What Is Sushi Rice, and How Do You Make It? – Bokksu Market

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What Is Sushi Rice, and How Do You Make It?

by Melanie Totenberg

Are you looking for a simple Japanese recipe to try at home? Sushi rice is a perfect starting recipe! Sushi rice is steamed rice that is flavored with seasoned vinegar. When most people think of sushi, they probably think of maki rolls filled with tuna or salmon. What most people may not know is that the term sushi does not actually refer to the fish wrapped in rice and seaweed, but actually refers to the seasoned rice. However, we’ll continue to use the term sushi rice for clarity’s sake.

What is Sushi Rice, And How Do You Make It

The reason that sushi rice is vinegared harkens back to a time before refrigeration. In the past, Japanese people kept fish preserved and fresh by wrapping it with fermented rice. When they wanted to eat the fish, they discarded the rice. Sometime between the 1300s and 1500s, vinegared rice replaced fermented rice as a way of preserving the fish for longer. The vinegared rice and fish combination tasted so good together and thus sushi was born.

Sushi Rice

Sushi Rice Recipe

If you want to learn how to make sushi rice, we’ve got a great sushi rice recipe for you to try.

You can find everything you’ll need for this recipe at Bokksu Market. No need to search high and low weaving through a crowded Asian grocery store or Japanese grocery store. Order groceries online with ease at Bokksu Market, the first online nationwide Japanese grocery store.

We sell various kinds of rice, but the kind of rice you’ll want for this recipe is Tamanishiki Super Premium Short Grain Rice. Short grain rice will create a slightly sticky texture that is essential for sushi rice. You’ll also need a quality rice vinegar, another key ingredient that can be found at Bokksu Market. If you want to simplify the process further you can buy a pre-made sushi vinegar like Marukan’s Sushi Rice Vinegar.

We also have a seasoning blend which includes lotus root, carrots, kampyo (dried gourd), bamboo shoots, Japanese mushrooms, and nori that will spice up your plain sushi rice. Now you’ve got the ingredients sorted, let’s learn how to make sushi rice.

Sushi Rice Recipe:


  • 2 cups of Japanese short grain rice
  • 1 piece of Kombu (optional)
  • ⅓ cup of rice vinegar
  • 2 tbs of sugar
  • 1 tsp of salt


  1. Rinse the rice until the water runs mostly clear. This will get rid of any excess starch and prevent your sushi rice from clumping together. Make sure to strain any excess water.
  2. If using kombu, wipe the kombu with a damp cloth. Do not wash and be sure not to wipe off any white powdery residue (the umami factor).
  3. Put the rice in the rice cooker bowl. You want about 3 cups of water. Place the kombu on top and soak the rice for 20-30 min before pressing cook on the rice cooker. If you don’t have a rice cooker, repeat the previous instructions but cook the rice over a stove top.
  4. Combine the sugar, salt, and rice vinegar into a small saucepan. Cook for about 10 minutes until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
  5. Pour your hot sushi vinegar over the cooked rice and gently fold with a wooden spoon or rice cooker paddle. Let the sushi rice cool to room temperature before using.

By Melanie Totenberg

Author Bio

What Is Sushi Rice, and How Do You Make It?


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