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Butter Mochi Cake

Butter mochi cakes are light, buttery rice cakes with just a few simple ingredients.

I first had the joy of sinking my teeth into butter mochi several years ago in Hawaii.  There are so many delicious culinary experiences from that trip but butter mochi stood out with its particular texture and simple pleasure.  It looks quite unassuming, like a nude vanilla cake but upon further investigation, it’s so much more.

Today, I bring you my recipe for soft and tender butter mochi that is only gently sweet with a rich, buttery flavor.  Oh, and don’t forget that characteristic chewy texture.  What I love about this recipe beyond the fact that it’s an incredibly easy one to make {seriously, it’s just combine, stir and bake}, it’s that it captures the best things about traditional mochi cake without the eternal pounding and stretching of the dough.  It affords you to be extra greedy and indulgent here.

Butter Mochi Cake

Since the foundation of this recipe is sweet rice or glutinous rice flour, there’s no fear of over-mixing.  It actually may bode well to give it an extra stir or two.  On the subject of the sweet rice flour, it’s not actually sweet as the name implies.  Rather, it’s flour that’s been finely milled from the extra starchy sticky rice.  It’s what lends that oh so wonderful chew to these bars.  It’s this humble ingredient that allows the batter to be the least finicky one possible during the before and after process.  You can be as rough and tumble with it while constructing and after it’s been baked, it’s pliable and giving.  You don’t have to worry about tearing up the pieces or that it will sink or shatter like a traditional cake.  What it does instead is bounce and spring with the feel of almost  a sponge or fluffy cake hybrid.

It is a unique experience, all at once and I do hope you enjoy my recipe.  You can certainly stud its centers like I did with my LA baked rice cakes.  It’s been awhile since I’ve enjoyed these at tea with my mother who is stateside but it’s probably my favorite way to consume each little square.  How you dress them up is up to you.

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Butter Mochi Cake
Prep time

Cook time

Total time


Serves: 8×8 pan

  • 1½ c sweet rice or glutinous rice flour
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 ts baking powder
  • 1 c coconut milk
  • ¼ c melted butter
  • 2 room temperature eggs
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 ts pure vanilla extract

  1. In a large bowl, combine the sweet rice flour, sugar and baking powder. Set aside.
  2. In another bowl, combine the coconut milk, melted butter, eggs, salt and vanilla.
  3. Add the second, wet bowl to the first, dry bowl.
  4. Mix well to combine. Whisk for at least 5 minutes.
  5. Pour into a lightly greased pan.
  6. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour.



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