Are you wondering how to make sushi without seaweed?
You can find seaweed used in many ways. You can find it used as garnishing, topping, or even as a wrapper. You can also find it used in many dishes. You can use it for ramen, rice balls, and many more. However, it might be best known for sushi.
That could be a problem if you are a sushi lover but not a seaweed lover. Well, we might have the solution to that dilemma. Today, we will show you 5 ways to make sushi that doesn’t use seaweed and add in 12 no seaweed sushi recipes while we’re at it.
1. Make Nigiri Sushi
Many sushi uses seaweed, but not all of them do. For one, many nigiri sushi generally don’t use seaweed. Usually, you only need some sushi rice, some wasabi, and your preferred topping to make a nigiri.
Here are a few nigiri recipes you might want to try if you are trying to skip the seaweed:
Maguro sushi is a type of tuna sushi. It is probably one of the most popular nigiri sushi out there, and you might even be familiar with it.
You don’t have to worry about the seaweed with this sushi. It generally doesn’t need it, so you don’t have to wonder if you can skip it or if you have to find a substitute for it. For the maguro sushi recipe, you can head on over to IzzyCooking.
On the other hand, you might not be a big fan of fish or raw food. In that case, you might want to go for some ebi sushi instead. This one can be served cooked or uncooked.
Ebi sushi is nigiri sushi that uses shrimp. Again, you don’t have to worry about the seaweed with this sushi. It generally doesn’t use it. For the ebi sushi recipe, you can head on over to Secrets of Sushi.
No, we’re not talking about the drink. However, we are talking about something that we’d like to think is equally tasty. Sake sushi is nigiri sushi that uses salmon. If you are a fan of this fish, this recipe by Manu’s Menu might be for you.
You don’t have to worry about the seaweed with this one. However, you might want to keep in mind that it uses raw salmon. If you don’t want to eat raw salmon, you might want to opt for the aburi nigiri version instead.
Saba Nigiri Sushi Recipe
Saba sushi is nigiri sushi that uses mackerel. If you like mackerel, this recipe might be for you.
You will not have to worry about the seaweed here too. However, you might want to remember that it uses raw fish like maguro and sake sushi.
2. Rice Paper as Seaweed Substitute
As you might have noticed, many nigiri sushi uses raw fish. Are you not a fan of such? You might want to go with a seaweed substitute instead. One seaweed substitute you can use is rice paper.
Rice paper is a type of edible wrapper. It is thin, translucent, and pretty much tasteless. These characteristics make rice paper a good substitute for those looking for a flavorless wrapper. Here are some sushi recipes that use rice paper instead of seaweed:
This sushi has avocado, cucumber, carrots, and smoked salmon. It is a sushi roll, but you won’t have to worry about using seaweed. As the name of this sushi suggests, it uses rice paper instead.
This sushi uses common sushi ingredients. So, it has all the sushi goodness only minus the seaweed. Do you want to give this sushi a try? You can get the recipe for this sushi over at Happy Foods Tube.
On the other hand, you might be looking for a vegetarian option. Well, you don’t have to worry about that. We also have something for our vegetarian friends. This sushi has mangos, avocados, and bell peppers. No meat! You can check out the recipe for this sushi over at My Pure Plants.
3. Cucumber as Seaweed Substitute
Rice paper is a good seaweed substitute. However, its strength could also be its weakness. It could be bland, and not everyone is a fan of that. Additionally, rice paper can dry out fast, and they don’t have the best texture when they do.
In that case, you might want to try cucumber wraps instead. It offers a slightly sweeter taste, and it doesn’t become rubbery.
Here are some cucumber wrapped sushi roll recipes you might want to give a try:
As you might already know, the different types of sushi are flexible. You can easily skip on some ingredients and swap them with your favorites.
If you already know what you want to stuff in your cucumber sushi, you might want to check this recipe by Feel Good Foodie then. It gives you the general idea of how to use cucumber wraps but gives you lots of creative freedom.
On the other hand, you might want to check out this recipe by Low Carbing Asian if you are looking for a simple cucumber sushi recipe.
Most of the ingredients of this sushi are easy to find and already premade. Once you have your cucumber ribbons, all you really have to do is put the sushi together with this recipe.
4. Tofu as Seaweed Substitute: Make Inari Sushi
Tofu is not a substitute per se because it is actually the choice for inari sushi.
Inari sushi is a type of sushi generally composed of sushi rice and deep-fried tofu. The tofu used for this usually gets dunked and cooked in dashi. With that, you can expect it to be more flavorful. So, if you find rice paper and cucumber wraps both to be a bit bland for you, you might want to go for tofu instead.
Here is some inari sushi you might want to check out:
You can top inari sushi with many things, but it might be good to start simple. Before experimenting and trying different ways to make inari sushi, you might want to check this recipe by Just One Cookbook first.
Tamago Inari Sushi Recipe
If the sushi rice and fried tofu combo seem too simple for you, you might want to check this recipe by Japanese Cooking 101 then.
It has some tamago, carrots, and peas. With the fried tofu and the tamago, you will get that sweet and savory combo with every bite. On the other hand, the carrots and the peas should help give you that crunch.
5. Leafy Vegetables as Seaweed Substitutes
If none of the options we’ve shown you have tickled your fancy yet, you might want to try using leafy vegetables as a last resort.
There are tons of leafy veggies from which you can take your pick. They come in different shapes and sizes. Of course, we can’t forget to mention that they also come with varying tastes and textures.
Do you find yourself not into the flavor or consistency of the other seaweed substitutes? You will likely find a leafy veggie that will suit your taste. Also, using leafy greens could be good for the health. So, what is not to love?
Here are some sushi recipes that use leafy greens instead of seaweed that you might want to try:
This sushi is another nigiri.
Shiso is a leafy veggie commonly connected with sushi. It has a citrusy and minty flavor making it a good pair for fatty fishes. If you want to make some sushi with fish like tuna and salmon, you might want to consider shiso as a seaweed substitute then.
This recipe by Food 52 doesn’t have any fish, though. So, if you are looking for a vegetarian option, you might want to check this one out.
However, you don’t have to look far for a leafy veggie. You can use some lettuce if all else fails you! Take a look at this recipe by Food & Wine, for example. You might think the lettuce to be the least fancy of the leafy greens, but as you can see, you can use it to make some really fancy sushi!
12 Best No Seaweed Sushi Recipes
How to make sushi without seaweed? Today, we showed you 5 ways to make sushi without using seaweed with 12 sushi recipes that don’t use it.
We learned that many nigiri sushi doesn’t use seaweed, and we can turn to them if we want to skip the seaweed. Additionally, we also learned that there are many seaweed substitutes we can use, like rice paper, cucumber wraps, and leafy veggies.
Of course, we can’t forget to mention that we can also use tofu as a wrap and make inari sushi instead to avoid the seaweed.
We hope we got to answer your sushi concern. If you have more, feel free to take a look around!
- Select your favorite recipe.
- Organize all the required ingredients.
- Prep a No Seaweed Sushi Recipe in 20 minutes or less!
Hiroshi Nakamura, a Tokyo-born sushi chef turned US-based writer and critic, is the voice behind ichisushi.com, blending traditional sushi wisdom with modern insights.