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Holy Cow! Easy-Cheesy How To Make Homemade Natto Beans Without Starter Spores

how to make natto at home, without the starter, instanpot, homemade natto, Japanese food Food & Recipes

Are you dreaming if you can make Japanese natto beans at home?

Honestly, I was the same as you for a long since I left Japan.

But! I am a happy camper right now because I enjoy homemade natto every day for my healthy life.

You should know that this Japanese superfood can bring you natural health and beauty!

(For more details, read this post AFTER reading this post.)

So, anyway, to make natto, do you need to buy a natto starter on Amazon?

It is not a bad idea if you are planning to eat natto beans constantly.

However, for those who want to just try to make natto at home once, or those who can’t wait for the Amazon delivery,

Today, I am going to tell you how to make natto beans without the starter.

The Essentials For Homemade Natto

All ingredients and tools you need to make homemade Natto in this recipe,

  1. An instant pot with cooking bean & Yogurt maker
  2. Organic soybeans
  3. Frozen Natto beans (you can buy them at an oriental grocery store)
  4. Mini food storage containers for freezing
  5. Cheesecloth or a thin kitchen towel

So, you can go ahead to read if you are ready!

The Instant Pot Can Save Us To Make Natto Without Stress

To make homemade natto EASILY and NO-STRESS, we need an instant pot with a Yogurt maker.

Can you still make natto without the instant pot?

Technically, you can.

But, the hardest part to make natto beans at home is the temperature control and management.

So, I highly recommend using an instant pot with a Yogurt maker.

Moreover, you can skip rehydrating soybeans for 18 hrs using “bean” cooking mode in the instant pot.

Why is so important?

Because you can make natto without planning!

Where To Buy Natto

Go to Asian grocery stores.

Commonly, you can find 1 for 3 packs in the frozen food section. (which means they are in a freezer.)

You can see Japanese or Korean products.

In my experience, you can buy around $3 each in the US.

My favorite is “Kin no tusbu torro mame”, which is the Mituskan product.

An Instantpot Or Yorgurt Maker?

Wait a minute!

So, can you make natto beans with a yogurt maker?

Yes, you can.

If you already have one, you can use it.

But, what I am saying here is, that there is a steaming bean process anyway.

If you have an instant pot, you can do the whole process in one gadget.

If you don’t have either an instant pot or yogurt maker, the instant pot is a handy kitchen tool anyway.

You can cook beans in this recipe.

Holy Cow! You Can Skip Rehydrating Beans The Night Before

Stop soaking beans in water the night before when using the instant pot with the bean cooking function.

I used to rehydrate beans for 18 hours before cooking (following the Japanese recipe). I wanted to skip the process because it didn’t make sense to me once I saw the “bean” button on the instant pot.

“So why the instant pot has the cooking bean function!”.

Also, I was not happy about Natto beans became a little mushy when they were soaked and cooked with the instant pot.

So, you can soak beans if you like the soft texture of Natto beans.

Holy Cow! Know You Can Make Authentic Natto Beans From Frozen Natto?

If you just like to try homemade natto beans as a new experience and you are not sure you like it out not, go get a frozen natto package at an oriental grocery store rather than buying Japanese Natto Starter Spores.

Usually, there are Japanese and Korean Natto products, and it doesn’t matter where it comes from.

Generally, three packages are one bundle and cost around $2 -$3.

Store them in a freezer when you go back home if you don’t plan to make or eat them soon.

Surprisingly, bacteria in natto can live even in a freezer.

Moreover, you need only a quarter to half natto for a batch of natto making.

I normally use 800g of soybean to make natto at one time and I can get approximately 14 packs (100g X 14) of natto beans.

I use a half pack of natto, so I can make 84 packs of natto eventually from only 3 natto packs.

how to make natto at home, without the starter, instanpot, homemade natto, Japanese food

Homemade Japanese Super Food Natto

Rico McConnellRico McConnell
Famous Japanese superfood. Rich in vitamin K2. Bring health & beauty to life! Using an instant pot, making natto is easy and saves money. Eating natto daily to get healthy life.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Japanese


  • Instant pot with "bean" and "yogurt" functions
  • A thin cotton towel or cheesecloth
  • A colander


  • 400 g Dried Soybeans 14.1 Ounce
  • ½-1 pack Frozen Natto beans
  • Water


  • Thaw frozen Natto beans at room temperature.
  • Rinse and drain soybeans and place them in an inner bowl.
  • Cover the beans with 2-3 times the amount of water. Please make sure the beans are completely covered and the water will be more than 1-inch above beans.
  • Press the "Bean" button and select 45 minutes mode.
  • While beans are cooking, sanitize tools such as the strainer and a spatula.
  • Allow to naturally release until the pressure subsides, or at least 20 minutes before doing a quick release.
  • Once strained the water, immediately return the beans into the bowl and add ½-1 pack of Natto beans. Stir well.
  • Cover the inside bowl with a thin kitchen towel or cheesecloth and then place the IP lid. (It's for avoiding water dripping in the beans.)
  • Press the "Yogurt" button and select 24 hours mode.
  • After 24 hours, if there is a white film on the surface, it's done.
  • Once it is cooked, leave them in the container if you care about the funky smell. It'll be gentle the next day.



©Japanmcconnell/Rico McConnell- Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
Keyword Beans, Easy, Fermented food, Healthy, Instantpot, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Holy Cow Tips For The Best Result To Make Natto At Home

Cleaning And Sanitizing Tools

All tools used should be disinfected with boiling water before use. If germs are mixed in, they will not ferment well.

I just poured boiled water over tools, but it is successful so far. More than welcome if you want deep sanitizing.

Rest Homemade Natto Overnight

Freshly cooked Natto beans release a charming (to me) funky smell, so let them rest in the refrigerator for about 24 hours before eating.

When natto beans are aged in the refrigerator for 24 hours, it becomes more sticky and rich without a less funky smell.

I don’t mind at all with the funky fermented smell so I eat it right away though.

How Long Does Homemade Natto Last?

It lasts for 2 weeks in a refrigerator.

Quick Action

Mix cooked beans and Natto beans well while cooked beans are still hot.

Natto Starter Spores work well when it is stimulated by heat.

Freeze Them

Homemade Natto beans can be stored in the freezer, so it is recommended to make a large amount at a time and freeze them. Just thaw it at room temperature.

Frozen natto can be stored for 3 months to 6 months.

Natto Is The Superfood To Eat Daily

Why Japanese traditional superfoods can bring you many health benefits?

Especially for ladies, natto can improve your health & beauty. What is nutrition?

What is good for you? When & how much should you eat Natto?

All about Natto health benefits you should know is in this post!

Do You Need Homemade Natto Sauce?

You can make the authentic Natto sauce in just 10 minutes.

Or make these Japanese essential sauces and dressings. My BBQ sauce, Teriyaki sauce, and Asian dressing will go well with Natto!

All recipes are so easy to make.

Holy Cow! Fluffy, Sticky, Rice Every Single Time

Natto and rice are the typical Japanese breakfast.

You can cook perfectly delicious white rice with my Instant pot recipe!

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