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This Sushi Bowl recipe is the answer for anyone who loves sushi but doesn’t want to fuss with rolling their own sushi at home. Ditch that rolling mat and layer seasoned sushi rice with imitation crab, crunchy veggies, nori, creamy avocado, and all your fave sushi toppings!

crab sushi bowl with chopsticks

Why You’ll Love This Easy Sushi Bowl Recipe

  • A Feast for the Eyes—and the Stomach. If you like your meals poppin’ with color and texture, you’ll appreciate this recipe for sushi bowls. (And if you like to share pics of your meals on the socials, this is a good one!) They’re not just here to look pretty, though, because they’re also delish, with all the sushi ingredients you love.
  • The Easiest Way to Enjoy Sushi. If every sushi roll you try to make at home is lopsided, loose, and falls apart as soon as you cut it: I see you, I am you. Easy sushi bowls are the way to go, friend.
  • Highly Customizable. Just like Burrito Bowls, Buddha Bowls, and any other meal bowl, homemade sushi bowls are made for customization. I share some of my favorite ideas below, but this is a recipe where you really can’t go wrong.
sushi bowl with chopsticks laid on top

How to Make a Sushi Bowl

The Ingredients

Sushi Rice

  • Sushi or Calrose Rice. Sushi rice is a short-grain rice that’s stickier than long-grain options. Because we don’t necessarily need the rice to be sticky since we’re not making rolls, you can substitute another rice you have on hand, but the dish will lose some of its sushi-ness with a different type of rice.
  • Rice Vinegar. Use unseasoned; if you only have seasoned on hand, omit the sugar and salt for the sushi rice.
  • Granulated Sugar. To balance the vinegar and give the rice a hint of sweetness. You can leave it out, but it won’t taste like sushi rice!

Bowls

  • Flake-Style Imitation Crab. Real crab meat is pricy, but imitation crab meat (which is made from fish) is delish and affordable. I also use it in Crab Salad.
  • Cucumbers. I like to use Persian or English cucumbers. If you want to use a garden cucumber, halve it lengthwise and scoop the seeds out.
  • Carrots. Shred the carrots yourself or buy a bag of pre-shredded carrots.
  • Nori. You can buy nori sheets or seaweed snacks.
  • Avocados. Creamy, dreamy, and fab in sushi (and sushi bowls).
  • Optional Toppings. Sesame seeds, pickled ginger, and soy sauce.

Sriracha “Mayo”

  • Plain Greek Yogurt. My favorite swap for mayo. If you’re a purist, you can use mayo. If you’re an extra-super purist, use Kewpie mayo.
  • Sriracha. A little heat to keep things interesting.

The Directions

overhead view of sushi rice in pot
  1. Cook the Rice. Bring it to a boil with the water, then cover and simmer until it’s tender.
vinegar mixture for sushi rice in measuring cup
  1. Make the Rice Seasoning. Microwave the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt until the sugar and salt dissolve.
pouring vinegar mixture into bowl of sushi rice
  1. Season the Rice. Transfer the rice to a bowl and fold in half of the vinegar mixture, then add the rest.
sriracha added to bowl of greek yogurt
  1. Make the Spicy Mayo. Stir together the yogurt and sriracha.
diced imitation crab, sliced cucumbers, and diced avocado on cutting board
  1. Prep the Toppings. Dice the crab and avocado and slice the cukes.
sushi rice in bowl
  1. Start Assembling. Add the rice to the bowls.
homemade sushi bowl
  1. Finish. Add the toppings to the sushi bowls and drizzle with the sriracha mayo. ENJOY!

Sushi Bowl Variations

  • Salmon Sushi Bowls. Use sushi-grade salmon, or you can cook the salmon a la these Salmon Bowls. Air Fryer Salmon Bites would also be excellent.
  • Tuna Sushi Bowls. Again, you’ll want sushi-grade tuna if you’re using it raw. Canned tuna will work too.
  • Vegan Sushi Bowls. Use your favorite plant-based yogurt for the mayo. Replace the imitation crab with Crispy Tofu, Baked Tofu, Baked Sweet Potato slices, or extra veggies.
crab sushi bowl with spicy mayo

Meal Prep Tip

Sushi bowls make a fabulous work-week lunch.

  • Prep the rice and the toppings (minus the avocado) in advance and store them separately. If you have lunch containers with separate compartments (like these), that works great!
  • Put everything together just before serving (this will make sure your avocado doesn’t turn brown).

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Keep the Avocado’s Ripeness in Mind. If you’re making sushi bowls the same day you’re shopping, buy a ripe avocado. If you’re making them later in the week, buy an unripe avocado. Using these sushi bowls as a meal prep lunch? Then you might want to skip the avocado or just dice it up fresh before serving.
  • Make Perfect Sushi Rice. Use the tips in my How to Cook White Rice post to make sure it’s not soggy or crunchy. We want our sushi rice juuuust right!
chopsticks picking up crab from sushi bowl

Sushi Bowl

5 from 2 votes
With crisp veggies, sushi rice, and imitation crab (or your fave seafood), this sushi bowl recipe is the easiest way to enjoy sushi at home!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes

Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients
  

For the Sushi Rice:

For the Bowls:

  • 1 pound flake-style imitation crab diced
  • 4 Persian cucumbers thinly sliced or 1 English cucumber, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 2 carrots shredded (about 1 cup)
  • 2 to 4 nori sheets or seaweed snacks thinly sliced or crumbled (the amount you need depends on their size and how much you like the flavor—I love one small sheet per bowl)
  • 2 small avocados diced
  • Sesame seeds optional
  • Pickled ginger optional
  • Soy sauce optional

For the Sriracha “Mayo”:

  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt or mayo
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons sriracha

Instructions
 

  • Cook the sushi rice: Rinse the rice well with cold water; use a sieve and really swish it around. Transfer to a medium saucepan and add the water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat, cover, and let simmer until the rice is tender, about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and let sit covered for 5 additional minutes.
  • Combine the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup with a spout (heat in a small saucepan if you prefer not to microwave). Microwave for 30 seconds, then stir. Continue to microwave in 30 second bursts and stir until the sugar and salt dissolve (or simmer for about 2 minutes on the stove, stirring until it dissolves). Transfer the cooked rice to a large bowl and pour half of the vinegar mixture over the top. Fold gently to combine. Repeat with the remaining vinegar mixture. Let cool.
  • While the rice cools, prep all of your toppings. Stir together the Greek yogurt (or mayo) and 1 tablespoon sriracha; taste and add more sriracha if you’d like it spicier.
  • To assemble the bowls, place a scoop of rice in the bottom of a bowl. Top with the crab, cucumber, carrot, nori, and avocado. Add the sesame seeds and pickled ginger (if desired). Drizzle with the sriracha “mayo.” Enjoy with soy sauce to taste.

Notes

TO STORE: Store leftover sushi rice, veggies, imitation crab, and sauce separately in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. If you’re storing leftovers that you’ve already assembled, they’ll last in the fridge for a day or two.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 4)Calories: 673kcalCarbohydrates: 116gProtein: 17gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 13mgPotassium: 772mgFiber: 12gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 5372IUVitamin C: 16mgCalcium: 66mgIron: 2mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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  1. I made this for a friend and we loved it! I didn’t realize I was out of rice vinegar so my rice was plain but it was still good! I made it with tofu instead of crab and I added crispy fried onions for some crunch. I will definitely be making this again!5 stars

  2. My partner and I adore this recipe. Lately we’ve been substituting imitation crab with a can of tuna. We’ll mix some of the sriracha mayo with the tuna and we’ve found it to be a more filling and tastier substitution.5 stars