This easy sushi rice is perfectly fluffy and sticky, and it can be made in a rice cooker or on the stovetop. Use it in sushi and rice bowls, or serve it as a side dish!
Sushi rice is a sticky, short grain rice that's lightly coated in a vinegar, salt and sugar solution. The seasoned rice is slightly sweet and salty, with a delicious flavor that's perfect for sushi, wraps and rice bowls.
There are only four ingredients you'll need for sushi rice:
What kind of rice should I use?
You'll want to use short grain white or brown rice for this recipe. Look for brands that come from Japan or that are labeled "sushi rice." I use Lundberg Farms Sushi Rice, since it's readily available at my market.
How to make sushi rice
This easy method for making sushi rice requires no special equipment!
- First, rinse the rice well in several changes of cold water to remove the excess starch. This is an important step, ensuring the rice grains turn plump and firm, not mushy, when cooked.
- Cook the rice on the stovetop or in a rice cooker.
- While the rice is cooking, bring rice vinegar, sugar and salt to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring to dissolve the sugar and salt. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- When the rice is cooked, drizzle it with the vinegar solution. Use a rubber spatula or rice paddle to fold and turn the rice until each grain is coated.
Can you make sushi rice ahead?
Yes! Sushi rice can sit a room temperature for up to 5 hours before using.
Tips for making sushi rice:
- Make sure to use short grain rice, often labeled "sushi rice."
- Use this sushi rice in classic sushi rolls or spicy salmon sushi rolls! It's also awesome in these salmon bowls.
To make sushi rice taste like a restaurant, rinse the rice well before cooking (this will help prevent a mushy texture), and fold a rice vinegar, sugar and salt solution into the rice after it's cooked (this will give the rice a classic flavor).
For sushi rice, the best ration of rice to water is 1 part rice to 1 part water.
While sushi rice is often called sticky rice, sticky rice is actually a different subspecies of rice. It is traditionally soaked then steamed, and it has a sweeter flavor.
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Easy Sushi Rice
- Pot with Lid or Rice Cooker
- 2 cups short-grain white rice (sushi rice)
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- Place the rice in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Swirl the rice a few times, then pour off the water. Keep doing this, using several changes of water, until the water runs clear.
- Drain the rice well and transfer it to a pot or to a rice cooker. Add 2 cups of water. If using a rice cooker, lock the lid and cook according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If using a pot, bring the water to a boil, uncovered. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook 15-20 minutes, or until the water is absorbed. Remove the pot from the heat and let sit, covered, 10 minutes to steam.
- In the meantime, combine the vinegar, sugar and salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until the sugar and salt are dissolved.
- Transfer the cooked rice to a large bowl. Drizzle the vinegar mixture over top. Using a rubber spatula or wooden paddle, fold and turn the rice until each grain is coated. Let cool.