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. JJt UK joined 2/14 & has 1 comment

    So I left the rice to soak overnight and just checked it. The rice doesn’t seem to have expanded at all? Is the rice supposed to be still quite hard or soft at this point?

  2. byul Singapore joined 2/14 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi!!~ I love your recipes! There’re great! Well, since Im very into korean stuffs, I tried out spicy rice cake (Tteokbokki *yum* :D’) However, I got a problem ): In singapore there’s hardly any short grain rice flour……..cant find any ;n; Therefore for the tteokbokki recipe, can i make my own rice flour using GLUTINOUS rice flour instead??? O.O Soaking them overnight in cold water like the method used for the short grain rice flour??????? 0o /SOS/ i would greatly appreciate your reply! Tx!~ (n_n)/

  3. Vyvynini123 Cincinnati joined 12/13 & has 3 comments

    Can I use sushi rice?

  4. Bama1801 United States joined 12/13 & has 1 comment

    I love this recipe! I love all of your videos and recipes! You are someone I look up to when it comes to cooking! :) Is there a way to make homemade sweet rice flour?

  5. zipurlip2 USofA joined 7/11 & has 20 comments

    hahaha ….. I’m laughing at myself right now! I wanted to make your dessert for my daughter and at that time you didn’t have these instructions, so I ground up my own grains. I knew you said you had it from the freezer section and that it was sorta wet out of the bag, but i couldn’t quite figure out how to make it wet and still have flour. I made the dessert and steamed and steamed and steamed it. It was beautiful – to look at, but horrid to eat!!! Now thanks to your instructions I think I can try to make it again w/good results. Thank you for your efforts, Maangchi.

  6. Korean fan Canada joined 10/13 & has 1 comment

    Hi. I did try it but when i add water for the rice cake, it became a sticky dough. Why?

    • joyful8581 NJ joined 8/14 & has 1 comment

      Mine came out to a horrible sticky dough, too! I think I just ruined this batch when attempting to make Baekseolgi-tteok :( Should we not be adding water to ‘fresh’ mepssalgaru?

      • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 12,047 comments

        oh you were going to make baekseolgi with your homemade rice flour.
        Yes, I added some cold water to the frozen rice flour that I bought from Korean grocery store.
        Most people make baekseolgi with store-sold frozen rice flour. The wetness of the rice flour varies for every package of rice flour. It shouldn’t be too dry or too wet.
        So it will be hard for you to know how wet the flour should be. I think I explained this in the video. When you squeeze some of the rice flour by hand, it should be gathered 1 lump but if you drop it, the lump should be broken 2 to 3 pieces. That’s the right wetness of rice flour for steaming rice cake.
        So if your homemade rice flour is wet enough for you to reach the moisture, you don’t need to add water.

  7. carspyder Pennsylvania joined 10/13 & has 1 comment

    I have a foodmill – would that work? I am assuming yes but thought I would ask before I try :D

  8. Angel Blue Zagreb, Croatia joined 7/13 & has 1 comment

    Thank you so much, it turned out perfect! I’ve been loking for a way to get this kind of flour for a long time (It’s not possible to buy it where I live). :)

  9. ayukusuma Indonesia joined 8/13 & has 2 comments

    I put my soaked rice even barely under the sunshine before I grind it because it (rice & flour) turns out too sticky here n there on my processor’s pot. I can’t even sift it. Otherwise, I put my rice flour on the freezer in about 2 hours n it turns out very good enough to call “wet”. thakyou maangchi ;)

  10. Ireojimajebal Indonesia joined 6/13 & has 3 comments

    Hi maangchi.. Thank you for this recipes, i will definietely try this out! But i have one little problem here, can we blend the rice using fruit mixer? Because i only have that kind of mixer.. Thank you very much!

  11. curla360 philippines joined 2/13 & has 4 comments

    hi Maangchi! im 6 months pregnant and im craving for korean foods. i was getting excited to try your recipes. just want to ask how to make homemade sweet rice flour. does it have the same procedure like the short grain rice flour? please help..thanks in advance!

  12. Jichin Yeohaengja Artesia, CA joined 1/13 & has 2 comments

    So, the flour is actually moist? I’ve never, ever seen flour like that before seeing this. That would also explain why my garaddeok came out so horribly (and why I got a terrible stomach ache), because my “plain rice flour” was dry… I really do want to try it one more time using SGRF I’ll make myself, because although my local Korean market doesn’t carry frozen SGRF, it does carry SGR to make the flour with.

    But moist flour, wow! Just like there are some moist sea salts out there. Everyday you learn something new. :)

  13. nati georgia joined 1/13 & has 1 comment

    hii Maangchi ^^ can’t you make video about this??i tried so hard but it became something really different,so please hepl me ^^love you very much :*:*:****

  14. Matilda.Kramer Sweden joined 1/13 & has 2 comments

    Thank you Maangchi for this recipe! I´m one of those who can´t find frozen rice flour in my Korean or Asian store. Now I can´t wait till my rice flour is ready to use =)

  15. Gerrydizon Guam joined 1/13 & has 1 comment

    Maangch, do you grind the rice wet or do you dry it out?

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