Shio Koji – 4 Basic Ways to Use the Salted Rice Malt Seasoning

A salted rice malt seasoning called “Shio Koji (塩麹)” became a hot topic several years ago in Japan, and since then many Japanese has used it as a common seasoning.It seems that some overseas people also like the Japanese seasoning.

Shio Koji is a simple food known as an all-purpose seasoning and used together with a wide variety of foods.It’s made fermenting and aging the mixture of rice malt, salt, and water.

4 Basic Ways to Use Shio Koji

These days, Shio Koji is easy to obtain using online shopping sites, such as, even if you don’t live in Japan.Therefore, today, for beginners that haven’t used the Japanese seasoning yet, I want to introduce 4 basic ways to use the salted rice malt seasoning.

Make pickles with Shio Koji (the easy recipe)

It is difficult to make pickles very well unless you know the proper mixing ratio of seasonings, but just with Shio Koji you can make tasty pickles very easily, as I wrote before.Cut vegetables such as cucumber, daikon radish, and carrot, into bite size chunks, and combine those pieces of vegetables with the rice malt seasoning in a plastic zipper bag, then force out the air from the bag and close it.Let it sit for one day and you can enjoy the pickles with plenty of umami.

Marinate seasonal fish and meat with Shio Koji, and Grill them 

Marinating seasonal fish or meat with Shio Koji is a typical way of using the seasoning.That makes the umami of fish and meat increase because protein in the food is hydrolyzed into amino acids.Marinate fish or meat with the rice malt seasoning in a plastic zipper bag and let it sit for one day in the refrigerator, then grill it and enjoy.

Make a dressing with Shio Koji (the easy recipe)

If you put a little amount of Shio Koji into dressings, that gives the sauce a rich flavor, and with the rice malt seasoning, you can make a tasty dressing as well.According to this popular dressing recipe, the recommended mixing ratio of seasonings, Shio Koji : Vinegar : Mirin : Sesame Oil : Ground Sesame Seeds is 2 : 2 : 1 : 1 : 2.Combine shio koji, vinegar, mirin, and ground sesame seeds together well first, then add sesame oil and mix well again.

Use Shio Koji as a secret seasoning

Shio Koji is often used as a secret seasoning.For example, a popular steak restaurant in Tokyo is using the rice malt seasoning as an ingredient of the hamburger mixture.It is also good to use Shio Koji as a secret seasoning for curry, omelets, fried foods, and so on.


I'm Japanese living in Niigata Prefecture,Japan.I want to introduce things about Japan,especially unique Japanese products,sightseeing places,my daily life and Japanese culture.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: