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What is Mochiko Flour?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 16, 2024
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Mochiko flour is flour made from mochi rice, sticky and glutinous rice that is popular in many Asian countries. Typically, the mochi rice used to make this flour has a high starch content with no complex carbohydrates because the rice has been milled into white rice first. Since mochiko flour is starchy, but really doesn’t contain gluten, it can be a good flour substitute for people who have gluten allergies.

In Asia, this flour may be used in a number of baked goods, and it's often used to make varied types of rice noodles. It can also be added to sauces to thicken them, and it may be an emulsifying agent in commercially prepared foods, since it won’t allow foods to separate if they’re frozen or when they’re heated. The flour, like mochi rice, has a notably sweet taste, which often means if you use it in baked goods you can cut down on sugar needed in the recipe.

Because mochiko flour does not contain gluten, it can’t be used successfully in yeast raised breads. You can substitute about a third to a half mochiko flour in recipes that call for wheat flour. Generally the more you use, the lower rise your bread will have. You can use the flour in other baked goods leavened by baking powder or soda. Consider the possibility of muffins, pancakes, waffles, or cookies made with mochiko flour. These often taste lighter and more delicate than the same recipes when wheat flour is used. Many people suggest that mochiko flour provides the perfect coating for fried chicken or fish too.

Sweet rice flour can be delicious, but it doesn’t necessarily pack the nutritional punch needed to make it the flour of choice at all times. Especially since the milling process for mochi rice removes the bran and germ, the flour is high in simple carbohydrates, and lacking in many nutrients. Alternatives to mochiko that are a little more nutritionally sound include brown rice flour, which will give you the complex carbohydrates that mochiko lacks.

You can find sweet rice flour at most Asian grocery stores, and if you’re having difficulty locating it, there are a number of online stores, including Amazon, that stock the product. Note that many places also sell rice flour. If the package isn’t labeled as mochiko or sweet rice flour you’re probably getting flour of another rice variant. You might additionally look for the product sold in packages or in bulk at well-stocked natural foods stores. Both organic and non-organic versions exist.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen , Writer
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a DelightedCooking contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.

Discussion Comments

By anon228119 — On Nov 07, 2011

Tilili, it does have gluten, just not the type of gluten that so many people have trouble digesting. Rice gluten and wheat gluten are made up of different properties. Rice gluten usually does not cause any issues for people that need to avoid wheat gluten.

By anon67601 — On Feb 25, 2010

glutinous just means like gluten, which is rubbery or chewy

By anon60981 — On Jan 17, 2010

I found something called 'glutinous rice flour' in a little asian supermarket near me. is it the same thing?

By anon52329 — On Nov 13, 2009

Glutinous simply means glue-like or sticky. It doesn't in any way refer to gluten content.

By anon45443 — On Sep 16, 2009

Yeah, See mom? lol. I was looking for shiratamako or mochiko in the grocery today to use in making dango. I found "white rice flour" and "brown rice flour" and my mom thought I should just get the white rice flour, but I was *really* suspicious of it. I told her it wasn't the same. I wasn't going to buy it if the package didn't say 'glutinous' or 'sweet.' She does all kinds of crazy things when cooking. Chh.

By Tilili — On Sep 29, 2008

Wow, that's really confusing! Everyone says glutinous rice and then says that it doesn't have any gluten!

Tricia Christensen

Tricia Christensen


With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a DelightedCooking contributor, Tricia...
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