Homemade Shio Koji Recipe

This probiotic seasoning is lower in sodium than soy sauce and rich in vitamins and minerals. It is most commonly used as a marinade for meat and fish.

| July 2019


This is a recipe for basic shio koji that is easy and fun to prepare. Once you have made this you can store it in the fridge and use it to season meats and fish. I recommend you make your shio koji in the warmer months because you need to keep it in a room above 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) during its fermentation.

Yield: 1 cup (250 ml)
Fermentation time: 1 week


  • 1/2 cup (100 g) rice koji
  • 2 tbsp (30 g) salt

Place the rice koji in a mixing bowl and add the salt, then combine well with your hands. Put the rice koji and salt in a glass jar and add enough water just to cover. Place a lid on top and leave it in a warm room with a temperature above 68 degrees F (20 degrees C) for a week. Stir the mixture once a day with a wooden spoon. It will be ready to use when the rice koji is softened and has a sweet mellow fragrance. Store it in the fridge to avoid further fermentation, and it will keep refrigerated for about 6 months.


Also from The Secrets to Japanese Cooking:

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secrets-to-japanese-cookingMother and daughter Shihoko Ura and Elizabeth McClelland, founders of the blog Chopstick Chronicles, reveal the key to amazing Japanese cooking — fermenting your own miso, amazake and more. Sweet, salty, tangy and rich, these ingredients add subtle layers of flavor to dishes like Ultimate Miso Ramen, Vibrant Rainbow Roll Sushi and Japanese Curry with Summer Vegetables and Natto. It’s easy to enjoy the health benefits of fermented foods, known for aiding digestion and boosting the immune system, with fun recipes like Amazake Bubble Tea and Super Simple Shio Koji-Pickled Cucumbers. This book makes achieving Japanese flavors so simple, these fermented ingredients will quickly become staples in your pantry. From multicourse dinners to sweet-salty desserts and refreshing drinks, find out what elevates everyday Japanese dishes to unforgettable classics.

Reprinted with permission from 
The Secrets to Japanese Cooking by Shihoko Ura and Elizabeth McClelland, Page Street Publishing Co. 2019. Photo credit: Shihoko Ura.



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