Recipes

Rice cake

Injeolmi 인절미

Injeolmi is rice cake made with sweet rice (glutinous rice). It’s one of the most popular and common Korean rice cakes and it’s made on special occasions and Festival days. The rice cake is chewy and sticky, so traditionally it was given to newly wedded couples to wish that they get along and ‘stick together’ forever. The bride’s mother also makes this rice cake for the groom’s family in the hopes that her daughter will get along with the  groom’s family.

When the newly wedded couple share the rice cake, they say, “let’s stick to each other forever, just like this injeolmi” : )

Traditionally it’s made with a mortar and pestle. Soaked sweet rice is steamed and pounded until all the cooked rice grains are mashed. Then it’s  coated in roasted soy bean powder or other things like black sesame seed powder, mashed red beans, chopped pine nuts, chestnuts, and jujubes.

It’s most commonly made with soybean powder; yes, I mean roasted soybean powder, or konggaru (kong means beans and garu means powder).

I remember my grandmother used to make injeolmi at home and usually all adult family members (especially male members) helped.

“Ok, let me help you!”

“It’s my turn, take a rest!”

I was always excited to see them making rice cake, and so happy when I ate the freshly made rice cake, coated with lots of delicious soybean powder.These days almost everybody buys or orders injeolmi from a rice cake store rather than making it at home with a mortar and pestle.

I’ve often been told by my readers that they cook together with their children. I think cooking together with your mom is fun and a great experience. Children will keep those good memories in their hearts forever.

I used to make my own injeolmi without pounding, but the taste always lacked something. It wasn’t chewy enough and I didn’t like the taste at all. So a few years ago when I lived in Canada, I did an experiment to make this rice cake by pounding, like I saw my grandmothers in Korea do it. It turned out so delicious! I took my injeolmi to work and shared it with my coworkers, and they said it was awesome.

Instead of sweet rice, I use sweet rice flour, cook it in a microwave oven, and pound the dough with my small mortar and pestle. It works perfectly! What makes this rice cake perfect is that it’s super chewy just like my grandmother’s homemade injeolmi!

Enjoy the recipe!

Ingredients:

Sweet rice flour (glutinous rice flour), salt, sugar, roasted soybean powder (and mugwort powder for ssuk injeolmi)

Directions:

  1. Place 1 cup of sweet rice flour, ¼ ts salt, 1 tbs sugar, and ¾ cup of water in a microwavable bowl. Mix it well to make rice cake dough.
  2. Cover it with Saran wrap, and cook it in a microwave oven for 3 minutes.
  3. Mix the hot dough with a wooden spoon for about 20 seconds. Put the Saran wrap back on and cook 1 more minute in the microwave.



  4. Transfer the rice cake dough into a mortar and pound it for about 1 minute (pound 50 times). You’ll make bubbles and then hear the bubbles popping out while you pound, which mean the consistency of the rice cake is just right: chewy and elastic.
    *tip: Put a little cold water on your hands when you want to touch the dough so that it won’t stick to your fingers and will keep you from burning yourself.
  5. Spread ½ cup roasted soybean powder on a cutting board and place your pounded rice cake in the powder. Roll it around a bit to cover it with a light dusting of powder.
  6. Cut into bite size pieces.
  7. Coat each piece of the rice cake with the roasted soy bean powder and transfer to a serving plate.

Sprinkle with  sugar when you serve.

Ssuk injeolmi

Same directions as above, and add 1 tbs ssukgaru (mugwort powder) and 1 tbs water to the dough water you mix it.




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63 Comments:

  1. Morgan York PA My profile page joined 9/14
    Posted September 4th, 2014 at 4:07 pm | # |

    I just made this recipe and it turned out amazing! This treat I was missing and now I can make it myself.

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted September 6th, 2014 at 3:18 pm | # |

      Congratulations! yes, when I invented the method, I was almost crying because I was so happy! : )

  2. natoo australia My profile page joined 8/14
    Posted August 16th, 2014 at 8:52 am | # |

    hello manchi. i have recently been watching your videos and i really want to make this injeolmi. i have failed more than 5 times. im using the normal rice flour it didnt work. and then few times i tried with japanese rice flour but it is not sweet so i use your measurements but added extra sugar. and i dont know why after mixing the ingredients its all so runny? and when i put in microwave it turn out cookd solid and stuck. :( help me !!
    is it the flour problem or too much water? im confused

  3. Cutemom Indonesia My profile page joined 3/13
    Posted January 21st, 2014 at 1:37 pm | # |

    Maangchi ssi,
    Awesome recipe as always. I tried it with green tea powder & rolling them on misutgaru instead of kong garu (I was out of kong garu). It was really good even though I forgot to add sugar to the misutgaru.

    Nomu kamsamida,
    Ima

  4. KrynauwOtto2 Pretoria, South Africa My profile page I'm a fan! joined 9/13
    Posted October 15th, 2013 at 12:56 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi,
    Do you think I could use green tea powder instead of mugwort?
    Thanks!

  5. ThePinkSakura Bangkok Thailand My profile page joined 6/13
    Posted June 28th, 2013 at 12:15 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi! I bought all the ingredients already but i cannot find soybean powder. Can i use other powder like in the mochi ricecake recipe or use oil like in the normal (plain )ricecake recipe you did? or do you have any suggestions about what i can use instead or can be easily found? Such as not using any powder but another way of processing it?

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted June 28th, 2013 at 8:49 pm | # |

      If you have roasted sesame seeds at home, blend it into powder and use it to coat your rice cake. Or sesame seeds are not available, I would use starch powder.

      • ThePinkSakura Bangkok Thailand My profile page joined 6/13
        Posted June 30th, 2013 at 2:27 am | # |

        Thz. so much! i really enjoy your website. I have made it and the taste is great! all my family likes it thanks alot :D

  6. Christine Su Malaysia My profile page joined 5/13
    Posted May 24th, 2013 at 12:05 am | # |

    beautiful rice cake! But the problem is I’m allergic to soybean , so what can I use to replace roasted soybean powder?

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted May 24th, 2013 at 9:17 am | # |

      How about using black sesame seeds powder? Grind roasted black sesame seeds and mix with some sugar.

      • Christine Su Malaysia My profile page joined 5/13
        Posted May 24th, 2013 at 11:07 am | # |

        Thanks for replying, but is there any other power? Because my twin sister is allergic to sesame.

  7. Fujia GERMANY My profile page joined 7/12
    Posted February 24th, 2013 at 4:52 am | # |

    Dear Maangchi, I made yesterday Injeolmi and we loved it. But, my child say they were to big, this way I cut it in very little cube. They are no one left.
    Thank you very much for your recipe. I made photo to show you. Were can I post it?
    Have a nice day.

  8. Charmaine Singapore My profile page joined 6/11
    Posted November 29th, 2012 at 8:36 pm | # |

    Hi maangchi ! I have tried this recipe again and again. And I absolutely love it ! This time round , I replace mugwort powder with green tea powder, needless to say. It was awesome ! Thanks for your recipe!

  9. missmoochan klang selangor My profile page joined 7/12
    Posted July 5th, 2012 at 6:09 pm | # |

    i really love u and ur recipe.

  10. eera94 kuala lumpur My profile page joined 12/11
    Posted December 11th, 2011 at 11:17 pm | # |

    maangchi, i dont have mortar and pestle…so, can i just use my spoon or my hand??

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted December 12th, 2011 at 2:14 am | # |

      Use a rice scoop or wooden spoon and stir the sticky dough vigorously, almost mashing and pounding! Because this is a small portion, it will work well.

  11. Charmaine Singapore My profile page joined 6/11
    Posted November 22nd, 2011 at 10:01 pm | # |

    Hi maangchi! I have finally made this by steaming! This was awesome!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted December 14th, 2011 at 9:34 am | # |

      “Hi maangchi! I have finally made this by steaming! This was awesome!” omg, you made injeolmi by steaming! Congratulations!

      If you have any tips about steaming rice cake, please leave it on my forum in a post titled: “how to steam injeolmi.” Then I can refer my other readers to it when they ask me.
      http://www.maangchi.com/talk/forum/general-discussion

  12. chef Benedict Manila, Philippines My profile page I'm a fan! joined 11/11
    Posted November 21st, 2011 at 2:13 am | # |

    injeolmi, i just tasted it from the korean store here in manila, and really chewy and sticky, some of them stuffing it with red beans, or i want to make a strawberry flavored injeolmi, i want color pink for this stuff… what will it tastes if it is a strawberry flavored? when i put some jell-o strawberry flavor or strawberry flavoring….

  13. Abbeh Marie --- My profile page joined 10/11
    Posted October 3rd, 2011 at 8:41 pm | # |

    Hi Maangchi,
    i was wandering if i could make my own sweet rice flour? i am making rice flour now with long grain enriched white rice but i dont know how to make it like the sweet rice!! HELP!!!

    thank you and please reply soon!!
    –Abby

    • StephanieC Phoenix, Az My profile page joined 11/11
      Posted May 16th, 2012 at 5:45 pm | # |

      i think that to achieve what you want you would have to make it with short grain rice. that is the difference between rice flour and sweet (or glutinous) rice flower. rice flower is made with long grain rice, and sweet rice flour is made with short grain rice. because short grain rice has more starch content and that gives the stickiness to the flour.

  14. lisams54899 Seoul Korea My profile page joined 9/11
    Posted September 30th, 2011 at 10:48 am | # |

    i was wondering how to make korean chop cal donuts my mom told me it was call that but its like a rice cake donut

  15. CLryeustngal Guangzhou, China My profile page joined 9/11
    Posted September 21st, 2011 at 8:24 am | # |

    Hi! I really really want to make this but I don’t have a pounder/mortar thing… Is there an alternative please??

    And for those of you who want to make your own roasted soybean powder, look what I found: http://www.soy-beans.org/soy-powder.html

    Hope this helped and please answer!!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted September 21st, 2011 at 10:44 am | # |

      Yes, use a rice scoop or wooden spoon and stir the sticky dough vigorously, almost mashing and pounding! Because this is a small portion, it will work well.

  16. Charmaine Singapore My profile page joined 6/11
    Posted August 30th, 2011 at 1:23 am | # |

    Hi. I wanted to make this rice cake, but I don’t have a microwave, can I steam this?

  17. chaboshi Los Angeles My profile page joined 8/11
    Posted August 27th, 2011 at 2:43 pm | # |

    Wow. Will have to try this soon. Have always stayed away from making rice cakes except for New Year because of the time an effort that goes in. I love it with soy bean powder. We also eat it with ground sesame seeds and sugar. But my favorite way to eat rice cake is pan fried in a little bit of oil sprinkled with salt. My Grandma used to make it this way. Oh no. Now I am getting hungry!

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 28th, 2011 at 10:32 am | # |

      Yesterday I made ssuk injeolmi again! Ahh so delicious! I froze some to roast it. I prefer roasted injeolmi without using oil. Super tasty.

  18. sl100048 Singapore My profile page joined 6/11
    Posted August 24th, 2011 at 5:59 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi,
    Thanks for sharing a brilliant recipe again. The traditional method was to steam but this one is so easy. I tried this to give to my girls after school. It was a perfect snack. I didn’t have roasted soybean powder so substituted with multigrain powder (misoo karu) and added more sugar. My husband was surprised at such a quick fix! Have a great day and hope your area was not impacted by the earth quake. JY

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 25th, 2011 at 4:42 pm | # |

      I’m glad to hear that misugaru worked well. Thank you for your good wish about the earthquake. I was working on my computer and didn’t even notice it. : )

  19. funcooking Ontario My profile page joined 8/11
    Posted August 23rd, 2011 at 10:15 pm | # |

    Awesome looking rice cakes~! 쑥떡 is one of my favorites because it has got a special aroma, and it’s healthy too. Also love the way you made these rice cakes by pounding. I am sure they must taste really good~!!
    Thank you for sharing this recipe and always making us sweet^^*

  20. zipurlip2 USofA My profile page joined 7/11
    Posted August 23rd, 2011 at 12:32 pm | # |

    Just before New Year, my family pounds sweet rice into mochi just like your grandmother did with our usu/motar and kine/pestle. But this! You make it seem so easy that I’ll be trying it out soon! I have a sweetened version of it, but your recipe looks much neater to do. I usually have cornstarch all over the kitchen w/the other! As for left-over (plain) mochi, my family likes it when I broil it in the toaster oven. Make sure to coat the pan’s surface w/oil or else there’s gonna be trouble. It tastes ‘nutty’ and is very crunchy on the outside … yummy~! Thanks for sharing … :D

  21. katiaannabel California My profile page joined 8/11
    Posted August 21st, 2011 at 12:21 am | # |

    Hello Maangchi, THANK YOU SO MUCH for all the super delicious, authentic recipes in English. You’re amazing!

  22. julialow Melbourne, Australia My profile page joined 8/10
    Posted August 19th, 2011 at 3:21 pm | # |

    Hi maangchi,

    We have this as well in Malaysia. But instead of sesame seeds powder, we use roasted peanut powder and sugar.

    I am so excited to try the korean version as well :)

  23. Cheonyong Indonesia My profile page joined 4/11
    Posted August 18th, 2011 at 11:40 am | # |

    Maangchiii!!!!!!
    aaaaa, I miss u sooo much!!
    I went to borneo Island for 5 month and I can’t acces your site…
    very very busy!
    but now I can see tour site and see many new dish!
    aaa

    but..
    I don’t have microwave here maangchi…
    can I steam the dough?
    or shall I do something?
    umm

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 21st, 2011 at 9:35 am | # |

      ah… You were stuck in Borneo for 5 months! Time to cook Korean food now! Yes, you can steam it. I don’t know how long it will take exactly though. Steam it until the dough looks translucent.

      • Cheonyong Indonesia My profile page joined 4/11
        Posted August 22nd, 2011 at 1:53 am | # |

        of course~!
        time to cook !
        aaah, I’ll made this food…
        I’ll stick off my friends’s lips off
        so they won’t comment to my food anymore…
        ahaha,
        if they still can open their lips, I’ll make them a songpyeon filling…
        :))

  24. docpark US My profile page joined 5/10
    Posted August 18th, 2011 at 9:41 am | # |

    Link below are pictures from my injeolmi this morning. Thank you Maangchi for bringing a childhood favorite into a single serving size makeable in about 15 minutes. A miracle!

    http://golfism.org/2011/08/18/injeolmi-a-kind-of-manna-from-childhood/

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 18th, 2011 at 10:15 am | # |

      wow, you made it!
      I love your description about this rice cake on your blog, “Traditionally made from steamed rice which is pounded into an elastic paste with a forty pound hammer, shaped and cut unto lady finger sized pieces and rolled in toasted soybean powder”

  25. oksipak California My profile page joined 1/11
    Posted August 17th, 2011 at 10:32 pm | # |

    How did you know I was waiting for this recipe Maangchi? Just this past weekend I was salivating for this (I used to buy it in an Asian market long ago). Made it for dinner tonight, Wednesday, 8/17/11. Only made the Roasted Soybean Powder (may try using a batch of freshly grown Mugwort from my garden soon).

    The shapes are not perfect but all that matters of your recipe is that it’s SCRUMPTIOUS! DELICIOUS! AND IT ONLY TAKES MINUTES! Thank you for another tasty recipe of which I will make often just like your Kimchi and Mandu and Chopjae (yep, these are my regular Korean staples because of you). :) August 17, 2011

  26. kiki85 canada My profile page joined 8/11
    Posted August 17th, 2011 at 7:23 pm | # |

    this looks so good!! love rice cake ^_^
    maangchi, do you know how to make Hangwa? I saw it on korean show Family outing and it looks delicious as a snack

  27. powerplantop Louisiana My profile page I'm a fan! joined 6/09
    Posted August 16th, 2011 at 9:28 pm | # |

    Really nice! My wife and girls would love this.

    But I am going to be away for awhile.

  28. Reinier Rotterdam, The Netherlands My profile page I'm a fan! joined 2/09
    Posted August 16th, 2011 at 7:31 am | # |

    What power level did you use on your microwave? In Watts?

  29. neshiki My profile page joined 3/11
    Posted August 16th, 2011 at 5:34 am | # |

    Hi Maangchi, would steaming be a good alternative to the microwave? Thanks for the recipe =)

    • neshiki My profile page joined 3/11
      Posted August 16th, 2011 at 1:31 pm | # |

      Anybody have a tip for cooking this old school w/out a microwave? Thanks!

  30. Soju123 New York, NY My profile page I'm a fan! joined 3/11
    Posted August 15th, 2011 at 3:39 pm | # |

    Wow, how great that you can make this with a microwave! Looks easy and delicious.

  31. Emixiongmao Lyon, France My profile page joined 2/11
    Posted August 15th, 2011 at 3:01 pm | # |

    Hey hey Maangchi!
    I’ve been thinking for several weeks about making these, so it’s perfect timing, yay! I’ll do these tomorrow.
    Once they are done, how and how long can I store them?

    Thanks, byebyyye ;D

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 16th, 2011 at 10:09 am | # |

      I would keep freshly made rice cake in the freezer for later use. Rice cake gets hard after several hours at room temperature. If it gets hard, roast or grill it.

  32. Reinier Rotterdam, The Netherlands My profile page I'm a fan! joined 2/09
    Posted August 15th, 2011 at 2:03 pm | # |

    Nice one! I used to buy mochi from asian store, this is about the same right? Now i can make myself! Wooohoo

    • Maangchi New York City My profile page joined 8/08
      Posted August 16th, 2011 at 10:08 am | # |

      Reinier, I feel you are going to make it right away, or in a few days. : ) I’m sure it will look gorgeous and tasty.


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