Recipe : White An Paste

白あん White An Paste (Sweet white bean paste)

Shiro an, sweet white bean paste, is used in many "Wagashi" confectioneries in Japan. This Shiro an recipe uses a food processor to make mixing easier.



Makes 750g Shiro an paste
Dried Lima/White kidney beans 300g
Granulated sugar 200~250g
Water 1,600 ml (1,6 liters)

*If you use canned / prepared white beans instead of dried beans, start from step 6. Sugar: 60% of beans weight, Water: 10% of beans weight.

白いんげん豆(LIMA, White Kidney Beans) … 300g
グラニュー糖 … 250~300g
水 … 1,600 ml (1,6 liters)

What you need

Strainer, Pan/Saucepan, Spatura, Bowl, Food Processor, Flat tray




Rinse white beans and put into the bowl. Soak the white beans in the water for 8 hours. Peel the skin of beans with fingers.

豆を洗い、たっぷりの水に8時間程度つける。(Large Lima、White Kidney Beansは皮をむく。)


Pour white beans into the pot and add 600 ml water. Turn the heat on medium high. Bring to a boil. Then, add 200 ml water.



Bring to a boil again. Allow to boil for 2 minutes. Use the strainer to drain the water from the white beans. Then rinse the white beans with tap water.



Pour the white beans (from step 3) into the pot again and add 800 ml water. Turn the heat on medium high. Bring to a boil. Skim off foam while boiling. Turn the heat to medium low. Simmer the white beans for about 30 - 60 minutes. Do not stir the white beans. If the white beans rise to the surface of the water, then add more water. The white beans should always be below the surface of the water.



Simmer until it is easy to mash a bean with your fingers. Be careful as the white beans are hot – run a bean under cool water before touching. If the beans are capable of being mashed, then turn off the heat. Use the strainer to drain the water from the white beans, and while the beans are still wet immediately pour the white beans into a mixing bowl, making sure that there is some water with the beans.



Pour the white beans (from step 5) into the Food Processor. Mash until the white beans become a smooth paste. ( If you need, you can add some water from step 5 to make this process easier.)



Pour half of the paste (from step 6) into the pot. Add the granulated sugar. Turn the heat on high. Stir with the spatula until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the other half of the paste into the pot and stir together.



Continue stirring while using the spatula to lift the white bean paste from the base of the pot to prevent burning. Lift some white bean paste with the spatula and allow them to fall back into the pot. If the white bean paste stand like a pile, the paste is done.



Transfer white bean paste onto the flat tray in small piles and allow to cool. The white bean paste is then ready to eat as a spread, a filling of manju, nerikiri dough , or any other Japanese sweets.

The white bean paste can be stored in the refrigerator for a week and freezer for a month. Seal in a container, saran wrap or Ziploc baggie.