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My favorite cooking manga (and in my opinion the best) is Bambino! Granted this is the only one I have ever read... Regardless, its still a great story and the characters are great as well. Don't know if its DBZ level, or for that matter, if any cooking manga has ever gotten popular enough to be considered "the DBZ of cooking manga".
I've only read 2 series that fall into this category and I will have the share the prize. For seinen it has to go to Addicted to Curry. A extremely funny series that has a serious plot. A pervy cook starts to work a curry restaurant and faces many problems. Along the way in search of finding his mentor, he gets the help of the owner's daughter.
For shonen, I'm going to pick Toriko. Warning, do not read this on an empty stomach. They do such a good job describing what the food tastes like and the drooling mouths doesn't help at all. Plus some cool fights here and there all over rare food makes this a great food manga.
Yakitate Japan is the only coocking manga I've read and I loved it. The overeactions of the caracters the lame but kind of funny puns this manga/anime is just epic.
Kitchen Princess is the best shoujo cooking manga (I have read). It had lovable characters even if the 'plot' is a bit unbelievable when 'that' happens. The food aspect was researched well and stayed simple enough for young children to understand. The art was pretty average for a shoujo manga unfortunately. It managed to write a purity sue into a belivable character, it averted serveral tropes despite the two main male characters are what you typically call 'the blonde prince guy' and 'the dark-hair tsundere guy'.
It was one of the shoujo manga that I really hoped for a morning anime adaption, unfortunately that didn't happen because the lack of magical toys to sell...
Even Mamotte Lollipop had a TERRIBLE anime adaption...
I started reading Addicted to Curry but I didn't really like it much. I might one day try one of the curry recipes from the manga though!
Bambino! Looks awesome! I'm definitely giving this one a try. This looks like a REAL seinen cooking manga. This is like a dream come true.
Bambino is more slice of life than cooking I think.
Addicted to curry is good, Yakitate Japan is brilliant too funny, over the top and like any other shonen action series except it's about bread.
Cooking series are painfully neglected by scanlators there are a few I would like to see. Food is great.
Bambino is magic!! A masterpiece about italian cooking (LOL, I'm italian ) and sacrifice.
Addicted to curry is not bad, but I have read until the 6th volume. I'm wondering what happens in more than 30 volumes about the curry. It seems too long for a cooking manga.
Yakitate is the only one I've read. It's pretty entertaining with all the puns and parodies. Some of the puns are quite hard to understand for non-Japanese to understand though..
Toriko is good, but I count it more of a fighting manga than a cooking or food manga.
I'll say Tetsunabe no Jan, that manga is totally awesome. The R! version is good, but the first version is the best. It's about a cook who hold the ideal 'Cooking is dueling' so he'll do anything it take to win. It's just plain awesome.
Cooking manga hum? I only read Yakitate!! Japan but I have to admit this is a great series: great drawing, kinda weird but thatz make its more funny, oh.. many recipes too (I did try some of those already ).
Even though this is not really my fav type of manga, I bought the whole series when its released in my country
Yakitate Japan! all the way!
The food looks good enough for me to want to just eat the paper...
And I love the silly/witty puns and reactions when someone eats the almighty bread *drools*
A long time ago, I really enjoyed reading Hoppe ni Chuubo. The plot had the usual shoujo tropes (a love interest, a rival etc.) but the food that were featured looked really good! In the tankoubons, they had series of recipes based on the food that the protagonist made. They're pretty easy to make. I remember I made the rice soup and brownie.