This vegetable packed Vegan Sushi Recipe goes to show that sushi is far more than rice and fish. These inside out vegan sushi rolls are stuffed with tofu, cucumber, carrot and avocado and easy to adapt with you favourite vegan fillings. If you don't like sushi because of fish, then this recipe is for you!
Follow our step by step instructions for making the best sushi for vegans. Protein packed with tofu and certainly not lacking in colour or flavour. We have a list of vegan sushi fillings, so you can easily adapt this recipe to suit your own tastes or what you have in your fridge.
Homemade sushi is easier to make than you might think. Perfect for getting kids to try new things and great for a dinner party too. This is very similar to a Korean dish called Gimbap, but it's also a recreation of a sushi dish we have enjoyed many times, and therefore our take on it.
Why you will love it
- Easy - You might think sushi is hard to make, but this vegetarian sushi is about as easy as it gets. All you need is a pan to cook the rice in and a sushi rolling mat too.
- Adaptable - This is a really easy sushi roll, as anything goes. You can easily adapt it with other vegan fillings - more ideas below.
- Suitable for everyone - When people think of sushi, they usually think of fish. But this is tofu sushi, with lots of vibrant vegetables.
- Cheap - Sushi restaurants can be expensive, but making your own vegan sushi at home is actually pretty cheap. The packets of rice go a long way and use whatever you have in your fridge to reduce waste.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Nori - These are the sheets of edible seaweed that sushi is wrapped in. Choose a brand that is dark green in colour. You can find these in the world food aisle of most supermarkets.
- Sushi rice - You have to use sushi rice for the best results. Basmati or jasmine rice will not work. Follow our recipe for Sushi Rice for the best sticky rice. The measurements in this recipe are for cooked sushi rice.
- Sesame seeds - These are added to the rice because this is an inside out roll (with the rice on the outside) so the sesame seeds make it look really presentable.
- Cucumber - Traditionally you would use Japanese cucumber, which you can find in more Japanese supermarkets. However, any cucumber will work for this. If you don't like cucumber, you could just use avocado instead.
- Carrot - These add a nice crunch. We used orange carrots, but you could use rainbow carrots for even more colour.
- Tofu - We used ready cooked marinated tofu. An easy way to add a bit of protein, but this can be left out. You can marinate and fry your own tofu too.
- Avocado - This adds lots of creaminess and some healthy fats to the sushi roll.
- Roasted red pepper - This is optional, and we didn't add it to ours, but it adds lots of flavour and colour.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
How to make vegan sushi - Step by step
Prep: Cook your sushi rice according to our Sushi Rice recipe.
One: Lay a sheet of nori on a bamboo rolling mat, shiny side down. Put the cooked sushi rice onto the nori and spread to cover the nori (a). Sprinkle over the sesame seeds (b).
Two: Carefully, but quickly, flip the nori over so the rice is on the underside (a). Lay the fillings across the centre of the nori (b).
Three: Using a bamboo rolling mat, roll up from the bottom, tightly away from you (a). Leave a small amount of nori unrolled. Wet this part of the nori with water and finish rolling to seal it (b).
Four: Dip a sharp knife into some water and then slice the roll. Dip the knife into water each time you make a cut. Slice each roll into 10 pieces.
This vegan sushi is great for a light lunch, but are also a great addition to a bigger sushi meal. Try it with some of these sushi recipes:
You could also serve it with an edamame salad and some pickled seaweed.
Of course some soy sauce, wasabi and ginger are a must served alongside sushi. But if you want something with a big more of a kick, then mix together some vegan mayo and Sriracha to dip these in.
We love dipping sushi in our Healthy Teriyaki Sauce too.
Vegan sushi fillings
The variation options are almost endless here. Other ingredients that you can add to this include, pickled radish, roasted sweet potato, red/purple cabbage, fresh coriander (cilantro), tenderstem broccoli, jackfruit, asparagus, cooked mushrooms, vegan cream cheese or jalapeno.
These are larger rolls, but try not to add too many fillings otherwise you will struggle to roll it up.
If you really wanted to give this some extra colour, then you could add food colouring to the rice. You could separate the rice into 4 and add a different colour to each and then add the rice in rows, so when it is rolled you get sections of colour.
It is best to eat sushi within 1-2 hours of it being made, as the rice will go dry and stale. However, if you do have any leftovers then it can be stored.
Refrigerate in an air tight container for up to 24 hours. Add a bit of lemon juice to the avocado to stop it from browning and keep it fresher for longer.
Frequently Asked Questions
For each nori sheet, which makes one sushi roll, you need 100g/0.5 cup of cooked sushi rice.
Using both hands, slowly roll it with the bamboo mat pressing down gently and equally as you roll. The pressure will make it stick together.
We really would recommend getting a sushi rolling mat, and they are quite reasonable in shops or online. However, if you don't have one then you can use a flexible place mat instead. Just wrap it in clingfilm/serran wrap first.
More Japanese recipes
- Cook your sushi rice according to our Sushi Rice recipe.400 g Cooked sushi rice
- Lay a sheet of nori on a bamboo rolling mat, shiny side down. Put the cooked sushi rice onto the nori and spread to cover the nori.4 sheet Nori
- Sprinkle over the sesame seeds.1 tablespoon Black sesame seeds
- Lay the fillings across the centre of the nori.0.5 Cucumber, 1 Carrot, 75 g Cooked tofu, 1 Avocado, 1 Roasted red peppers
- Using a bamboo rolling mat, roll up from the bottom, tightly away from you. Leave a small amount of nori unrolled. Wet this part of the nori with water and finish rolling to seal it.
- Dip a sharp knife into some water and then slice the roll. Dip the knife into water each time you make a cut. Slice each roll into 10 pieces.
- This recipe calls for 400g of cooked sushi rice. To make this amount of cooked rice, you will need 130g of raw rice. If you are altering the serving size in the recipe card, divide the amount of cooked rice by 3 to get how much raw rice you will need.
- Make sure to wet the knife before making each cut. This prevents the rice from sticking to the knife.
- Always place the nori shiny side down on the rolling mat. This is because the rice sticks better to the rough side and it looks better for presentation.
- With some nori brands, you might not be able to use water to seal the roll. You can use cooked rice grains as the "glue" instead, just squash a few grains across the nori where you want to seal it.
- Make sure the sushi rice is fully cooled before adding it to the nori, as the steam of the hot rice can cause the nori to go soggy.
- When handling the rice, use wet hands or a spoon, as it is very sticky.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.