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Sushi Hand Rolls Print E-mail

We cheated and used sushi seasoning mix in a packet but if you can't find sushi seasoning in a store near you, you can make it from scratch. The recipe is at the bottom of the page.

Because these hand rolls will be in your lunch box and will be sitting around for hours, we are only using cooked ingredients. Still you will want to put an ice pack into your lunch box to keep the sushi cold.

Once you master this technique you can fill your rolls with whatever you like. But for your lunch box - DO NOT USE RAW FISH!!

Those little bacteria will grow like crazy and you’ll wind up in the hospital for sure.

{Makes 6 servings}

You'll need:

  • 2 cups short grain rice
  • 6 cups of water
  • 1 packet of sushi rice flavoring (actual recipe is below)
  • Tomago (see our recipe)
  • 4 sticks of shirimi (fake crab sticks)
  • 1 avocado – cut in strips
  • 1 medium cucumber – peeled, seeded, and cut in strips
  • 1 packet pickled gourd - optional
  • Sheets of toasted nori
  • Wasabi
  • Pickled ginger
  • Soy sauce
  • A little adult help


  • A large pot with a tight fitting lid
  • A clean dry dishtowel
  • Rice paddle or flexible spatula
  • A bamboo sushi mat (or a clean, dry wash cloth)
  • Plastic wrap
  • A sharp knife
  • Sealed ice packs
  • Lunch box
    1. Cook the rice. Bring the water and rice to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 minutes. Then turn the heat off and let the rice steam for another 10 minutes. If you're using a rice cooker, make sure you use the measurements recommended for the cooker.
    2. When the rice is done, ask dad or whoever is helping you in the kitchen to mix the hot rice. Using a wet rice paddle or spatula, bring the rice from the bottom of the pot to the top. This makes the rice fluff up. Wetting the paddle is the secret that keeps the rice from sticking.
    3. Cover the pot with the clean dishtowel and replace the lid. The towel will absorb the excess moisture from the rice.
    4. Meanwhile, lay out your ingredients and get ready to roll!
    5. Season the rice with the sushi seasoning packet and fluff it again using the wet spatula or rice paddle.
    6. Cut a piece of plastic wrap a little bigger than your bamboo mat and wrap the extra plastic wrap around the sides. This will keep the nori from getting stuck to the mat.
    7. Lay out a sheet of nori on the mat. Cover about half the sheet with a thin layer of rice. Add some shirimi or tomago and a little vegetables near one edge. Too much and you'll never get the roll to close.
    8. Starting at one end, roll the nori, with its coating of sticky rice, until it covers the vegetables. Use the bamboo mat to gently tighten the rice around the veggies into a tube shape. Now roll the rest of the nori around the rice.
    9. Dip your finger in the water and brush it along the loose edge to seal the nori.
    10. Cut the roll into 3/4 inch slices. Lay the rounds on a pretty dish and try to keep from eating them all at once.
    11. Pack your sushi hand rolls in a tightly sealed container and keep them in the refrigerator overnight.
    12. When you're ready to leave for school slip the ice pack under or on top of your container of sushi. Wait until you tell everyone you made it yourself.

      Traditional Sushi Rice Seasoning

      5 tablespoons of rice vinegar
      A 2-inch square of knobu (dried kelp)
      2 tablespoons of sugar
      2 tablespoons of sake (rice wine)