Rainbow Rolls {with Video}

Rainbow Rolls

Welcome to my new addiction. Oh. My. I always thought rolls like this were made by folks who had gone through years of culinary training in Thailand, mastering some secret rolling technique. Thanks to my new friend Joe, from Whole Foods, I not only “stuck the landing” on my first try, I’ve been making these daily for a week. They’re that good.

Husband and I decided to do a 3-day juice cleanse a few weeks ago. We wanted to press “restart” on our healthy eating plan, before the holidays got the better of us. The cleanse encouraged us to “drink the rainbow.” In other words, get a variety of colored fruits and vegetables into our bellies every day. {It was great! And we’ll do it again. You can check out the plan here.}

Afterward, I had the odd beet, carrot and greens hanging around my produce drawer. Wanting to continue down the healthy path, I thought I’d try making summer rolls {also called spring rolls}. However, I wasn’t confident at all that I could get them right, having had a few failed attempts at homemade tortillas recently.

As I searched the store for the spring roll skins “Helpful Joe” asked if he could assist. As he walked me to the Asian foods section he told me to ignore the instructions in most recipes that tell you to soak the skin for 15-20 seconds. Too long! Just wet the skin under running water, on both sides, then get to work. The skin gets more pliable by the second, so there’s no need to soak it for a long time – if you do, you make it too hard to work with and more prone to tears and punctures.

The possible filling combinations are endless! Think you don’t like tofu? Or you’ve never been a beet fan? Try them in these – it’ll change your mind.

Since there’s a bit of confusion about whether these are called Spring Rolls, Summer Rolls or something else, I decided just to name them Rainbow Rolls – not only because it’s a perfect description {look at them!} but also as a nod to our cleanse that started the whole obsession.

rainbow rolls closeup

Making these would be a great family activity or task to give guests while you’re working on something else.

And just to prove how easy they are, here’s a quick video showing you how to roll them up.




5.0 from 2 reviews
Rainbow Rolls
The filling combinations are endless. Start with this recipe, then make it your own!
  • 8 spring roll skins
  • firm tofu, pressed, cut into 3" x ½" strips
  • olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bunch red leaf lettuce
  • 4 carrots, grated or shredded
  • 2 medium beets, grated or shredded
  • ½ cucumber, peeled, cut into strips
  • 1 avocado, pitted and sliced thin
  • 2 cups alfalfa sprouts
  • 1 small bunch Thai basil
  • ½ bunch cilantro sprigs
Peanut Sauce
  • 1 cup Peanut Butter
  • ¼ cup hot water
  • 2 Tbs fresh lime juice
  • 1 Tbs rice vinegar
  • 1 Tbs fish sauce
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper
  • Sriracha sauce {optional}
  1. Press tofu to release water. Slice into 3" x ½" strips. Sprinkle with cumin and salt and pepper.
  2. Heat olive oil in medium skillet. Sauté tofu until golden, turning once. Drain on paper towels and cool.
  3. Prepare and assemble remaining roll ingredients.
  4. Working with 1 at a time, briefly wet both sides of spring roll skin and place on work surface. Lay 1 lettuce leaf on left third of skin, leaving 1½ inches on the top and bottom. Layer about ¼ cup of carrots on top of lettuce, followed by about ¼ cup beets, then cucumber strip, a strip of sauteed tofu, avocado slice, and about ¼ cup alfalfa sprouts. Top with a few basil leaves and a cilantro sprig.
  5. Beginning with left edge, gently pull it up and over filling, keeping ingredients as tight as possible. Fold top edge down to seal top end, and fold bottom edge up to seal bottom end, then continue rolling tightly until sealed.
  6. Repeat with remaining skins.
  7. Mix Peanut Sauce ingredients together - stirring vigorously with a fork, or shaking in a sealed jar until thoroughly mixed.
  8. Slice rolls in half diagonally and serve with Peanut Sauce.


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