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Mirin Substitute
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5 from 4 votes

Mirin Substitute: Unlocking the Magic of Authentic Japanese Cooking

Unlock the secret of making your own Mirin with this easy-to-follow recipe that uses organic ingredients and simple steps to create a delicious seasoning.
Prep Time2 hours
Cook Time45 minutes
Course: Seasonings
Cuisine: Japanese
Servings: 1 Bottle
Calories: 2003kcal
Author: Elle John


  • 1 cup glutinous rice
  • 1 cup Koji rice
  • 2 cups Japanese Shochu or Sake


Preparing the glutinous rice:

  • Begin by rinsing the glutinous rice in water multiple times, ensuring that the water runs clear.
  • Once that's done, let the rice soak in cold water for about 2 to 4 hours.
  • After soaking, drain the rice well and place it in a steamer basket lined with cheesecloth.
  • Steam the rice for 40-45 minutes, or until it becomes tender, and then set it aside to cool down completely.

Mixing glutinous rice with Koji rice:

  • Once the glutinous rice is completely cooled down, mix it with the Koji rice evenly.
  • Transfer the mixture into a sterilized jar large enough to hold both the rice and the liquid.

Adding the liquid component:

  • Next, pour the Japanese Shochu or Sake into the rice mixture.
  • Stir well to ensure that the rice and liquid are well combined.
  • Seal the jar with a clean cheesecloth or towel, and store it in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight.

Fermentation process:

  • Patience, young grasshopper! The secret to unlocking the magic of authentic Mirin lies in a slow and steady fermentation process.
  • The mix needs to ferment for at least three months, during which, you must stir the contents once every week.

Straining and bottling:

  • After the fermentation period, take out the jar and strain the contents through a cheesecloth or fine-mesh strainer.
  • Make sure to squeeze out as much liquid as possible from the rice.
  • Transfer the liquid, your freshly brewed Mirin, to sterilized bottles and store them in a cool, dark place.


  • For optimum results, make sure that you use the freshest ingredients available to you, particularly the Koji rice.
  • Fresh Koji will provide a rich and intricate flavor to your Mirin that you won't find with store-bought substitutes.
  • The longer you leave the mixture to ferment, the more complex and flavorsome your Mirin will be!
  • If you can resist the temptation, allow it to ferment for up to six months for a truly divine taste.


Calories: 2003kcal | Carbohydrates: 323g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 32mg | Potassium: 475mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 0.2g | Calcium: 96mg | Iron: 5mg