Kitchn Love Letters

I Can’t Stop Making This Coconut-y Hawaiian Butter Mochi

published Apr 12, 2024
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Hawaiian butter mochi sits stacked on top of each other
Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Anna Stockwell

I love all kinds of desserts, from chocolate cake and fudge brownies to strawberry cheesecake and lemon meringue pie, I don’t discriminate. They’re all absolutely delicious. But when I’m in the mood to bake during the week, I usually go for the easiest recipes — let’s be honest here!

So when I came across Alana Kysar’s recipe for Hawaiian Butter Mochi, I knew it would be one of my favorites. Not only is it similar to the Filipino bibingka that I grew up eating, but the sweet and chewy coconut custard dessert is as easy as it gets. Plus her version of butter mochi has a “magic crust” that’s so good, you’ll fight over those golden-brown, crispy-crunchy corner pieces.

Get the recipe: Hawaiian Butter Mochi

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Anna Stockwell

Why You’ll Love This Version of Hawaiian Butter Mochi

Butter mochi is a baked sweet and chewy rice cake that’s popular in Hawaii. It gets its signature chewy texture from mochiko flour, which is a fine flour made from short-grain rice (it’s also known as sweet rice flour or glutinous rice flour). The mochiko flour is combined with sugar, baking powder, milk, eggs, melted butter, and coconut milk until smooth, then baked until set and golden brown. There’s no need for special equipment here — a couple of mixing bowls, a whisk, and a spoon are all you need to prep this easy recipe. 

But what makes this version of butter mochi special is its “magic crust.” After you pour the batter into the baking pan, you sprinkle the top with shredded coconut and a few pinches of flaky salt. As it bakes, the shredded coconut is caramelized into a crisp, golden brown crust. If you like yours slightly more caramelized, you can bake it a bit longer. But fair warning: This butter mochi is so dangerously good that you almost don’t want to share.

Get the recipe: Hawaiian Butter Mochi

Other Ways to Use Sweet Rice Flour

Sweet rice flour is incredibly versatile and can be used in a number of recipes. Here are a few other delicious ways to use it.