Ooh, it’s that powder stuff!

It kinda looks like something you get in bulk at GNC, filled with protein and creatine.

Misutgaru (MEE-soot-ga-ru, “roasted rice powder”) is actually a traditional powder made from rice that has been cooked, dried and ground, along with nuts and other grains.

We have a big whole bunch of it in our household. It’s sometimes sprinkled on patbingsu. Yet the most popular application is mixed as a drink, usually with just water an honey.

It’s the original smoothie, you could say. But I’ve always hated that word “smoothie.” Sounds like a classification of bowel movement.

Anyway. Simple. I chunked a banana in my cup and dusted it with–I don’t know. Does it look like a couple tablespoons of Misutgaru?

Filled it to level with milk and blended with my boat motor.

The attempt at garnish was pathetic. Using a blender is the best way to deal with this stuff. It doesn’t dissolve easily and is usually quite clumpy. Eun Jeong likes to eat it in a bowl with a spoon.

The taste is nutty, like a peanut butter smoo–um, milkshake. The little clumps, and there will always be little clumps, crackle between the molars. In a pleasant way. As far as health drinks go, this is a good one. And it doesn’t have that stale artificial chocolate taste like the musclenecks at the gym drink.

Frozen Banana Misutgaru Smoothie

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 1

Serving Size: 1 glass

Calories per serving: 360

9 g

Frozen Banana Misutgaru Smoothie


  • 1 Banana, frozen, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp Misutgaru
  • 1 cup Milk


  1. Combine ingredients in a blender
  2. Blend until it’s the consistency of a milkshake
  3. Pour into a glass and enjoy
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Joe McPherson founded ZenKimchi in 2004. He has been featured and sourced in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, CNN, KBS, MBC, SBS, Le Figaro, Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia, Harper’s Bazaar Korea, The Chosun Weekly, and other Korean and international media. He has consulted for "Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain," The Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern,” Lonely Planet, National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, the PBS documentary series “Kimchi Chronicles,” and other projects in the UK, Canada, and Australia featuring celebrity chefs such as Gizzi Erskine and Gary Mehigan.Mr. McPherson has written for multiple Korean and international publications, including SEOUL Magazine, JoongAng Daily, The Korea Herald, Newsweek Korea and wrote the feature article for U.S. National publication Plate magazine’s all-Korean food issue. He has acted as dining editor for 10 Magazine and was on the judging panel for Korea for the Miele Guide.He spoke at TEDx Seoul on Korean food globalization, at TED Worldwide Talent Search on the rise of Korean cuisine, and in New York City on Korean Buddhist temple cuisine. The company ZenKimchi International organizes food tours for tourists and corporations and acts as a media liaison for foreign and Korean media and local restaurants and producers.
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