Recipe: Homemade Sushi (with brown rice)

Making your own sushi at home is actually not as hard as one would think, and it can make for a very fun evening with friends or family…both young and old. My picky 3-year-old wouldn’t even think about touching a piece of sushi until the first time she sawRecipe - Homemade Sushi (with brown rice) from 100 Days of Real Food us making it at home (with brown rice of course). We had allowed our older daughter to be up on a chair at the counter with her own cutting board, bamboo mat, chopsticks, and fun little soy sauce dish (she already knew she liked vegetable sushi). Of course her little sister wanted to do the same, but we told her she couldn’t “make” any sushi unless she ate it. And what do you know…once our child (who barely even eats veggies in the first place) gave it a fair chance she actually liked it. I didn’t know if I should have been more shocked that she ate the sushi or the vegetables! She does love to “dip” her food so I am guessing the soy sauce aspect had something to do with it.

I do want to make sure I share that (especially if this is your first time making sushi) it can take some time to get the hang of it, and it also requires a lot of chopping. It can also make a little bit of a mess particularly if kids are involved. So we definitely like to reserve this event for a special occasion or weekend activity, but think it is worth the effort for such a fun and unique experience. Awhile ago I mentioned that I thought a child’s “first impression” of a food was important and making sushi at home turned out to be the perfect way to introduce it to my picky 3-year-old.  She will now eat it anywhere!


Recipe - Homemade Sushi (with brown rice) from 100 Days of Real Food


4.0 from 2 reviews
Homemade Sushi (with brown rice)
Serves: 4 – 6
  • 3 cups short-grain brown rice (Some packages of white rice specifically say “sushi rice” on them, but you don’t see this label as often on brown rice. I’ve found that any short-grain variety is adequate.)
  • 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • ½ pound raw shrimp (or cooked real crab…please do not buy anything labeled as an imitation!)
  • ½ pound raw sushi-grade tuna or salmon
  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 1 cucumber, peeled
  • 1 or 2 avocados (depending on how much you like them)
  • 1 package of Nori (seaweed sheets)
  • Necessary supplies: bamboo rolling mats, saran wrap, cutting boards, a very sharp knife, soy sauce (and little dishes for dipping), chopsticks (which can be modified with a rubber band and piece of paper for the little ones), and a flat wooden or bamboo spoon
  • Optional supplies: toasted sesame seeds, wasabi, pickled ginger, toothpicks or skewers, and a bowl of water (to dip your fingers and spoon in to keep the rice from sticking)
  1. Cook the brown rice according to the package directions.
  2. Before cooking the shrimp stick a skewer or toothpick through each one from end-to-end so they will be “straight” after they are done cooking and will therefore be easy to cut into strips. Boil the skewered shrimp in the water for 3 – 5 minutes or until they are firm.
  3. Chop the cooked shrimp, raw fish, peeled carrots, and peeled cucumber into little julienned strips (pictured above). Similarly, slice the avocado(s), but save them for last since they could start to turn brown.
  4. Once the rice is done stir in the rice wine vinegar. Some sushi recipes also call for sugar to be added to the rice, but we think it tastes just fine without it. Also, it is best to use a wooden or bamboo spoon when handling the rice.
  5. Cut the sheets of nori in half long ways.
  6. Cover the bamboo mats with plastic wrap.

    Now it is time to get started! (see pictures below)
  7. We think it is best for each person to either have their own cutting board and bamboo mat or at least only have to share their items with one other person.
  8. Lay 1 of the half sheets of nori along the bottom of the plastic covered bamboo mat.
  9. Completely cover the top of nori with a thin, uniform layer of rice.
    Sushi Recipe from 100 Days of Real Food
  10. If you prefer the nori to be on the outside of your sushi roll then leave it the way it is with the rice on top. If you like the rice to be on the outside (like me) then flip it over like I did in the picture.
  11. Make a nice and neat row along the very bottom edge of the nori with whatever ingredients you’d like on the inside.

  12. Using the bamboo mat as an aide roll it over as tightly as you can and keep rolling until it is closed up completely.

    Sushi Recipe from 100 Days of Real FoodThen squeeze down on the roll with a little force to really secure it together.

    Sushi Recipe from 100 Days of Real Food
  13. If the rice is on the outside (like the picture) we think it is best to lay a little piece of saran wrap over the top of the roll before cutting it. Using a sharp knife cut through the plastic and the roll until you have the desired number of pieces of sushi.

    Sushi Recipe from 100 Days of Real Food
  14. We believe in eating as we go when we have to work this hard for our food so enjoy!

    Sushi Recipe from 100 Days of Real Food


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  • Comments

    1. Karina |

      What kind of raw fish is safe to get? My husband and I love the Philadelphia roll (with avocado cream cheese and salmon) and my 6 yr old daughter will eat any sushi under the sun lol. It’s a family favorite. I’d love to make it at home, but don’t know where to find “safe” raw fish to use. If someone can please direct me in the right direction, it’d be appreciated. Thank you.

      • |

        Karina – The Philadelphia Roll is actually made with smoked (not raw) salmon so no concerns there. Wherever you normally buy fish they may offer wild-caught “sushi-grade” tuna, which is okay to eat raw and what we usually buy.

    2. |

      Here’s the story of my attempt at sushi. They tasted good but this picture has the nicest looking of what I made. This rice has convinced me that should now try making the sushi sandwiches that Food Babe makes. I’ll be trying them soon!

    3. |

      I would also suggest spreading the rice layer by hand (wet your hands so the rice doesn’t stick) – avoid destroying rice grains with your wooden spoon/spatula.
      Also, be both firm and gentle when rolling your sushi.
      (If you’ve already applied a lot of force during the first layering of rice, then there isn’t a need to smash your rice and ingredients)
      This is to help protect the flavor and preserve the texture of restaurant-grade sushi.
      Of course, roll it too loosely and the sushi may fall apart when eating.

    4. |

      This a Great tutorial and I am sending My health coaching clients here to see your amazing pictorial. Visit my page when i recommend this site and I hope you will be as inspired by my site as I was by yours.
      Thanks again,
      Lily Aronin

    5. |

      Hi there! This blog post could not be written any better!
      Reading through this article reminds me of
      my previous roommate! He always kept talking about this.
      I’ll send this post to him. Pretty sure he’ll have a
      very good read. Thanks for sharing!

    6. jamie |

      Where do you get your sushi grade salmon and tuna?

      • Assistant to 100 Days (Amy) |

        Hi Jamie. Lisa usually gets them at Earth Fare but our Harris Teeter also has wild caught options of both, as well. ~Amy

        • jamie |

          Thanks so much!

    7. Erica |

      I’ve been making sushi for years because it’s so expensive at restaurants and tastes so much better fresh. I wanted to say that you don’t need a bamboo mat. I use a piece of foil a little bigger than a sheet of seaweed. I just spread the rice on that instead of the bamboo mat. It works really well. Just wanted to say that in case someone wants to try sushi but doesn’t have a bamboo mat.

    8. |

      You can definitely see your skills within the work you write.

      The sector hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who are not afraid to say how they
      believe. Always follow your heart.

    9. morgan |

      hey what is the number of calories in this please

    10. Josy |

      i just made this and it’s freaking amazing. thank you for this!

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