How to Make Japanese Rice Balls With Sesame and Red Bean Filling

These onigiri, or Japanese rice balls, are equal parts sweet and savory.

Skip takeout and make these vegan Japanese rice balls instead.

Onigiri, also known as omusubi, is a traditional Japanese dish made from white rice. The Japanese rice balls are typically formed into a triangular shape and stuffed with a variety of fillings. Onigiri is often wrapped in nori, or seaweed.

On this episode of EATKINDLY With Me, we show you how to make this popular Japanese dish. The sesame and red bean onigiri is extremely easy to make—and equally delicious.

How to Make Japanese Rice Balls With Sesame and Red Bean Filling
Onigiri, also known as omusubi, is a traditional Japanese dish made from white rice. | LIVEKINDLY

Sesame and Red Bean Onigiri

Vegan

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups sushi rice
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water, more for soaking
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons organic cane sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup red bean paste
  • 1 cup toasted sesame seeds and black sesame seeds
  • 1 cup shiso powder

Preparation

  1. 1
    In a bowl, add cold water to sushi rice and mix.
  2. 2
    Drain the water and repeat until the water is clear.
  3. 3
    Add the rice to a pan. Add water and bring to a boil.
  4. 4
    Add the unseasoned rice vinegar, organic cane sugar, fine sea salt and mix.
  5. 5
    Scoop a cup of the rice into your hand and flatten. Add one tablespoon of red bean paste to the center, and form the rice into a triangle around the paste.
  6. 6
    Dip half of the rice balls into the sesame and black sesame seeds. Sprinkle the other half with the shiho powder.

Additional Recipes

Can’t get enough of these sesame seeds and red bean Japanese rice balls? Then try making these black sesame seed recipes. Vegan food blogger Lisa Kitahara whips up the two plant-based recipes: vegan waffles and dango, a Japanese dumpling. “Black sesame seeds is one of my favorite ingredients to cook and bake with,” Kitahara says. “It’s very different than white sesame seeds because it has a nutty, earthy, and very deep flavor.”

Or, for a traditional Korean dish, make this spicy vegan ramen recipe. Christina from East Meets Kitchen whips up the plant-based ramen, which is packed with flavor and super easy to make. The authentic Korean recipe features ramen powder, a spicy Korean sauce, and a ramen base. In addition to noodles, the base includes vegan bacon and sausage, as well as corn and kimchi.


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