These delicious Vietnamese spring rolls with tofu and avocado are naturally gluten-free and vegan. What is better than fresh, exotic, and fruity spring rolls? Nothing. Except maybe the combination of tofu, avocado, and fresh mango slices in a spring roll. The semi-translucent skin on these stunning Vietnamese spring rolls tantalizes you with the brightly colored fresh vegetables within.
A quick and easy Vietnamese spring rolls
When serving Vietnamese spring rolls, it is best to serve them rolled in toasted seeds or with a side salad and a peanut butter dipping sauce. Arrange the rolls on salad greens or a slightly moist plate; the rice paper tends to be sticky as it dries out.
The trick to getting perfect rolls is to prep the ingredients before rolling. These are a fantastic dinner party meal as guests can get involved with building their summer rolls. Set bowls of prepped and chopped ingredients out on the worktop, with two or three large bowls of warm water to soak the rice paper sheets.
Vietnamese Spring Rolls Recipe with Tofu & Avocado
- 1/2 red pepper, julienned
- 1 medium-sized avocado, sliced
- 1/2 a cucumber, sliced into thin strips
- 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage
- 1/4 cup sliced fresh basil leaves
- Large lettuce leaves
- 2 cups of thin rice noodles, cooked
- Rice paper rounds
- To serve: Toasted sesame seeds, sprouts, fresh cilantro, and dipping sauces
For the tofu:
- 1 lb firm tofu, sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons of freshly grated ginger
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 2-4 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons water
The tofu: Slice the tofu into strips and place into a tofu press, or press the tofu under a cutting board weighted down. Press the tofu for 15 minutes. Drain the excess liquid off and remove it from the press. In a large ziplock bag, pour in the liquid smoke, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and tofu.
Shake the bag and rub to coat the tofu with the marinade thoroughly; add a dash of water if the mixture is not covering the tofu. Set the bag aside in the fridge to marinate for 30 minutes.
Once marinated, fry the tofu strips in sesame oil on medium-high heat. Keep the leftover liquid in the bag, mix the cornstarch into the liquid and cold water. Pour the cornstarch and marinade mixture into the pan, stir to coat the tofu pieces. Cook until the glaze thickens and coats each slice of tofu. Allow your tofu to cool before adding to the rolls.
The noodles: Prepare the rice noodles according to instructions; most brands would recommend cooking in hot water for 6-8 minutes or until al dente. Rinse the cooked noodles with cold water and set them aside.
Place all the prepped and chopped veggies in bowls in front of you. Prep a cutting board in front of you with a clean and slightly damp tea towel. Wet the rice paper sheet in a bowl of cool to slightly warm water. The rice paper will become jelly-like, remove from the water, and place flat on the damp tea towel.
Take a lettuce leaf and roll up some veggies, and cooked rice noodles inside. Do not over stuff. Place the lettuce roll onto the rice paper, tuck the rice paper’s end up, and roll once. Arrange slices of avocado and tofu on top of the rolled section of rice paper. Tuck the sides of the wrap in and continue rolling until you have a perfect spring roll.
To serve: Sprinkle with sprouts, chopped cilantro leaves, sesame seeds, or slice in half and serve with a dipping sauce.
Peanut dipping sauce
This sauce is non-negotiable when it comes to serving spring rolls. It is the perfect level of creamy, tangy and without a doubt completes your meal!
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 6 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sriracha
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 1 lime, juiced
- Liquid coconut oil to thin if needed
- To serve – toasted peanuts or cashew nibs.
Mix all the ingredients, add a drizzle of coconut oil to the peanut butter to thin if required. Serve in a bowl with crushed and toasted nuts on top.
Use the peanut butter sauce over noodles or stir-fried tofu (if there are any leftovers)
Alternative tofu recipes
Tofu is versatile enough to be made in a multitude of ways. Try these variations for a platter of spring rolls.
Try battering your tofu in a light mixture of flour, spices, and soy sauce. The batter should be thick enough to coat the tofu. Drop the slices into hot oil and fry until crispy. Blot the tofu with paper towels and allow it to cool before rolling into the wraps.
Chili lime tofu:
Marinate your tofu in a sublime chili and lime marinade. Mix the juice of 1 lime, 3 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon mirin, 1 tablespoon sugar, chopped fresh cilantro leaves, and a splash of coconut cream. Marinate extra firm tofu in the mixture for 24 hours before frying.
Thai red curry tofu slices:
Marinade your tofu in a Thai red curry paste that has been thinned with a little coconut cream—opt-out of using fish sauce in your curry paste for a vegan option.
The secret ingredient to perfect rolls
The texture is the secret ingredient to picture-perfect Vietnamese spring rolls that taste amazing every time! The beauty of a spring roll is that it hits just about every spot. Crunchy, soft, creamy, and chewy. The flavors range from earthy, tangy, and sweet depending on how you prepare your tofu, adding another flavor layer to your meal.
These exotic and fresh rice paper rolls are wrapped with a chewy rice paper wrap; the almost see-through wrap is plain and bland. This means that you can customize the rolls to match your cravings. Dinner guests can pick and choose their fillings, building different flavors and textures. The variety of dipping sauces are endless. There are no limitations from soft creamy steamed tofu in a lemon herb-based marinade or crunchy battered and deep-fried tofu slices.