How to Make a Red Bean Paste Using Healthy Adzuki Beans


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Adzuki Beans

Adzuki Beans

Red bean paste is made from the adzuki bean. This little red bean is packed full of protein, fiber, and great vitamins and minerals. It's the second most consumed bean in Japan behind the soybean. While the bean itself is used in both sweet and savory dishes, red bean paste is mostly used in desserts or treats.

The paste is simply made from adzuki beans with a little sugar and oil. Once made, you'll have a whole world of fabulous recipes at your disposal. I do hope you enjoy this easy and tasty recipe.

Cook Time

Cook timeReady inYields

3 hours

3 hours

Approx. 2 cups of paste


  • 1 cup dried adzuki beans
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  1. Wash one cup of adzuki beans. Put them in a medium saucepan and fill with water an inch or so from the top.
  2. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer for about two hours. Check them If they don't easily mash from a spoon then let them cook longer.
  3. Once soft drain the beans. Mash with a spoon or use a food processor for a smoother finish. Leaving the paste chunky is desirable for some uses. Check your recipe, and an example of texture would be red bean ice cream.
  4. Heat the oil in the saucepan. Add the sugar to the paste and return to the saucepan.
  5. Cook and stir until dry and pasty. This should take about ten minutes.
  6. Allow to cool before using.

What Can You Use Red Bean Paste For?

  • Spread on or in between pancakes.
  • Use them as a filling for sweet rice cakes (also called mochi)! This is my favorite way to use it.
  • Replace the jelly or the peanut butter in a PB&J sandwich.
  • Mix it into ice cream.
  • Slice a banana in half and spread both halves with paste.

Do you have a favorite way to use it? Let me know in the comments!

They Also Contain These Great Vitamins and Minerals

According to LiveStrong, this bean is a tiny powerhouse because it contains:

  • 121 mg of folate, 30%
  • 532 mg of potassium, 15%
  • 168 mg of phosphorus, 17%
  • 52 mg of magnesium, 13%
  • 2 mg of iron, 11%
  • .57 mg of manganese, 28.5%
  • 1.78 mg of zinc, 12%

All percentages are based on the daily values of a 2,000 calorie diet.


Sasha Kim (author) on October 18, 2014:

Van, not if you're trying to make the red bean paste found in asian desserts and snacks.

van on November 11, 2013:

can i make it without oil or sugar?

Sasha Kim (author) on March 27, 2013:

Beingwell... Your hubby has good taste, this is fantastic with ice cream. In fact my mother in law likes to freeze the paste and eat it as if it were ice cream. Thank you for your great comment ^_^

beingwell from Bangkok on March 27, 2013:

Thanks for the tips. I think the hubby would like to have this with vanilla ice cream. hihih...

Sasha Kim (author) on January 04, 2013:

Thank you Cathy ^_^ I'll have to check out these puffy mochi you're talking about ^_^ Guess I have a trip to the asian market in store for next week. I hope you enjoy!

Sasha Kim (author) on January 04, 2013:

Tealparadise, you certainly can make these into refried beans ^_^ just be sure to add a little salt since adzuki are naturally sweet, they need just a little help to be savory. Enjoy!! thank you for the great comment

Ms. Immortal from NJ on November 12, 2012:

Your right, I just checked out your recipe for sweet rice cakes. We are talking about two different things. My mochi you buy in the store pre-made and bake. They puff up and can be filled at that point. Garden of Eden sells them.

Your recipe looks amazaing, we are going to have fun making and eating them. Can't wait.

Tealparadise on November 12, 2012:

Wow! I just moved to Japan and didn't realize how easy it is to make azuki. Definitely going to do that now. Have you tried it without sugar? I loved mexican style refried beans at home and am wondering if I could improv it azuki style here.

Sasha Kim (author) on November 11, 2012:

Baked? I think we are talking about two different types of cakes ^_^ Maybe you should make a hub on the kind you and your son make, I would love to see.

Ms. Immortal from NJ on November 11, 2012:

I put the jelly in after it's baked.

Sasha Kim (author) on November 11, 2012:

Jelly? How do you fill them? must be a very thick/solid jelly?

Ms. Immortal from NJ on November 11, 2012:

Mama Kim,

We improvised the red bean paste, we will try salmon next time, sounds delicious.

We love mochi, I usually fill them with jelly, but will definitely use red bean paste next time. Much better for you too.


Sasha Kim (author) on November 10, 2012:

Cathy, What your son made is called onigiri. It's mostly a savory dish but on rare occasions I see it prepared sweet... without seaweed. I absolutely adore it with smoked salmon in the center or a savory black bean paste ^_^ If your son enjoys trying the foods he sees in anime then you should see my hub on sweet rice cakes that use this red bean paste as the filling. The Japanese call it Mochi... they even have an adorable kids song about it I've seen in a couple of anime. ^_^ I'm so happy you and your son enjoyed my recipe and I just love that your exploring new foods together! Thank you so much for sharing it with me ^_^

Ms. Immortal from NJ on November 10, 2012:

I thought you might want to know, tonight my son decided to make rice balls with seaweed and red bean paste inside. He had never had these before, but saw them in an anime movie and decided to try it. We used your recipe. The rice balls were very good and the red bean paste recipe is a winner. Thanks.

Sasha Kim (author) on November 10, 2012:

Cathy, Thank you for your nice comment I hope you enjoy ^_^

Ms. Immortal from NJ on October 27, 2012:

Yummi, thanks I'm going to give this a try!

Sasha Kim (author) on October 03, 2012:

RTalloni, Oh I'm so happy this sparked interest ^_^ I just love red bean paste... and I'm sure you wont be disappointed! For an easy treat spread it on pancakes... one of my favorite ways to eat it ^_^ Thank you for your lovely comment!

RTalloni on October 02, 2012:

Such an interesting recipe--thanks for posting something new for me to explore!

Sasha Kim (author) on September 22, 2012:

Virginia, Thank you for your nice comment ^_^ I Love moon cakes! Wonderful choice. I hope you get to make your own now.

Sasha Kim (author) on September 22, 2012:

Donnah, Thank you for you wonderful comment vote and share! Yes I do have a dessert hub called 'Sweet Rice Cakes Filled With Red Bean Paste' We are the opposite.. I only eat red beans as a dessert ^_^ I will have to try them in savory dishes. Do you have a recipe for a savory red bean dish?

Virginia Kearney from United States on September 22, 2012:

I love red bean paste and didn't know you could make it yourself. My favorite way to eat this is in moon cakes. Thanks for the recipe.

Donna Hilbrandt from Upstate New York on September 22, 2012:

I love azuki beans. They sell them in this little health food store where I used to live, and I detour past there on my way home whenever I need some. They are fantastic in savory dishes. I never tried them in paste form, though I have heard of it. Do you have any dessert recipes to share that uses this paste? Voted up and sharing.

Sasha Kim (author) on September 21, 2012:

Natasha, Thank you for your lovely comment ^_^ I so happy you like and will use this recipe! Beans of any kind are pretty easy to cook, they just take a long time. Enjoy!

Sasha Kim (author) on September 21, 2012:

Thank you very much Michelle!! You are lucky to have an abundance of these fantastic beans! ^_^ You're very kind!

Natasha from Hawaii on September 21, 2012:

I love azuki beans! I've never cooked them myself, though, because I didn't know how. Thanks for the recipe - I know I'll put it to use.

Michelle Liew from Singapore on September 21, 2012:

We have lots of red beans here in Singapore! A wonderful recipe, healthy too, and you are one fantastic chef! Shared and voted!

Sasha Kim (author) on September 17, 2012:

Good luck! ^_^

Alexandria Taberski from Loveland, CO on September 17, 2012:

hmm, I'll have to search around. Thanks for the tips.

Sasha Kim (author) on September 17, 2012:

Alexandria, If you don't have an Asian market that has them near you I know Amazon.com has them. Just search Adzuki beans. ^_^ I just knew you'd like this ^_^ Thank you so much for stopping in.

Sasha Kim (author) on September 17, 2012:

Thank you Rajan ^_^ I'm glad you're making your own paste. Your cakes will come out fantastic! Thank you so much for you nice comment.

Alexandria Taberski from Loveland, CO on September 17, 2012:

Red Bean is my absolute favorite! Now if only I could find some . . .

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on September 17, 2012:

Mama Kim, thanks for sharing this recipe. I need to try making the sweet rice cakes and needed this recipe for the filling.

Thanks for sharing.

Sasha Kim (author) on September 16, 2012:

Thank you Alicia! The suggestions I gave are very popular in Japan, Korea and China ^_^ I'm lucky to be apart of a Korean family that has opened my culinary world ^_^ I hope you enjoy!

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on September 16, 2012:

I often eat beans, including adzuki beans, but I've never eaten them as a dessert. Thanks for the idea. Your suggestions for using bean paste sound very interesting - especially mixing the paste with ice cream or spreading it on a banana or pancakes. I'm looking forward to trying these ideas!

Sasha Kim (author) on September 15, 2012:

Vespa, Thank you for yet another wonderful comment ^_^ If you have any asian markets maybe. That's the only place I can find them around me. If not maybe online.

I adore red bean paste and pancakes!! I made it just last night ^_^ I haven't tried it with the whipped cream though, that sounds like an excellent addition.

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on September 15, 2012:

I wonder if we have these beans in Peru? I'm going to see if I can find them. I have seen imported red bean paste for sale in the grocery store. Our Japanese friends served a dessert once that was little pancakes filled with beans and whipped cream. Delicious!

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