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Difference Between White Miso and Red Miso

White Miso vs Red Miso

White Miso and Red Miso are Japanese seasonings that are produced from rice, barley and soybeans which are then fermented. Miso is a thick mixture that is usually used for sauces and other means of seasoning. The miso has different tastes depending on the variety.

White Miso

White miso comes from fermented soybeans. The mixture comprised of larger percentage of rice. A white miso has a sweet taste and by the name itself, it has a whitish color or light beige. Usually a white miso is used for salad dressings, mayonnaise and sandwich spreads. A white miso has the highest carbohydrate count which is important to note especially for the health conscious.

Red Miso

On the other hand, a red miso still comes from fermented soybeans however instead of rice; it is mixed with barley and other grains. The highest percentage which also makes the color red is because of soybeans. A red miso is an ingredient for soups, stews and brazes. If you want to make a darker color, you just need to add extra soybeans into the mixture.

Difference between White Miso and Red Miso

White miso has a higher percentage or rice while red miso has more soybeans in it. A white miso is sweet while a red miso has a deep umami flavor. A white miso has a whitish to light beige color while a red miso is also reddish brown in color. White miso is used for mayonnaise and spreads while a red miso is used for stews, brazes and glazes. White miso takes only a few months to ferment while a red miso can range from 1 year to 3 years.

Both miso are great for adding flavor into your meal, they are also well loved by the Japanese. It is good to know the difference between the two in a more intimate detail.

In brief:

• White miso has more rice while red miso has more soybeans in every mixture.

• White miso is whitish to light beige in color while red miso is reddish brown in color.

• White miso is sweet while red miso has a deep umami flavor.

• White miso is used mostly for mayo, spreads and dressings while red miso is for stews, glazes, and soups.


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