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These Summer Rainbow Rolls Are Salad in a Gorgeous Wrap

These beauties are like burritos, but so much better for you.

Not feeling a salad today? Even wellness chef Charles Chen can sympathize. When he wants to get a nice portion of fresh veggies but isn’t in the mood for a salad, he whips up these classic veggie summer rolls.

Chen is a chef, entrepreneur, and vivacious host of the online cooking show Kitchen Hustle, where “hustlers learn how to fuel their passions.” Throughout his childhood, Chen struggled with his health. As a teenager, he was prediabetic and a self-proclaimed couch potato who had no energy or motivation to make healthier choices. After hitting what he calls his “rock bottom moment,” he reclaimed his health, lost more than 100 pounds, and now helps others fuel their “bodies, mind, and spirit starting in the kitchen.”

A summer roll (not to be confused with the crunchy, deep-fried spring roll) is a fresh roll rolled in transparent rice paper and filled with julienned veggies (here’s how to julienne carrots, cucumber, and other vegetables), herbs, and often some type of protein. Chen uses tofu in this recipe, but you can also use pre-cooked and chilled shrimp or chicken.

In fact, you can put just about anything in a summer roll. Not a fan of bell peppers or cucumbers? Try red cabbage, slivered beets, asparagus, or sliced radishes. Anti cilantro? Try basil or mint. Picky about vegetables? Get fruity instead with sliced mango or papaya. Not a fan of scallions? Add flavor with fresh ginger or with a fun sauce, like a Thai peanut sauce or Chen’s basil cream sauce.

And yes, avocado fans. You can definitely throw in some avocado.

Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/2 a red bell pepper, julienned
  • 1/2 a long English cucumber, julienned
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced on a diagonal
  • 5 rice paper wrappers (22 cm papers)
  • 1 (14 oz) package of tofu
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and julienned
  • 1 cup of baby spinach, chiffonaded
  • reduced-sodium soy sauce, for serving

Instructions

Soak a single rice paper in the hot water until it's completely soft and flexible. This could take anywhere from a few seconds to more than 30 seconds depending on the brand/type of rice paper. I have best results soaking them for about 30 seconds. Gently shake the excess water from the rice paper, lay it straight out onto your work space. Let it sit for about 30 seconds to absorb any excess water, The papers won't stick together properly if they're really wet. Sprinkle some sesame seeds in the center of the wrap. Lay the julienned vegetables down in the middle of the wrap. Use approximately ⅕ of each ingredients per wrap (use a little more or a little less depending on how many wraps you want to make and how big you'd like them to be.) I like to fill mine with a little bit of spinach, lots of cucumber and carrot, a little red pepper, and lots of tofu topped with a sprinkle of green onion. Try to keep the fillings laid neatly, making sure to leave ample room on each side to easily fold the wrap.
Charles Chen

This video features Charles Chen. Charles Chen is a chef, host, and wellness expert based in Los Angeles and New York City.

Duration: 3:07. Last Updated On: Nov. 8, 2017, 6:14 p.m.
Reviewed by: Dr. Preeti Parikh, . Review date: Sept. 12, 2017

Nutrition Information

Recipe Serves 5
Nutrition Information Based on a Single Serving
Amount Per Serving% Daily Value*
Calories
212
10% Complete
10%
Fat
7g
10% Complete
10%
Cholesterol
0mg
0% Complete
0%
Sodium
30mg
1% Complete
1%
Carbohydrates
14g
14% Complete
14%
Fiber
13g
52% Complete
52%
Sugar
3g
6% Complete
6%
Protein
12g
23% Complete
23%
*Percent Daily Value are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dietary Needs

Dairy Free
Dairy Free
Diabetes Diet
Diabetes Diet
Gluten Free
Gluten Free
Heart Healthy
Heart Healthy
Lower Carbohydrate
Lower Carbohydrate
Lower Cholesterol
Lower Cholesterol
Lower Sodium
Lower Sodium
Lower Sugar
Lower Sugar
Vegan
Vegan
Vegetarian
Vegetarian
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