Originally posted August 17, 2011

yaki onigiri (grilled rice balls)

yaki onigiri (grilled rice balls) by joanie

Okay, so my rice balls aren't exactly ball-shaped. No worries. They can be whatever shape you want. Grilled rice is good no matter what. Think of "rice ball" as provocation rather than direction. Personally, I find cubes to be amenable to maximum grillability.

If you know me, then of course you know that I'd attempt a heart. Not a great idea. It's too hard to grill the sides. :(


  • 2 cups cooked short-grain sushi rice
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • pinch of black sesame seeds
3 large/6 small onigiri


Spread rice in a large bowl and let cool until warm (but not cold).

Dissolve the salt in the warm water. Wet hands with the salt water. Divide the rice according to the size onigiri you want to make. Press rice firmly to compact and shape into a cube, triangle, disk, ball, or whatever you like! If you have a mold, now is the time to use it! Just be sure to rinse it in the salt water to prevent the rice from sticking.

(If you want to stuff the onigiri, delicious! Form a rice bowl in your hand, add filling, then press the sides up and over the top, enclosing the filling. Then shape.)

Heat a nonstick pan on medium heat. Add sesame oil. Brown the onigiri on all sides. Then brush each side of the onigiri with soy sauce and brown again. When glazed as you so desire, remove from heat.

(If you're up for it, toast your onigiri on the grill the next time you barbecue!)

Plate, wrap in seaweed or garnish in a provocative manner, and serve.

1 hour



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Adapted from

Cooking With Dog
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