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Vegan Asparagus Sushi Rolls

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  • Author: erin wysocarski
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 rolls
  • Diet: Vegan


These vegan asparagus sushi rolls are fun to assemble and make the best vegan sushi! You can tempura batter or blanch the asparagus. The avocado is cut thinly with a mandoline slicer to create a pretty pattern and texture. This sushi is also gluten-free!


for the sushi rice

  • 1 cup sushi rice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

for the tempura batter

  • 1/3 cup cornstarch (place into freezer a few hours before using, if possible)
  • 1/3 cup white rice flour (place into freezer a few hours before using, if possible)
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • a couple pinches of salt
  • 1/3 cup ice-cold fizzy water
  • canola, grapeseed or vegetable oil, for frying

for the fillings 

  • 12 TB sesame seeds (optional)
  • 1 ripe avocado, mandolined (wait to slice it until ready to use, as it will quickly brown)
  • 810 asparagus spears, wooden ends removed and cut in half
  • 2 tsp wasabi paste (optional, but tastes really nice with the other ingredients here)
  • 4 toasted nori sheets

to serve

  • soy sauce or tamari to make it gluten-free
  • pickled ginger


to make the sushi rice

  1. Place the rice and water into a rice cooker and cook according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  2. Season with the rice vinegar, sugar and salt.
  3. Allow to cool before assembling your sushi.

to make the tempura batter and for frying the asparagus

  1. Combine the chilled cornstarch, white rice flour, baking powder and salt into a medium-sized bowl.
  2. Pour in the chilled fizzy water. Stir with a spoon or spatula until super smooth. No need to worry about overmixing since the batter is gluten-free. 
  3. Add several inches of oil to a heavy pot. Heat over medium-high heat for about 7 minutes. 
  4. Insert a chopstick into the hot oil until it touches the bottom of the pot. If Bubbles form around it immediately, you are ready to fry.
  5. Place a piece of asparagus into the batter to coat and allow any excess to drip off. Gently place into the hot oil. Repeat this to fry no more than 4-5 pieces at a time. Do not overcrowd the pot and move them around with chopsticks to prevent sticking. Remove with chopsticks or a skimmer and place onto paper towels to drain. 
  6. Repeat with the remaining pieces of asparagus.

To roll your sushi

  1. Place a bamboo mat into a gallon-sized ziploc bag. Place it in front of your so the bamboo strips are parallel to you. Place a sheet of nori on top of it so the serrated lines are running vertically towards you, and the shiny side is down.
  2. Dip your fingers into a bowl of water, and scoop up a quarter of the prepared sushi rice. Spread it evenly over the nori, leaving some space exposed towards the top of the nori.
  3. If you’d like, sprinkle the rice with some of the sesame seeds.
  4. Place your mandolined avocado and asparagus in the center of the nori sheet. Dot with some of the wasabi if you’d like. Take care not to overfill, or your sushi roll may split.
  5. Pick up the part of the nori sheet closest to you, and fold over and away from you. Apply gentle but firm pressure to create a tight roll. 
  6. Bring the sushi mat up and over the roll and use it to tighten the roll even more. 
  7. Replace the mat back down, and continue rolling. Stop when you reach the part where the nori is exposed.
  8. Dip your index finger into your bowl of water and run it alongside the nori strip at the top. This will help seal the nori.
  9. Roll away from you and tighten it again to seal it.
  10. Use a very sharp knife to cut the roll in half, then those halves again to create 8 pieces.
  11. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.
  12. Serve immediately with pickled ginger and soy sauce or tamari. 


  1. For crispy tempura, you want to make sure your batter ingredients are ice cold and your fry oil is hot (350 to 375 degrees). Don’t overcrowd the pot or your tempura will get soggy!
  2. If you don’t want to fry the asparagus, no problem! Just blanch it instead. Bring a medium-sized pot of salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and boil for 2-3 minutes, or until t’s bright green. Transfer to paper towels to absorb the liquid before adding to your sushi roll.
  3. To get a clean cut on the sushi, use a very sharp knife and run the blade under very hot water (and then give it a quick dry) before cutting.
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Appetizer, Dinner
  • Method: Battered, Deep Fried
  • Cuisine: Japanese, American