Food Etiquette: How To Properly Eat Sushi

Who doesn’t like to eat sushi? However, most people don’t know the proper way to eat sushi, and that’s totally okay if you are eating take-out sushi or the ones you can buy at the grocery store. But to have a good sushi experience, you need to know the basics of eating sushi.  

If you plan to go to a restaurant and order top-quality sushi, you’ll want to learn how to properly eat sushi. It will elevate your experience and make you love this little ritual even more. 

And we are about to teach you some basic sushi etiquette that you’ll be able to incorporate the next time you go out for dinner.  

The Importance of Knowing the Proper Way to Eat Sushi 

Why is it important to know how to eat sushi? Is eating sushi simple like eating anything else; you pick up the food and put it in your mouth? It can be simple like that, but it can be much more. Sushi etiquette will elevate your whole experience to another level and teach you to respect the chef. Nobody will judge you if you don’t know basic sushi etiquette when you eat sushi, but it will be recognized and appreciated.  

How to Interact With the Chef? 

If you go to a proper sushi restaurant and you have a chance to interact with the chef, you’ll want to do it. You’ll want to sit at the counter and ask him what he would recommend to you. Avoid randomly choosing what you think is the best option. He will always recommend something exceptional and the freshest choice of the day. You’ll also want to avoid unnecessary chit-chat with the chef, and please don’t distract him while he’s working. You can quietly enjoy the work of art that’s being created in front of you and appreciate the opportunity you have.  

Sushi Etiquette: The Basics of Eating Sushi 

A proper way to eat sushi is something you should practice every time you go out for sushi, whether sitting at a table in a restaurant or sitting in front of a sushi chef. Sushi etiquette will help you have a memorable experience and feel special.  

Even before you start eating the delicious sushi, there are a few things you need to consider and do.  

Wet Towel 

If you get a wet towel at your restaurant, it is meant for you to clean your hands. It’s a part of sushi etiquette, but also, it’s for hygienic reasons. There are some types of sushi that you’re supposed to eat with your hands and not with chopsticks. So, it would be best to always clean your hands before eating sushi. Once you use the wet towel, set it aside.  

Soy Sauce 

The next thing you need to know is how to use soy sauce properly. Everybody loves it, and it’s an essential part of the sushi experience. However, you don’t want to misuse it. The first rule of eating sushi is not to use a lot of sauce. It may come as a shock to you, but yes, you should only use a little bit of this sauce. It’s because you want to taste the sushi itself and not drown it in the sauce. It may also seem rude because using too much of the sauce looks like you are trying to change the flavor of the fish because you don’t like it or think it’s not fresh enough. Also, you shouldn’t add wasabi to your soy sauce and dip sushi in it, even if you saw someone do this. It is a common practice, but it’s not the proper way. 

Wasabi and Ginger 

Besides soy sauce, you’ll always get ginger as a side to your sushi and wasabi if you want. Wasabi is already added to the sushi pieces, and the chef knows how much needs to be added. Of course, you can always ask for more. However, you shouldn’t add too much of it to your sushi. It can seem as if you don’t like the flavors and as an insult to the chef. If you want to add it, add a bit on top of your sushi with the help of chopsticks. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t lick the chopsticks after doing it.  

A familiar yet wrong practice is to eat ginger with your sushi. But the real purpose of the ginger is to cleanse your palate between each piece of sushi. It is not a side or a salad and shouldn’t be treated like that.  


When eating some sushi types like nigiri and maki, you shouldn’t use chopsticks. And when you are eating sashimi, you’ll want to use chopsticks.

If you are not using chopsticks, you’ll want to place them in their holder that should be placed beside your plate. You shouldn’t put them anywhere else because it isn’t polite, or it can indicate that you are done with your meal.  

You should use chopsticks only to eat sushi, not to stir the soy sauce or anything else that may come to your mind. And one thing that you definitely should avoid is licking your chopsticks.  

How to Properly Eat Sushi

We’ve come to the part where we’ll talk about how to properly eat sushi. Our prior advice can seem a bit confusing, especially if you’ve been eating sushi the wrong way all your life. But if you want to know how to eat sushi, it’s pretty simple.  


Sashimi is sliced raw fish, and traditionally you should eat it with your hands. Pick up the slice using your thumb and middle finger to feel the texture. However, today people mostly eat it with chopsticks. Sashimi is by far the most straightforward sushi to eat.  


Nigiri consists of perfectly prepared rice and a piece of raw fish on top of it. The proper way to eat sushi prepared this way is to dip the fish part into the soy sauce and place the piece in your mouth so that the fish is touching your tongue. You should never dip the rice part into the sauce because the piece can fall apart, or the rice will absorb too much of the liquid.  


Maki rolls can often be found in various restaurants, and you should eat them the same way you would eat other sushi types. The easiest way to eat it is with your hands because it can easily fall apart if you use chopsticks.  

If the sushi pieces already have some sauce on top, you shouldn’t dip them in the sauce. 

Incredibly High-Quality Sushi in Miami 

If you now can’t stop thinking about sushi, we know the right place where you can satisfy your craving. Public Square restaurant is one of the best places to find sushi in South Miami.  

Don’t hesitate to call us and book your reservation today for your next sushi experience.