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+ servings

Simple Sushi

Simple sushi can be made in minutes with a few ingredients. The sky is the limit when choosing sushi filling: vegetables, fish (raw or tempura battered and fried), fruit, even cream cheese.

Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Japanese
Keyword fish, japanese dinner, sushi, vegetabels
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
assembly time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 8 maki rolls
Author abountifulkitchen


  • 7-8 cups white sticky rice cooked, hot
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cups rice vinegar
  • Nori seaweed dark green or black in sheets
  • assorted filling ingredients - avocado, cucumber, carrot, scallions, mushrooms dried or fresh, fresh lemon sliced, assorted raw fish sliced thin or shrimp
  • Soy sauce, pickled ginger and wasabi


  1. Cook the rice according to directions. Let the rice sit for about 10 minutes after cooking is complete.

  2. Meanwhile, prepare all vegetables and fish for making sushi. Place plate or platter of fillings close to the assembly area.

  3. While the rice is cooling, Cover the rolling mat with plastic or Saran Wrap for easy clean up!

  4. When rice is ready to use, fold the rice in the cooking pot so the rice on the bottom of the pot is on top and the top layer is on the bottom of the pot. Do not smash or stir the rice. This prevents the rice from forming a yellow or brown layer on the bottom.

  5. Spoon the rice into a large bowl, preferably wood or a shallow bowl to let cool a bit. While the rice is still warm, sprinkle the rice vinegar over the warm rice and continue to fold until the rice vinegar is evenly distributed.

  6. Place a sheet of seaweed (nori) on top of the bamboo rolling mat, shiny side down. To make maki roll, use a silicone spatula or clean, wet hands to gently spread a thin, even layer of rice over the seaweed. the layer of rice is usually about 1/4 inch thick. Leave a 1/4 inch border around the edge of the seaweed all the way around.

  7. Place cut up fish, vegetables or other fillings in the center of the roll, in a long thin line.

  8. Lift the end of the mat, and gently roll it over the ingredients, pressing gently as you roll. Roll it forward to make a complete roll. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Cut the rolls into 6-8 pieces per roll. Serve on a platter with pickled ginger, wasabi and soy sauce.

  9. To allow guest to make their own rolls buffet-style: Stack seaweed sheets (nori) next to the rice, alongside the veggies and fish. Let each guest spread the sea weed wrapper with a thin layer of rice, then top with fillings.

Recipe Notes

  • for 7-8 cups rice, I use about 1- 1.5 lbs fish or shrimp combined. 1-2 lemons, sliced, 1/2 cucumber, one carrot, 1 large avocado. 
  • Prepare all ingredients while the rice is cooking.
  • Brown rice does not form a firm roll. The flavor of the brown rice does not complement the fillings. White sticky rice is best for sushi.  We like the Calrose brand, found at most grocery stores.
  • Sushi tastes best right when you make it. If you have to refrigerate, let it warm up to room temperature before eating for best flavor.
  • If making the sushi rice a day ahead, follow directions to cook rice and fold in rice vinegar. when completely cool, seal in an air tight container or I like to wrap the rice in plastic wrap. Leave on the counter top at room temperature (do not refrigerate) and use within 24 hours. 
  • Extras-must haves - Wasabi, soy sauce in small bowls for dipping, pickled sliced ginger, ohashi (chop sticks).
  • To make this dish more budget friendly, coordinate with guests and have everyone bring 1-2 fillings, you provide the nori, prepared rice, supplies and condiments (soy sauce, ginger and wasabi).