Delicious Vietnamese Crab Spring Rolls Recipe

Hey there foodies! Are you looking for an easy and delicious dish to add to your culinary repertoire? Look no further than my Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe! These rolls are packed with flavor and make for an impressive appetizer or light meal.

With their delicate rice paper wrappers and fresh, crispy filling of crab and veggies, these rolls are a popular staple in Vietnamese cuisine. But don’t be intimidated – this recipe is approachable and perfect for beginners.

Not only are these rolls visually stunning with their colorful, vibrant ingredients, but they’re also a healthy option full of nutritious vegetables and lean protein. And the zesty dipping sauce made with lime juice, fish sauce, and cayenne pepper adds a bright burst of flavor that will leave your taste buds dancing.

So why not impress your friends and family with this mouth-watering dish? Whether you’re entertaining guests or just looking to spice up your weeknight meals, these Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab are sure to satisfy.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab
Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab

If you are a fan of Vietnamese cuisine or Asian food in general, you simply must try this recipe for Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab. I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed! Not only does it boast delicate, fresh flavors that will transport your taste buds to Vietnam, but it also offers a unique texture experience that is unlike any other dish out there.

What makes this recipe so special is the mix of crisp veggies, aromatic herbs, and succulent crab meat wrapped in soft and chewy rice paper sheets. The filling is bound together by a flavorful dipping sauce called nuoc cham, made with fish sauce, lime juice, garlic, sugar, and cayenne pepper. You won’t be able to resist dipping your rolls in it!

Whether you’re looking for a refreshing appetizer or an inspired lunch idea, these Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab will not disappoint. They’re perfect for impressing guests at summer parties or satisfying your cravings for healthy yet satisfying meals. So go ahead and indulge yourself in the authentic flavors of Vietnam by making these delightful rolls today!

Ingredient List

 Bursting with fresh flavors and colors
Bursting with fresh flavors and colors

Here are the ingredients that you’ll need to make this Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe:

For the Rolls:

  • 1 pound of crab meat or imitation crab
  • Rice paper sheets, round or square
  • Fresh cilantro stems
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Thinly sliced carrot strips
  • Alfalfa sprouts
  • Red leaf lettuce leaves
  • Fresh asparagus, blanched and cut into thin strips

For the Dipping Sauce (Nuoc Cham):

  • 3 tablespoons of fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup of lime juice
  • Cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Water (optional)

For the Peanut Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup of hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of peanuts, finely ground

Optional Ingredients:

You can add shrimp, softshell crab or tree ear mushrooms to your rolls. You can also use spring roll wrappers instead of rice paper.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect summer appetizer
The perfect summer appetizer

Now that we have gone through the ingredients list let’s get started with making this delicious Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab recipe:

Step 1: Preparing the filling

In a mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of finely chopped imitation crab meat with 1 thinly sliced garlic clove, 2 tablespoons of finely chopped peanuts, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, and 1/4 teaspoon of sugar. Mix the ingredients until they are well combined.

Next, take a carrot and cut it into thin julienne strips. Also, take a few fresh asparagus spears and blanch them in salted boiling water for about 20-30 seconds until they turn bright green. Remove them from the water and transfer them to cold water to stop the cooking process.

Take a few tree ear mushrooms and soak them in warm water for about 10 minutes. Once they soften, drain the water, remove the tough stems, and roughly chop them.

Now, take a large bowl and add all the prepared ingredients along with some fresh cilantro stems, basil leaves, alfalfa sprouts, and torn red leaf lettuce. Mix well.

Step 2: Preparing the rice paper wrappers

Take a shallow plate that is big enough to fit your rice paper wrapper. Fill it with warm water. Take one rice paper sheet and fully submerge it in water until it is soft and pliable. This should take around 5-10 seconds.

Once ready, place the rice wrapper on a damp kitchen towel.

Step 3: Rolling the Soft Rolls

On top of the rice wrapper, add about 2-3 tablespoons of your prepared filling mixture towards the bottom end. Fold both sides towards the center over the filling, then fold up from the end nearest you to enclose everything neatly into a tight roll.

Repeat this process until you run out of filling.

Serve with nuoc cham dipping sauce on the side.

Enjoy your delicious homemade Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab!

Substitutions and Variations

 Soft rolls filled with succulent crab meat
Soft rolls filled with succulent crab meat

Are you looking to switch things up and try a different protein in your Vietnamese soft rolls? Not a fan of crab? No problem! Here are some substitution and variation ideas to make this recipe your own:

1. Shrimp Spring Rolls – Swap out the crab meat for cooked shrimp. Shrimp spring rolls are a classic Vietnamese dish that are just as delicious and refreshing as the crab version.

2. Soft-Shell Crab Rolls – If you’re feeling adventurous, try using soft-shell crabs instead of imitation or square crab meat. Soft-shell crab has a unique texture and flavor that will add an unexpected twist to this classic recipe.

3. Vegetarian Rolls – You can easily make these rolls vegetarian by omitting the crab meat altogether and adding in more vegetables like bell peppers or cucumbers. You can also add in some tofu or tempeh for extra protein.

4. Peanut Sauce – If you’re not a fan of nuoc cham dipping sauce, try making a peanut sauce instead with creamy peanut butter, soy sauce, garlic, lime juice, and sugar. It’s the perfect complement to the fresh flavors of the roll.

5. Different Vegetables – Get creative with your filling and try adding in different vegetables like julienned zucchini, avocado slices, or even roasted sweet potato cubes.

No matter what substitutions or variations you choose to make, be sure to keep the rice paper wrapper and fresh herbs like cilantro and basil as the base of your roll. The combination of flavors and textures is what makes these Vietnamese soft rolls so unique and delicious!

Serving and Pairing

 A dish that will impress your guests
A dish that will impress your guests

Ah, the perfect pairing. It can take a meal from good to great with just one well-matched addition. And these Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab are no exception.

When serving up these delicious rolls, I recommend making up several dipping sauces to provide a variety of flavors. The traditional nuoc cham, made with fish sauce, lime juice, water, sugar, garlic, and cayenne pepper, is an excellent choice for those who enjoy a bit of spice. But for the less adventurous palate, try pairing the rolls with a sweeter peanut sauce.

As for drinks, I suggest keeping it simple with a refreshing glass of iced tea or lemonade. However, if you want to up your game in terms of flavor pairings try serving the rolls alongside Asian-inspired cocktails such as Sake Sangria or Spicy Shochu Cocktail.

In terms of appetizers to accompany this dish, fresh spring rolls and shrimp spring rolls make for a great pairing. And if you’re looking for something more substantial, pan-fried soft-shell crab is an excellent option.

Adding some fresh sliced mango or papaya to your plate will help balance out the saltiness from the fish sauce used in the recipe while also adding an extra layer of sweetness and texture.

Overall, set yourself up for success by playing around with different flavors and textures when it comes to serving your Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab. Experiment and have fun!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A healthy and light option for any occasion
A healthy and light option for any occasion

One of the biggest advantages of Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe is how versatile it is when it comes to preparation and storage. These rolls make wonderful appetizers, snacks or even entrées. They’re perfect for parties, picnics and potluck dinners because they can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to serve.

To make these rolls ahead of time, you simply need to prepare them according to the recipe instructions, then wrap each roll tightly in plastic wrap and store them in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve. The rolls will keep for up to 24 hours in the fridge without any loss of quality.

When it comes time to serve, take the rolls out of the refrigerator and let them sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes before serving. This will allow them to come back to their full flavor potential.

If you have leftovers that you’d like to save for later, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. To reheat your rolls, place them on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 5-10 minutes or until heated through.

One quick note: don’t try to freeze these soft rolls! The rice paper wrappers will become too hard and brittle once frozen, ruining the texture of the rolls. But as long as you follow these simple storage procedures, your Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe will stay fresh and delicious every time!

Tips for Perfect Results

 The crunch of the vegetables adds a nice contrast to the soft roll
The crunch of the vegetables adds a nice contrast to the soft roll

Now that you have all of the ingredients and steps to make Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe, here are some tips to ensure perfect results every time:

1. Soak the Rice Paper Sheets in Warm Water

Before rolling your spring rolls, make sure to soak your rice paper sheets in warm water for about 20 seconds. This will soften them up and make them pliable enough to wrap around your crab and vegetable fillings. Be sure not to over-soak the sheets as they can become too soft and tear easily.

2. Don’t Overfill Your Rolls

While it’s tempting to stuff your soft rolls with as much filling as possible, be careful not to overfill them. Overstuffed rolls can be difficult to roll up and may burst open during cooking. Use a moderate amount of filling and adjust as needed based on the size of your rice paper sheets.

3. Use Fresh Ingredients

Fresh ingredients can make a huge difference in the taste of your Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe. Choose fresh herbs like cilantro and basil, crisp lettuce leaves, and crunchy vegetables like carrots and asparagus for maximum flavor and texture in your rolls.

4. Add Some Heat

For a little extra kick, add a pinch of cayenne pepper or diced chili peppers to your crab mixture. This adds a spicy element that complements the sweetness of the crab and tanginess of the dipping sauce.

5. Serve with Nuoc Cham Dipping Sauce

Don’t forget to whip up a batch of nuoc cham dipping sauce to serve alongside your soft rolls. This traditional Vietnamese dipping sauce combines fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic, and chili peppers for a sweet, tangy, and spicy condiment that pairs perfectly with the flavors of the crab and vegetables.

Follow these tips for perfect results every time you make Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe is an absolute must-have in the book of any food enthusiast. This dish’s unique blend of fresh crab meat, herbs, and vegetables, wrapped in rice paper, is a true testament to the Vietnamese culinary traditions. The crispy rolls bursting with flavors will take your taste buds on a delectable journey like never before.

Don’t shy away from experimenting with variations of this recipe to create your unique version. With a wide range of possible substitutes and serving options provided in this article, you can let your creativity soar and come up with something truly unique.

But above all, I highly recommend using fresh ingredients and following the instructions to the letter for the perfect results. Remember to also use nuoc cham or peanut sauce as dipping sauce.

With these tips and tricks under your belt, you are ready to delve into the world of Vietnamese cuisine and bring its vibrant flavors to your dining table. I hope this article has been informative and useful. Happy cooking!

Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab

Vietnamese Soft Rolls with Crab Recipe

A very refreshing roll, much like an updated goi cuon, with a choice of two Asian dipping sauces. Served as an appetizer, these rolls make 16, but as a part of a main course, these serve 4 as part of an Asian meal. The rice papers used in this recipe may be found at high end grocers or Oriental markets and are called "Banh Trang".
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Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Vietnamese
Servings 16 soft rolls
Calories 75.1 kcal


  • 1 lb cooked crabmeat (imitation crab may also be used)
  • 1 lb fresh asparagus, ends snapped,woody stems trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 head red leaf lettuce
  • 1 cup alfalfa sprout
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaf
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro stem
  • 1 package rice paper sheet (banh trang)
  • paper towels

For the Hoisin Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • sesame oil, few drops
  • 1 tablespoon chopped peanuts

For the Nuoc Cham Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce (nam pla)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 lime, juice of


  • Mix together ingredients for the nuoc cham sauce in a small bowl and set aside.
  • Mix together all ingredients for Hoisin dipping sauce EXCEPT chopped peanuts in a small saucepan.
  • Bring mixture to a boil; then reduce heat and simmer for five minutes.
  • Cool Hoisin dipping sauce to room temperature, garnish with chopped peanuts, and set aside.
  • Het oil in a large skillet, add asparagus and cook for one minute.
  • Add water and cook, covered, for three minutes more; remove from heat.
  • Note: crab is meant to be chilled and asparagus is meant to be cooled down to room temperature when building rolls.
  • Fill a large bowl with warm water (deep enough to submerge a rice paper).
  • Dip one rice paper at a time while building soft rolls, just till it becomes pliable; remove from water and blot on paper toweling.
  • To build roll, on softened rice paper, place a lettuce leaf with margins on all sides (except top is ok).
  • Top lettuce with one ounce of crab, one piece of asparagus, a couple of pinches of alfalfa sprouts and shredded carrots, a fresh basil leaf, and a couple of cilantro sprigs.
  • Fold bottom edge of rice paper up over filling, then wrap right side over filling and roll up tightly into a bundle.
  • Place on serving platter covered with a damp paper towel while preparing remaining rolls.
  • Serve at once with dipping sauces and hot chile paste (sambal oelek), if desired.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 1969gCalories: 75.1kcalCarbohydrates: 8.1gProtein: 7.3gFat: 1.7gSaturated Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 12.1mgSodium: 840mgFiber: 1.5gSugar: 4.7g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Asian, Crab, Spicy, Vegetable, Vietnamese
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