How to make Amazake from Koji at home

Hello. Please call me kay.

Amazake “甘酒” is a traditional Japanese drink. It also appears in the book “Nihon Shoki / 日本書紀” written about 1,300 years ago.

In my buddhist temple it offers to the people who came to the year-end and New Year holidays.

It is easier to make from Sake-kasu “酒粕”, but it is more delicious and sweet from Koji “麹”.

This time I will show you how to make Amazake from Koji.

Do not worry, if you keep time and temperature correctly, anyone can easily make it at home.

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It is not difficult to make Amazake from Koji.

The most important thing in making Amazake is temperature control.

Because amylase produced by koji mold adhering to raw rice should check the temperature at which the enzyme works best. (Not to make sweet sake with koji mold{Aspergillus oryzae}, amylase made by koji mold is important)

So let’s prepare a thermometer to know the temperature.

What to prepare to make.

  1. Koji: this time is famous in Kagawa prefecture where I live “Tsukumo-Koji /津久茂こうじ”, One bag (about 500 grams)
  2. Rice 1.5 go“1.5合”: a cup measuring about 225 grams
  3. Hot water 2600 cc: temperature is important
  4. Cooking thermometer, insulation rice steamer

Sugar is unnecessary for Koji.

Kouji, Japanese food uses rice-malt

“Tsukumo Koji” famous for Kagawa prefecture. The price is about 800 yen.

Procedure to make Amazake with Koji.

There are three ways to make Amazake from Koji.

  1. Easy way to not use the rice
  2. Make from rice porridge
  3. In earnest, from cooked rice

The way to make from cooked rice is full-blown and gentle sweetness comes out, so it takes time and labor but it is recommended.

  1. Use more water than usual, steam (cook) rice 225 grams of soft rice. (Using glutinous rice instead of white rice is more delicious)
  2. While steam rice is hot, put loosen Koji 500 grams, quickly mix 100 times and keep warm for 4 hours.
  3. After cooling the boiled hot water of 2,600 cc to about 60 degrees, mix for about 150 times together with 2. and keep warm for 3 hours.
  4. Then, heat on fire and stop the fire before boiling.
  5. Store it in a refrigerator after cooling immediately. (Best timing to drink is around after a day to two days)
    *If it gets sour, please boil it again.

Partially quoted from Tukumo-Koji endorsement

In fact state that are making Amazake from rice.

  1. First I steam rice. It will be delicious if you increase the moisture content and soften it.

2. Meanwhile I warmed up another rice steamer for making Amazake

3. I took out the pan inside the rice steamer which had been warmed before rice cooked, and finely unraveled Koji in the inner pan.


insulation rice steamer

Koji before loosening4. I put hot rice which I just steamed on loose Koji and mixed thoroughly more than 100 times evenly using a rice spoon. (The amount of rice is suitable from 200 grams to 300 grams. I will make it at around 260 grams.)


Loose Koji, 500 grams


State mixed with steamed rice and Koji

5. I will keep the warm accurately for 4 hours.


Appearance after keeping warm for 4 hours.

When it is kept warm for 4 hours, moisture will come out and it will look like soggy rice.

5. At this timing, pour hot water of about 2,600 CC which had been adjusted to 60 degrees.

making Amazake, 60 degrees of hot water

60 degrees from boiling water

The reason to use boiling water is to prevent harmful bacteria and yeast from being generated in the hot water.


Pour 60 degrees hot water


Koji fungus is killed, and amylase is activated

After pouring hot water of 60 degrees, stir firmly more than 150 times evenly.

6. After stirring, keep warming for 3 hours with insulation rice steamer.


The above photo is the state after keeping warm for 3 hours.

The color has become yellow, but this is not a problem at all. White rice and koji sink below and the yellow supernatant is only conspicuous.

At this point the Amazake is complete (you can drink it, of course), but at the end you have to stop fermentation of amylase by heating to near boiling.

7.Transfer from insulation rice steamer to a pot, heat until just before boiling, stop the fire before boiling.

Let’s cool in a moment and save it in a refrigerator.


Turn off the heat before boiling

The meaning of this final heating is to kill the enzyme amylase.

Amazake is not made from Aspergillus oryzae (fermented bacteria). The starch of rice is decomposed into sugar by the enzyme called amylase produced by the Koji mold attached to raw rice.

  • The death temperature of Koji mold (fermented microorganism) is about 50~65 °C.
  • The activity temperature of amylase (enzyme) is about 50~60 °C.

Finally, if you do not heat until just before boiling, the enzyme will live forever, the finished Amazake tends to be sour. And, there is also a meaning to kill other bacteria that might have been mixed during the preparation of Amazake. As a result, Amazake becomes hard to go bad.

Koji’s Amazake is healthy drink without alcohol and sugar.

As I mentioned at the beginning, my buddhist temple offers Amazake of Koji during New Year’s holidays.

Because hot Amazake is hard to cool down, it is suitable for drinking outdoors.

People of various ages such as elderly people and children come to visit at the temple event. Of course some people are come to driving a car.

Unlike Amazake made with Sake-kasu, Amazake made from Koji has characteristics that alcohol is not included. And even if you do not add sugar, you can feel the sweetness of rice adequately.

There is also an entertaining place such as tea and coffee, but I think that a drink that meets the requirement of “Delicious drink even if it is cold /Drinks that can be drunk from children to adults /Drinks that can be drunk safely even by people who can not drink alcohol like pregnant women and drivers” is Koji’s Amazake.

Therefore, Amazake of Koji is most suitable for temple events, and it is often provided.

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Finally.Amazake is good for the body, I want to drink at any time since it is easy to make.


In recent years, Amazake with Koji has been attracting attention again in Japan.

From the Edo era 400 years ago from now it was popular as a common drink, but in recent decades drinks of artificial sweetener have emerged, the number of families who make Amazake decreased.

However, in recent years, Amazake made from rice and Koji has become known to be nutritious and easy on my stomach, and it is spreading again as a nutrition-supplement drink and a drip infusion drink.

  • No alcohol, no suagr
  • Low calorie
  • Nutritious drinks that also contain antioxidants
  • The key to success is temperature control only

Amazake drink can anyone make it easy at home. Amzake made from Koji and rice is really sweet and delicious.  It is a flavorful rich taste different from commercial Amazake.

You must try it!  (By the way, traditionally it was a summer drink.)

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