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How to Make the Perfect Sushi Rice

How to Make the Perfect Sushi Rice

This recipe is perfect for sushi, rolls, nigiris ir even to make buddha bowls.

How to Make Sushi Rice – Complete Recipe

Preparing sushi rice might seem scary at first but once you make it, it’s just as simple as making ordinary long white rice, only with added seasoning to give it that sweet and tangy characteristic flavour. The secret for the perfect sushi rice is to know your rice!

Here are five simple steps that covers the entire process:

  1. Choosing the right rice
    Any Japanese-style rice will work well to make sushi rice. The Japanese rice is also known as Japonica short rice or “Shari” which has a short, almost round shape. The rice grains have a translucent color, sometimes with a whiter spot along with the gain.
    Tip: Japanese rice is frequently covered in powdered starch to keep it dry, which is why rinsing it prior to cooking is essential.
  2. Measuring and prepping
    Prepare 1 cup of sushi rice for every 3 rolls of sushi. Each roll is made up of 6-8 little pieces of sushi. I personally think 2 rolls per user is a good measure. Wash the rice (1 cup = 3 rolls) with running water for 1-2 minutes until no more starch comes out of it. When washing is finished, take the rice and put it gently in a bowl, add a little more water than rice. The ratio is for water at around 1.2:1. That is more water than rice by 20%. Don’t put on too much water, or instead of rice, you’ll get flour.
  3. Cooking the rice
    At first, cook the rice over high heat, stir as soon as you add the water and again when it boils. Then, lower the heat and cover the pan.
    Check the water level after 6-8 min – if there’s no more water in the pan, just the cooked-looking grains, that means the rice is ready. If not, check back every minute to make sure the rice at the bottom is not burnt. The cooking time should total 15 minutes.
  4. Taking out the rice
    there are a fewTaking the rice out of the bowl, there are a few important things to bear in mind:
    Use just a wooden spoon to handle the rice which is cooked. A metal spoon damages the rice, and can respond with the vinegar that we’ll add later.
    Second, don’t scrape the rice out of the bowl. If it comes out quickly, then well, if not – let it be. The bottom rice is dry and burnt so it won’t taste that sweet. Using a plastic or wooden bowl to carry the rice in to cool.
  5. Seasoning the rice

Now you need to add rice vinegar for the rice to taste like sushi rice, after taking it out of the pot.

How is This Done?

For 3 cups of (uncooked) rice, use ½ cup of rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 teaspoons of salt. Use only rice vinegar! Any other kind of vinegar will taste bad. Alternatively, you could use Sushi rice seasoning powder.

Mix together in a small pot, on medium heat until all solids are mixed together.

Pour mixture on rice and mix well. That should take a minute or two.

Let the rice cool down for a few minutes until it reaches room temperature. Don’t put the rice in the fridge to make it cool faster – that will damage the rice. You can however use a fan, A/C or put it by the window.

Important tip – Some people prefer their sushi rice less seasoned. Also, there might be differences in strength and flavour between different brands of rice vinegar. If it’s the first time you are making sushi rice, and you are not sure, prepare the amount of seasoning described above, but only use half of it. Mix it with the rice and taste.Trust your own senses if you like to use the full amount or not.

Mizkan Rice Vinegar (12 fl oz) from Berkeley Bowl - Instacart

Sushi Rice

Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 Servings


  • 3 cups sushi rice
  • 3.5 cups water
  • 0.5 cup Rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp White sugar
  • 2 teasp Fine salt


  • For the seasoning, heat rice vinegar with sugar and salt in a stove pot or microwave. Mix until fully dissolved.
  • Cook 3 cups of sushi rice with 3.5 cups of water in a thick bottom pot (or rice cooker).
  • Once ready, transfer rice to wooden or plastic container. Do not cover.
  • Pour seasoning evenly over rice and mix with wooden spoon in a cutting motion.
  • Let rice cool down to room temperature by the window or using a fan, but never in the refrigerator.
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