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Mint Matcha Butter Mochi (with Vegan Version)

Peppermint matcha mochi squares are made in a traditional Hawaiian style called butter mochi, and is more like a fluffy cake than traditional Japanese mochi. Garnished with fresh flowers and dusted with powdered sugar.

I distinctly remember the first time I tried mochi. I was adorned in a kimono that was provided by the kindergarten I attended on the island of Oahu, and we were celebrating Hinamatsuri, or Girls’ Day, a spring festival that takes place every March 3 to celebrate the health and well-being of young girls. The tender, sweet, and gooey-textured mochi cake had me hooked from the very first nibble. Mochi is a traditional rice flour cake consumed year-round in Japan, but often is reserved for special occasions and holidays.

With several varieties of mochi available (varying in textures, fillings, and toppings), my all-time favorite variety growing up in the islands was far and away butter mochi. Often found at potlucks and birthdays (and, in my family, also after soccer games), butter mochi is not a traditional Japanese variety, but a product of the diverse melting pot of cultures that make up Hawaii; it’s a combination of a traditional Japanese mochi cake made with matcha tea, and a Filipino coconut milk dessert cake called bibingka.

Mint tea herbal tea blend is blended from organic peppermint and spearmint and makes a great ingredient when recipes call for a minty flavor. Paired with organic ceremonial grade matcha tea, they make great sweet flavors for desserts.

When my husband and I miss our family in the islands, I like to make some of our favorite Hawaiian foods, and coming up with new versions of the beloved standards is always a fun adventure. With spring in the air, and the cherry blossom festivals of Japan in mind, I want to share my version of a butter mochi that incorporates bright herby flavors to complement the richness found in its buttery and decadent texture (and which also happen to give it just the right spring-green hue). Enjoy!

 Dusting finished mint matcha butter mochi cakes with arrowroot powder. Mochi cakes stacked high on a plate garnished with fresh daises.


Minty Matcha Butter Mochi Cake

Makes about 2 dozen small to medium squares.



  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Pour coconut milk into a pot over medium heat. Heat through, whisking occasionally, until just before milk comes to a simmer (dont bring to a full simmer). Remove from heat.
  3. Put mint tea, peppermint leaf, or spearmint leaf in a tea bag or diffuser. Drop into the hot coconut milk and set aside to steep for about 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, using a handheld mixer, stand mixer, or food processor, mix melted butter or coconut oil with sugar until thoroughly combined and creamy in appearance.
  5. Add eggs (one at a time) or applesauce, and blend until thoroughly incorporated and smooth.
  6. Blend in matcha powder, vanilla extract, and fine sea salt.
  7. On low speed, slowly incorporate rice flour and baking powder.
  8. Remove mint from coconut milk and discard. Slowly blend coconut milk infusion into the mochi batter.
  9. Slowly blend in evaporated milk or almond/cashew milk until creamy and smooth.
  10. Pour into an ungreased glass 9 x 13-inch pan. Tap pan on counter to clear batter of any possible air bubbles.
  11. Bake on middle rack of oven 35 to 45 minutes, just until the edges appear golden in color. Immediately remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. It will continue to cook in the pan and will solidify.
  12. Cool completely before cutting into squares.
  13. Lightly dust cut squares with arrowroot powder or powdered sugar before serving.

Pro Tip

Superfine sugar is often called for in recipes that require a faster dissolving granule. Unfortunately, the organic version can be difficult to find in some places, but its easy to make at home!

  1. Measure out the amount of regular organic granulated sugar called for in the recipe (in this case 1 1/2 cups) and add a couple of tablespoons.
  2. Put into a food processor, and process 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Let the sugar dust settle before you open the top to check consistency. You want the sugar to feel like fine sand.
  4. When you have achieved the right consistency, remeasure to make sure you still have the right amount.


 Want to try other sweet delights using matcha?

Try This No-Bake Matcha Cheesecake Recipe!


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Peppermint mochi cakes with matcha tea served as a dessert for any occasion. Vegan mochi recipe with peppermint and matcha.


Topics: Culinary, Recipes, Specialty Ingredients


Written by Tiana on March 11, 2020

Tiana Challenger was born and raised in Hawaii. Her mother, a home-based herbalist, instilled in her the value found in our natural world from a very young age. Tiana moved to the mainland to attend the University of Nevada, Reno, where she graduated with a major in Journalism and a minor in English Writing. Upon graduating, she became an English teacher abroad in South East Asia for ESL high school students and maintained a photography and cooking travel blog. Having completed coursework with the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and as someone who practices sustainable living and agriculture, she now lives in Oregon with her husband where they operate a small farm just outside of Eugene. When she’s not working as a Product Coordinator for Mountain Rose Herbs, you can find her cooking up something new in the kitchen, spending time with her rescue animals, beekeeping, crafting repurposed furniture, tabling at the farmers market, practicing photography, or playing the cello.

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