Recipe: Easy Rice Paper Veggie Rolls

Good is the enemy of great.

~ Jim Collins

Well I think it’s finally here! Something that looks like summer…

Here in Vancouver the weather has finally turned for the better. It looks like the sun may stick around. This is just in time for a weekend away with my work mates as we head out for our annual retreat in a land far far away (the BC interior 3 hours outside of town here). This time we’ll be hidden away, tucked in the mountains, with access to a clean lake and hiking trails.

It will be lovely to get away. We’ll be working, of course, but amongst the fresh country air and the stillness of the mountains.

We’ll also be completely cut off from internet access with no phones either. Just us. That is a rare thing these days, and truthfully, I am a little excited! Time to turn it off, tune it in, and really ‘be here now’.

Creativity dies in an undisciplined environment.

~ Jim Collins

Today I want to share a long time favorite for me. Rolling rice wraps is as familiar to me as almost anything, and it is one of those fall backs I count on when I need to lighten up, and prepare good easy ‘grab and go’ food that I can pack and eat easily.

If you’ve never rolled rice paper before – prepare to have fun, and be surprised at how easy it is to make healthy vegetables disappear quickly right before your eyes!

I usually eat these with a thick tasty nut-based sauce, either a peanut sauce, or an asian inspired tahini sauce – but any sauce works – even plain soy sauce in a pinch.

Today I’ll share with you a recent recipe for Almond Butter ‘Peanut’ Sauce I tried from Natalia Rose’s Raw Food Detox book which was so good I had to share it with you all right away.

So let’s get rolling!

The Less:

Less greasy fried spring rolls means less irritated troubled tummies. Less heavily dressed packaged prepared food means lighter, leaner fill ups. Less cooked, salted veggies means more raw vibrant goodness, and more fun ways to prepare them means you’ll always use them all up.

The More:

More fun ways to eat vegetables means more likelihood it will happen. More easy prep beforehand means easy healthy snacking in mere seconds. More on the road finger food means less greasy messy containers – so eating and clean up are simple.

Easy Rice Paper Veggie Rolls:

  • (1) package Rice Paper Wraps for Spring rolls (available at most stores in the Asian food section)
  • (3-4) medium to large carrots (unpeeled if organic)
  • (4-6) cups washed hardy greens (spinach, lettuce, arugula, pea greens)
  • (1) red bell pepper, sliced lengthwise
  • (1) bunch green onion tops
  • (1) avocado (optional, only include if eating right away)

Sauce:

  • (1) cup almond butter, raw (I am sure roasted would be delicious too)
  • (2) tbsp freshly chopped ginger
  • (1/2) cup water (to thin)
  • (4) tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • (1/4) cup maple syrup
  • (3) tbsp Bragg or soy sauce
  • (2) tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • (2) cloves garlic
  • (1/2) fresh jalapeno chile

Ready to roll?

Start by washing and prepping all of your veggies. Wash your greens, and leave them whole in a bowl and set aside. Grate your carrots and set aside in a separate bowl. Continue with the rest of the veggies, making sure to keep them all separate either in bowls or on a large platter or cutting board.

Next, prepare the sauce. Combine all of the sauce ingredients in a blender, and blend on high until smooth. Transfer to a bowl or container and refrigerate (taste it first and you’ll be amazed at how good it is).

To make the wraps, prepare a clean work surface on a counter top or a large cutting board. Get a large mixing bowl and fill it with hot tap water.Take 2 of the rice paper wraps and immerse them in the bowl of hot water (make sure they are separated). Allow to soak for 30 seconds, or until completely soft to the touch (don’t leave them in for too long!). Remove one from the bowl and lay flat on the work space. Remove the second from the bowl and lay on top of the first, overlapping the two by about a 1/3 – 1/2 (see the photo).

Next, spread a line of carrots down the middle, leaving a little space at the ends for tucking in the edges. Next, add the greens – don’t be shy on the amounts as the veggies will condense nicely once rolled. In fact, you will be shocked at how much raw goodness you can cram in each of these bad boys. The veggies always seem to disappear just as I get going :)

Follow the greens with a few strips of red pepper, green onion, and avocado if using.

At this point, you can decide whether to add a line of sauce to the inside of the rolls or not. I have tried them both ways and both are great, however, I do like the way they keep without the sauce and I always eat them with plenty of sauce on the side anyways!

Once you are all set on the veggies, start with one end of the roll and roll up, pulling the piled veggies into the roll with your hands to condense. Once you have the veggies tucked in nicely, turn in the side of the rice paper to form the ends of the roll.

Continue the rolling until the end – the wet rice paper will seal it all up inside as it dries. Place finished rolls on a clean plate until all done. You will find as they dry they are sealed little rolls of healthy perfection.

Continue this until all of your rolls are done (when your veggies are all gone). Don’t worry about running out of a vegetable – the more I make these the more I am reminded they taste great with any combination. You can really experiment with these!

Speak the truth, even if your voice shakes.

~ Unknown

No mess, no fuss. Just good, healthy deliciousness. Serve with sauce on the side for either dipping, or with a spoon to grace each upcoming bite.

For packing takeaways, roll up with the sauce inside and eat cleanly :)

I find these are the perfect answer when I get a little what I call ‘salad fatigue’. They keep quite nicely for a day or two in the fridge and are wonderful to come home to when you need a quick bit to eat that won’t zap you of your energy.

Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

I hope you’ll get rolling too. I started years ago, and it’s been a favorite in the kitchen ever since. It is cheap (a pack of these wraps cost less than $3) and a great way to use up veggies from the fridge.

Once you get the hang of the rolling, you’ll want to keep doing it again and again!

  • Have you ever made your own rice paper rolls?
  • If so, what are your favorite ingredients to put in them?

The variations are endless, and I’d love to hear your ideas!

Thanks for reading folks and for all of your comments and suggestions – in the next week I’ll be sharing a few more yummy classics, a little something for breakfast with quinoa and a gorgeous way to enjoy simple cauliflower.

If I am slow to respond it’s because I am off to bond with my work mates. We’ll be breathing the fresh air and having some serious fun too I suspect.

Have a wonderful weekend all!

Yours in Less,

80 Comments

Filed under Cooking, Food, Gluten Free, Raw, Recipes, Rich & Simple, Salads, Savory, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

80 Responses to Recipe: Easy Rice Paper Veggie Rolls

  1. Yum-scrum! I love veggie rice paper rolls and yours look DIVINE! I may have to get rolling – although, it is so cold here it may have to wait until the sun comes out to say hello. Frankly, it’s soup weather here!

    Hope you have a fab’ weekend with your work mates, Shira. Remember to breathe deeply of that good country air!

    • Soup weather! You are the same as we have been though our seasons are opposite :)
      Good to have you back Miss J! I hope you had a fab break – and no dairy? You can do it! Let’s do this together!

      • It’s a whole new world, Shira! I can’t do black coffee and I’m only permitted one soy coffee a week (any suggestions for milk substitutes in coffee? I’m finding that the hardest). I am fast becoming an herbal tea fanatic and it’s only day 12!!!

        Most of the break was a detox and it was wonderful – lots of fresh air, exercise and healthy food. LM was in Vietnam for business so I gave myself a present!

        Missed my blog buds, tho’! :-)

  2. Can’t wait to try these, they look delicious!

  3. I am a huge fan of rice paper rolls especially when they are filled with so many veggies :D
    Gorgeous recipe my friend, love it!

    Cheers
    CCU

  4. A beautiful, light meal, prefect for hot summer days. I love that there is no cooking with heat involved; it’s been painfully hot here in Colorado, so anything that doesn’t involve the stove is welcome!

  5. These are a staple in our family! We usually add some baked or grilled tofu as well. The kids love to soften the wrappers and make their own.

  6. Can’t wait to try these Shira! I love peanut in any form esp peanut sauce and I think I sometimes go for Thai food just for the peanut sauce ;) Have a lovely away-from-the-world time at the retreat!! – Simran

  7. I love rice paper rolls! I will put just about anything in them but I really like tofu or tempeh and some mango in the mix. I love the colours in yours! Mine have never looked that pretty :) That sauce sounds awesome too. I would never have thought to put maple syrup in an almond butter sauce, I so need to try that!

    Have a great weekend away with your coworkers! Hopefully the good weather holds out for you! xox

    • Yum – mango and tofu or tempeh sounds heavenly! You’ll be amazed by this sauce – it is really quite delicious! ;) Had a great weekend Gabby – thanks!

  8. I’ve always wanted to try these, and you make it sound so easy, the supplies are on next week’s shopping list! Thanks for sharing!

  9. I love these rolls but never have tried to make them myself. Yours here sound delicious and are easy enough to make. I’ve no excuse now not to make a batch. I especially like that they’ll keep in the fridge. WIth our weather this hot, it’s nice to have something light and healthy waiting in the fridge when cooking is the last thing I want to do.

  10. I’ve never even used those rolls, let alone make them… But you are making them look delicious!

  11. These look delicious – great for every day as well as for parties – thanks for sharing! Have a Great Weekend!

  12. Somer

    I seriously made a “Somer” version of these with tofu, scallions, romaine, rice noodles, cucumber and carrot and mint 3 days ago with almond butter and sweet chili dipping sauces. It was a first in this house and a real hit. Awesome that a dozen rolls cost as much to produce as you would pay for 2 at the grocery store takeout. Definitely making these again and will do your version!

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  14. These look great, especially in the heat we’re having in the East. Supper photos. Thanks. Ken

  15. Yes! I love how this is almost like veggie sushi :). I’d totally dip these in some soy sauce and munch away!

    The interior will be even nicer weather than we’re getting here so have a total blast! It should be nice and hot there!

    • It was wonderful in the mountains Anna! We were up at Manning Park and spent the day at the lake Saturday (Lightning Lake) – SPECTACULAR!

  16. This looks like a tasty, fresh combination.

  17. This year I finally mustered up the courage to experiment with rice paper wrappers – I love the combination of sweet potato, asparagus, carrot, bean sprouts & black sesame soba noodles so so good!

    I totally agree, rice paper rolls are so easy once you get started and are the perfect way to use up those veggies in the fridge in a new and fun way!

    Have a great mountain retreat Shira :) xo

    • Thanks Heather! Your filling idea sounds absolutely mouth watering – I’ll have to give that a go for sure! Delicious with soba noodles :) Had a fab weekend!

  18. These look so good, Shira! I never think to make spring rolls, but I vastly prefer rice wraps to deep-fried anything. These look like a great thing to bring to summer potlucks to up the veggie quotient while having fun.

  19. YUM!!!! I’ve been wanting to make something like these! I’ve never used the rice paper wraps, but you’re making them look easy! I bet the avocado is delicious in there! super creamy!

  20. My favorite – looks SO good!!! Perfect too for this weather :-)
    I will bet anything that you are enjoying this beautiful weather as much as I am – finally the sun is shining and it is warm and delicious!!
    Enjoy your time away!!

  21. Oh man, I’m starving now! Seriously salivating all over the screen.
    BTW, that “voice shakes” quote is Maggie Kuhn (though she said “your mind” not “truth”)

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  23. These look perfect for a hot summer day, and let me tell you, we are having plenty of those too. Io always forget about how easy it is to make spring rolls at home. And that sauce sounds divine. THIS is going on the menu this week!

    • I hope you like them Betty! So perfect for this hot weather (which I am SO happy to report we are finally enjoying!) Keep me posted how it goes!

  24. Oh Shira, I’m so excited to get rolling! And your sauce is definitely coming along! these are sure to be on the menu this week!

  25. Ohh my gosh these are amazing. I have yet to make my own rolls of any sort (except egg rolls that went in to the oven..those count I suppose). I do want to try some like this that do not need to be baked. I lovee the fresh looking veggies…YUM!

  26. Hi.. I’ve never visited your blog before, but I clicked on WP blog who listed you among top food blogs to read this 2012 summer! Congratulations! Plus, I’m looking to become more active and change my page. Time to take action. I read you page and viewed your colorful photos, ( I like ) and decided, shucks, I can do that. See, you made it sound so easy. Guess what I had for dinner? ha ha I’ll bet you will never figure it out. Well, yes… I had your spring rolls. We are eating dinner in shifts tonight…. people coming, people going. Just the perfect summertime meal. Its been 103-105 here in COMO. Last night at the store, I accidentally grabbed a package “cooked” of jumbo shrimp. I like to cook my own but then I thought…. I’ll add some to the spring rolls. Very tasty. Thanks for sharing!
    AmyRuth

  27. Looks delicious!
    I recently gave up meat and am in desperate need of veggie recipes!! Thanks :)

  28. I haven’t made these in forever! I really need to get some wrappers and do them soon! I love adding fresh mint and cilantro in them too…
    As always, thanks for the inspiration!!

  29. YUMMO Shira! Love this dish and I the avocado is a must I think! It makes the roll so much richer :) Enjoy the retreat, fresh air, and work/unwork time.

  30. yum Shira!! those look SO incredible! i love rice paper rolls — there’s something really fun about the texture of the rice paper! haha and that sauce does sound delicious! I’m glad the weather has improved! yay! And enjoy your “unplugged” time…so refreshing. I’ve had a week with no cable or internet (i’m at a coffee shop right now:) ) and it’s a fabulous change of pace!

  31. This is great. Thank you. I tried to make some but they weren’t all that good. I think I will try the avocado, and that dipping sauce looks yummy too :) Thanks for sharing.

  32. I made these recently too–great minds think alike! It seems that it’s *the* summer dish, and rightfully so. Absolutely a great way to showcase fresh veggies…

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  35. Jesh

    Thanks for this wonderful recipe… won 1st place in a cooking contest held at work place under the “no-heat” cooking concept. :)

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