Sushi Rice Recipe Mirin

Sushi, a culinary masterpiece originating from Japan, relies on the harmony of flavors and textures. A crucial component of exceptional sushi is the perfectly seasoned sushi rice. Mirin, a sweet rice wine, plays a significant role in adding depth and complexity to the flavor profile of sushi rice. This recipe guide will walk you through the steps of creating sushi rice with mirin, elevating your sushi-making experience to new heights of authenticity and delight.


  • 2 cups of sushi rice (short-grain Japanese rice)
  • 2 1/2 cups of water
  • 1/3 cup of rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of mirin
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of salt


Rinsing and Soaking the Rice

    • Begin by measuring 2 cups of sushi rice. Rinse the rice under cold water in a fine-mesh strainer until the water runs clear.
    • Transfer the rinsed rice to a bowl and add water. Let the rice soak for about 30 minutes to allow the grains to absorb moisture evenly.

Cooking the Rice

    • Drain the soaked rice and place it in your rice cooker’s inner pot.
    • Add 2 1/2 cups of water to the rice. Select the “Sushi Rice” or “White Rice” setting on your rice cooker and start the cooking process.

Preparing the Seasoned Vinegar

    • While the rice is cooking, prepare the seasoned vinegar mixture. Combine rice vinegar, mirin, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan. Heat the mixture over low heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Avoid bringing it to a boil.

Vinegaring the Rice

    • Once the rice has finished cooking, carefully transfer it to a wide, shallow, non-metallic container like a wooden or glass bowl. This aids in cooling down the rice quickly.
    • Drizzle the seasoned vinegar mixture over the rice using a cutting motion with a wooden or plastic rice paddle. Gently fold and mix the rice to evenly distribute the flavors.

Cooling and Fluffing

    • Allow the vinegared rice to cool for about 10-15 minutes. The rice will become slightly stickier and ideal for sushi making during this time.

Covering the Rice

    • Once the rice has cooled slightly, cover it with a damp, clean kitchen towel to prevent it from drying out while you prepare your sushi ingredients.

Tips and Variations

  • Choosing Mirin: Traditional mirin is recommended for the most authentic flavor. If you can’t find mirin, you can use a combination of sake and sugar as a substitute.
  • Rice Texture: Sushi rice should have a balance of stickiness and separation. Folding the rice with the seasoned vinegar gently achieves this texture.
  • Consistency: The vinegar mixture should be gently and evenly distributed throughout the rice. Be cautious to keep the mix manageable, as this could result in mushy rice.
  • Cooling Time: Allowing the rice to cool slightly after seasoning is crucial. Hot rice can make it challenging to shape sushi rolls properly.


Sushi rice seasoned with mirin adds a layer of sophistication and authenticity to your homemade sushi creations. The balance of sweet, tangy, and savory flavors enhances the overall sushi experience, allowing you to appreciate each bite of your sushi rolls. Following these steps and using high-quality ingredients, you can craft sushi rice with mirin that captures the essence of traditional Japanese sushi. Whether you’re a seasoned sushi enthusiast or a novice looking to explore the art of sushi making, this recipe is a delightful gateway to creating truly exceptional sushi rice.


How does mirin enhance sushi rice?

Mirin, a sweet rice wine, subtly complicates sushi rice. Its sweetness balances the tanginess of rice vinegar, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. Mirin also contributes a glossy sheen to the rice, enhancing its visual appeal. The combination of mirin, rice vinegar, and other seasonings gives sushi rice its characteristic taste, making each bite of sushi a delightful experience. Incorporating mirin in your sushi rice preparation enhances authenticity and elevates the overall quality of your homemade sushi.

Is it possible to create sushi rice without using mirin?

Yes, you can make sushi rice without mirin. If you want to avoid alcohol or don’t have mirin on hand, you can use a combination of sake and sugar as a substitute. While mirin contributes a unique sweet depth to sushi rice, using sake and sugar helps achieve a similar balance of flavors. The substitution maintains the authenticity of sushi rice while accommodating individual preferences and ingredient availability.

Can I modify the quantity of mirin used in sushi rice?

Certainly! The amount of Mirin used in sushi rice can be adjusted to suit your taste preferences. You can reduce the amount of Mirin if you prefer a more subtle sweetness. On the other hand, if you enjoy a slightly sweeter flavor, you can add more Mirin. Experimenting with mirin quantities allows you to personalize your sushi rice to match your preferred flavor profile. Remember that Mirin’s unique contribution to the balance of flavors is crucial for achieving authentic sushi rice taste, so aim to find the right proportion that aligns with your palate.

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