Short grain rice flour

Mepssalgaru 멥쌀가루

Many people who watched my rice cake videos that use frozen rice flour and who haven’t used rice flour before asked me many questions about it.

Rice flour (ssalgaru) is flour made from finely milled rice. Koreans usually use one of two kinds of ssalgaru for making rice cakes: chapssalgaru (sweet rice flour) and maepssalgaru. Maepssalgaru is made with short grain rice and usually sold frozen to keep it moist.

Traditionally in Korea and even today, most neighborhoods have a local mill where you can get grains and seeds ground and pulverized into powders, grains, oils, liquids and even cakes. So you can bring your toasted sesame seeds to the mill, and they will make toasted sesame oil from them for you.

I live in New York City, and there are no local mills at all. Whenever I want to make rice cake, I have to buy frozen rice flour (naengdong mepssalgaru) from a Korean grocery store.

Some of my readers tell me:

“Maangchi, I really want to make your rice cake but I can’t find the rice flour you use.”
“The Korean grocery store I shop at doesn’t sell the rice flour.”
“How can I make this rice flour at home?”

I did some experiments and developed this method of making maepssalgaru at home with a food processor or coffee grinder. So now you can make homemade rice flour and your own rice cakes whenever you want them! I hope this helps!

Ingredients (makes 4 cups of rice flour)


  1. Wash the rice. Put it in a bowl of water and scrub it by hand for a full 10 seconds. Rinse, stir, and drain. Repeat until the water drains clear.
  2. Soak in clean water overnight, or for 8 to 12 hours.rice flour_soaking
  3. Strain the rice. It should have expanded to about 3½ cups’ worth.rice flour_strain
  4. Grind the rice finely with a coffee grinder or food processor.rice flour_grind
  5. Sift the ground rice flour into a bowl. If any rice pieces are too big to sift, grind them again until they can be sifted.riceflour_sifting
  6. You’ll end up with about 4 cups of rice flour. Use it right away, or put it in a plastic bag and in the freezer until you need it.


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  1. Anriil Sweden joined 9/20 & has 1 comment

    I rinse water soo many times but water is still not perfectly clear. Can i keep it like that? And not wash it till it is perfectly clear?

  2. Alia Rivera North Carolina joined 7/20 & has 1 comment

    I made the rice flour with medium grain rice. The flour turned out great just the when I was making garateokk the mix was way too liquidy.

  3. CeIngNjo Indonesia joined 3/20 & has 1 comment

    i was wondering do you have to dry the rice flour after soaking for 12 hours and if so how do you do it? thankyou

  4. MikeyKentucky Shepherdsville, Kentucky joined 1/15 & has 1 comment

    i was wondering do you have to dry the rice flour after soaking for 12 hours and if so how do you do it?

  5. sajbarku addis ababa joined 1/16 & has 3 comments

    can i use basmeti rice for making rice flour

    • Shiaun Singapore joined 3/20 & has 1 comment

      If you’re still wondering, no need to dry the flour. This type comes moist, therefore, if it’s store bought it’s always frozen and if you do it yourself, make sure to store in freezer for any that’s not used.

  6. Helen swee Singapore joined 10/19 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangchi,

    I have tried your recipe. It do turn out nicely with the recipe. However I’m using the flour to make songpyeon and I do add hot water form a dough. But the dough I have make it become hardly to hold for a shape (trying to create a full moon shape for songpyeon or cute pumpkin shape) and become too soft and seem like melt when I’m steam it. May I know that is that because I have added too much water for it ?

  7. David63 Cornwall joined 12/18 & has 1 comment

    Why need short grain rice?
    Can use rice porridge from Basmati rice for kimchi (instead of the stated rice flour porridge)?
    Love kimchi :)

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