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This recipe for tofu veggie sushi rolls is vegetarian, vegan, and made up of only 10 ingredients! This post will show you how easy it is to make a basic sushi recipe with fresh ingredients and step-by-step instructions.
in this post
- Why You’ll Love These Tofu Veggie Sushi Rolls
- Sushi Basics
- Ingredients Needed
- How To Make Tofu Veggie Sushi Rolls Gluten-Free
- Different Types of Sushi Rolls + Tofu Sushi Ideas
- Quick Tips for Best Results
- Common Questions
Why You’ll Love These Tofu Veggie Sushi Rolls
- This basic recipe can be easily customized so that each tofu veggie sushi roll is unique and filled with different ingredients
- This recipe is vegetarian, vegan, made up of only 10 ingredients and can be easily made gluten-free
- This recipe includes different optional ingredients such as wasabi, spicy mayo sauce, and pickled ginger to suit your preferences
- This recipe includes easy step-by-step instructions for making basic sushi as well as various methods for cooking sushi rice and tofu
- You can substitute many of the basic ingredients for other ingredients you may have on hand
- This veggie sushi with tofu recipe is great for meal-prepping
For this recipe, the following ingredients may be unfamiliar to you:
- Nori: Nori is just dried seaweed and it’s commonly used as a wrapper in sushi recipes.
- Sushi Rice: Sushi rice, or Japanese short grain rice, is a type of rice that’s typically smaller in size and used within sushi recipes.
- Rice Vinegar: Rice vinegar is vinegar made from fermented rice. It has a unique flavor that is different from other types of vinegar.
- Firm, Extra Firm, or Super Firm Tofu
- Light Soy Sauce or Coconut Aminos
- Sesame Oil
- White or Brown Sushi Rice + Water
- Rice Vinegar
- Bell Pepper
- Nori Seaweed Sheets
- Cane Sugar
- Pickled Ginger
- Spicy Mayo
- Tofu: For this recipe, you can use firm, extra firm, or super firm tofu.
- Soy Sauce: You can use light soy sauce, regular soy sauce, dark soy sauce, coconut aminos, or tamari.
- Sesame Oil: You can use olive oil or a neutral oil such as vegetable/canola oil or avocado oil for this recipe.
- Rice: For this recipe, you can use brown or white short grain sushi rice.
- Vegetables: You can use many different types of veggies in your sushi and customize it to your liking. For sushi, I recommend using any of the following vegetables: green onion, purple or green cabbage, daikon radish, any color of bell pepper, eggplant, potato, sweet potato, asparagus.
- Nori Seaweed Sheets: If you’re not a fan of seaweed, you can replace a nori sheet with soy wraps, thinly sliced cucumber or zucchini strips, rice paper, tofu skin, or large lettuce or green veggie leaves.
Want some more easy recipes? Check out the list below!
How To Make Tofu Veggie Sushi Rolls Gluten-Free
When I was developing this recipe, I wanted to make it as simple as possible, but also include instructions, for anyone with food allergies. The below explanation is a break down of why some ingredients are not considered gluten-free and how you can easily make this recipe gluten-free.
- Nori Seaweed Sheets: Nori seaweed sheets are typically gluten-free since seaweed is naturally gluten-free. Some seaweed sheets contain added soy sauce or tamari. Soy sauce and tamari are not gluten-free unless specifically stated on the packaging. To ensure that your seaweed sheets are gluten-free, look for the the certified gluten-free symbol on the packaging or opt for seaweed sheets that only contain seaweed as the listed ingredient.
- Sushi Rice: Sushi rice, or just plain rice, isn’t always gluten-free. In its natural form, rice is gluten-free; but just like oats, rice can be cross contaminated with wheat ingredients and no longer be considered safe or gluten-free for people with celiac disease/related food allergies. For gluten-free sushi rice, choose the product that contains the certified gluten-free label on the packaging.
- Rice Vinegar: Rice vinegar can be a tricky ingredient for gluten-free cooking if you’re not careful. Some manufacturers do not list additional wheat additives such as barley malt. For gluten-free rice vinegar, make sure the certified gluten-free label is displayed on the packaging.
- Soy Sauce/Tamari: Soy sauce and tamari often contain gluten or come in contact with wheat during manufacturing. For a gluten-free version, look for the certified gluten-free label on the packaging or opt for coconut aminos since it is naturally gluten-free.
Different Types of Sushi Rolls + Tofu Sushi Ideas
Making different types of vegetarian and vegan sushi without fish is extremely easy. With this basic sushi recipe, you can quickly customize sushi to your liking in minutes!
- BBQ Eggplant Sushi: Cut an eggplant into strips the same size as the tofu strips shown in this recipe. Add the eggplant pieces to a bowl along with 1 – 2 tablespoons of corn starch, tapioca starch, or arrowroot powder. Toss the eggplant to thoroughly cover in starch and set aside. Heat up a large non-stick pan over medium heat and add 1 – 2 tsp. of oil. Add the eggplant strips and cook on each side until crispy. Brush with bbq sauce on all sides and add to sushi roll when it’s time to put it all together. BBQ eggplant strips pair well with cucumber, carrot sticks, sprouts, and purple cabbage.
- Spicy Vegetarian Sushi: Spread spicy mayo (1 cup mayo + 3 tbsp. sriracha/chili sauce) onto the sushi rice and seaweed wrap and add whichever vegetables you prefer. Roll up the sushi, cut into individual pieces, and drizzle with additional spicy mayo and sriracha/chili sauce.
- Quick Pickled Veggie Sushi: Add 1 cup cane sugar and 1 cup water to a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil until the sugar has dissolved. Add carrot strips, cucumber strips, daikon radish strips, and thinly sliced jalapeño (optional) to a glass bowl or tall jar and cover with the water and sugar mixture. Let the pickled veggie mixture sit for at least 5 minutes before adding the veggies to the sushi rolls. Roll and slice the sushi and serve with pickled ginger if preferred.
Quick Tips for Best Results
- Use quality tofu: Extra firm tofu and super firm tofu have less water than firm tofu which makes the tofu chewier and much less likely to crumble apart. Additionally, extra firm and super firm tofu soak up soy sauce and marinades better than firm tofu does.
- Use a sharp knife: When cutting the sushi into individual sushi bites, I recommend that you use a sharp knife. You can also rinse both sides of the knife blade every once in a while to prevent the rice from sticking while cutting.
- Use a sushi mat: Place a sushi mat down before you begin putting the sushi roll together. This will help shape the sushi and prevent the seaweed sheet from tearing.
- Be gentle with the sushi rice: When adding the vinegar, sugar, and soy sauce mixture to the rice make sure that you don’t mash the rice. Gently fold the liquid mixture into the rice until well combined.
- Have water close by when rolling sushi: To prevent the rice from sticking to your hands when pressing it into the seaweed sheet, have a bowl of water nearby. Dip your hands into the water before grabbing the rice and between sushi rolls to make them easier to form.
- Wrap sushi rolls and refrigerate: After the sushi rolls have been made, tightly wrap each one in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight if possible. This will help the sushi hold together when you cut them into pieces.
- What is tofu sushi?
Tofu sushi is a form of vegetarian sushi. Like other sushi, it has common ingredients such as sushi rice and seaweed. Tofu is often used in sushi to replace meat or fish.
- Is tofu sushi healthy?
Yes! Tofu sushi is safe and healthy for consumption. This recipe contains tofu, a food made from soybeans, and other veggies.
- Where can I find tofu in the supermarket?
Tofu is most commonly found in the produce or health foods section of supermarkets.
- What are vegetarian sushi options?
This recipe for tofu veggie sushi rolls is vegetarian and includes three other simple variations of vegetarian sushi.
- What type of rice should I use for sushi?
Use short grain sushi rice. Do not use other types of rice.
- What is veggie sushi made of?
Veggie sushi is made of vegetables. It is often paired with other vegetarian foods such as tofu and avocado.
- If I don’t want to cook the tofu on the stovetop, can I bake it?
Yes! You can easily make baked tofu with this same tofu recipe by placing the tofu strips onto a covered sheet pan and baking at 450°F for 20 minutes. Flip the tofu halfway through cooking.
- Can I use a different type of vinegar in the sushi rice?
No. I don’t recommend that you use a different type of vinegar in this recipe. If you don’t have rice vinegar, then leave it out.
- Can I use any type of rice for this recipe?
No. Only use short grain sushi rice. Other types of rice won’t be suitable.
- Can I make sushi rice in a pressure cooker or stovetop pot?
Yes! Instructions are in the recipe below.
- What are coconut aminos?
Coconut aminos is a sauce that’s nearly identical to soy sauce/tamari, but it contains less sodium. It’s derived from coconuts which makes it a gluten-free alternative to soy sauce and tamari.
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Tofu Veggie Sushi Rolls (Vegetarian + 10 Ingredients)
- Yield: 6 – 7 sushi rolls (approximately 3 – 4 servings) 1x
- Diet: Vegetarian
These tofu veggie sushi rolls are vegetarian, vegan, and made up of only 10 ingredients! Customize with avocado and any veggies you prefer!
Fried Tofu Ingredients:
- 1 (14 – 16 oz.) Block Tofu, Firm/Extra Firm/Super Firm*
- 3 Tbsp. Soy Sauce or Coconut Aminos**
- 2 Tsp. Sesame Oil
Sushi Rice Ingredients:
- 2 cups Sushi Rice**
- 3 cups Water***
- 1/4 cup Rice Vinegar**
- 1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce or Coconut Aminos**
- 2 Tsp. Cane Sugar (Optional)
- 1 Bell Pepper
- 1 Cucumber
- 1 Large Carrot
- 1 Avocado
- 6 – 7 Nori Seaweed Sheets**
Optional Add-On Ingredients:
- Pickled Ginger
- Spicy Mayo (1 Cup Mayo + 3 tbsp. Sriracha/Chili Sauce)
Cook the rice:
- Rinse: You can either add the rice to a large bowl along with enough water to cover and it let it sit for a few minutes or add the rice to a fine mesh strainer and rinse. Drain the water and re-add/rinse until the water runs clear. (See package instructions for best results if applicable)
- Stovetop or Rice/Pressure Cooker: If you’re cooking the rice in a rice cooker/pressure cooker, add the water and rice and choose the ‘rice’ setting (if applicable). If you’re cooking the rice on the stovetop, add the water and rice to a medium pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid, and let the rice cook for 20 minutes.
- Add other ingredients: When the rice is done, remove it from the heat, gently fluff with a fork, and set it aside. If you’re using sugar for this recipe, add it to a small bowl along with the rice vinegar and microwave for 10 seconds. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Add soy sauce to the heated liquid and stir. Pour the liquid mixture onto the rice and gently fold/stir until well combined. Do not mash the rice. Cover and set aside.
Cook the tofu:
- Cut and press: Place the tofu on a cutting board and cut into 12 equal strips approximately the length and width of a finger. Press the tofu between paper towels or clean kitchen towels to remove excess liquid.
- Soak: Add the tofu strips to a large plate and cover with soy sauce. Flip the tofu every minute to cover each side.
- Cook: Place a large non-stick pan/skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the sesame oil and tofu strips and cook for 1 – 3 minutes on each side until crispy. Set the tofu aside to cool.
Cut the veggies:
- Cut the bell pepper, carrot, cucumber, and avocado into long, thin strips.
Make the sushi rolls:
- Place a nori seaweed sheet onto a sushi rolling mat or cutting board. Dip your hands with water (to prevent rice from sticking) and gently press a thin layer of rice onto the seaweed sheet until evenly covered.
- Add a few strips of each vegetable, two strips of tofu, and some avocado and roll to close. Be careful not to make the sushi rolls too tight or the seaweed sheet could fall apart. Also, be careful not to make the sushi rolls too loose or the contents could fall out when cutting.
- When the sushi roll is finished, tightly wrap it in plastic wrap and chill for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight (optional).
- Cut the sushi rolls into individual sushi bites and serve.
*Tofu: Firm tofu contains more water than extra firm or super firm tofu, which may require more pressing to remove the excess liquid. Super firm will require almost no pressing so you may skip this step if you’re using this type of tofu.
- Soy Sauce: Soy sauce and tamari are not typically gluten-free. To make this recipe gluten-free, make sure you use soy sauce/tamari that has the certified gluten-free label on the packaging or opt for coconut aminos since it is gluten-free.
- Sushi Rice: Sushi rice can come in contact with wheat during manufacturing. Be sure to use certified gluten-free sushi rice if desired.
- Rice Vinegar: Like sushi rice, vinegar can contain wheat ingredients due to cross contamination. Choose the product with a certified gluten-free label if preferred.
- Nori Seaweed Sheets: Seaweed is naturally gluten-free but can contain gluten if soy sauce/tamari is listed as an added ingredient. For gluten-free seaweed sheets, choose a product with the certified gluten-free label on the packaging or with seaweed listed as the only ingredient.
***Cooking Sushi Rice: I used the packaged sushi rice by Lunderberg Family Farms for this recipe. Their sushi rice is certified gluten-free and has package instructions for cooking. Generally, 2 cups of sushi rice will need approximately 3 cups of water for cooking, but I recommend you follow the package instructions if yours says differently. If you are not using packaged sushi rice, then I would recommend using the 2:3 ratio and cooking instructions in this recipe.
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