Hanami Dango (花見団子) | Sanshoku Dango (三色団子) | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

Hanami Dango

Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: dango, mochi, wagashi
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8 sticks of dango
Author: Nami

Made with sweetened rice balls on a skewer, Hanami Dango is a popular sweet enjoyed during the cherry blossom viewing in Japan.




  1. Gather all the ingredients.
    Hanami Dango Ingredinets
  2. Put Yomogi in a bowl and add hot water. Use a fork to combine yomogi and water well.
    Hanami Dango 1
  3. Set aside for 5 minutes. Then strain the yomogi using a fine mesh strainer. Discard the liquid.
    Hanami Dango 2
  4. Combine joshinko, shiratamako, and sugar in a large bowl and mix all together.
    Hanami Dango 3
  5. Add hot water in small increments to combine (NEVER pour water at once). Mix well before you add more water. When the texture of the dough is similar to an earlobe texture, it’s good to go. It’s a funny comparison but that’s the traditional way to check the consistency. If you put too much water and your dough is too soft, add more joshinko.

    Hanami Dango 4
  6. Divide the dough into thirds. Add the red food coloring to one third, the yomogi to another third, and keep the last one as it is.
    Hanami Dango 5
  7. Knead each dough until the color is even and well combined.
    Hanami Dango 6
  8. Roll the dough into 8 even sized balls for each color. I used a #60 cookie scooper that holds 2 tsp. I have to say it’s a bit bigger than actual dango, so you can probably use 1 to 1.5 tsp. would be the ideal size. You might be able to get 12 dango total.
    Hanami Dango 7
  9. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the white dango in boiling water until they start floating, about 8 minutes. Stir in the beginning so dango won't stick at the bottom. Once floating, cook for another 1 minute.

    Hanami Dango 8
  10. Remove the white dango from the water and immediately let them cool in iced water for 1 minute. Then transfer to a plate.
    Hanami Dango 9
  11. Next, work on the pink dango, and repeat the same process. Then finish with the green dango. As you see, the boiling water changes color, so I recommend starting from light to dark color so the white dango doesn’t get stained.

    Hanami Dango 10
  12. Put one of each color dango onto a skewer, in the order of green, white, and pink.  Serve at room temperature.  Put dango in an airtight container and keep at room temperature up to 2 days. If you live in a hot climate, find a cool place to store, but not in the refrigerator as dango will become too tough. Enjoy in 2 days.

    Hanami Dango 11

Recipe Notes

Yomogi: If you can’t find this ingredient in a Japanese grocery store, substitute with 1 to 1.5 tsp Matcha green tea powder.


Red food color: If you prefer to use natural ingredient, other options to make dango pink is to use crushed freeze dry strawberries/raspberries. Add a little bit at a time to check on the color.


Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.