Vegan Summer Rolls
You’ll love this easy recipe for Vegan Summer Rolls to make for summer or any time of the year. Add crunchy vegetables, sliced avocado, and rice noodles and roll them up easily in a rice paper wrap. Serve with a creamy peanut dipping sauce for a bite-sized healthy meal everyone will enjoy!
If you’ve never had a summer roll before, this recipe will easily get on your rotation fast! Summer rolls, also known as spring rolls, salad rolls, or rice paper rolls are filled with veggies, noodles, and protein and can be served as an appetizer or main meal.
You’ll use a rice paper wrap which is a very thin sheet of rice flour to hold all the ingredients together when rolled up. Dip these sesame avocado spring rolls in a homemade peanut-soy sauce that’s spicy and sweet and compliments all the textures and flavors in the roll. I love making this recipe when I have guests because you can add just about anything to summer rolls which makes them fun for everyone!
Enjoy with a mango strawberry smoothie for even more fresh flavor.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- It’s made with 100% vegan and vegetarian ingredients.
- The homemade peanut-soy sauce is a perfect combination of spicy and sweet, you’ll want to put it on everything.
- The method for using rice paper wraps for spring rolls is easy once you get the hang of it.
- Easily customize the fillings in this dish with any vegetables or proteins you enjoy.
- A great way to get in some raw veggies.
- This dish is served at room temperature, so they can be made ahead saving you time in the kitchen.
- Filling enough to be a party food or to serve as a weeknight meal.
Ingredients You Need
For the Spring Rolls:
- Rice Paper Sheets – You can find these thin sheets of rice paper at most international grocery stores or you can purchase online.
- Rice Noodles – You’ll need your favorite rice noodles cooked. Make sure they aren’t too thick and are about spaghetti-sized or smaller.
- Vegetables – Cucumber, carrots and cabbage add a great crunchy texture and natural sweetness.
- Avocado – Gives these summer rolls a creamy texture and adds nutrition.
- Thai Basil Leaves – Adds a fresh herb kick that’s classic in summer roll flavors. These are optional. You can also substitute with fresh mint or cilantro.
- Sesame Seeds – Give the spring rolls a crunchy texture and slightly nutty taste.
For the Peanut Dipping Sauce:
- Creamy Peanut Butter – This nut butter is the perfect spread to make the base of the sauce as it’s slightly sweet and nutty. You can also use almond butter or cashew butter.
- Soy Sauce – Gives the sauce a salty umami flavor. Substitute with tamari or coconut aminos.
- Lime Juice – Fresh lime adds flavor and a pop of acidity that pairs well in the sauce.
- Ginger & Garlic – These two fresh spices infuse the sauce with spicy and savory flavor.
Add more flavor – Spice up the rolls by using some sriracha or chili garlic paste in the sauce!
How to Make Summer Rolls
Step 1. Prepare your fillings.
Before you begin, you want to make sure that all of your fillings are chopped and ready as the rice paper needs to be worked with quickly. Chop all your vegetables and cook your noodles and set them aside.
Step 2. Prepare the rice paper wrap.
Fill a large bowl with warm water that’s big enough to fit the entire rice paper wrap. Submerge the wrap for 5-10 seconds in water and remove it to lay flat on a cutting board.
EXPERT TIP: Place your wet rice paper wrap on a wooden cutting board to prevent them from sticking. You can also place them on a damp paper towel.
Step 3. Fill the rice paper wrap.
Add a bit of each of the filling to the middle of the rice paper wrap making sure there is some room on all sides for rolling. You can add as little or as much of each topping as you like making sure you don’t overfill.
Step 4. Roll it up.
You’ll want to roll up the rice paper wrap similar to a burrito. Place the bottom side over the filling then tuck in the sides before rolling the rest of the way. The rice paper sticks immediately so take care when placing rice paper on rice paper.
Serve the rolls chilled or at room temperature with peanut dipping sauce!
- Prep fillings before assembly. It’s important to make sure all of your toppings are chopped and prepared as the rice paper sticks very quickly! I like adding them to a plate or tray so I can grab each one easily.
- For serving at a later time – If you’re serving later, spray the rolls lightly with a neutral-tasting cooking spray or oil to prevent them from sticking together while storing in the fridge.
- Do not oversoak the rice paper. More is not better when it comes to rice paper wraps. Once you remove them from the water, they continue to get soft so it may not seem like 5-10 seconds is enough, but it is as long as the water is not too hot.
More Filling Ideas and Substitutions
There are so many ways to customize spring rolls! You can add your favorite veggies, herbs, proteins or you can dip them in your favorite sauces. Check out these ideas below to make the best summer roll.
- Proteins: Cooked shrimp, marinated extra firm tofu, chickpeas, chicken, thinly sliced beef.
- Vegetables: Radish, butter lettuce, parsnips, bell peppers, jalapeños.
- Herbs: Mint, basil, cilantro, parsley.
- Fruit: Sliced mango, strawberries, dragonfruit.
- Nuts: Chopped cashews, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, peanuts.
These days, they are sometimes known as the same thing but traditionally Spring rolls are wrapped in a dough made of flour and water and then fried, while summer rolls are wrapped in rice paper and served cold.
Absolutely! The beauty of summer rolls is that you can make them fit your healthy lifestyle by adding in your favorite vegetables and proteins.
A chewy rice paper wrap means it was probably soaked a bit too long or has dried out in the fridge due to improper storage. You’ll want to make sure you don’t soak the rice paper wrap too long in the warm water and also make sure they are stored properly if made ahead.
Vegan summer rolls are are great choice for a fresh snack, appetizer or main dish. Try a different combination of ingredients every time you make them for fresh new flavors every single time!
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Vegan Summer Rolls
For the Rolls
- 8 rice paper sheets
- 2 ounces rice noodles, cooked according to the package
- 1 medium cucumber, cut into matchsticks
- 1 medium carrot, thinly shaved
- 1 medium avocado, sliced
- 1 cup shredded purple cabbage
- 1/2 cup thai basil leaves, (optional)
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
For the Peanut Dipping Sauce
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, or tamari or coconut aminos
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon grated garlic
To Make the Summer Rolls:
- Fill a large bowl (big enough to fit the rice paper sheets) with warm water.
- Dip a rice paper sheet into the warm water for 5-10seconds, or until it starts to soften.
- Carefully transfer the rice paper to a cutting board and fill it with your desired toppings– I like to use a small handful of rice noodles, a few sticks of cucumber, a slice of avocado, a small handful of cabbage, two thai basil leaves, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. You don’t have to be exact with what toppings you include– do whatever you like!
- Fold the sides of the rice paper toward the middle, covering the filling. Then, fold the side closest to you over the filling and roll towards the top to completely enclose the filling– just like you would a burrito.
- Serve chilled or at room temperature with peanut dipping sauce.
For the Peanut Dipping Sauce:
- Whisk together all of the ingredients in a small bowl. If needed, add water to thin to your desired consistency (for more of a spring roll friendly sauce, I add 1-2 tablespoons of water). Store in the fridge until ready to use.