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Make super quick, easy, and delicious gluten-free dumplings with rice paper wrappers! These crispy rice paper dumplings are crisp outside, slightly chewy, and packed with a delicious vegetable, tofu, and sushi rice filling. Pan-seared and air-fried methods included!

top shot of rice paper dumplings

Rice paper rolls, veggie gyoza, and sushi are 3 of my favorite tasty appetizers. Now this TikTok-inspired crispy rice paper dumpling recipe allows me to combine all three into something new and utterly addictive… what’s not to love?!

veggie filled rice paper sushi dumplings on plate

Super Crispy Rice Paper Dumplings (Pan-Seared or Air Fried)

These rice paper sushi dumplings combine an umami-rich marinated tofu, nori, sushi rice, and fresh vegetable filling, encased in a rice paper wrapper, and pan-fried until crispy (like dumplings). Combined with a simple dipping sauce, they make for a wonderfully satisfying appetizer, snack, or light main.

As much as I love gyoza, there’s definitely a learning curve to all those fancy pleats and folds, and my gluten-free spring rolls can take time, too, when I’m in a rush. But luckily, now, with these rice paper wraps, you can enjoy delicious dumplings with super simple assembly and in just about 30 minutes. They’re naturally gluten-free and vegan, too.

The texture is where these crispy rice paper rolls really shine, though. When cooked, the rice paper wrapper becomes crisp outside but maintains a chewiness inside. Combined with the filling (did I mention that is fairly adaptable, too?), these sushi dumplings are truly satisfying!

crispy rice paper dumplings on small plate

The Ingredients

  • Rice paper: I used medium rice paper wrappers. If you can only find small ones, you may need to use more or will end up with leftover filling.
  • Nori: Nori sheets, quartered, will help to add a wonderful depth of flavor and umami to the filling and help complete the sushi-like filling.
  • Tofu: Use extra-firm tofu or tempeh to add protein. For a soy-free option, you could use my chickpea tofu, adding 1- 1 ½ tsp of agar powder for firmer tofu.
  • Vegetables: You can use a selection of thinly sliced shredded veggies. I used:
    1. Carrot
    2. Zucchini (or cucumber)
    3. Red cabbage (though green cabbage would also work)
  • Sushi rice: You’ll need 2 ½ cups of cooked sushi rice (or about 1 cup dry). Alternatively, you could use rice noodles.
  • Sesame oil: To fry the rice paper dumplings and add a lovely toasty, nutty flavor. Neutral-flavored cooking oil will work too, but be less flavorful.
  • Sesame seeds: To create a delicious, crunchy crust on top of the crispy rice paper rolls. Omit it if preferred.

The Tofu Glaze:

  • Soy sauce: I use tamari or coconut aminos, as they’re gluten-free. However, regular soy sauce works too.
  • Maple syrup: Or a similar liquid sweetener like agave or brown rice syrup.
  • Lemon juice: Alternatively, rice vinegar would work fine, too.
  • Seasonings: This glaze uses a simple combination of garlic and ginger powder to add depth of flavor and classic Asian flavors. Fresh garlic and ginger would work, too.

Feel free to make extra as a delicious dumpling dipping sauce, too.

ingredients for crispy rolls

Recipe Variations and Add-ins

  • Noodles: Swap the rice for noodles – plain (like glass noodles/ vermicelli) or stir-fried.
  • Other vegetables: Like bean sprouts, shredded broccoli, edamame, shiitake mushrooms (or other types, sautéed to remove excess liquid), bell peppers, etc.
  • Scallions: (green onions) to garnish.
  • Spice: Optionally add some red pepper flakes/hot sauce to the filling/ tofu marinade or use a spicy dumpling sauce.
  • A lighter filling: Ditch the rice, double the vegetables, and lightly sauté them until tender-crisp—similar to my Asian cabbage roll filling. Add salt and black pepper if preferred.

Please read the recipe card below for the full ingredients listmeasurements, complete recipe method, and nutritional information.

horizontal shot of crispy sushi summer rolls

How to Make Pan-Seared or Air Fryer Rice Paper Dumplings

Prepare the Fillings

  • First, soak the sushi rice in water, drain it, then cook it with fresh water according to its package instructions.
  • Meanwhile, thinly slice the carrot and zucchini into matchstick pieces (or use the julienne blade on a mandoline), and shred the cabbage into thin strips (slice it in half and remove the tough core first). Also, cut the nori sheets into quarters.

sushi rice in pan and sliced veggies on wooden board

  • Then, combine all the tofu glaze ingredients in a separate bowl and slice the tofu into even-sized rectangles.
  • In a large skillet, heat a swirl of the oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the tofu and pan-fry it until golden brown on every side.

Don’t move it around too much while it cooks to get a nice crispy sear. 2-3 minutes per side should work great.

  • Pour the tofu sauce into the pan and continue to cook, occasionally stirring, until the sauce thickens.

tofu marinade and chickpea tofu in skillet

Assemble the Rice Paper Wraps

  • To assemble the rice paper dumplings, first -working one at a time – soak a rice paper sheet in cold water for 3-4 seconds, then transfer it to a slightly damp (to stop it from sticking) wooden board.

dipping rice paper in a bowl of water

  • Place one of the cut nori pieces into the center of the rice paper. Top that with some cooked sushi rice, pan-fried tofu, and, finally, the veggies on top.
  • To seal the dumpling, fold all the corners in over the filling into the center, sealing it with your fingers. Then dip the flat surface of the dumpling into a plate of sesame seeds for a seedy crust.

I find it easiest to fold the wrap one side at a time. I start with the bottom-half, folding it up to cover the filling, then I fold the top half over the filling and finally the right and left sides.

  • Repeat these steps with the remaining rice paper and filling.

assembling rice paper sushi dumpling

Cook the Dumplings

  • Clean out the skillet and add a little more oil, heating it over medium heat.
  • Once hot, add a single layer of rice paper dumplings (not touching) and pan-fry them on all sides for about 3-4 minutes, or until golden and crispy.

For air fryer rice paper dumplings: Cook in batches, placing a single layer of dumpling in the bottom of your air fryer basket and cooking for 8-10 minutes at 360F/182C (up to 12 minutes for large dumplings/super crispy results), flipping them over halfway.

Serve the crispy rice paper dumplings immediately with the dip of your choice. I like to either double the tofu marinade ingredients for a dipping sauce, use Chinese garlic sauce, or even sometimes homemade hoisin sauce. Then, enjoy!

pan-fried rice paper dumplings in skillet

How to Make Ahead and Store

Make ahead: You can prepare the various fillings 2-3 days in advance (though sushi rice is best consumed fresh or within a day) and store them in separate airtight containers. Then, when ready, assemble and cook.

Store: Rice paper dumplings don’t store particularly well, as their crispy texture is best immediately after cooking. However, if you end up with any leftovers, they’ll store in an airtight container in the fridge for a day.

I don’t recommend freezing them, as I imagine the wrapper’s texture will become unpleasant upon thawing. However, I haven’t tried to freeze them, though.

Reheat: I recommend pan-frying the dumpling with a little more oil to bring back the crispiness. Alternatively, reheat them in the oven or air fryer at 350F/175C until warm and crispy.

close-up of gluten-free crispy rice paper dumplings

Recipe Notes

  • To save time: If you have one, use a mandoline on the julienne setting, a handheld vegetable shredder, or a food processor shredding disk to quickly prepare the vegetables. Save even more time using prepared coleslaw mix.
  • Only dip for 3-4 seconds: And use cold water to do so. Over-dipping the rice paper in water can make them overly soggy and really fiddly to work with. They’ll continue to soak up water even after removing them from the water, so 3-4 seconds is more than enough.
  • A damp surface helps: Once wet, rice paper becomes sticky, so it’s best to work on a damp cutting board or a damp kitchen towel to stop the wrappers from sticking/ tearing.
  • Don’t overfill the dumplings: Otherwise, the rice paper may tear.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan: If the dumplings are touching in the pan, they will stick to one another and can cause tearing. It’s best to cook them with space in between.
  • For larger dumplings: You could use two sheets per dumpling. This can also help to avoid tearing in the crispy summer rolls. However, 2-layered versions will also be chewier because of the double layer.

crispy rice paper dumplings on white plate with dip

More Simple Vegan Appetizers

If you try this crispy rice paper dumpling recipe, I’d love a comment and ★★★★★ recipe rating below. Also, please don’t forget to tag me in re-creations on Instagram or Facebook with @elavegan and #elavegan—I love seeing them.

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top shot of rice paper dumplings

Rice Paper Dumplings

Make super quick, easy, and delicious gluten-free dumplings with rice paper wrappers! These crispy rice paper dumplings are crisp outside, slightly chewy, and packed with a delicious vegetable, tofu, and sushi rice filling. Pan-seared and air-fried methods included!

Prep Time 20 mins

Cook Time 15 mins

Total Time 35 mins

Course Appetizer, Dinner, lunch

Cuisine Asian

Servings 8 dumplings

Calories 136 kcal

Ingredients 

  • 8 medium sheets of rice paper
  • 2 nori sheets quartered
  • 16 oz (453 g) extra firm tofu (see notes)
  • 1 (120 g) carrot thinly sliced
  • ½ (120 g) zucchini or cucumber, thinly sliced
  • ¼ of a small (120 g) red cabbage thinly sliced
  • cups (450 g) cooked sushi rice (about 1 cup dry)
  • Sesame oil to fry
  • Sesame seeds

Instructions 

Prepare the Fillings

  • First, soak the sushi rice in water, drain it, then cook it with fresh water according to its package instructions.

  • Meanwhile, thinly slice the carrot and zucchini into matchstick pieces (or use the julienne blade on a mandoline), and shred the cabbage into thin strips (slice it in half and remove the tough core first). Also, cut the nori sheets into quarters.

  • Then, combine all the tofu glaze ingredients in a separate bowl and slice the tofu into even-sized rectangles.

  • In a large skillet, heat a swirl of the oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the tofu and pan-fry it until golden brown on every side.Don’t move it around too much while it cooks to get a nice crispy sear. 2-3 minutes per side should work great.
  • Pour the tofu sauce into the pan and continue to cook, occasionally stirring, until the sauce thickens.

Assemble the Rice Paper Wraps

  • To assemble the rice paper dumplings, first -working one at a time – soak a rice paper sheet in cold water for 3-4 seconds, then transfer it to a slightly damp (to stop it from sticking) wooden board.

  • Place one of the cut nori pieces into the center of the rice paper. Top that with some cooked sushi rice, pan-fried tofu, and, finally, the veggies on top.

  • To seal the dumpling, fold all the corners in over the filling into the center, sealing it with your fingers. Then dip the flat surface of the dumpling into a plate of sesame seeds for a seedy crust.I find it easiest to fold the wrap one side at a time. I start with the bottom-half, folding it up to cover the filling, then I fold the top half over the filling and finally the right and left sides.
  • Repeat these steps with the remaining rice paper and filling.

Cook the Dumplings

  • Clean out the skillet and add a little more oil, heating it over medium heat.

  • Once hot, add a single layer of rice paper dumplings (not touching) and pan-fry them on all sides for about 3-4 minutes, or until golden and crispy.

  • For air fryer rice paper dumplings: Cook in batches, placing a single layer of dumpling in the bottom of your air fryer basket and cooking for 8-10 minutes at 360F/182C (up to 12 minutes for large dumplings/super crispy results), flipping them over halfway.

  • Serve the crispy dumplings immediately with the dip of your choice. I like to either double the tofu marinade ingredients for a dipping sauce, use Chinese Garlic Sauce, or even sometimes Hoisin Sauce. Then, enjoy!

Notes

  • Tofu: For a soy-free option, you could use my Chickpea Tofu, adding 1-1 ½ tsp of agar powder for firmer tofu.

Nutrition Facts

Rice Paper Dumplings

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

Nutrition information is an estimate and has been calculated automatically

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