Crunchy Beet and Sprouts Sushi

Crunchy beet and sprout sushi (via abeautifulmess.com) Crunchy beet and sprout sushi (via abeautifulmess.com)    Yep, I'm still on a homemade sushi roll kick. In case you missed my last installment of sushi-hating-girl-makes-sushi, check it out here (still LOVE this flavor combo). 

I'm exaggerating a little there though, as I couldn't actually say that I "hate" or "hated" sushi. But it wasn't really my favorite food. So this has been a real lesson in never say never because I truly never would have thought that I'd be getting into homemade sushi rolls. And yet, here I am. I guess I'm eating a slice of humble pie along with my sushi. 🙂

Crunchy beet and sprout sushi (via abeautifulmess.com)  This roll is all about pickled beets, crunchy spouts, and then a toasted coconut sesame topping that puts it over the top! Don't skip the crunchy topping; it adds so much flavor and texture to these. I love a little crunch in my sushi to balance out the soft, chewy rice. But this is a great alternative if you don't want to tempura deep fry anything. 

These rolls are mostly made of items I usually have on hand anyway, expect sprouts. That's not something I buy every week, but I do love them in this, on sandwiches, or just on top of dishes to add a little more nutrition and some crunch. These are also shockingly easy to make! Before I got into this, I thought homemade sushi would be too difficult and time consuming to make. But these rolls took me about 30 minutes to put together, and I'm not even very good at rolling. I guess what I'm saying is – this is easy, delicious, a little bit unexpected, and a fun way to eat a plant-based meal. 

Plus, I love beets. But that could be a whole other paragraph, so I'll spare you. For now. 🙂

Sushi ingredientsCrunchy Beet and Sprouts Sushi, makes 4-5 rolls (each 6-8 pieces). Could easily feed 2-3 people, maybe 4 with a side dish. 

1 cup uncooked sushi rice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
3-4 small pickled beets
1/2 cucumber
1/2 cup sprouts
soy wrappers or Nori

For the topping:
1 tablespoon Panko
1 tablespoon coconut flakes (unsweetened)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
soy sauce, Tamari, or coconut aminos for serving

First get your rice going. Following the directions on the package. This will probably mean rinsing the rice, then combining in a small pot with 1 1/4 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 18-20 minutes until most of the water has absorbed. Remove the rice from the pot to a medium size mixing bowl and stir in the vinegar so that all the rice gets coated. Allow to cool enough to handle before use (this won't take but 5-10 minutes). 

Cutting sushiWhile the rice is cooking, prep your vegetables: thinly slice the cucumber, beets, and have the sprouts ready. You can also prep the topping at this time. In a dry pan combine the Panko, coconut, and sesame seeds. Cook over medium/high heat until the coconut begins to look very toasted. Stir every now and again with a wooden spoon so that nothing burns. Once the mixture looks toasted and smells fragrant, remove to a plate and allow to cool until you need it. 

Once the rice is ready, get your sushi rolling mat out, or you can use plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel. Place a sheet of the soy paper or Nori on the wrap, cover in rice (it's quite sticky, so this may take some getting used to), then place the filling vegetables on one edge. Roll up and gently press as you do so everything sticks together. Remove from the plastic wrap and slice into pieces. I will sometimes lightly coat my (clean) fingers or my knife in a little oil so it doesn't stick as much to the rice, but don't over do it or things can get too oily. 

Top the rolls with the crunchy coconut topping. 

Crunchy beet and sprout sushi (via abeautifulmess.com) If you have wasabi paste or pickled ginger to serve with this, then you'll really make it feel like a fancy night at home! I recently picked up this sushi serving board that has built in chopsticks (they are stored underneath) and a little spot for soy sauce – I thought it was too cute! I got mine at T.J.Maxx, but I also like this one. xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions