How to Make Homemade Sushi

When my sister was here, we ate out- a LOT. Were talking at least two meals a day, most days. As much as I like roaming the city, popping into my favorite spots for a quick bite, sometimes its nice to have a home-cooked meal. So one night, I decided Id have my sister help me make dinner, and teach her something she probably wouldnt think to make herself: sushi.

Making sushi rolls at home is much easier than one might think. Really, the prep-work is the hard part (if you can even call it that) and once you start rolling (no pun intended) its a breeze from there.

We used a recipe from one of my favorite vegan cookbook. It involved some spicy tempeh (SUCH a delicious recipe!), avocado (great way to use up my almost-gone one) and green onion, along with the traditional sushi rice. I used white rice to make it more authentic, but you could most definitely use brown rice instead.

We started by prepping the ingredients:
-1 batch rice (1 cup rice with 2 cups water, cooked in a rice cooker), mixed with a pinch of stevia (instead of sugar) and a couple tablespoons of rice vinegar. Alternately, you could use a hummus/spread or raw rice for this instead.

-Fillings- veggies, avocado, onion, tempeh/tofu- whatever you want, to taste, all sliced up.

– Nori sheets (toasted or raw)

You will also need:
-Sushi rolling mats (you can get these at any Asian food store for about $2 a piece)
-Small dish of water with a dash of rice vinegar for dipping your fingers in

To make your sushi (as modeled by my sis):

1. Place the nori sheet on the sushi mat, shiny side down, so the lines on each are matching.

2. Spread a little rice on the nori sheet, as so. You can do this one of two ways. Either spread a long, thinner lump of rice on the sheet, or make it thinner and spread out over a larger portion of the nori to make the rice wrap around the filling more when its rolled. I think this way is easier, so I went with it. Use the water in the bowl on your fingers to prevent sticking.

[ Note: If I were to do this for good presentation, I would go with the rice more “spread” to make it look more profesh. For home, this way works!]

3. Next, top with your fillings.

4. Youre going to need both of your hands to roll. Using two hands, roll the nori-covered sushi mat over the filling and squeeze a little to set. You should have a cylinder now.

5. Pulling with one hand on the end of the sushi mat as you go, continue rolling the nori over the filling and squeezing lightly on the cylinder to keep all the filling packed in. When you get to the end, you may need a tiny bit of water on your finger to keep the roll closed.

6. Set aside for a few minutes to set before slicing. REPEAT!

7. Using a sharp knife, lightly slice the cylinder into small bite-sized pieces.

Serve with shoyu or tamari, pickled ginger and wasabi if desired. We also had some raw zucchini noodles with my favorite spicy sesame sauce.


After the rice was cooked, our whole meal probably took twenty minutes. See? Not hard at all!