Glossary - Seasonings

Mirin (Manjo Mirin, Kotteri Mirin)


A Japanese seasoning characteristic for its delicate sweet and umami flavors


Mirin is a Japanese seasoning that imparts sweetness, richness and umami to cuisine. For mirin derived from rice there are "hon mirin" and "sweet cooking rice seasoning". For those concerned about alcohol content, we recommend using "sweetened cooking seasoning”.

Hon mirin (Manjo Mirin, Manjo Mirin Rich)

An alcohol-based seasoning, made from a long process of slow saccharification and aging of the ingredients of rice, glutinious rice, rice koji and alcohol. High in sugar with characteristic sweetness, Hon mirin has many excellent effects such as imparting sweetness and savoriness as well as luster and glaze to cuisine, eliminating unpleasant ingredient odors, preventing ingredients from falling apart when boiling, and soaking flavor into ingredients.

Kikkoman Products: Manjo Mirin, Manjo Mirin Rich

  • *Manjo is a Kikkoman mirin brand.

Sweet cooking rice seasoning (Manjo Aji Mirin)

Made from the ingredients of rice, rice koji and alcohol, however characteristic for containing salt. As with hon mirin, sweet cooking rice seasoning imparts richness, luster and mellow flavor to every dish, and can be widely used for cooking.

Kikkoman Product: Manjo Aji-Mirin

  • *Manjo is a Kikkoman mirin brand.

Sweetened cooking seasoning (Kotteri Mirin)

This versatile cooking seasoning adds a mild sweetness and glaze to a variety of grilled, broiled, baked and sauteed foods. Since sweetened cooking seasoning has an alcohol content of less than 1%, we recommend this product as an alternative for those concerned about alcohol content.

Kikkoman Product: Kotteri Mirin

Cooking effects

Effect 1: Sophisticated and delicate sweetness

Mirin contains sugar components derived from rice which impart a delicate and natural sweetness to dishes.

Effect 2: Complex umami

Contains umami components that impart a deep rich flavor to dishes that is unique to mirin.

Effect 3: Luster and glaze

Various sugars contained in mirin impart luster and glaze to ingredients.

Effect 4: Elimates odors

When using mirin with higher alcohol content, the effect of eliminating unpleasant odors from ingredients can be anticipated.

Effect 5: Soaks in flavor

The small particles of alcohol quickly penetrate into ingredients. As such, when using mirin with higher alcohol content the sweetness and umami unique to mirin are easily absorbed for uniform flavor.

Effect 6: Keeps ingredients from falling apart during cooking

Sugars and alcohol contained in mirin help prevent ingredients from falling apart during cooking. That is why when mirin containing higher alcohol content is used, not only the prevention of ingredients from falling apart and delicious apprearance, but also the effect of sealing in the natural umami of ingredients can be anticipated.

Great compatibility with soy sauce

Mirin is said to be a seasoning that matches well with soy sauce. When used and heated together, this mixture produces a fragrant aroma and an appetizing sweet and spicy taste. You can also easily make delicious teriyaki sauce by adding soy sauce and sugar to mirin.

Did you know?

Hon mirin was enjoyed as a beverage from around the Sengoku period (about the 16th century) in Japan, but in the late Edo period (19th century), together with the development of food culture, it came to be used as a "seasoning" in grilled, steamed, and simmered dishes.

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