Simple Recipe: Super Soft Mochi

Frock Files | Easy Mochi

Every Girls’ Day when I was growing up, my grandma brought over a plate full of mochi. I’d ration it out over a week because I knew I’d have to wait months until having it again. As I got older, I’d buy mochi from shops and farmer’s market stands, but none of them ever compared to my grandma’s. After all that searching, I eventually broke down and decided to make it myself. That’s when the real secret was revealed to me: it’s really easy to make. All you do is mix the ingredients and bake them on low heat.

If you’ve never had mochi, the closest thing I can compare it to is Turkish delight. Of course, perhaps you’ve never had Turkish delight either, so I’ll say that it’s a bit like a chewy marshmallow. The ingredients — rice flour, coconut milk, sugar, and vanilla — speak for themselves. And speaking of ingredients, mochi is naturally gluten-free and vegan. Double hooray!

Frock Files | Easy Mochi

  • 1 lb. mochiko (aka Sweet Rice Flour by Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 2 ΒΌ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • Potato starch (or corn starch)
  • Food coloring
  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Grease a 9″ x 13″ pan.
  2. Mix the mochiko, sugar, and baking powder together. In a separate bowl, mix the vanilla, water, and coconut together. Then, blend the wet and dry ingredients, using your hands. Add food coloring, if desired.
  3. Pour the mixture into a greased pan. Cover tightly and bake for 90 minutes.
  4. Remove the pan from the oven. Remove the foil and allow to cool completely. Once fully cooled, my grandma re-covers the mochi with foil and allows it to sit for 10-12 hours. I don’t have that kind of patience, but if you do, your mochi will probably be even softer!
  5. Using a plastic knife, cut into small pieces and roll in potato starch until lightly coated. Wrap in wax paper, if desired.

1 lb. mochiko 2 ΒΌ cup sugar 1 teaspoon baking powder   Mix well: 1 teaspoon vanilla 2 cups water 1 (12 ounce) can coconut milk

Aside from the fact that this recipe makes delicious mochi, it’s also really pretty once it’s finished. This would be an excellent dessert for St. Patrick’s day, since you can use any food coloring you want (it only requires a few drops). I love sealing them in glass jars and making deliveries to friends, since this recipe makes so many pieces.

P.S. More mochi recipes (including mochi ice cream, butter mochi, and pumpkin mochi)!

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  1. Yum!!! I love mochi, but I’ve never even dreamed of making them myself! I can’t wait to try these.

  2. Derrick says:

    Deliveries are always welcome!

  3. YES! A recipe I can make! This gluten free gal loves mochi – cannot wait to try your recipe! My favorite are the little mochi shells with ice cream in them. Double delicious, but sinful.

    • I’ve never tried making these with ice cream in them, but i bet it’s do-able. Hmmm. I’ve had freshly made mochi ice cream in a restaurant before and it was SO soft.

  4. Is this the dessert where sometimes there is ice cream or like a bean paste in the middle? If so…I have to try!!

    I would love to know!

    • Yes! Sometimes people put azuki bean paste in the middle, but I’ve never been a big fan. In Hawaii, people also put fresh strawberries, cream cheese, or jam in the middle. I’m kind of a purist, though – I like it just as it is.

  5. Joy, seriously, this recipe makes my day! My husband & I both love mochi.. I’ll have to surprise him with this homemade treat one day soon πŸ™‚

    … off to google our nearest asian supermarket!

    • That makes me so happy! You know, in Portland I could find mochiko at my local grocery store, so you might have luck there too. I know that Marukai definitely carries it – are you near one?

  6. Okay, you’ve convinced me – I will make these πŸ™‚

    I’ve always been curious about mochi and it does sound totally do-able. Thanks for sharing the recipe Joy!

    • Adina, if you can make gluten-free bagels successfully (they looked SO good!), you can definitely make these. πŸ™‚ xo

  7. These look amazing Joy! I’ve never heard of them before either. Are they like jelly or similar to Turkish Delight? Must try these and must say – your photography here is beautiful!! M x

    • They’re not really jelly-like, but they’re more like Turkish delight. Fluffy and a little sticky. And basically just the most delicious thing ever. You can find the ready made stuff in London at Go Sushi, I think, if you want to try it before making a whole pan. πŸ™‚

  8. I loved this post and will have Auntie Shirley show it to Grandma! She will LOVE being famous.

    Your photography captures the mochi in all its softness.


  9. Love this post. The mochi look dee-lish! You really have captured the sweetness in your pretty photos πŸ™‚

  10. I love mochi! Plain, with beans inside, or wrapped in a pancake…. any style. We also love the mochi covered ice cream treats from Trader Joe’s. Your pink ones look scrumptious!

  11. Ok, Stephanie is definitely speaking our language here. Yum!
    Have you ever been to one of those fancy mochi shops where the mochi look like little works of art? They’re almost too pretty to eat. Well, yours look too pretty to eat. (It never dawned on me that mochi was GF. Great fact to keep in mind.)

  12. I have been looking for gluten free sweet treats and these look amazing! Can’t wait to try them!!

  13. yum yum yummm!! i made mochi last week and filled it with peanut butter and jelly! just finished the last of them and now i am sad πŸ™ these look different though! i must try them, as i have a ton of rice flour left!

  14. OH my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh! You are my favourite person right now.
    I LOVE mochi. Thankfully we have Japanese grocery stores here so I’m never at a loss for mochi, but when I lived in Japan I fell in love with strawberry daifuku which, sadly, I’ve never since. I’m totally going to make it using this mochi recipe. So excited!

  15. Aw yeah – I love mochi. in fact, my sis and I were just talking about it the other day. Glad I found the recipe here.

  16. I am very excited to try this!

    I was wondering if the coconut milk was a substitute for something else?

    It doesn’t seem like a “traditional” ingrediant (forgive my ingnorance, if it is).

    Just curious! πŸ™‚

    • Aslo have you ever tried flavoring the mochi?

      • No, I’m kind of a purist. You know how it is when your grandma makes something really good — it’s hard to beat the original.

    • The coconut milk is actually always used as one of the main ingredients and isn’t a substitute. It gives it flavor and substance. I hope you’ll let me know how you like it!

      • Christine says:

        Just made this – it’s yummy!

        I don’t think the coconut milk part is traditionally Japanese (I don’t think they had a lot of coconuts back in the day), but possibly a Vietnamese or other Asian/Pacific Island style of mochi?

        • Christine, I’m thrilled to hear you made it! You must be right; this style of mochi is popular in Hawaii, where coconuts are abundant.

  17. Chelsea Weiler says:

    I was wondering if I could use corn starch instead of potato starch?

  18. Okay, I just got home from the gym and have 3 hrs. before work, I’m totally making these right now. I’ll let you know how they turn out. Thanks

  19. I just made a batch and they are super yummy! The consistency was a little more cakey than I’m used to. Is that pretty normal with this recipe?

    • Hmm, I don’t think they’re usually cakey when I make them this way. They’re a bit smooth/gooey, actually. I’ve had friends who have had to extend or reduce the baking time, so I’m wondering if that’s what you’re encountering too…? You may try reducing the time by a few minutes to see if the consistency is more like what you’re used to.

    • i know what you did wrong! i made the same mistake today…you forgot to cover it with foil im guessing =P my last batch turned out awesome..but it turned out cakey hthis time becuse i forgot to cover it with foil..

  20. OMG! I’ve tried sooooo many mochi recipes, and FINALLY I am happy to have found this one! My daughter and I are big fans of daifuku/mochi, and while we love just buying them from the Japanese and Asian stores in our area, we’ve been dying to make mochi at home too! I guess you can say my daughter can be quite a mochi critic, and after we made your recipe, we both agree it’s a winner!!! I can see us making these for years to come. We are ready to make a second batch! ^_^ THANK YOU for sharing!

    • Amy, I’m so glad you like it! It’s totally addictive, isn’t it? It’s so easy. Whenever I have mochiko on hand it doesn’t last long because of this recipe.

  21. oh yum! reminds me of the delicious soft pink chichi dango from honolulu! are you located in hawaii? ^__^

    • Lyndsay, you’ve hit the nail on the head! This is my grandma’s chichi dango mochi recipe. I’m originally from Hawaii, but I’ve been living off island (London, Portland, Boston) for the past 10 years or so.

  22. I just made some with almond extract. It was like a marzipan candy. It’s so amazing, I had to share.

    There is a woman here locally who is world renowned. I may have to see what all she has and do some experimenting.

  23. I made this recipe–seriously delish, but so much! I shared it around after cutting it up but even then it took an hour to slice. If I halved the recipe, would it take half the time to bake do you think? Because one way or another, I am making this again!

    • Hmm I wonder why it took so long to slice. Did you use a plastic knife? That makes it so much easier, and should just glide through. I haven’t tried making half the recipe but I would imagine it would take about half the time. You might just check on it to see if it’s on the firm side. So glad you liked it! And we always figure that the quantity makes it fun to share. Plus that, we’re gluttons for it, so we eat a whole bunch of it ourselves!

  24. Hi Joy, these little mochi look amazing. I actually do not really know how they taste cause it is the first time I read about this kind of sweet treat. I want to make them. I was wondering what you mean by vanilla? Is it vanilla sugar, powder, or extract? Thanks a lot for the help.
    Lena from

    • Welcome, Lena! Thanks for pointing that out – I hadn’t realized that I failed to specify the first time. Vanilla = vanilla extract. I hope you’ll let me know what you think of this recipe when you try it!

  25. Helena Shimizu says:

    If I add filling do I do that before or after baking? Can these be shaping into balls and rolled in sesame seeds and would that also happen before or after baking. Thanks for sharing I can’t wait to try it.

  26. Happy new year Joy! This recipe looks delicious – so glad I found your website via twitter! πŸ™‚

  27. Tiffany M. says:

    Made this mochi for New Years and it was perfect. Only problem was I could not stop eating it as I cut it up!

    • So glad you liked it, Tiffany! I have the exact same problem. In my mind, it doesn’t count at that point. πŸ™‚

  28. Thanks so much! Turned out great the first time making. Since it was all for me I just stuck it in some Tupperware instead of individually wrap em. Thanks again will surely keep this in my recipe book.

  29. Wow! does this recipe work with komeko too?

  30. I stumbled across your site after becoming totally obsessed with eating mochi during a recent trip to Taiwan. Your recipe makes it seem doable and I live in Istanbul where I will never ever find mochi as long as I live. Can you tell me how many cups or grams 1lb of the sticky rice flour is? Thanks!

    • Hi Jasmine – welcome! I’m not sure how many cups/grams of mochiko you’d need to use because I always weigh it. I know it’s a pain, but because of the way that the flour settles, a cup in one environment could be a lot different than a cup in another environment. It’s a lot safer to weigh the flour for this recipe, in order to achieve consistent results.

  31. Where can I find the sweet rice flour or can i just use any rice flour. Same with the potatoe starch can i use corn starch?

    • Sweet rice flower is sold as “mochiko” in Asian grocery stores. I usually buy the Bob’s Red Mill version, which is available in my local grocery store. You may have to find a grocery store with a big Bob’s selection! And, yes, corn starch is a good substitute for potato starch if you can’t find the latter.

  32. Elizabeth says:

    I was wondering what can you use instead of coconut milk? I’m allergic to coconut but would love to make mochi, I’ve never had it before. It sounds so yummy!

    • Elizabeth, I honestly don’t have any experience making the substitution so I poked around the internet for an answer. The consensus seems to be that there’s no good substitute. However, there ARE other kinds of mochi you can make without coconut milk! Check out my mochi ice cream post for a simple outer mochi layer that you can make in the microwave. Spread that in a pan, let it cool, and you’ll have a similar end result.

  33. I have all the ingredients! Can’t wait to try your recipe out! Mochi has been at the top of my list for cravings <3

  34. michelle says:

    This was so yummy and so easy too! Was wondering if u have tried making other flavors like peach or some other fruit?

  35. Christine says:

    Hi Joy, I’d like to try this recipe. May I know how many ml is a can of coconut milk? And can I use rice flour instead of sweet rice flour? will it make any differences? Thanks :)!

  36. Does it get smaller after you cook it cause it filled the dish alot

    • It should be pretty high in the pan, but not overflowing. There should be about a half inch of room (or more) between the top of the mochi and the top of the pan.

  37. Michelle says:

    Hi Joy!
    I plan to make this recipe for my mom for Mother’s Day. I was wondering if the mochi would still taste good without the coconut milk. I asked my friend who made mochi before and she said they don’t usually use coconut milk, so just wanted to get a second opinion. Thanks soo much!

    • Hi Michelle! I’m tickled that you’re going to make this for Mother’s Day. This is my grandmother’s recipe, and I think the reason your friend doesn’t recall there being coconut milk is because this is a Hawaii-style mochi, not a traditional Japanese mochi. That said, the coconut milk is absolutely essential to this particular recipe. It would be a totally different confection without it.

      • Michelle says:

        Ohhhh I understand… can’t wait to make this tomorrow!!!!!
        Is baking spray ok to grease the pan with?

        • Good luck! (It’s really easy – you don’t need much luck :)). Baking spray is perfect for greasing. Make sure you have a plastic knife to cut with afterward!

  38. Hello,

    I love your site. You have great recipes and pictures! Where did you get this recipe for mochi? I have tried to make mochi before, but the recipe was different and so it didn’t come out very soft. These look great!

    • Thank you, Alayna! I got this recipe from my grandmother. This is a traditional chi chi dango mochi recipe in Hawaii. Mochi recipes from Japan don’t generally use coconut milk. I find this to be the easiest way to make it, and a lot of readers have also had success with it. I hope you’ll let me know how it turns out for you if you should try it!

  39. Phalyca Kong says:

    I just happened to stumble across this recipe on Pinterest, and i will definitely give this and the mochi ice cream recipe a try!!

  40. Chin Oh says:

    I just finished making your mochi recipe and it’s fantastic! Thank you for sharing this easy recipe. I’ve been looking for a simple mochi recipe and almost shoes away after seeing all the failed attempts from microwave, steaming, etc. I didn’t put enough food coloring to look as pretty as your photo but the taste is what matters. Like you, I couldn’t wait for it to cool and started eating it out of the pan when it was cool enough. Even my picky daughter liked it! Thank you again for sharing your grandmother’s recipe. πŸ™‚

  41. Hi Joy!
    Thank you so much for this recipe! My whole family loves it. I was wondering, how do you traditionally store the mochi? There is all sorts of advice online about freeziing and refrigirating mochi with the warnings that it ruins them. πŸ™

  42. Love this recipe – so easy and it comes out just like I remember it as a kid! I use a sharp pizza cutter to cut it and it works like a charm.

  43. Mina Martin says:

    I love this recipe, but I found that when I baked it at 275 for 90 minutes it was very under done. I tried again at 450 for an hour and it came out perfect πŸ™‚

  44. I was wondering of you knew the shelf life of mochi when made this way? I want to use it as a counter treat so it would be sitting out at room temperature.

    • It really depends on how humid it is when you make the mochi. In Hawaii, where it’s VERY humid, I would keep the mochi for no longer than three or four days. Here in New England, we can keep it a little longer, between five to six days. Mochi should always be kept at room temperature! If you put these in the refrigerator, they dry up and become tough. Mochi jerky is not a delicious treat. πŸ™‚

  45. Do you think I could flavor these using Matcha powder? Matcha is one of my favorite mochi flavors, but I don’t know if I would need to decrease the amount of dry ingredient used. Does anyone have any suggestions?

  46. I’m looking for a recipe to make fruit-flavored mochi bits and was hoping I could possibly sub fruit juice for the coconut milk in your recipe? My kids can’t have coconut, but I want to still get that soft, smooth texture and worried that if I use say strained blueberry puree/juice instead of the coconut milk that it will change a lot. Any chance you’ve made the mochi bits with fruit juice?

    • Hi Carolyn, I don’t think this recipe would work if you substituted fruit juice in this recipe. The coconut milk is what gives the mochi its consistency. Traditional mochi doesn’t have coconut milk in it and can be filled with jellies, jams, or beans, but will not be quite as easy to make. The blog FOODjimoto has a recipe for mochi without coconut milk that you can add jam to:

  47. yum! i made 1/4 of the recipe in a 9×4 loaf pan. Had to cook it about 50 minutes. Oh but I had some pineapple juice leftover from the other day.. it was a little watery so i reduced it a bit and used it in place of water. so. freaking. good. Thanks for the recipe!

  48. Can I use glutinous rice flour instead of Mochiko?

    • I haven’t tried it! But because the mochiko is the foundation of this recipe, I don’t think I would stray from it.

  49. This recipe is wonderfully simple and so easy to make. I was very pleased with how well the mochi came out.

  50. MADE THIS AND ITS A HIT!!! I’m making my 2nd pan tonight, the 1st one came out PERFECT! And I let it sit for the 12hrs which made the mochi EVEN BETTER!! THANK YOU FOR THIS RECIPE!!! Never will I buy store bought mochi ever again lol

  51. just put it in the oven i love making mochi i grow up with it all my life all kinds of it but plain is my favorite …can wait to eat it omg ………i hope everyone had a good girls day yesterday

  52. Found this recipe on pinterest, just made it and I’m waiting for it to cool right now. I thought it was a little under done in the center when I took it out of the oven so I put it back in, but then my Japanese girlfriend scolded me so I took it back out again and its solidifying nicely now.

    Anyways, thanks for sharing the recipe!

  53. Thank you so much for the recipe. Made it several times and everyone loves it EXCEPT for the color. I just can’t seem to get the pink right!! It always comes out muddy looking. Any advice?

    • Hi, Arlene! I would suggest adding just a couple of drops of food coloring at first, stirring, and then adding one drop at a time until you reach the color you want to achieve. You can also make it any color you want. My grandma often made green, blue, and pink (each in a separate pan) for big events like my great grandmother’s 100th birthday party, or weddings. Good luck, and let me know how it goes!

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