Why You Should Use Soy Paper for Sushi | Bokksu Market

What is Soy Paper and Why Should You Cook With It?

by Bokksu Staff

If the slightly fishy taste of seaweed (nori) is the primary reason you avoid consuming sushi, it's time to try soy paper. This alternative to seaweed paper comes in various colors and is flavorless, so it's the perfect option for picky eaters or those who don't enjoy the taste of seaweed. While not all sushi restaurants offer the option of soy paper sushi, some do. All it takes is a quick search for soy paper wrap sushi, and you'll see options pop up near you.

Continue reading to learn more about soy paper, including how to make sushi, soy paper-wrapped, at home.

What Is Soy Paper?

Soy paper

Soy paper is typically made from soybeans that have been compressed. This ingredient goes by various names, like mamenori and soybean paper. It's a delicate sheet easily dyed in multiple colors, making it a fun alternative to nori.

What is Soy Paper Used For?

It’s usually used as a replacement for nori on sushi rolls to hold the ingredients together. You’ll also see it used for some desserts and spring rolls.

Soy paper offers a neutrality to these dishes that allows the other ingredients to shine. People who don’t like the fishy taste or smell of seaweed sushi wrappers can replace them with soy paper. This ingredient can also be used to make dumplings or wrap sweets made from fruits or pudding.

What is Soy Paper Sushi?

Simply put, you're using soy paper for sushi instead of seaweed. It can come in a variety of colors, including green, orange, yellow, and pink. For many people, this type of sushi dish tastes just as good as the one with seaweed wapping. However, getting the paper to stick to the sushi rice can be tricky. You’ll need to apply enough pressure when making the hand roll or typical sushi roll.

To make soy paper sushi, we recommend the Yamamotoyama Assorted Soy Sushi Wraps. It comes in five different colors and can also be used as dessert crêpe, cold cut, or sandwich wraps.

Yamamotoyama Assorted Soy Sushi Wraps (10 Half-Sheets)

Healthy is never boring with these fun and colorful soy sushi wraps! They're high in plant-based protein, low in calories and carbs, and perfect for yummy creativity. Toast, chop, and sprinkle on your salads! Wrap some funky temaki and maki sushi rolls! Craft sweet dessert crêpes with fresh fruit, or roll up your favorite cold cuts to make sandwich wraps! Whatever you're thinking, possibilities are healthy, fun, and endless!

Common Allergens: Soy. 

0.74 oz

What Does Soy Paper Taste and Look Like?

Soy paper usually is semi-translucent paper and comes in a white color. It is nearly flavorless and only offers a slight aroma, allowing the other sushi ingredients like the rice and fish to shine through.

Is Soy Paper Better for You?

Soy paper spring rolls

Regarding soy paper calories versus nori calories, it has slightly more. However, it is lower in carbs. Soy paper does not typically contain saturated fat, trans fat, or cholesterol and is a great addition to ketogenic diets. It’s made from soybean, which is a good source of protein, minerals, vegetable glycerin, and vitamins. The main reason people consider eating soy paper as a healthier choice is that soy paper is a gluten-free option. However, it's always necessary to read package ingredients, as certain flavoring can contain gluten.

Difference Between Soy Paper And Its Alternatives

If you want a different option than soy paper, there are alternatives you can use. Below, you'll find the difference between each soy paper sushi roll substitute.

Soy Paper vs. Seaweed

As mentioned, seaweed has a stronger flavor. If you want a more traditional sushi roll, you can use nori instead of soy paper. However, if you want to be able to taste the seafood and veggies more fully, you can use soy paper. 

They also differ in appearance. While seaweed sheet tends to be delicate and dark green in color, soy paper may come in various colors, especially white and yellow. Unlike soy paper, seaweed sheets can be eaten on their own as healthy snacks. Versions like the Yamamotoyama nori seaweed are light, highly snackable, and contain natural ingredients.

Yamamotoyama Roasted Sushi Nori Seaweed: Original (10 sheets)

With a natural umami and melt-in-your-mouth papery thinness, these sheets of roasted sushi nori make excellent sushi, but honestly, they make for a great (if light) snack all on their own. Use the provided perforations for easy tearing, or go rogue! We would never hold you back in your own kitchen.

0.88 oz

Soy Paper vs. Rice Paper

Soy paper and rice paper are very similar. Rice paper is typically made from rice starch; like soy paper, it does not have a strong flavor. This is the closest alternative to soy paper. You can also use it to make rice paper rolls. Rice paper needs to be submerged in water for about 30 minutes before it’s soft enough to use as a sushi wrapper.

Soy Paper vs. Cucumber Wraps

Cucumber wraps are what they sound like – thinly sliced cucumbers that you wrap around sushi rolls. If you enjoy a light veggie flavor, you'll enjoy cucumber wraps. They're a little harder to work with than soy wraps unless you slice them very thin.

What Is Soy Paper Made Of?

The ingredients for soy paper vary depending on the brand. However, the common ingredients are sesame seeds, soybeans, soy flour, soybean oil, organic rice syrup, and food coloring (for options other than white).

How to Make Soy Paper Sushi Rolls?

Soy paper sushi rolls

Restaurants and manufacturers make delicious sushi rolls by combining and compressing all of the ingredients into a thin sheet of paper. You can recreate some at home if you can't find any sushi restaurants that make soy paper rolls near you. Don’t worry; you don’t need the same heavy weights as they do.

You'll need sushi-grade fish or chopped veggies, imitation crab, and your favorite fillings. You’ll also need to prepare sushi rice.

Filling options include the following:

  • Avocado: fresh avocados cut into thin slices.

  • Shrimp tempura: pre-made versions of shrimp tempura are available in Asian grocery stores

  • Spicy crab: fresh or imitation crab mixed with some spicy mayo.

  • Cucumber: seedless cucumber works best.

  • Carrots: included to add some crunch to the sushi roll.

  • Mango: fresh and ripe mangoes to bring sweetness.

  • Jalapeno peppers: adds spicy flavors 

  • Salmon: preferably the sushi-grade version.

Feel free to combine all of the above options according to your taste. You could even create your own vegan recipes from them. Once you have your fillings and rice prepped, it’s time to assemble.

Slice your soy paper in half. Then, add some sushi rice and press down. Add your fillings and roll. Wet your fingertips and run them along the edges to help the soy paper stick together. Slice the log into rolls and serve!

How Do I Store Soy Paper?

Since soy paper is thin, it can easily be affected by moisture and temperature. Once a soy paper package is open, you'll want to seal it tightly and keep it in a dry, cool environment. You'll need to use an open package of soy paper within two weeks. Otherwise, it won't be fresh.

Packaged, unopened soy paper can stay on the shelf for 3–9 months if stored in a cool and dry environment.

Soy Paper Recipe Ideas

Rolls wrapped in soy paper

Besides using soy paper for sushi, you can also use it for the below recipes:

  • Soy paper spring rolls (fried or unfried): This recipe uses various vegetables, meat, herbs, noodles, and other ingredients. You can top it with peanut sauce made from chili sauce, peanut butter, soy sauce, and hoisin sauce.

  • Poke burrito (like a sushi wrap with soy paper): This is an assembly of ahi tuna poke, spicy salmon poke, and brown sushi rice wrapped in soy paper. 

  • Shrimp dumplings (using soy paper): It’s a mix of shrimp, pork, cabbage, green onion, mirin, sesame oil, and vegetable oil. It’s typically served with soy sauce. 

  • Sweet fruit sushi: This is an imaginative sushi that’s enjoyable as a gluten-free, vegan, and dairy-free dessert. It combines sticky rice, mango, and other fresh fruits to create a delightful recipe that offers natural sweetness without unhealthy ingredients.

  • As a decoration for tea sandwiches (using brightly colored soy paper): Enjoy afternoon tea with colored sandwich wraps filled with chicken, mayonnaise, prawns, or beef. 

Where To Buy Soy Paper For Sushi

Most grocery stores carry soy paper for sushi in the Asian aisle. If you can't find it in your regular grocery store, you'll likely find it in an Asian marketplace or online. Buying soy sushi wraps from an online Asian grocery store like Bokksu Market is the most convenient option. Purchasing grocery items from Bokksu Market allows you to have authentic ingredients delivered right to your door.

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Why You Should Use Soy Paper for Sushi | Bokksu Market


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