The tricky part about making this desert is figuring out the right ratio of yeast to rice. Too much or too little yeast can result in mold growing on the rice. The bottom line is you’re making wine, thus everything should be clean, dry, and accurately measured.

If Using Hong Kong Yeast:
-1 wine yeast ball (approx. 8g, about the diameter of a US quarter)
-1kg white or brown glutinous rice

If Using Vietnamese Yeast:
-1/2kg white or brown glutinous rice
-2 wine yeast balls (approx 5g, diameter about the size a US dime) or 5 small yeast balls (approx. 7g, diameter about 3/4 of a US dime)

What to Do:
Wash rice a few times; soak for a few hours (the longer you soak, the faster the rice will cook). If using brown glutinous rice than soak and cook as you would normal rice (in a pot with water). If using white glutinous rice, cook the rice by steaming. The rice should be tender and moist. Grind yeast into a powder. Spread cooked rice on a large tray and cool until warm. Sprinkle yeast over rice and mix. Wet hands with saltwater solution and form rice into small balls (this step is optional). Place rice balls in a clean and dry container, cover tightly and place in a warm place for rice to ferment.

How long it takes for the wine to mature depends on the temperature at which it ferments. The process usually takes a few days. After a few days there should be plenty of wine in the container…enough for the rice balls to float in. The longer you ferment the stronger the wine will be. Serve “young wine” as a dessert. “Over-fermented” wine could be used to make Bánh Bò in place of the yeast or, the wine could be filtered, boiled and use as a drinking wine or, to soak spices to make cooking wine.

Saltwater Solution for Shaping Rice Balls:
-1 cup warm water
-1/2 tsp salt

*Dissolve salt in water, the solution should have the saltiness of soup.

Comments (17)

On 4:52 PM , Anonymous said...

You are an angel!!! I have been looking for this recipe for a long time. Thanks for posting it.


On 5:50 AM , Audrey Cooks said...

Hi there! I blog hopped from Jingle's blog and you are a pleasant surprise! This wine rice dessert is one of my favourites. I realise not many know how to make this. Great blog!

On 2:19 AM , Anonymous said...

I really appreciate you have this online, I have been looking for ages but could not find anything.
It is one of my most love snack, but never able to buy a nicely made one. Thank you so much for your kindness in sharing so much online.

On 4:00 PM , Anonymous said...


after much searching..finally I found your blog. Thank you for posting this recipe. However as I want to make this as a dessert & I noticed in your recipe there is no mentioned of sugar. Should there not be some amount of sugar in it? would you know how much to add.
Thank you

On 10:57 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

if sugar was needed then I would have mentioned it...but since I didn't....

On 11:55 AM , Anonymous said...

Hello, could we possibly use your photo on the new Wikipedia article about this food? We have a link to your page there now, but no photo. Thank you!

On 1:50 AM , hoangtam/tt said...


yes...of course.


On 3:14 PM , Xiaolu said...


I found your blog while looking for a recipe for Chinese White Sugar Cake. Your site is great! My mom loves that type of cake and rice wine so I'll try to make both soon.

I was wondering, if I do use rice wine to make Bánh Bò in place of the yeast, how much rice wine should I use?

On 10:56 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

my suggestion is don't use rice wine to make the rice cakes until you've mastered making it with yeast...

On 6:16 PM , LT said...

First! Thank OP very much for the recipe. I have been looking so long for this. I am making it now and waiting for it undergoes the fermentation process.
As for sugar! You don't need to add any since the hydrocarbon is decompsed by some strains of the wine yeast (Saccharomyces cerevesiae) into sugar before fermented into ethanol. I think mantose is the sugar in this case since our ancestors also made "ke.o nha" from young glutenous rice.
I also have learned that the yeast is easy to be contaminated. Wine makers add about 30-50 part per million SO2 into the fermentation tank, but it is not the case here for us homemaking. However, keeping the temperature high at above 14C/57.2F also help to prevent other non-Saccharomyces to grow. The fermentation process is defined as aerobic, so you may let it have some air in and out.
That is about it! Good luck everyone and thanks again for the recipe. I am crossing my fingers now hoping I will have a delicious pot of rice wine.

On 7:14 PM , Anonymous said...

is the weight(in grams)given for the wine yeast balls per a ball or a total amount? thanks!

On 12:36 PM , Unknown said...

Where do you get the yeast for the com ruou?

On 7:31 PM , SweetChocoGirl said...

Hi Hoang Tam,
I'm just curious if I can use instant dry yeast instead? If I can, what amount that would be?

On 11:14 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

no, you have to use wine yeast.

On 7:00 PM , SweetChocoGirl said...

Thank you so much, Hoang Tam! My cơm rượu turned to be very sweet, much sweeter than i have imagined!!

For those of you who'll be making wine for the first time, I hope that my little experience might help you a little.
My first batch I made with Black Rice and it was actually sweet and sour. It's probably due to the heat in my house was acting up on one night and turned it sour. It could be because i opened the container during the ferment process too. (curiosity kills the cat >_<). So you want cool temperature and don't open the container-->keep it sealed. oh, and you don't have to roll them into a ball either. That will save you time. =)

My second batch i made with just white sweet rice and it turned out perfect, sooo sweeet!_!

I had one of my friend tried it and she actually like them both! Me and my big bro are also enjoy having them side by side.

On 3:29 AM , Anonymous said...

I was wondering if I buy the one at my local store that is already made to be eaten as desert can I use that wine? Or do I have to let it ferment more and how would I do that?

On 3:28 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi, I was wondering if you can substitute yeast with something else.