Sushi Roll in a Bowl

Today we’re making a classic plant-based sushi roll… in a bowl instead of a roll (stay with me).

The idea is to layer all the flavors and ingredients of a simple sushi roll (rice, nori, soy sauce, wasabi, carrot, avocado, and more) into one big, delicious rice bowl. I can’t even begin to tell you how well this works. It tastes just like sushi, but it’s a rice bowl. It’s a sushi roll in a bowl.


Makes 3-4 servings


  • 3 cups cooked brown rice
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon wasabi powder
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 sheet of toasted nori
  • 12 oz tempeh
  • 3 large shiitake mushrooms
  • 2-3 green onions
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 avocado
  • Sesame seeds, for garnish

Step One

Cook the rice according to package instructions and measure out about 3 cups into a large mixing bowl. Then, let’s add some sushi flavor right into this rice. Whisk together 2-3 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1-2 teaspoons of sesame oil, and a *small* amount of powdered wasabi until combined, then drizzle this sauce into the rice along with a few grinds of black pepper.

Step Two

Nori is, of course, the toasted seaweed papers that are used to wrap sushi. In this bowl, we’re adding small bits of nori into the rice. To do this, first cut the sheet into 1-inch strips with kitchen scissors, stack them all on top of each other, and then cut in the other direction until you have thin strips of nori confetti. Add this into the rice while it’s still hot so that the nori wilts (which is what we want).

Step Three

We’ll need to sauté the tempeh and mushrooms. Dice the tempeh and slice the mushrooms, then add them to a saucepan with a drizzle of water and soy sauce (you can also add a hint of maple syrup and cayenne if you like, but I didn’t include this in the ingredient list). Allow these to sauté until the mushrooms are tender, then drain the cooking liquid and add them into the rice.

Step Four

Finally, slice 2-3 green onions, grate a carrot, and dice an avocado. Stir everything together, plate into individual bowls, and garnish with some toasted sesame seeds to complete your sushi roll in a bowl.




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  1. You are a genius, Andrew. I can’t wait to try this. Do you think seitan could work as well? I’m trying to limit my soy intake since I’m expecting.

    • Haha, thanks Tiff! Yes, the ingredients in this bowl are very flexible, I’m sure seitan or just omitting the tempeh would work just fine.

  2. I’m a huge fan of the one-bowl-meal, such as your Quinoa Buddha Bowl, which is something I eat almost weekly. This one sounds yummy and so much less messy than making rolls. I think I have tomorrow’s lunch figured out!

    Perhaps you are also inspired to create an Indian inspired bowl? Samosa bowl anyone? Yeah?

    Thanks for sharing your creative culinary creations with us Andrew!

    • Thanks, Sabine. Ooh, an Indian-inspired bowl… I love that idea! I’ll experiment with that soon for sure. 🙂

  3. I think my husband, who always says YUCK to sushi (even veggie sushi) will like this and not realize he’s eating the same ingredients – thanks for the idea and I miss you on TV!

    • That’s a great idea because this tastes like sushi but might be less intimidating for someone who doesn’t typically like sushi rolls. Wait, when was I on TV?!

  4. I LOVE this idea! I’ve always said that food in a bowl is the best kinda food! lol
    I think this will really entice my friends who are a little leery of sushi. Most folks don’t realize how nori can be such a delicious addition to a meal!

  5. This looks awesome! I’ve actually had sushi served like this at a “country style” Japanese restaurant in Denver…but had somehow never translated that idea to my own cooking. ha. Seems like a really yummy and low-fuss way to make sushi 🙂

  6. Yum! This is delicious. I added it to our weekly rotation as it is so easy to make and perfect for a hot summer evening’s meal. I usually make it with sushi-style rice, which is everyone’s favorite. We can’t get enough around here!
    The kids can even throw it together themselves for lunch with leftover rice and pre-chopped veggies and they use the sauce on top, which doubles easily and keeps for a long time in the fridge. The wasabi powder was too much for the kids (perfect for us adults, though!) so we sub in powdered ginger now. Lends itself very well to substitutions for the veggies.

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