HOW TO MAKE RED MISO (yield: + 6 lbs)

Tools needed:

  • Medium pot with lid, double boiler, or large pot with lid
  • Masher or meat grinder
  • Fermentation container with lid (or pickle press)
  • Wooden spoons
  • Measuring cup
  • Cloth to cover miso
  • Heavy stones for weight
  • Probe thermometer
  • Flame diffusers
  • Blender (optional)
  • Mason jars with lids


Wash the soybeans well and soak overnight.

Drain the beans. Cook covered underwater for 20 minutes without lid and scoop off foam, put the cover on and cook the beans for 4-5 hours so they lose their golden color and turn an intense dark red-brown. When done, let the beans cool down to body temperature. Save the cooking liquid.

Mix the koji with some of the cooled down cooking liquid and let soften. Mix the salt, koji, and half of the cooking liquid, then mix with the cooked beans. Mash until you get a homogeneous paste. Add more of the liquid if needed until the mixture is smooth, but still thick enough to form a ball.

Transfer this paste to a container that you have rubbed with salt. Press it in tightly to make sure you don’t have any air bubbles. Dust the top with a little salt and cover it with a thick clean cloth. Put a plate or wooden lid on it that fits within the container and weigh it down with a heavy rock or another heavy object. This prevents souring and yeasting.

Let the miso ferment for 6 months at ambient temperature.

You can use it after 6 months or let it age even longer. No need to refrigerate it as long as you have the weight on it. If there is mold growth on the cloth or the miso, just scrape it off.