Kinako flour/powder tastes much more decadent than the English explanation sounds. Image result for kinako"It’s roasted, ground soybean powder. I know, right?  It somehow tastes like earthy cinnamon though.  It’s traditionally used to flavor mochi.

Now you can find it in cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. Health conscious people might like it because of its high-protein content and micronutrients.

I just like the earthy, cinnamony subtle flavor.  So I stole a sable cookie recipe (never knew about this egg yolk-added sugar cookie until I went to Japan– which is obsessed with sable cookies including the hatto sable–which is a travesty) from Fine Cooking and worked in some Kinako.

The children and Tokyo Boy approved. There are none left today 🙂

This yields about 1 dozen cookies depending on if you roll it into a log or roll it out for cutouts like we did.


  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/3 cup with about half granulated sugar and half powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup Kinako powder (plus about 1/4 cup more for dredging cookies in)

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix the butter on low speed until smooth and creamy (you don’t want it to get light and fluffy), about 1 minute; mix in the salt and sugars. Mix until smooth, about 1 minute. Add 1 egg yolk and vanilla and mix for 1 minute. Still on low speed, mix in the flour and kinako powder just until blended; the dough will be soft.

Turn the dough out onto the counter and knead it gently a few times. Either roll into a log or shape into a disc (if you want to do cut outs) Wrap the log or disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

Preheat oven to 350. If you are doing logs, you can brush a bit of egg yolk wash and roll in either more Kinako or sanding/demerera sugar before slicing into 1/2 inch thick rounds. If you are doing cutouts, roll out to desired thickness and then dredge each cut out in more kinako powder before putting on parchment covered baking sheet.

Bake 12-18 minutes depending on thickness and let cool for a couple minutes on sheet before transferring to cooling rack. Enjoy 🙂