Onigiri (Japanese Rice Balls)

"Like Nori rolls but triangular."
photo by Jonathan Melendez photo by Jonathan Melendez
photo by Jonathan Melendez
photo by Jonathan Melendez photo by Jonathan Melendez
photo by Jonathan Melendez photo by Jonathan Melendez
photo by Anonymous photo by Anonymous
photo by Chef Nikko-san photo by Chef Nikko-san
Ready In:
8 rice balls




  • Cook the rice.
  • Keep it warm, but let it cool enough so that it won't burn your hands.
  • Cut each nori sheet into 9 strips.
  • Wet your hands and sprinkle them with salt to prevent the rice from sticking to them.
  • Mold a handful of rice into a triangular shape with an indentation in the middle.
  • Press a piece of umeboshi into the indentation you left.
  • Wrap the rice and umeboshi in Nori strips.
  • Serve immediately or save for later.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Bethany W.
    what happens if you use long grain rice?
  2. Volet H.
    Onigiri rice mixtures


  1. Makironi
    Variations: (use plastic food wrap to help mold it, and to keep it off your hands.) fillings: *fuji`kko (preserved sea kelp? I don't know what this is called in english) *bonito flakes (katsuobushi) mixed with soy sauce to make a paste-like filling other variations: *furikake (stuff you sprinkle on rice, like flavouring) various flavours... (furi - "shake" ka`ke -"ontop") I use this for when I make rice, and I want to have a healthy and fast snack in class (I'm a university student). I usually make a batch of rice, and then make 4 or 5 of these, using a new piece of plastic wrap each time. The piece used for each becomes the wrapping for the o`ni`gi`ri, so you can just make it and toss it (not literally...) in your bag. (^_^)
  2. pigzen
    It is ESSENTIAL that you use the right rice here people or this won't work. Real sushi rice has a high starch content which makes it sticky. Really, really sticky! Sho-Chiku-Bai premium sweet rice made by Koda Farms is a great one to use. If you are lucky enough have an Asian grocer nearby you can find it there. If not it can be purchased online.
  3. Jonathan Melendez
    I've never had onigiri or ever even seen it. It was so much fun to make and was so good! Found the umeboshi at my local asian market in the refrigerated section. It's so good!
  4. wen-wen
    My favorite comfort food!!! Makironi's suggestions were very helpful-- thank you! I like the bonito flakes and furikake suggestions, and using plastic wrap to mold the rolls is great. I am still practicing making the triangle shape, but the taste is always sensational. Yum!
  5. SAHS7930
    I used a filling of avocado, wasabi, soy sauce and mayo which was great. I couldn't get mine to stick together in one piece, though, and I tried another batch with sticky sushi-like rice which was even less cooperative. Will have to practice!



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