How to Make Vietnamese Spring Rolls (super lean recipe)

I always looked forward to spring rolls night as a kid. The effort that it took to stuff lettuce, vermicelli, and tender beef slices in each and every one of my hand-dipped rice papers, made the little creation so delightfully satisfying. Once dipped in my mother’s savory hoisin/peanut butter sauce, it was like perfection in my mouth!

As I got older, I began to eliminate a few ingredients from my rolls in hopes of eating more while actually eating less (less calories that is). Not that it was ever UN-healthy, but I wanted to see how lean I could make the dish without sacrificing taste.

The result? SUCCESS! You can exchange the beef for chicken, take out the vermicelli from the rolls, and the peanut butter from the sauce and you’ve got 1 spring roll for 65 calories! 65!? Yes, and let’s say you eat 5 rolls in a meal – that’s only 325 calories. 350-400 calories with dipping sauce. And you feel FULL.

Here’s the breakdown:

1 rice paper = 30 calories
Lettuce = 5 calories
Boiled chicken breast (.5 oz) = 30 calories
Some dipping sauce = 5-10 calories (Well, 10 if you really drench your roll)

Spring roll w/ sauce = only 70-75 calories

Ingredients:

For the roll:

  • fresh lettuce
  • tomatoes (optional)
  • skinless, boneless chicken
  • rice paper* (banh trang)

For the sauce:

  • hoisin sauce*
  • sriracha chili sauce* (if you like it spicy)
  • a lemon or lime
  • some water

*Can be found at Asian food markets

Directions:


1. Grab your lettuce and tomatoes and chop them into thin medium-thin slices.

2. Take your chicken and drop it in a boiling pot of water until fully cooked through. When ready, drain and let cool before chopping.

3. For the sauce, squeeze about 5 tablespoons of hoisin into a small bowl. Add half a lemon z(or a whole lime). Add 1 tablespoon of water. Mix and squeeze some sriracha in for desired spiciness. The sauce should taste sweet, spicy, and tangy.

4. Now for the fun part. Prepare a large shallow dish filled with water. Grab your rice paper and wet it on both sides, all the way around. Then place it on your plate – the paper will still be firm, but no worries, within 15-20 seconds it will be flexible, like magic!

5. Think burrito. Stuff your rice paper with chicken, lettuce, and tomatoes and wrap away! The paper is thin so be careful to not tug too hard or else the skin will break. You’ll get used to it.

6. Dip it! Eat it! Yum!

Keep in mind that this is totally not the “traditional” Vietnamese Spring roll, just my take on it! Enjoy! And eat guiltlessly.

Love,
Cassey

Comments

  1. Chrissy says:

    Hey Cassey!
    Just wondering if I could boil some zero noodles and use that instead of vermicelli because I’m soo used to eating spring rolls with noodles :)

  2. I have made this as a salad with rice noodles. I used the dipping sauce as a dressing! It was great and so easy.

  3. I’m filipino and still love my kind of food. I just want to share my versi on. I actually stuff mine w/ half cook bean sprout, carrots and green beans by stirfrying it with just a spray of of olive oil w/ some garlic a & onion . My sauce is just a liitle bit of hoisin and lime w/ crushed peanuts. Yummy, and oh I almost forgot my lettuce.

  4. will try have some rice paper laying around

  5. What about some thinly sliced red or yellow bell pepper? I’m not a huge fan of tomatoes.. I’m actually asking because you had posted to calorie count for the lettuce (to which I have never paid attention before) and I know that bell peppers tend to be sweeter/more sugar/maybe more calories? One more question – I really like the nutty taste of the peanut butter so, instead of putting that back into the sauce, what do you think about a small sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds into the rolls themselves?

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  1. […] been crazy about making these ever since I saw Blogilate’s post on making these rolls. Of course, I have seen them on other websites as well, but the video […]

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