How-to: Homemade Summer Rolls

Summer rolls (aka rainbow rolls) are one of our favorite base meals for spring and summer! There are so many different ways you can make them, they're quick and easy and the kids love putting together their favorite combos. They make a full meal when you pair them with my favorite best ever healthy peanut sauce (YUM).

They're surprisingly easy to make, once you get a hang of handling the rice paper wraps; and best of all, you can make dozens of different combinations (see below for some of my favorite filling ideas!).

Here's how to make them:

  1. Gather your filling ingredients (see below for ideas).

  2. Start with rice paper wraps (sometimes called spring roll wrappers).

  3. Boil water and pour into a large bowl. Let cool just slightly and add wrap, one at a time. You just want it to soften- this doesn't take more than a few seconds! Using a flat spatula, carefully remove and place on a flat surface (do not put on top of paper towel or something that could stick to it- they are very sticky!)

  4. Place desired filling in the center.

  5. Fold the wrap up and over the filling in the center (parallell to filling).

  6. Fold in one side, and then the other. Roll into a tube. Repeat until you run out of filling or wraps! The kids love to help me with this!

Filling Ideas:

We love a mix of fresh and cooked filling. Some traditional filling options are:

  • Thinly sliced carrots

  • Thinly sliced cucumber

  • Shredded cabbage (I'll often use a slaw mix to make this even easier!)

  • Cilantro

  • Thai Basil

  • Thin rice noodles (cellophane noodles)

  • Sliced Mango

  • Lettuce

  • Thinly sliced or grated Radish

  • Sliced green onion (scallion)

  • Shrimp (cooked)

  • Tofu (baked, pan-seared or fried)

Vegetables are sometimes tossed in a mixture of rice vinegar, sugar and fish sauce- I like to keep them fresh, but lightly marinating them is always an option!

A few of our favorite combinations:

  • Cucumber, carrot, cabbage, cilantro and shrimp

  • Cucumber, avocado, mango and shrimp

  • Crispy tofu, cilantro, carrot and daikon radish

  • Salmon, avocado and red cabbage

But really- the sky is the limit, here!

Just don't forget the peanut sauce for dipping!

Kristin Dovbniak


I'm Kris! Founder of Healthy Balanced Mama, I'm a holistic health coach, certified intuitive eating counselor, trained chef, and mama of two, and I'm here to guide busy moms like you in stressing less and finding freedom with food through balanced eating and simplified routines around meal planning, meal prep, grocery shopping and cooking with confidence.


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