Fresh Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce — Healthy rolls that taste just like your favorite Asian restaurant makes!! Fill them with your favorite veggies along with shrimp, chicken, or tofu – totally customizable! The homemade peanut sauce for dipping is AMAZING!!
Fresh Vietnamese Spring Rolls Recipe
These rolls go by many different names including rice paper rolls, summer rolls, and more.
These healthy, super fresh-tasting, naturally gluten-free rolls consist of a rice paper wrapper and are filled with fresh vegetables and your choice of protein. I used cooked shrimp for my rolls today.
The rice paper spring rolls are surprisingly satisfying after you have a couple, thanks to the fiber and water content in the vegetables, but also light enough for a perfect summer snack, lunch, or dinner.
They also make a great appetizer for entertaining. Everyone will be so impressed!
I made a batch of homemade peanut sauce to dip my rolls in, which is key for me for maximum enjoyment of my fresh spring rolls.
You could also dip them in soy sauce, hoisin sauce, or a mixture of soy sauce with fish sauce or oyster sauce, but I strongly prefer peanut sauce, and since it literally takes two minutes to whisk together, why not?
What’s in the Fresh Spring Rolls?
I have sampled spring rolls — or summer rolls — with many different types of filling options. They tend to have variable ingredients so don’t be afraid to make substitutions.
If you’re unsure what to put in spring rolls, here’s what I used in this particular batch:
- Rice paper wrappers
- Cooked and peeled shrimp
- Bagged salad mix with a variety of greens, cabbage, and radicchio
- Bell peppers
To make the peanut dipping sauce for the spring rolls, you’ll need:
- Peanut butter
- Sesame oil
- Apple cider or rice vinegar
- Ground ginger, or to taste
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Coconut milk
Protein Options for Fresh Spring Rolls
You can keep them strictly vegetarian, as in just vegetables. Or you can mix-and-match the proteins. Extra-firm tofu or cooked shrimp or cooked chicken are the post popular.
No matter what protein you use, it will pair perfectly with the peanut spring roll sauce!
What Else to Put in the Spring Rolls
Like I said, this fresh spring roll recipe is very flexible so feel free to mix and match the veggies to suit what you have on hand. Some other filling ideas include:
- Thin rice noodles (labeled as maifun at times) or very thin capellini
- Butter lettuce or almost any lettuce
- Green cabbage
- Green onions
How to Wrap Spring Rolls
Rice paper wrappers are incredibly delicate. I submerge them in a bowl of lukewarm tap water, one at a time, until just barely softened.
They will continue to soften up on your counter or cutting board as you fill and roll them, and if they if they are overly softened from being submerged too long in water, their already delicate nature is nearly impossible to work with and they will rip.
Practice makes perfect. By no means are my rolls perfect. I am the first to admit that! This is one of those situations where food is art and if you’re crafty or have patient hands and nimble fingers, you’ll naturally have a leg up on the rest of us.
Have all the ingredients you plan to use in the filling chopped and ready to go.
Don’t overstuff the rolls. You will learn quickly that less is more. Although I would love to incorporate all the ingredients I listed in the Fillings Substitutions section above, there is definitely a maximum amount of ingredients each roll will hold and don’t overstuff or they will rip.
I put the ingredients I am using in the bottom one-third of the roll, and roll it up like a burrito. Tuck in the two sides, and roll straight up.
The tighter you can roll it, the better. This is easier said than done though because of the wiggly nature of the ingredients inside the wet, delicate rice paper. Do you best.
Tips for Making Rice Paper Spring Rolls
I buy my wrappers from my regular grocery store, but if you check ‘rice paper wrappers for spring rolls’ on Amazon there are dozens of options.
Fresh rolls are best. They are simply the best tasting immediately after you make them, however the rolls can be stored in an airtight container for 24 hours in the fridge noting that they will stick together.
I combat this by putting the smallest, tiniest bit of olive oil on my fingertips and run that along the sides of the rolls where they will touch each other in your airtight container. I have no idea how they likely make these in Asian restaurants in what I would think would be large batches at one time and prevent sticking during refrigerating, but this is what I do at home and it’s fine.
You can make the spring roll peanut sauce recipe ahead of time and it keeps great for two weeks in the fridge.
For a flashback to 2010, check out my Fresh Vegan Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce recipe and post. Blogging was so different then but great memories!
Pin This Recipe
- heaping 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/4 cup honey, or to taste
- 1/4 cup sesame oil, or to taste
- 2 tablespoons apple cider or rice vinegar
- 1 to 2 teaspoons ground ginger, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
- 1/4 cup coconut milk (canned or carton), or as desired for consistency
- 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped peanuts, for garnishing (I used salted peanuts)
- 1 pound peeled, cleaned, and boiled (I used fresh U-20 shrimp that I cleaned and de-veined before boiling)
- 12 rice paper wrappers
- one 10-ounce packaged of bagged salad mix with a variety of greens, cabbage, and radicchio
- 1 large cucumber, peeled and diced into very thin spears about 4-inches long
- 1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced into very thin spears about 4-inches long
- 1 cup shredded carrots (use a store bought bag to save time)
- 1 bunch fresh basil, or as desired
- To a medium bowl, add all peanut sauce ingredients and whisk to combine until smooth and incorporated. Taste, check for seasoning and flavor balance, and make any necessary adjustments (i.e. more honey, more peanut butter, more salt, more sesame oil, etc.). If you like your sauce on the thicker side you may want to omit the coconut milk.
- Garnish with peanuts and set aside to serve with spring rolls.
- Clean, peel, and devein the shrimp. Add to a small kettle of salted boiling water. Allow shrimp to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes, or until just pink and opaque; don't overcook them. Small to medium-sized shrimp — which is what you want for this recipe — cook very quickly. Immediately submerge them in an ice bath after cooking; set aside.
- To a large bowl, add lukewarm tap water. Working one at a time, dip one rice paper wrapper into the water until just beginning to soften. Wrappers will continue to soften even after they're out of the water and are impossible to work with when they're too soft so don't over-soak them.
- Have all vegetables pre-chopped and within easy reach on your countertop.
- Lay the softened rice paper wrapper onto your counter or cutting board and to the bottom one-third of the wrapper add about 3 shrimp, a few pinches of the lettuce mixture, a small bundle each of cucumbers and bell peppers, a pinch of carrots, a few basil leaves, and roll up like a burrito, tucking the ends in, and then rolling straight up.
- Place completed rolls on a serving platter, making sure they do not touch.
- Repeat steps 3 and 4 until all shrimp are used.
- Serve immediately with peanut sauce.
1. Please review all tips for making spring rolls presented in the last main paragraph of the blog post for optimal results.
2. The shrimp may be substituted with cooked chicken, extra firm tofu, or simply just use vegetables without a protein.
Storage: Extra peanut sauce will keep airtight for up to 2 weeks in the fridge. Rolls are best fresh but will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 24 hours. To prevent sticking, I add the slightest bit of olive oil to my fingertips and grease the sides of the rolls where they may touch each other when stored in a container in the fridge.
Peanut Sauce adapted from Easy Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 396Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 462mgCarbohydrates: 50gFiber: 5gSugar: 18gProtein: 8g
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