Hawaiian butter mochi is an easy lightly sweet dessert made with coconut and butter in a rice flour base. This butter mochi cake recipe makes a great gluten free dessert for any time. I also include a dairy-free option!
What Is Butter Mochi?
"Bata Mochi" also known as Butter Mochi, is a naturally gluten free Hawaiian local treat. You may be surprised how easy this butter mochi recipe is to make. Hawaiian mochi cake is naturally gluten free, and our kids love it as a snack or dessert.
A lot of people have never heard of butter mochi. Think of it like a baked custard made with sweet rice flour. Butter mochi is a soft cake made with coconut (or regular) milk, sweet rice flour, sugar, and eggs.
When Chef Nagano of Skool restaurant in San Francisco shared her amazing gluten free Black Sesame Banana Bread recipe with me, she also shared her Auntie Ellen's family mochi recipe. I knew this was special, and I asked if I could write up this recipe for the blog.
If you haven't tried mochi, this super easy butter mochi recipe is worth trying. Soft and creamy, this butter mochi just melts in your mouth. If you love this matcha recipe, wait until you try my matcha mochi recipe.
Why You Need To Try Mochi:
- This is mochi recipe is seriously good! It is made with very few ingredients, and it tastes delicious!
- This is the best Mochiko flour recipe.
- The creamy texture and flavor can't be beaten! My mochi recipe is lightly sweet and has a subtle coconut flavor.
- This mochi tastes like you are on a tropical vacation in Hawaii! Every time I make it I have fond memories of our Hawaiian vacation.
If you are new to gluten free and gluten free ingredients, check out my post on gluten free living 101. There are tons of tips and strategies to learn how to live gluten free.
- Sweet rice flour - Also called Mochiko. Mochiko is the ingredient that gives this Hawaiian butter mochi its creamy texture. DO NOT substitute this with regular rice flour or brown rice flour or your mochi will not turn out. Trust me on this. You can find sweet rice flour at many grocery stores. I prefer this brand by Koda Farms.
- Milk - I prefer to use coconut milk because it adds a little sweetness and flavor. You can use regular milk if you prefer, but the flavor will not have the famous light creamy coconut taste.
- Butter - Use unsalted butter. For dairy-free use vegan butter!
- Eggs - Size large
- Baking powder - Be sure to use aluminum free baking powder!
How to Make Hawaiian Butter Mochi:
Step 1: Set the oven rack to the middle and preheat the oven to 325º F. Add the sweet rice flour (Mochiko), cane sugar, and other dry ingredients to a large bowl or standing mixer.
Step 2: Add your coconut milk, eggs, and melted butter to a small mixing bowl. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix.
If you are using a standing mixer, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients in the bowl. Be sure to use the paddle attachment.
Step 3: Use a spoon to mix the wet and dry ingredients together in the mixing bowl.
Here is a photo of the Hawaiian butter mochi batter so you can see the creamy consistency. The batter texture is creamy and smooth.
Step 4: You can either grease an 8x8 pan or line the pan with parchment paper. This butter mochi is easier to remove from the pan if you use parchment paper.
Carefully pour the mochi batter into a greased 8x8 baking pan. Bake the mochi cake for 25 minutes. Remove the mochi from the oven.
TIP: Allow cooling before cutting the mochi cake! Due to the texture, if you slice the mochi while it is warm, it will stick to the knife.
If you love the texture of mochi, you will love these homemade black sesame mochi muffins too!
Mochi Tips and Recipe FAQ:
Most mochi should be gluten free but you will want to check the ingredients label every time!! Note, the mochi at Whole Foods is not gluten free, at least in the Whole Foods near our store.
Some people say bata mochi should be refrigerated and some people say it shouldn’t be. Refrigerating the gluten free butter mochi is fine, but it will dry it out a little bit. It’s better if you reheat it before serving or eating. I like to microwave it for a few seconds just to warm it up.
You can store your Hawaiian mochi on the countertop, but I really recommend storing it in the refrigerator. It will last for a few days. You will know when the mochi goes bad because it will seem dry, hard, and potentially have mold on it.
Yes, you can freeze Hawaiian butter mochi. It’s best if you wrap the gluten free butter mochi in individual-sized pieces with plastic wrap. Then place it in a freezer bag or other airtight container. It will last around 1 month in the freezer. Toss it in the microwave for a few seconds when you are ready to serve.
Yes, absolutely you can make butter mochi in a cupcake pan. This is ideal if you are serving to a crowd and want individual portions too. Just follow the instructions as directed.
They don’t take as long to cook when they are in cupcake tins unless you fill each section really full. A muffin tin filled no more than ½ way should take about 30 minutes but up to 45 minutes if filled higher.
Yes, if you love coconut, you should try adding in some shredded coconut. Put up to 1 cup of shredded coconut into the batter. You can go a little bit less if you want a subtle coconut texture. Another option is to toast some coconut and put it on top. Either way, it’s really
Mochi is sweet and chewy. Hawaiian butter mochi has a sweet buttery flavor.
Japanese mochi is typically filled with a sweetened mung bean or other fillings while Hawaiian mochi is baked cake style without a filling.
As much as I wish there were a good Mochiko substitute, there really isn't. Some recipe sites will say to use potato starch or corn starch, but I tested those replacements and they tasted like garbage. (Sorry, just the truth.) Mochiko is special and it really can't be replaced.
The good news is you can find Mochiko at many grocery stores and online.
Yessa! So good!Bailey, Pinterest user
Hawaiian Butter Mochi Recipe
- 1 cup sweet white rice flour 120 g
- 1 cup coconut milk or regular milk, 220 ml
- ½ cup of organic sugar 100 g
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons melted butter 30 g
- 1 teaspoon baking powder aluminum free!
- Preheat oven to 325º F.
- Mix together rice flour, baking powder, and sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to blend it together. You can also use a standing mixer if you prefer.
- Add egg, coconut milk, and melted butter and mix well.
- Pour into a greased 8x8 baking dish. You can line the baking pan with parchment paper instead of greasing hte pan.
- Bake at 325º F for 25 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack.
- Allow the mochi to completely cool before slicing.
Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.
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(*This post was updated from a December 2016 post.)