Substitute Japanese Hon-Mirin (Sweet Rice Wine)

Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 5 mins

A quick way to blend a reasonable substitute for Mirin in Japanese sauces and dishes.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix sugar and water and bring to a slight boil for a few minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  3. Add Sake to the mixture a small bit at a time until the desired sweetness is achieved.
  4. True Hon-Mirin is very expensive and difficult to obtain outside of Japan.
  5. While this shortcut does not have the full flavor and complexity of a true Hon-Mirin, it is an adequate substitute when used as a sweetener in certian Japanese sauces such as teriyaki.


Most Helpful

This recipe worked great in my Nikujaga! I wasn't able to find Mirin but had Sake. I found the corn syrup to be a better option because you didn't have to wait for it to dissolve like the sugar.

tlkerr October 10, 2007

The only thing I use mirin for is teriyaki marinade, and I couldn't find any a while ago, so I decided to give this a try. It worked great! Excellent way to use up stale sake, too!

Space Burger Steve June 22, 2013

thanks so much for posting this, as i can never find mirin. not even in specialty Asian stores for some reason! it's the strangest thing. i will be using this in the many Japanese and Asian recipes i have.

Cypress July 25, 2010

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