What rice should I use for cooking sushi?

In this brief article, we will provide you with the answer to the question: “What rice should I use for cooking sushi?”, discuss how to cook sushi rice, and share some tips for cooking rice. We will also talk about the history of sushi.

What rice should I use for cooking sushi?

Japanese short-grain rice is the ideal rice for cooking sushi. Outside of Japan, some rice brands call Japanese short-grain rice “sushi rice.” It gives the wrong impression that this rice is only utilized for sushi. However, short-grain rice is also used for steamed rice as well as other rice recipes.

How to cook sushi rice?

Sushi rice is created by cooking Japanese short-grain rice and then seasoning it with a mixture of rice vinegar, sugar, salt, and, in some cases, kombu.


The ingredients you are going to need for making sushi rice are:

  • 2 cups of Japanese rice (short grain)
  • 3 tea cups water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar (you can use other white vinegar)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Preparation mode

Wash the rice in a strainer until the water flows clear through the rice.  Allow the rice to rest for about 25 minutes.

In a saucepan, bring the water and rice to a boil over high heat. Then reduce the heat to low and leave it to cook for around 15 minutes. 

Remove from the heat and cover the pan with the rice for about 10 minutes to rest. Place the vinegar and sugar in a separate small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat after the sugar has dissolved. 

Spread the rice on a dish and sprinkle with the vinegar and sugar syrup, fanning it with a fan while thoroughly mixing the rice (the important thing here is to cool the rice quickly and mix).

What are the tips for cooking sushi rice?

Use an electric rice cooker

You can cook the rice in a saucepan on the stove, but the most efficient method is to use an electric rice cooker.

Assure your rice is perfectly cooked

To assure your rice is perfectly cooked, the texture of the rice should be fluffy with a firm bite after it has been cooked. And each rice grain should be sticky while yet holding its form. Mushy rice indicates that it contains too much water or that it has been overdone.

Before cooking, rinse and soak the rice

Ensure that the rice is washed and rinsed several times until no more starch comes out of the water. The rice should then soak for at least 30 minutes before cooking. This improves the texture of the rice grains.

Cook the rice with kombu 

This is not required, however, it is one of the best-kept secrets for fragrant sushi rice. It adds a faint scent and umami flavor to the rice.

Water should be used in smaller quantities than normal.

We use less water (just a tad less) while cooking the rice since we add sushi vinegar to it.

You can make your own sushi vinegar

Sushi vinegar is always used to season sushi rice. It is created using rice vinegar, salt, and sugar to obtain a sweet, salty, and sour flavor balance. 

You must use mild-flavored rice vinegar for this, otherwise, it will be excessively intense and the flavor will be different.

After combining all of the ingredients in a bowl, heat in a microwave or on the stovetop until the sugar is completely dissolved.

What is the history of sushi?

Sushi, like many other meals across the world, was created by accident. Asians utilized cooked rice to coil fish and preserve them by fermenting the cereal around the 4th century BC.

The approach was refined over time until it arrived in Japan. In the 7th century, the Japanese began to crush uncooked fish and rice using stones. People gradually began to consume fish in this manner, flavoring it solely with soy sauce.

The sushi as we know it today dates back to the 15th century and was known as Nama Nare zushi. Rice was added to vinegar in the 17th century. After a few years, in the twentieth century, the dish gained popularity in the West, particularly in the United States, the birthplace of the renowned California Roll.

Other FAQs about Rice that you may be interested in.

How to reheat rice in a rice cooker?

What can I substitute for arborio rice?

Do you rinse rice?


In this brief article, we provided you with the answer to the question: “What rice should I use for cooking sushi?”, discussed how to cook sushi rice, and shared some tips for cooking rice. We also talked about the history of sushi.


Chen, Namiko. “How To Make Sushi Rice (Video) 酢飯.” Just One Cookbook (blog), May 18, 2017. https://www.justonecookbook.com/how-to-make-sushi-rice/.


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