Is mirin flammable? Here’s why the alcohol is not an issue

                by Joost Nusselder | Updated:  September 7, 2021

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Mirin is a Japanese cooking wine that contains alcohol. And since alcohol is flammable, it is possible that your dish may catch on fire.

But the likelihood of that depends on what kind of mirin you use.

Is mirin flammable? Here's why the alcohol is not an issue

How much alcohol is in mirin?

Mirin that you get at the store (aji mirin) contains less than one percent of alcohol, so it is not particularly flammable. You should still use caution when cooking with mirin. Since there is alcohol in it, it is still possible for it to catch on fire.

However, pure mirin, or hon mirin, contains up to fourteen percent alcohol, making it much more flammable than mirin-like condiment.

Hon mirin is harder to get your hands on. If you do not live in Japan, you will have to buy it online.

Unless you know where an authentic Asian grocery store is, you won’t be able to find hon mirin. Learn more about the differences between aji mirin and hon mirin here.

Is it dangerous to cook with mirin?

No, it is not dangerous to cook with mirin. Mirin bought from a grocery store has very little alcohol.

If you are using pure mirin, the chances of it catching fire are higher, since it has a greater alcohol percentage.

I’ve listed the 12 best substitutes for mirin here (+ a guide on how to properly use this ingredient).

Does the alcohol cook out of mirin?

Yes, when mirin is cooked, the alcohol evaporates, leaving only the flavor behind. You can’t get drunk off of mirin that is cooked in a dish.

Pure mirin, or hon mirin, is ok to drink and has an alcohol percentage of ten to fourteen percent, so drinking it can get you drunk.

Mirin is a great ingredient to add to Japanese cuisine. It adds a sweet and tangy flavor to your dish and helps thicken marinades and sauces.

Be careful when cooking with wine, even cooking wines. Anything that contains alcohol is flammable. Mirin from the Asian cuisine aisle will most likely only contain one percent alcohol, but it can still catch fire.

Also learn if you can substitute mirin for rice cooking wine?

Ever had trouble finding Japanese recipes that were easy to make?

We now have "cooking Japanese with ease", our full recipe book and video course with step-by-step tutorials on your favorite recipes.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.