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How to Make Perfect Sushi Rice

  • Author: Yuto Omura
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x


How to make perfect sushi rice at home! Perfectly fluffy steamed rice lightly seasoned with rice vinegar, salt and sugar. 




  • 300g (1 1/2 US cups or 2 rice cups) Japanese short grain white rice
  • 400ml (1¾ US cups) cold water



  1. First, measure out 300g of rice. You can use kitchen scales to measure, or 2 rice cooker cups.
  2. Next, pour the rice into a sieve and put the sieve into a large bowl. Pour cold water on to the rice and wash. When the water becomes cloudy, drain it out and repeat this step 2 more times (3 times in total).Wash Japanese Rice
  3. Transfer your rice to a rice cooker or a pot with a lid and add 400ml of cold water.
  4. Leave it to soak for 30 minutes. (If it's winter, extend soaking time to 1 hour.)
  5. Once the soaking time is up, start your rice cooker or follow the steps below.

Cooking rice on a stove

  1. Put your pot on the stove on a medium heat and bring it to the boil.
    Boil Japanese rice
  2. Don't take off the lid, listen for the boiling water. Once you can hear it boiling set a timer for 2 minutes.
  3. After 2 minutes are up, reduce the heat to medium-low and set a timer for 3 minutes.
    How to cook Japanese rice
  4. After 3 minutes are up, reduce the heat to the lowest setting and simmer for 5 minutes.
    simmer Japanese rice
  5. Turn up the heat to max for 10 seconds and then turn off the heat completely, leave the rice to steam for 10 minutes. Don't be tempted to take off the lid or mix it.
    How to steam Japanese rice
  6. After the 10 minutes are up, the rice is cooked and can be transferred to a wooden "sushi oke" or a large mixing bowl. Wet the sushi oke or bowl slightly before adding the rice to stop it from sticking too much, and then spread the rice in a thin layer. The thinner the layer, the quicker it will cool down so if you're using a bowl, use a big one and spread the rice up the edges. (Try not to crush the rice though.)


  1. In a small bowl, mix 2 tbsp rice vinegar, 1/2 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp salt until the salt and sugar is dissolved.
  2. Once your rice is cooled slightly (still warm to the touch), pour the vinegar mixture over the rice.
  3. Using a rice paddle (or spoon) mix the rice until the vinegar is evenly distributed throughout.
  4. Use immediately, or place a damp tea towel over the top to stop it from drying out. (Use within 2 hours)


If you have left over rice, you can store it in a microwavable container in the freezer for up to 1 month. Defrost at room temperature or microwave until warm (not hot).

Prep time includes rice soaking time.

Cooling time varies depending on how thinly your rice is laid out.

  • Prep Time: 40 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Category: Rice
  • Method: boiling / steaming
  • Cuisine: Japanese

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