Mad over Mochi

What did I say? Odd shaped or what?

I’m sure I’ve got some of you stumped.

Nope, mochi is NOT a cartoon character.

Even though I honestly thought about Peekachoo (ya know, that cute yellow cartoon character) when I first heard of it, surprise, it’s a fun little food to play around with.

How did I even find it? As usual, I was scoping out this one little randomly placed refrigerated section in Whole Foods which contains some items I”ll refer to as “not so popular, but give it a try” section. Think tempeh, the un-noodles made from tofu and today’s special->mochi, are all found there.

I’ve pondered picking up the oddly heavy and dense brick of packaged mochi in the past, but this time I grabbed it with enthusiasm (imagine that). After actually reading the package, I had found  that all you need to do is bake it or pan-fry it, even boil it or make mochi waffles! (next time). The plain mochi tends to be bland, but it grasps onto whatever flavor you want since it’s made from brown rice. So go for savory or sweet!

P.S. It’s Gluten Free.

So….What the heck is Mochi?

According to my Food Lover’s Companion, mochi, pronounced (moh-chee) is: “A sweet, short-grained, very glutinous rice with a high starch content. It’s commonly used to make rice cakes, for which it is pounded in large tubs until it becomes extremely sticky, where it’s then formed into balls or squares, which can be found in Japanese markets (or apparently whole foods).

Other Mochi Tidbits:

  • According to The whole foods encyclopedia, by Rebecca Woods, Mochi is beneficial for pregnant and lactating women and for children, in fact it is a favorite Japanese food that New Year’s Day feasting often includes.
  • It’s also referred to an “instant” natural food.
  • Comes in different flavors (I only saw a cinnamon raisin flavor, but bought plain).
  • Once cooked it puffs up, think of pirates booty odd-shaped puffs or like those carnival fried dough balls, but these aren’t fried and 900 calories.
  • Slice into 1/4 inch pieces and squish into a waffle iron, it puffs into an airy and moist waffle! Can we say, yes please!
Keep it refrigerated until use. Once the package is open it’s good for 10 days. But who’s gonna have left overs? Also, buy the brown rice version. 

Cut cute little cube like chunks


Serves: I dunno, how hungry are you? One brick likely makes at least 16 mochi puffs.


10 minutes cooking, and around 5 minutes for the dip.


For the PB & banana Dip

  • 1-2 tablespoons natural peanut butter
  • 1/4-1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons maple sugar, more for dusting if you wish (alternatively use honey or maple syrup)
  • cinnamon for dusting
  • 1/2 a small banana, cut into quarters (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place cubed mochi on a cookie sheet and bake for approximately ten minutes.

Baked and oddly shaped mochi puffs!


  • Make the dip by mixing all ingredients (except the mochi and cinnamon) in a small bowl. Set aside.

I love maple sugar, it smells exactly like the syrup. Mmmm.

  • Pull the newly formed mochi puffs (they’re so cute, I can’t handle it) out of the oven and sprinkle or dust with cinnamon and/or maple sugar.

Mochi Puff close-up. Definitely NOT enough dip on that one.

Dip, and enjoy! 

Cooks Tips:

  • The puffs are actually hallow inside, feel free to smush some of the dip in them!
  • I know, I’m a dietitian, but a little nutella, anyone?
  • Also try other dips, instead of sweet, try something like a BBQ type dip, or I was thinking of a salsa/vegan refried black bean guacamole dip? I dunno, why not right?
  • Also, the yogurt PB & banana dip I made, yeah, that’s pretty darn good on it’s own as a snack, just increase the portion.

20 thoughts on “Mad over Mochi

  1. Wow, you may have made a mochi convert out of me. I hadn’t given it a thought before. Yum!

    I was passing out some bloggy love on my blog today and gave you an award. Come by for a visit when you have a chance. Thanks for being so inspiring.

  2. I have a package of mochi bricks that I bought in Japan 5 years ago…it appears to be unchanged…some have little black beans in them. I tried once to bake it with not so great results….have you tried boiling it to soften it and then make the waffles? If nothing else I can let my granddaughters use them as building blocks…

    • Hi Peggy,
      Hmmm, I really don’t know how long that Mochi lasts, but if I go with my gut, it probably isn’t so good anymore? I haven’t boiled them personally but I let the brick sit out on my counter a bit before I slice it up (to soften). Lol to the granddaughter comment. Yes, they would likely stack up well. ;-).

    • Hey Peggy,
      I grabbed a friend who commented here in fact, Yuri, and she tells me that Mochi can last pretty long if kept in the freezer and suggested that you pan-fry it to soften it up. I had done that and used very little oil (sesame oil) then added a little rice syrup (or maple syrup) for flavor. I’m sure that would work well with the black bean mochi.

  3. Oh so this is the reason for this morning’s mochi craze! I am spending this weekend at my grandma’s and I’ll make sure to arrange a mochi making session to post on my blog 😀

    • Hey Victoria!
      That is ironic! Ha! I just watched a youtube video a friend shared with me on a mochi festival. How fun! Had no idea the “history” behind it, sort of cool, oh and fun to eat! Thanks for commenting and welcome!

  4. You’ve just gotten me excited over this …mochi thing! I will now search high and low for it, because…they look so fun to eat! Are these healthy? (ha…humor me please) andddd yes to the Nutella!

    • lol Nella! Now can you get that excited over beets? Kidding. Sort of. They aren’t unhealthy, they’re made from brown rice and baked, whatever you add on top could end up a little more calorie dense though. ;-). Ummm, like nutella.

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