Sakuraco Snack Box: Be My Valentine!

Photo of contents of Sakuraco snack box
Trying to fit all of the contents of the Sakuraco snack box in one photo

Thank you to Sakuraco for providing a free snack box for my review! This does not affect the price you pay for the product and also does not affect my evaluation of any products in this article.

Anyone who knows me knows that I have a HUGE sweet tooth. So when Sakuraco got into contact about reviewing their Valentine’s snack box, I was all in. Who can resist cat-shaped rice cakes, squid chips, or strawberry dorayaki?

In this post, we’ll look at the contents of the box, a brief comparison with other subscription snack boxes, and who this box would be good for.

A Look in the Sakuraco Snack Box

The Sakuraco snack box itself was sturdy, but smaller than I expected. However, after opening, it was like a clown car of snacks. I could not believe how much they had managed to pack in there. As you can see from the photo, I had a difficult time getting all the snacks in the shot.

Photo of two ogura an pies (sweet bean paste pies) on top of the Sakuraco snack guide
One of my favorite snacks from the box, the ogura an pie, along with the snack guide

The Snacks

In total, there were sixteen types of snacks, three types of tea, a postcard, a snack guide, and one cute soup bowl. (Out of the sixteen types of snacks, two packages were included for two of the types, for a total of 21 snack/tea packages.)

The theme of the Sakuraco box this time was “Valentine’s Bliss,” which meant there was a lot of seasonal strawberry snacks. In addition, this box was put together in collaboration with the Osaka Prefectural government, so it focused heavily on snacks from Osaka, such as Osaka Chiyoko (white chocolate and raisin millet treats).

My favorite snacks in the box were probably the ogura an pie (sweet red bean paste pie from Nagano Prefecture) or kinako dumplings (soybean flour dumplings from Osaka Prefecture).

Photo of page from the Sakuraco snack guide showing the kinoko dumpling details
A look at the Sakuraco snack guide, which includes allergy and vegetarian-friendly information

The Snack Guide

While the snacks are of course the stars of the show, one of the biggest “added value” items in this box is the snack guide. The snack guide is a glossy booklet that describes all the snacks in English, including allergens and whether it is vegetarian. You’ll also be able to read articles about the history of a few of the snacks and Japanese culture in general. For example, in line with the Valentine’s theme, one of the articles talks about the romantic aiaigasa culture of sharing an umbrella.

Also a quick shoutout for the cute soup bowl that was included. Since I’m a huge “bird otaku,” I already own a few items with the adorable triangular bird pattern adorning this bowl. But what I didn’t know was that this pattern depicts plovers (chidori). So that is going to be the piece of trivia I share in my next bird-related conversation.

Snack Box Comparison

While I was aware that Japanese snack boxes other than the Sakuraco box existed, I actually wasn’t expecting there to be so much competition.

So in the spirit of fairness, I’ll compare several of the boxes with the Sakuraco box below.

Photo looking down into the Sakuraco snack box before unpacking it
First look inside the box

Sakuraco Snack Box Stats

  • Focus: traditional Japanese sweets
  • Price: 32.50 USD per month (for 12-month subscription)
  • Number of sweets per box: 20

Box B Stats

  • Focus: traditional Japanese sweets
  • Price: 39.99 USD per month (for 12-month subscription)
  • Number of sweets per box: 20 to 22

Box C Stats

  • Focus: modern Japanese sweets
  • Price: 32.50 USD per month (for 12-month subscription)
  • Number of sweets per box: 15 to 20

Box D Stats

  • Focus: modern Japanese sweets
  • Price: 24.90 USD per month (for 12-month subscription)
  • Number of sweets per box: 10

Comparison Conclusion

As you can see, there are a lot of different Japanese snack boxes to choose from. And the above three competitors don’t even begin to scratch the surface. But looking at all the different boxes, my feeling was that the Sakuraco box is best for people who like more traditional Japanese sweets at a reasonable price point.

Photo of cat-shaped rice cake and Japanese woodblock postcard
Delicious savory sauce flavored “maneki-neko” cat senbei (rice cake), along with the included post card

Who Should Buy the Sakuraco Box?

To be honest, since I live in Japan, I could theoretically buy many similar snacks here for friends and family back home. But I think in the future I will definitely consider buying the Sakuraco box for them instead.

As mentioned above, the box itself is attractive and sturdy, the snacks are very thoughtfully chosen, and the snack guide includes a huge amount of information that I would have no way of reproducing. Not to mention, shipping from Japan is a huge hassle, with a lot of paperwork and high costs. So going with Sakuraco would be both a higher quality gift and probably more cost/time efficient.

Overall, the below analysis can give you an idea of who might be happy to receive this box. (Or whether you might like it as a gift to yourself! As the Japanese say, 自分へのご褒美! [jibun e no gohobi])

Recommended for:

  • People who love traditional Japanese sweets
  • People who are interested in learning about traditional Japanese culture
  • People who have lived in Japan before
  • People interested in trying unique snacks that might be difficult to get in one’s home country
  • Vegetarians (while I am not sure about the other boxes, all of the snacks except one was non-vegetarian friendly)

Not recommended for:

  • People who want more modern Japanese sweets (such as KitKats, etc.)
  • Very picky eaters (depending on your home country, some of the textures and flavors might be very different, such as squid, mochi, etc.)
  • People allergic to soy (while I am not sure about other boxes, most of the snacks in this one included soy)
  • People who travel a lot (most of the snacks had an expiration date two to six months away, but a few were about one month)


I’m really grateful to Sakuraco for the chance to review their snack box. If you are looking for a Japanese snack box, keep Sakuraco in your sight!

Have you tried Sakuraco (or any other) snack box before? What is your favorite Japanese traditional snack? (Mine is anything red bean flavored!)

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