Asian Recipes/ Entrees / Appetisers/ Recipes/ Vegan/ Vietnamese

Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls – Rainbow Rolls!

09/02/2024

These cute vegetarian rice paper rolls are just bursting with flavour! Stuffed with our teriyaki tofu, they’re surrounded by all the colours of the veggie rainbow and look SO good on a platter for friends and family.

A vegetarian rice paper roll is dipped into tamarind sauce.

Why We Love This

These vegetarian rice paper rolls are so pretty, we like to call them rainbow rolls! We love the bright colour and crispy crunch of the veggies paired with chewy rice paper wrappers – they’re so satisfying as a quick and easy meal, and we love how healthy they are.

You can also tweak it to make it your way! It’s a great way to use up leftover veggies whatever you have in the fridge.

Related: Crispy Thai Spring Rolls / Spring Roll Salad

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Half a rice paper roll stuffed with vegetables and tofu.

What are Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls?

These delicious rainbow beauties are a riff on our ever popular Vietnamese rice paper rolls

Known as gỏi cuốn in Vietnamese, they’re super popular across the whole of Vietnam. We ate them in most cities on our travels through Vietnam. There were so many different varieties everywhere we went. 

The essentials were always there though: soft and chewy rice paper rolls stuffed with protein + veggies, dunked into some kind of epic dipping sauce. 

While they were all equally delicious in their different ways, there’s still nothing quite like fresh + homemade!

What You’ll Need

  • Rice Paper Wrappers – We use Valcom or Three Ladies brand. These often come in two sizes, so we usually buy the larger size wraps. Look for them in the international section of your local supermarket, at Asian grocery stores or buy them online.
  • Vermicelli Noodles – Sometimes known as rice stick noodles, these are available in two versions: one made with rice and one made with mung bean thread. They are almost identical once cooked, so you can use either. Just like wrappers, you can probably find these at your supermarket, otherwise head to an Asian grocery store or buy online.
  • Veggies – We love using a bright and colourful combo of lettuce, cucumber, carrot, capsicum / bell pepper (in red, yellow or green!) and red/purple cabbage. But you really can use just about anything. Whatever veggies you choose, be sure to slice them in thin strips (also known as julienne slices) to make it easy to roll them up neatly. 
  • Fresh Herbs – Fresh mint and coriander / cilantro are great options to add a little extra flavour, use as much or as little as you like.
  • Protein – To make these vegetarian rice paper rolls a little more satisfying we love using thin strips of crispy fried teriyaki tofu – we used smoked firm tofu for making them and WOW the smokiness really amps up the teriyaki flavour. We cut them in long sticks so they’re easy to wrap up in the rice paper. You can use any flavouring you like or swap for non-vegetarian options like cooked prawns or chicken (it’s a great way to use up leftover rotisserie chicken while keeping it nice and easy!).
Ingredients laid out ready to make vegetarian rice paper rolls.

How to Wrap Up Veggie Rice Paper Rolls

First, gather your ingredients: See recipe card below for measurements.

  1. Pour warm water into a large, wide bowl – make sure it’s deep enough for softening your rice paper. Grab a rice paper wrapper and dunk into the water, rotating it in your hands until its wet all over. Tap off any excess water and place on a large plate.
  2. Layer up your fillings at the bottom third of the wrapper. We did lettuceteriyaki tofucucumbercarrotcapsicum / bell pepperred cabbage and vermicelli noodles.
  3. Lay the mint across above the vegetables, so the leaves will stand out once wrapped. Fold the wrapper from the bottom and stretch it over the vegetables tightly.
  4. Next fold in each side to the edge of the veggies.
  5. Now keeping everything packed tight, roll the wrapper all the way to the top of the plate. Ta-da! You’re done.
  6. Serves with any of your favourite dipping sauces. We love peanut sauce or tamarind sauce with these (or we even dip them in both!).
Tray of vegetables laid out in a rainbow wheel.
Tip! Lay all the veggies out in a circle on a big serving tray for a little “wow factor” as everyone goes to put together their own rolls!

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Warm Water – This softens the rice paper quickly without it turning into mush.
  • Be Quick – Dunk half the rice paper into the water and quickly rotate until the entire surface is covered. Don’t leave it in the water any longer than necessary, or they’ll become too sticky, flimsy and hard to work with.
  • Sauce Inside the Rolls – We’ve never seen this done anywhere else! If you’re eating the rolls straight away, why not slather plenty of the sauce between the herb and prawn layers. This way you’ll have extra delicious flavour in every bite, without needing to dip!

Storage, Freezing & Reheating

Like all rice paper rolls, these are best enjoyed fresh. We don’t recommend storing or storing them as the rice paper is too delicate to be refrigerated for too long or frozen. Plus they’d just never be as good as fresh rolls!

FAQs

Can I make them in advance?

Technically yes – but we don’t recommend it. They really are best eaten straight away, otherwise the rice paper can get a bit tough and chewy, or even take on other aromas from your fridge.

What else could I stuff them with?

Really you’re only limited by your creativity and flavour preferences! Why not try them with thin slices of teriyaki chicken or pork katsu.

Serving Ideas & Variations

Vegetarian rice paper rolls on a grey plate, some are cut in half. A dipping sauce sits at the back of the plate.

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★ Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and a star rating below!

A hand dips a rice paper roll into tamarind sauce.

Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls – Rainbow Rolls!

These cute vegetarian rice paper rolls are just bursting with flavour! Stuffed with our teriyaki tofu, they're surrounded by all the colours of the veggie rainbow and look SO good on a platter for friends and family.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Course: Appetiser
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Servings: 8 rolls
Calories: 191kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $10

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Pour warm water into a large, wide bowl – make sure it's deep enough for softening your rice paper.
    2 cups warm water
  • Grab a rice paper wrapper and dunk into the water, rotating it in your hands until its wet all over. Tap off any excess water and place on a large plate.
    8 rice paper wrappers
  • Layer up your fillings at the bottom third of the wrapper. We did lettuce, teriyaki tofu, cucumber, carrot, capsicum / bell pepper, red cabbage and vermicelli noodles.
    1-2 handfuls lettuce, 250 g teriyaki tofu, ½ cucumber, 2 carrots, 1 capsicum / bell pepper, 150 g red cabbage, 200 g vermicelli noodles
  • Lay the mint across above the vegetables, so the leaves will stand out once wrapped.
    1 bunch fresh mint leaves
  • Fold the wrapper from the bottom and stretch it over the vegetables tightly.
  • Next fold in each side to the edge of the veggies.
  • Now keeping everything packed tight, roll the wrapper all the way to the top of the plate. Ta-da! You’re done.
  • Serves with any of your favourite dipping sauces. We love peanut sauce or tamarind sauce with these (or we even dip them in both!)
    peanut hoisin dipping sauce, nuoc mam cham, tamarind dipping sauce

Video

YouTube video

Recipe Notes

  • Warm Water – This softens the rice paper quickly without it turning into mush.
  • Be Quick – Dunk half the rice paper into the water and quickly rotate until the entire surface is covered. Don’t leave it in the water any longer than necessary, or they’ll become too sticky, flimsy and hard to work with.
  • Sauce Inside the Rolls – We’ve never seen this done anywhere else! If you’re eating the rolls straight away, why not slather plenty of the sauce between the herb and prawn layers. This way you’ll have extra delicious flavour in every bite, without needing to dip!
  • Extra Filling – Wrap them up around a crispy fried spring roll or freshly cooked banh xeo (Vietnamese crispy fried crepe) – oh yeah!
    Dipping Sauces – Serve them alongside small bowls of Vietnamese dipping sauce (nuoc mam cham), peanut hoisin sauce, tamarind dipping sauce or umami sauce. For something completely different, try them with our sweet and savoury bibimbap sauce (Korean spicy sauce)!

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls – Rainbow Rolls!
Amount per Serving
Calories
191
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
2
g
3
%
Saturated Fat
 
0.3
g
2
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
0.5
g
Cholesterol
 
2
mg
1
%
Sodium
 
175
mg
8
%
Potassium
 
177
mg
5
%
Carbohydrates
 
37
g
12
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
2
g
2
%
Protein
 
6
g
12
%
Vitamin A
 
3261
IU
65
%
Vitamin C
 
31
mg
38
%
Calcium
 
73
mg
7
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Vegetarian Rice Paper Rolls - Rainbow Rolls!

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