I'd like to cook something that calls for rice wine, but alcohol is prohibited for me. What can I use as a substitute for it?

  • 1
    Hello and welcome! Can you please give us more details such as what you are using it for? That will help us to better tell you what a good substitute may be.
    – Cindy
    Commented Jul 26, 2015 at 13:55
  • Cook's Thesaurus is of no use here -- all of their recommendations are alcoholic : , much like our question on the topic. Related on the non-alcohol front : cooking.stackexchange.com/q/1332/67
    – Joe
    Commented Jul 26, 2015 at 14:25
  • You could get the 'zing' you need from tofu drenched in Japanese soy sauce and cider vinegar then very finely minced, but it would depend on what you're cooking as you'd have to include it in your recipe (jailing the soy sauce in the tofu so it doesn't overtake the rest of your ingredients)
    – user293
    Commented Jul 26, 2015 at 15:02
  • I haven't used it, but you might try Kikkoman Kotteri Mirin, also this link.
    – user3169
    Commented Jul 26, 2015 at 20:26

2 Answers 2


The first choice would be a non-alcoholic mirin such as Honteri mirin, made by Mizkan, or the Kikkoman Kotteri, mentioned in the comment above. I have a bottle of Honteri mirin and on the bottle it states that it is a non-alcoholic mirin.

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However, it should be noted that any of these products containing fermented rice can have trace amounts of alcohol. Even soy sauce can contain alcohol. From Kikkoman :

Is there any alcohol in Kikkoman Soy Sauces?

Kikkoman Soy Sauces contain greater than 2% alcohol by volume. The alcohol is not added, but is a result of the fermentation process. Like wine or beer, our soy sauces are brewed and they are made from wheat, soybeans, salt and water. During fermentation, the wheat starches are broken down to sugars and part of the sugar is changed into alcohol.

So, while you may not see it listed as an ingredient, products may contain alcohol as a result of fermentation processes.

If you want absolutely no alcohol, there are a few other options such as white grape juice, a broth that complements the dish, or an additional amount of another cooking liquid used in the recipe. If your recipe only calls for a small amount, you could replace it with water.

  • Even fruit juices have tiny amounts of alcohol. Commented Jul 27, 2015 at 15:52

I don't have enough reputation to leave a message, but alcohol in the rice wine will evaporate very quickly, I've seen Buddhists use rice wine in cooking, so it seems okay for them.

...But if you're really strict, I'd say use rice vinegar. Not the dark coloured kind, they are too strong, but the clear, white rice vinegar.

  • Only a fraction of alcohol evaporates when you cook it.
    – Jay
    Commented Jul 27, 2015 at 16:08
  • For more info on Jay's comment, see cooking.stackexchange.com/q/659/67
    – Joe
    Commented Jul 27, 2015 at 16:48
  • Okay, ignore my first statement (however, I technically didn't state that it will evaporate 100%, just that it will evaporate =p ).
    – lzl
    Commented Jul 28, 2015 at 6:43

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