Brown Rice & Quinoa Sushi Rolls

"I like to make vegetarian sushi rolls at home and have worked on perfecting a brown rice version. I came across a recipe online that added quinoa to the mix and I love it! Adds that extra bit of protein to make this a well rounded light meal, snack or appy. I've changed that original recipe a bit and have streamlined the cooking process (less dishes the better!). My kids like to help roll these up. I've included cucumber, carrot and avacado as filling...of course you can fill with whatever you fancy. This makes enough to fill 4 nori sheets, which you can cut into 6 or 8 pieces each. Enjoy!"
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Ready In:
1hr 15mins




  • Rinse and drain your short grain brown rice. Add the rice to a medium size saucepan along with the dash of salt and 2 1/3 cups water. (Yes, that too much water for the rice, but you'll add the quinoa to it as well later on). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover the pan. Set your timer for 30 minutes.
  • While the rice cooks you can mix up the vinegar(s), mirin, sugar and salt. I like to heat this up so that the sugar and salt fully dissolve. Set aside.
  • Also while the rice cooks you can cut up your filling (grate the carrot, slice up the cucumber and avacado). Set aside.
  • At the 30 minute mark, add in the quinoa and give it a quick stir. You may have to bring it back up to a boil to maintain the heat, then reduce back down to low and cover again. Set your timer for 15 more minutes. At the end of the 15 minutes both the rice and the quinoa should be tender and nicely cooked.
  • Remove your rice mixture from the pan. You can turn it into a large mixing bowl, or even onto a cookie sheet. Spread it out so that it cools more quickly. Mix in the vinegar mixture, carefully folding it into the rice. I like to use a rice paddle (flat sort of spoon), fanning it out as you go to help the rice cool off. Adjust the seasoning if need be, adding more vinegar if you like. (I wouldn't add more salt because you generally serve with soy sauce).
  • After about 10 minutes the rice should have cooled off quite a bit and be ready to work with. (You could prepare this far in advance, remembering it's best to work with the rice at room temperature).
  • Cover up your sushi mat with plastic wrap or a clear plastic bag (I put it inside a large ziploc). Place a sheet of nori on your mat (shiny side down).
  • Eyeball your rice mixture into 4 equal portions and place one portion on your sheet of nori. Pat it down with damp hands to cover the lower half of the nori sheet with rice. There is usually a picture on the back of the nori packaging to show you how to spread the rice and roll it up. I like to keep a mug of water nearby to dip my fingers into.
  • If you wish, spread a thin layer of mayo across the rice, with the option of adding a little wasabi to the mayo. Another option is to sprinkle the rice with sesame seeds or Gomasio at this point. Place your fillings in a straight line across the middle of your rice. Lift the sushi mat and fold over and roll, to form a log. This might take practice if it's your first time, but basically connect the bottom of the sheet closest to you, to the top of the rice mixture, which should result in your filling being perfectly in the middle (or not! -- still tastes good!). Use the mat to help you tighten up the sushi log then release it.
  • Repeat to use up all the rice and you should have 4 sushi logs. With a very sharp knife (I like a bread knife myself), cut each log into 6 or 8 equal pieces.
  • Serve with wasabi, picked ginger and light soy sauce. Enjoy!

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  1. Yummy!! I can't get enough of this and it's so simple. I make this at least once a week for lunch.
  2. Great recipe! I love that it uses brown rice instead of white + quinoa for protein. I made this as written, except that I used Vegenaise instead of mayonnaise and mixed it with sri racha instead of wasabi. It made the sushi creamy and a tiny bit spicy. Yum yum. It was pretty easy to make. The instructions were really clear, and I like that you pointed out that it's still delicious even if it's not pretty. The only part I had trouble with was cutting the rolls. I probably need to sharpen my good knife. My husband said that the sushi chefs leave the plastic wrap on top of the roll while cutting, and that actually helped quite a bit. Another friend later said that it helps to lay to rolls right next to each other and cut them together. I'll have to try that next time...and their definitely will be a next time. Thanks for this fun, nutritious dinner idea! Reviewed for Veg*an Swap November 2009


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