This Spicy Salmon Roll is bursting with scrumptious flavors from the buttery salmon, crab, and vegetables. It’s easier to make than you think and will really wow your friends and family.
Table Of Contents
This recipe for Spicy Salmon Roll is just what every sushi lover needs. It’s delicious, easy, and makes the perfect lunch or snack, whether for yourself or for guests.
- TASTE: This roll is full of buttery salmon, spicy mayo, sweet rice, and nutty sesame seeds. Together with the crab and seaweed, you have a flavorful combination.
- TEXTURE: Each piece of this Spicy Salmon Roll will have some melt-in-your-mouth salmon along with crisp cucumber, creamy avocado, and rich spicy mayo.
- TIME: This roll will take you about an hour to make.
- EASE: With the right recipe, sushi isn’t that hard to make. Just follow the instructions and pictures and you’ll have no trouble making this tasty dish.
What You’ll Need
- Sushi rice– You can make your own with just a few ingredients and short-grain rice. The starch in it helps the sushi hold when it’s rolled.
- Imitation crab sticks- Though they are not made with actual crab meat, but instead fish, they taste exactly like real crab.
- Avocado- This will be cut into sticks, so look for a ripe one that is still a bit firm so the sticks don’t become mush.
- English cucumber- You can use regular cucumbers, too, but these have a delicious crispness.
- Nori seaweed- These sheets of seaweed will be used to roll up your Spicy Salmon Roll.
- Sesame seeds- Toasted sesame seeds and black sesame seeds add a nutty flavor to the sushi.
- Atlantic salmon– Since we are using raw salmon, choose farm-raised Atlantic salmon that has been previously frozen to prevent harmful bacteria.
- Spicy mayo- You can buy this ingredient or make your own – it’s really easy. It will give the Salmon Roll its heat and creaminess.
- Bamboo sushi mat- This inexpensive rolling mat can be found in most specialty stores, online, or in the international section of your grocery store. It makes rolling sushi so much easier!
Add-ins and Substitutions
- Substitute other vegetables– Crunchy veggies like radishes, celery, and carrots make great additions to your Spicy Salmon Roll.
- Add more sauces- Besides the spicy mayo, you can also make this with sauces like garlic ponzu, teriyaki, hoisin, sesame oil, Yum Yum Sauce, or a Shrimp Tempura Dipping Sauce.
- Substitute other proteins- Instead of salmon and crab, sub other seafoods like spicy tuna, yellowtail, ahi tuna, and spicy crab.
- Cook it- If you prefer your sushi cooked, you can cook the salmon before adding it. You can also tempura the vegetables and crab with this Tempura Batter before rolling them in.
How to Make Spicy Salmon Roll
- Make the sushi rice. Follow the sushi rice recipe to make your rice. I highly recommend using this rice cooker. Then let it cool.
- Prep the salmon and crab. Now slice the salmon into 1/4-inch thick strips, then set it aside in the fridge. Finely chop the imitation crab meat and place it into a bowl with the kewpie Japanese mayonnaise. Mix and set aside.
Pro Tip: Make your own Japanese mayo by whisking together 3 tablespoons of regular mayo with 1 1/2 tsp. rice vinegar and 1/3 tsp. sugar until combined.
- Cut up the avocado and cucumber. Then slice the avocado and English cucumber into strips.
- Wrap the mat. Now wrap your sushi mat in plastic wrap to make clean up easier.
- Trim the seaweed and add sushi rice. Place a sheet of toasted seaweed on top of the sushi mat and cut off 1/4 of it with scissors. Now wet your hands in a bowl of water and grab a handful of rice and begin gently spreading a thin, even layer on top.
- Add the sesame seeds. Sprinkle the toasted white sesame seeds and black sesame seeds on top of the rice. Then flip the entire sheet of seaweed over.
- Add other filling ingredients. Now, in the middle of the seaweed, add some imitation crab meat mixture, cucumber strips, avocado slices, and a strip of raw salmon.
- Roll the Spicy Salmon Roll. This is the tricky part. While turning in the front of the nori with the sushi mat, slightly compress the inner ingredients. Keep rolling it, keeping it tight. Then place the sushi roll onto a cutting board and use a sharp wet knife to cut 8 equal pieces. Top with spicy mayo and serve.
- Use water when dealing with sticky rice- Whenever you are molding the sushi rice to the nori, or when you’re cutting the roll with a knife, wet your hands/knife with water before each touch to keep the rice from sticking to you.
- Trim the nori seaweed sheets- This is optional, but by trimming away some of the sheet, you keep the filling in proportion to the rice, so it’s not overloaded and out of balance.
- Don’t mash the sushi rice- Be careful not to press too hard on the rice when you’re spreading it on the nori, or you’ll end up with a mashed up mess.
- Wrap your sushi mat- These bamboo mats are great, but it’s easy to get sticky rice squished into it. Save yourself cleaning time by just wrapping it in plastic wrap before making your Spicy Salmon Roll.
A Spicy Salmon Roll is a type of sushi that traditionally uses raw sashimi-grade salmon, sushi rice, and nori along with spicy mayo. But vegetables like cucumber and avocado can be added as well.
Salmon is usually left raw when used in sushi. However, it can be cooked by request or if you make your own Spicy Salmon Roll. The raw salmon used is sashimi-grade, and farm-raised Atlantic salmon that has been previously frozen is a great choice for homemade sushi because it prevents harmful bacteria from flourishing.
This Spicy Salmon Roll is so easy to make and has tons of flavor. Serve it on its own or with other sushi, sides, or tasty desserts.
- Sushi: Serve this roll alongside other sushi dishes, like these California Roll Sushi Bowls, Easy Sushi Bake, or Shrimp Tempura Rolls.
- Proteins: Enjoy this sushi roll with some Asian-inspired Grilled Teriyaki Salmon, Chicken Tempura, Homemade Shrimp Tempura with a Shrimp Tempura Dipping Sauce, or Mongolian Beef.
- Side dishes: Try it with some Fried Spring Rolls (VIDEO), Kani Salad, Hibachi Fried Rice, and Shrimp Tempura Udon Soup.
- Desserts: After your Spicy Salmon Roll, cool off with some Ube Ice Cream and mochi ice cream, or a sweet treat like these Mochi Donuts (VIDEO), Easy Dango, and Strawberry Tanghulu.
Make This Recipe in Advance
Make ahead: You can make the sushi rice ahead of time and then assemble the roll. Just store it covered in the fridge for a few hours, and don’t add the toppings until you’re ready to serve it.
Storing: Store this Spicy Salmon Roll covered in the fridge for up to 2 days. The rice will harden as it sits, so try to only make what you will eat.
Freeze: This roll should not be frozen because the salmon can grow bacteria if re-frozen, and the rice becomes hard. Keep any leftovers in the refrigerator.
More Yummy Japanese-inspired Dishes!
Full Recipe Instructions
Spicy Salmon Roll
- Now slice the salmon into strips 1/4 inch thick. TIP: only use farm-raised Atlantic salmon that has been previously frozen to prevent harmful bacteria. Once the salmon is cut, set it aside in the fridge.
- Finely chop 8 oz of imitation crab meat and place it into a bowl and mix it with 3 Tbsp of kewpie Japanese mayonnaise. Then set it aside.
- Then slice up 1 avocado and 1/2 of an English cucumber into strips.
- Now wrap your sushi mat in plastic wrap. This will make your life a lot easier when it comes to cleaning.
- Place 1 sheet of toasted seaweed on top of the sushi mat and cut off 1/4 of it with scissors. You don’t have to do this but I find that if you use the full sheet, you end up with too much rice vs filling.
- Now wet your hands in a bowl of water and grab a handful of rice and begin spreading a thin even layer of sushi rice on top of the seaweed. Be careful not to press on the rice too hard, or you'll end up with a mashed up mess. Continuously wetting your hands will prevent the rice from sticking to your fingers.
- Now, in the middle of the seaweed, add about 1 oz of the imitation crab meat mixture, a few strips of cucumber, two slices of avocado, and 1 strip of raw salmon.
- Now, this is the tricky part. While turning in the front of the nori with the sushi mat, slightly compress the inner ingredients. Keep rolling the sushi with the sushi mat, making sure to keep the roll tight.
- Place the sushi roll onto a cutting board and use a sharp wet knife, cut the sushi into 8 equal pieces. I usually wet the knife before each slice.
- Then top with spicy mayo and serve with soy sauce and wasabi.