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How do Japanese people eat Mochi?

Around December in Japan, go to any supermarket and you will see many types of Mochi on sale.
If you try it, you will see that the cake is very hard, and you will probably wonder: “How can you eat it if it is so hard?”

In this article, I will introduce 2 basic ways to soften Mochi and the 5 most popular ways to eat Mochi in Japan.
If you want to try Mochi, please check it out.

How to soften Mochi

When you first buy Mochi, it will be very hard, you need to boil or bake it to soften the Mochi.

Boil Mochi

Put the cake in the pot, add water to cover the cake and boil for about 2 minutes.

More simply, you can boil Mochi in the microwave.
Put the Mochi in a bowl of water, without wrapping, adjust to 600W and run for about 2 minutes 30 seconds.

Bake Mochi

Bake Mochi in a pan

To bake Mochi, you can use a pan or an electric oven.

If using a pan, bake each side of the cake for about 4 minutes.
If using an electric oven, bake the cake for about 5 ~ 6 minutes.

How do Japanese people often eat Mochi?

Eat Mochi with Ozōni soup

Ozōni soup is a type of soup made with Dashi broth, often eaten on New Year’s Day in Japan.
When eating Ozōni soup, Japanese people often add a grilled Mochi to eat with it.

Ozōni soup does not have a common recipe, the ingredients are different depending on the locality and each family.
So, you can cook Ozōni soup to your liking and then add Mochi.

Eat Mochi with seaweed

Grilled Mochi covered with seaweed is called “Isobe-yaki” (磯辺焼き).
This dish has a salty taste and fragrant seaweed scent, very delicious.

How to make:

  1. Bake Mochi.
  2. Sprinkle soy sauce on Mochi, mix well.
  3. Wrap in seaweed.

Eat Mochi with red bean sweet soup

Mochi added directly to red bean sweet soup is a delicious dish that is hard to resist, especially for those with a sweet tooth.

If you don’t have time to cook, you can buy pre-cooked red bean soup (called Yude Azuki, ゆであずき) which is sold a lot in supermarkets.
Just heat the tea and add the Mochi and you’re done, very convenient.

Eat Mochi with Kinako powder

Boiled Mochi mixed with Kinako (soybean powder) is an extremely popular dish in Japan.
This dish is sweet and very fragrant, especially loved by girls.

How to make:

  1. Boil Mochi, drain.
  2. Mix Kinako powder and sugar in a 2:1 ratio.
  3. Mix Mochi and mixture in step 2 well.
  4. Adding Kuromitsu black sugar syrup (if available) will make it even more delicious.

Eat Mochi with soy sauce

Mochi after baking will be dipped directly in soy sauce. For those who want to enjoy the original taste of Mochi, they should try this way of eating.
You can add a little sugar to the soy sauce to make it easier to eat.


Just soften the Mochi by boiling or baking, you can easily customize the Mochi as you like.
Above are the 5 most popular ways to eat Mochi in Japan, of course you can also try many other ways to find your favorite.

Eating Mochi is an indispensable custom on New Year’s Eve in Japan.
If you are also in Japan this Tet, don’t forget to enjoy Mochi!


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