Entrees / Appetisers/ Lunch/ Recipes/ Snack/ Vietnamese

Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls

25/09/2018 (Last Updated: 18/09/2020)

Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls are super quick to prepare! Packed with juicy prawns, vermicelli, crisp lettuce and fresh mint, they’re perfect as a light snack or healthy lunch. Pair them with our Peanut Hoisin Dipping Sauce – you won’t want to stop at one!

Vietnamese rice paper rolls on a chopping board next to a bowl of dipping sauce.

Why We Love This

We love rolling our own cold rolls with family – it’s so light and refreshing to enjoy on a warm summer night. It’s fun to lay out the table with platters of rice paper sheets, sliced prawns, vegetables and herbs, and get creative with our own rice paper rolls combinations. There’ll be hands flying everywhere to grab all their favourite ingredients, pop them onto rice paper sheets, and quickly roll them up to start eating!

In Vietnam, we found that rice paper rolls were usually sold by street vendors or at dedicated restaurants like our favourite in Nha Trang – Nem Nuong Dang Van Quyen. We especially loved the rice paper rolls filled with nem nuong (grilled pork sausage) and mountains of fresh herbs all ready to wrap into glorious rolls, then washed down with a beer or two.

A bowl of rice paper roll dipping sauce with three cold rolls on a plate.

What You’ll Need

  • Rice Paper Wrappers – 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, head to an Asian grocery 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 possibly find these at your supermarket, otherwise the Asian grocery or online will be your best bet.
  • Fresh Herbs / Greens – The most common are fresh mint (regular garden mint is totally fine), coriander/cilantro, and lettuce. You might also like to include some bean shoots for extra texture.
  • Protein – Our local Vietnamese restaurants and eateries usually include fresh prawns and/or thinly sliced pork. At home, we’ll often make them with slices of BBQ chicken which makes for super quick prep!

How to Wrap Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls

The trick with wrapping Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls is to start with the greens! To assemble your rolls:

  1. Grab a rice paper disc and rotate it in the warm water until all surface areas have been covered.
  2. Pop it on your plate and top with lettuce, mint and vermicelli on the edge closest to you, then pop the prawns about 2-3cm closer to the top edge.
  3. Next, grab the bottom of the rice paper and fold it tightly over the greens.
  1. Tuck in both sides and continue rolling up the rest of the way.

That’s it! All that’s left is to dip it in your delicious peanut hoisin sauce and eat. Yum!

We’ve put together a quick video below to show you how to wrap your own rolls in seconds.

Best Rice Paper Rolls Dipping Sauce

We love to serve our Vietnamese Rice Paper rolls with this amazing 5 minute Peanut Hoisin Sauce. The mouth-watering combination of fresh rolls with creamy, nutty sauce simply bursts with flavour – so fair warning, you might want to grab the entire plate and run!

The sauce only takes minutes to prepare, so you can easily whip up a batch while the vermicelli noodles are soaking. That way everything is ready to eat as soon as the rolls are ready.

It’s up to you whether you choose to serve the sauce warm or cold. It’s delicious either way, so see what works best for you.

Depending on the amount of water you add – you can make the texture of the sauce super thick (so more sticks to the roll), or thin it out with more water for a smoother texture.

The sauce can also be made a day or two in advance if you’re making a large batch of rice paper rolls.

Close up of a vietnamese rice paper roll freshly dipped in sauce.

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Use Lukewarm Water – This softens the paper quickly without them 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!

FAQs

What are Vietnamese rice paper rolls called?

It all depends on where you live! They’re known as Gỏi Cuốn in Vietnam, Vietnamese spring rolls or summer rolls in America and we call them cold rolls in Australia. So take your pick! However you wish to refer them, they’re all just as delicious.

Can I make them in advance?

Rice paper rolls are best eaten straight away, otherwise the rice paper can get a bit tough and chewy. If you want to take them on a picnic or as a work lunch, just make sure you wrap them in cling film so the rice paper doesn’t dry out and harden. If you are making cold rolls the night before, try covering with a damp cloth to keep the moisture in, and always store them in the fridge.

Can I freeze Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls?

We don’t recommend freezing them as the rice paper is too delicate to be frozen and reheated. Plus they’d just never be as good as fresh rolls!

Three cold rolls on a chopping board.

Variations

Rice Paper Rolls are perfect to eat any time of the day, but we usually have them for lunch, as a snack, or as a tasty entree before dinner.

While we love to make them with prawns, mint, lettuce and vermicelli, here are some more ingredient ideas for you to mix and match:

  • Nem nuong (grilled pork sausage)
  • Pork belly
  • Chicken – make it even easier by using leftover BBQ chicken or roto chicken from the supermarket.
  • Bean sprouts
  • Cucumber – use a mandoline slicer for nice thin strips – not essential, but it’s easier than slicing.
  • Carrot – same as above.
  • Capsicum
  • Cabbage
  • Vietnamese mint
  • Fresh coriander / cilantro

Want more delicious Vietnamese treats? Why not pair these fresh cold rolls with our tasty Vietnamese Sweet and Sour Fried Wontons (Hoanh Thanh Chien), and wash it all down with a refreshing Vietnamese Iced Coffee?

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

Vietnamese rice paper rolls and dipping sauce.

Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls

Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls are super quick to prepare! Packed with juicy prawns, vermicelli, crisp lettuce and fresh mint, they're perfect as a light snack or healthy lunch. Pair them with our Peanut Hoisin Dipping Sauce – you won't want to stop at one!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Course: Appetiser
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Servings: 8 rice paper rolls
Calories: 155kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5-$10

Equipment

  • Platters for arranging all the fresh ingredients
  • Plate per person for rolling individual rice paper rolls

Ingredients

  • 200 g prawns cooked, sliced in half lengthways
  • 200 g vermicelli rice noodles
  • 8 sheets rice paper wrappers
  • 3 leaves lettuce roughly chopped
  • 1 bunch mint
  • water boiling, for soaking vermicelli noodles
  • water lukewarm, for dipping rice paper sheets

Two Optional Dipping Sauces

Instructions

To prepare your ingredients:

  • Pop your vermicelli noodles into a large bowl and soak them in boiling water for 5 minutes.
  • Pour some lukewarm water in a large, deep bowl – make sure it's deep enough for softening your rice paper.
  • Next, slice your prawns in half and devein them if this hasn't already been done.
  • Finally, drain the vermicelli and place all the ingredients on the table. Now you're ready to roll!

To assemble your rolls:

  • Take a rice paper wrapper and rotate it in the warm water until all surface areas have been covered.
  • Pop it on your plate and top with lettuce, mint and vermicelli on the edge closest to you, then pop the prawns about 2-3cm closer to the top edge.
  • Now grab the bottom of the rice paper and roll it over the greens. Tuck in both sides and continue rolling up the rest of the way.
  • That's it! All that's left is to dip it in your delicious peanut hoisin sauce or nuoc mam cham and eat. Yum!

Video

Recipe Notes

  • Rice Paper Wrappers – 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, head to an Asian grocery 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 possibly find these at your supermarket, otherwise the Asian grocery or online will be your best bet.
  • Fresh Herbs / Greens – The most common are fresh mint (regular garden mint is totally fine), coriander/cilantro, and lettuce. You might also like to include some bean shoots for extra texture.
  • Protein – Our local Vietnamese restaurants and eateries usually include fresh prawns and/or thinly sliced pork. At home, we’ll often make them with slices of BBQ chicken which makes for super quick prep!
  • Other Ingredient Ideas
    • Nem nuong (grilled pork sausage)
    • Pork belly
    • Cucumber – use a mandoline slicer for nice thin strips – not essential, but it’s easier than slicing.
    • Carrot – same as above.
    • Capsicum / bell pepper
    • Cabbage
    • Vietnamese mint

Nutrition

Calories: 155kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 315mg | Potassium: 38mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 36IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg
Hey hey – Did you make this recipe?We’d love it if you could give a star rating below ★★★★★ and show us your creations on Instagram! Snap a pic and tag @wandercooks / #Wandercooks
Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls

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24 Comments

  • Reply
    Rogee
    22/08/2020 at 11:46 am

    most been! Have been making this often now.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      24/08/2020 at 1:26 pm

      Yay! Awesome Rogee, we’re so glad to hear. So many new recipes for you now. 😀

  • Reply
    Raia
    19/07/2019 at 9:54 pm

    5 stars
    I looooove rice paper rolls! So easy and so much fun to customize them to your taste. 🙂 Love this prawn and noodle version!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/07/2019 at 1:56 pm

      Agree! Prawns taste amazing in this dish especially when paired with the peanut hoisin. What’s your favourite flavour combo?

  • Reply
    SHANIKA
    19/07/2019 at 9:10 pm

    5 stars
    These rolls looks so amazing! The perfect easy Summer dish!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/07/2019 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks Shanika, it’s a handy one to have on hand that’s for sure.

  • Reply
    Tatiana
    19/07/2019 at 8:10 pm

    5 stars
    We love love rice paper rolls! They are not only easy and fun to eat but also gorgeous! Pinned!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/07/2019 at 1:55 pm

      Haha thanks Tatiana, it’s so fun to get creative when making these too, makes it much more than just a meal. 🙂

  • Reply
    Chris Collins
    19/07/2019 at 8:08 pm

    5 stars
    That peanut sauce looks to die for! Can’t wait to make these on the weekend 🙂

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/07/2019 at 1:55 pm

      Thanks Chris! Hope you enjoy!

  • Reply
    Michelle
    19/07/2019 at 4:49 pm

    5 stars
    These are the perfect summer food! I’d happily eat a whole plate of these!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/07/2019 at 1:54 pm

      I know right, we’d join in with you!

  • Reply
    Neli Howard
    22/01/2019 at 9:14 pm

    5 stars
    Your tips will make this favourite snack so much easier. Your recipes and tips are the BEST and always my “go to”

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:59 am

      Aww thanks Nelly, appreciate your comments. Would love to hear how you go with this one! 🙂

  • Reply
    Anna
    22/01/2019 at 6:36 pm

    5 stars
    Oh I can just imagine how delicious these are! Such a tasty and fresh snack, perfect for gatherings with friends and family! Your photos are so gorgeous!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:59 am

      Thanks Anna, glad you like them!

  • Reply
    Cathy
    22/01/2019 at 5:18 pm

    5 stars
    I just love love rice paper rolls! Cannot wait to try these! They look so yummy! Perfect for a light lunch or dinner!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:58 am

      That’s our favourite part – all the flavour without the heavy feels. ????????

  • Reply
    Matt Ivan
    22/01/2019 at 4:24 pm

    5 stars
    I just want to take a big bite out of one right now! Of course with it smothered in that peanut sauce.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:57 am

      Of course. ????????????????

  • Reply
    Natalie
    22/01/2019 at 3:54 pm

    5 stars
    Looks so delicious, balanced and perfect for a healthy dinner ♥

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:57 am

      Thanks Natalie – dinner, lunch, or hey even brekkie… we’d never judge haha 😛

  • Reply
    Tracy
    22/01/2019 at 2:46 pm

    5 stars
    Give me a rice paper roll over something fried and greasy any day! This is my kind of comfort food!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      23/01/2019 at 8:56 am

      High five to that Tracy! ????????

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