veggies you’d want to give certain ones more time in the pan than others.

If you want mushrooms or broccoli with your hibachi dinner, I recommend making the steak and mushrooms together and broccoli with your shrimp.

If you do, I’d recommend cooking your vegetables in two batches. Putting everything in the pan at once will crowd the pan, steaming the vegetables instead of searing them.

Here in South Carolina we are unfortunately in a bit of a Benihana desert, so I’ve shockingly never been to one! 

However, we have many other excellent hibachi-style Japanese steakhouses here like Miyabi, Kyoto, and Hachiya, and this recipe is very similar to what I’ve found there!

Be sure to FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, PINTEREST, INSTAGRAM, and TWITTER for more great recipe ideas! Or SIGN UP for my EMAIL NEWSLETTER to get updates and recipes straight to your inbox!

Sautéed zucchini and onions in a white bowl with black and gold serving spoons.
5 from 1 vote

Simple Hibachi Vegetables (Zucchini and Onions)

Make these homemade hibachi vegetables in just 15 minutes! With a simple ingredient list, these sautéed zucchini and onions are just like the hibachi veggies you'd find at a Japanese steakhouse like Benihana!
Print Recipe
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Asian, Japanese
Servings: 4
Prep Time:5 mins
Cook Time:10 mins
Total Time:15 mins

Equipment

  • Large sauté pan or wok

Ingredients

  • 2 medium zucchinis
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  • Cut the zucchini into sticks about half an inch square by 2-3 inches long. I cut my zucchini in a lengthwise grid of 9 (or 6 for smaller zucchini) and then into 2-3 shorter pieces depending on the length of the zucchini. See post for photos.
  • Cut the onion into quarters root to end and then slice into half-inch slices.
  • Preheat a sauté pan or wok to medium high. Once hot, add vegetable oil and heat until it shimmers, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  • Add onions to the pan and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add the zucchini and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes, stirring every minute or so. You want them to get a little brown on them before you add the soy sauce.
  • Add soy sauce, sesame oil, salt, pepper, and sesame seeds. Sauté for an additional 1 minutes or so, until vegetables are tender-crisp.
  • Enjoy with hibachi fried rice, the protein of your choice, and some Japanese white sauce or ginger sauce for dipping!
Tried this recipe?Mention @pinchmeimeating or tag #pinchmeimeating on Instagram!

Want to enjoy the things you love about dining out — while you’re eating in?

Join my newsletter to receive

5 Secrets for Restaurant-style Eating at Home!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating