Mochi Ice Cream Recipe

Mochi Ice Cream Recipe

The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 4 mins
Freeze: 4 hrs
Total: 4 hrs 34 mins
Servings: 12 servings
Yield: 12 mochi
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
151 Calories
3g Fat
29g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 151
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 3%
Saturated Fat 2g 8%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 20mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 11%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 31mg 2%
Iron 1mg 3%
Potassium 56mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Mochi ice cream is a confection made from Japanese sweet glutinous rice flour with an ice cream filling. The ice cream flavors the confection while the mochi adds sweetness and texture. When making mochi, it is dusted with either cornstarch, potato starch, or additional rice flour to keep it from sticking while being rolled, cut, and formed. 

A Japanese-American woman named Frances Hashimoto is credited with inventing mochi ice cream after her husband conceived an idea of wrapping ice cream in a rice cake. She expanded the idea and processed it as a product for marketing. The research and development took over a decade to evolve into mass production due to the complex interactions of the ingredients.

It took many trials and errors to successfully pull the delicate mochi dough over the ice cream. Experts in construction and microbiology were brought in to perfect mochi ice cream as we know it today. Classic ice cream flavors such as vanilla, chocolate and strawberry are often used, but you'll also find Kona coffee, green tea, plum wine, and red bean have also become popular in recent years.

Mochi Ice Cream/Tester Image

"These take practice. The ice cream slides around in the mochi dough as you try to pinch it closed, and the dough is prone to tearing. But they don’t have to be perfect. They're fun to make and as delicious as the store-bought versions. Any holes and gaps can be patched up with dough scraps." —Danielle Centoni

A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 pint green tea ice cream

  • 3/4 cup sweet glutinous rice flour

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 teaspoons matcha powder

  • 3/4 cup water

  • Cornstarch, or additional rice flour, for dusting

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients to make Mochi Ice Cream

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  2. Line each well of a mini muffin tin individually with plastic wrap. Using a small cookie scoop (about 1 tablespoon), divide the green tea ice cream among the 12 wells. Freeze until the ice cream is very solid, 4 hours, preferably overnight.

    Alternatively, if you don't have a mini muffin tin, you can use an empty egg carton.

    green tea ice cream balls in a mini muffin pan

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  3. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the rice flour, sugar, and matcha powder. Add the water and whisk to combine. 

    rice flour, matcha powder and sugar in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  4. Cover the bowl with plastic and microwave for 1 minute. Stir, cover, and microwave for 1 minute more. Stir again, cover, and microwave until the mochi dough is thick and sticky, 30 seconds to 1 1/2 minutes. Note that the dough might be a bit lumpy at first. This is normal.

    matcha mixture in bowl

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  5. Generously dust a large piece of parchment paper with cornstarch (the dough will be very sticky). Form the dough into a flat disk and place in the center of the parchment.

    matcha dough on a floured surface

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  6. Dust the top of the dough generously with cornstarch. Top with another piece of parchment. Roll the dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Loosen the parchment from both sides of the dough occasionally to apply additional cornstarch as needed to prevent sticking.

    rolling out matcha dough

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  7. Slide the dough on the parchment paper to a large baking sheet and refrigerate until cool and firm, about 30 minutes.

    partially covered matcha dough on a sheetpan

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  8. Remove and discard the top layer of parchment. Using a round cookie cutter about 4-inches in diameter, cut the dough into 12 circles. Save the scraps for patching the wrapped mochi, if necessary.

    matcha dough round cutouts

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  9. Place each dough circle on an individual piece of plastic. 

    matcha dough rounds on a sheet pan covered with plastic

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  10. Working with 1 ice cream ball at a time (leave the rest in the freezer until ready to use), quickly wrap the dough around the ice cream and pinch to seal. Use a damp finger to help seal the seams, if needed. Patch any tears with the remaining dough.

    green tea ice cream balls on top of matcha dough circles

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack

  11. Use the plastic to wrap around the mochi ball, twisting tightly at the top to better hold its shape. As each ball is wrapped, immediately return to the freezer until solid. When ready to serve, remove the mochi from the plastic and enjoy.

    mochi ice cream balls wrapped in plastic

    The Spruce Eats/Cara Cormack


• It helps to do this process in close proximity to the freezer, working in small batches. Otherise, the ice cream balls will begin to soften too much, making it very difficult to wrap the mochi around the balls.

Recipe Variation

  • Any flavor of ice cream will work in this recipe. Simply omit the matcha powder to make plain mochi. 

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