Tofu Rice Paper Rolls with Easy Peanut Sauce
These vegetarian rice paper rolls are fresh, delicious, and packed with nutrition! Filled with colourful crunchy veggies and flavourful marinated tofu, served with a quick and easy peanut sauce for dipping. Offering fibre, protein, and powerful micronutrients, tofu rice paper rolls make a healthy lunch, snack, or dinner meal!
If you love ordering fresh spring rolls at your local Thai or Vietnamese restaurant, you’re going to absolutely love this recipe for Tofu Rice Paper Rolls.
This recipe was inspired by my Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls which are actually one of the most popular recipes here on my website. But, it’s a bit different in a few ways. First, we use the most delicious marinated, pan-fried tofu which adds delicious flavour and a healthy source of protein.
I also opted for fresh mint leaves in these rolls, and let me tell you, it’s been a hit! Everyone I share this recipe with raves about the mint addition. That being said, I use the same Quick & Easy Peanut Sauce (because its so dang good). I also use it in my Peanut Noodle Salad and Crispy Tofu Noodle Bowl!
These healthy rice paper rolls are so versatile! You can make them for lunch, enjoy as a healthy appetizer or snack or for a light and fresh dinner meal.
All About Rice Paper Rolls:
You may know them as fresh spring rolls, summer rolls, or salad rolls. Rice paper rolls are a traditional Vietnamese dish that consist of various ingredients wrapped in thin, translucent sheets of rice paper.
They are typically served fresh rather than fried, and often paired with a dipping sauce like hoisin sauce, peanut sauce, or a mixture. Veggie rice paper rolls make a great healthy appetizer, snack, or light meal as they tend to contain various vegetables and a source of protein.
What is Rice Paper?
The exterior rice paper wraps are made of rice flour, water, and salt. Straight out of the package they are stiff, brittle and break easily.
Once soaked in water, they become soft and pliable. This is perfect for wrapping around various fillings to make rice paper rolls. No cooking is required, but they can be deep fried to create crispy spring rolls.
Do Rice Paper Rolls Contain Gluten?
The sheets of rice paper used in these vegetarian rice paper rolls are naturally gluten-free and vegan as they are made with rice flour, water, and salt.
As long as the ingredients you wrap inside are also gluten-free, rice paper rolls will not contain gluten.
Where to Buy Rice Paper Wraps:
You can find rice paper wraps in a variety of places these days. This includes:
- Asian grocers and markets
- Major grocery stores
- Health food stores
Just 3 Easy Steps:
To build your spring roll, simply wet the rice paper to slightly rehydrate the wrapper. Then, fill it with any desired meats, vegetables, or herbs that suit your taste palate. Lastly, roll! It’s that easy.
Are Rice Paper Rolls Healthy?
As a Registered Dietitian, I’m here to tell you that yes, rice paper rolls are very nutritious! Here’s why:
- They’re packed with veggies. These tofu rice paper rolls really encourage you to eat the rainbow. You can definitely fill them with whatever vegetables (and even fruits!) that you have on hand. These healthy rice paper rolls are filled with lettuce, carrot, cucumber, red bell pepper, and purple cabbage. Together, these veggies offer lots of fibre, vitamins, minerals, and powerful antioxidants.
- Tofu is a healthy protein option. Not only is the marinated tofu in this recipe delicious, it’s a plant-based source of quality protein that also offers important minerals like iron and calcium. So not only are these rice paper rolls vegetarian, they’re filling and nutritious, too!
- They’re fresh, not fried. Fried food is okay to enjoy on occasion. However, deep-fried foods tend to be high in saturated and trans fats, which we generally want to be mindful of. The rice paper rolls themselves don’t actually don’t require any cooking, but they’re full of texture and flavour nonetheless!
- Peanut sauce offers healthy fats! To really round them out and create a well-balanced meal, the peanut sauce acts as a source of healthy fats. The peanut butter in it is a good source of monounsaturated fats, which we generally want to eat more of.
Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls Ingredients:
- Extra-firm tofu
- Soy sauce
- Sesame oil
- Brown sugar
Rice Paper Rolls:
- Rice paper wrappers
- Red bell pepper
- Purple cabbage
- Fresh mint leaves
- Peanut butter
- Soy sauce
- Lime juice
- Maple syrup
How to Make These Tofu Rice Paper Rolls:
While they are best served fresh, if you do have leftovers, I recommend is storing leftover rice paper rolls and peanut dipping sauce in the fridge, in separate air tight containers. For maximum freshness, wrap the leftovers in a clean, damp kitchen towel to prevent sticking and preserve freshness.
Like this, the tofu spring rolls will keep in the fridge up to 5 days and the peanut sauce will keep up to 1 week.
Can You Freeze Rice Paper Spring Rolls?
Unfortunately, fresh rice paper spring rolls do not freeze well, so I would not recommend storing them in the freezer. Cooked (fried) spring rolls, on the other hand, can be frozen.
As I’ve mentioned, you can really fill these tofu rice paper rolls with whatever vegetables that you have on hand. There are also some lovely additions you can try to mix up the flavours, like:
- Thinly sliced mango
- Other herbs like cilantro and basil
- Sliced avocado
- Almond butter or sunflower seed butter (in the sauce!)
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Tofu Rice Paper Rolls
For the Tofu:
- 1 block extra-firm tofu
- 1/4 cup soy sauce, I use reduced-sodium
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp brown sugar, can sub. with maple syrup
For the Rice Paper Rolls:
- 8 6-inch rice paper wraps
- 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced into thin sticks
- 1/2 large cucumber, sliced into thin sticks
- 1 cup carrot, shredded or sliced into thin sticks
- 1 cup red cabbage, sliced into strips
- 1/2 head romaine lettuce
- 1/2 cup mint leaves
For the Dipping Sauce:
- 1 batch Quick & Easy Peanut Sauce
- Slice tofu into thin strips.
- Whisk together the tofu marinade ingredients, then add to a bowl with tofu. Cover and set aside while you prep remaining ingredients (veggies and peanut sauce).
- Heat a nonstick pan over medium-high heat and add tofu strips with marinade. Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes. Repeat for all tofu strips.
- Place a rice paper sheet in a shallow dish of cool water and let it soak for 30-60 seconds, until it softens. Remove from water, and place on a large plate or cutting board.
- Fill the wrap starting with a romaine leaf, then the cooked tofu, remaining veggies, and 2-3 mint leaves.
- Start to roll the rice paper wrap over from one end, fold in the sides and then finishing rolling the wrap. Repeat for remaining rice paper wraps.
- Serve with the peanut dipping sauce, and enjoy!