Simple Sushi Recipe: the Spicy Crab Sushi Roll 

The Spicy Crab sushi roll is a fantastic recipe for people who are just starting to learn how to roll sushi at home. It’s simple to work with, simple to make, and simply satisfying.

During my early days of training to become a sushi chef, this recipe was key to developing my fundamental rolling technique. The simplicity of the ingredients ensured that I could work on getting consistent results without having to focus on rolling more difficult ingredients. If you are new to rolling sushi, then you have come across the best recipe to start with!

For this tutorial, you will need:

  • 2 Cups of Sushi rice – 380 grams
  • 4-6 Half-cut sheets of nori
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 cans of Sustainable Crab (Snow crab or Dungeness crab from U.S. or Canada) – 336 grams
  • 1 Tbsp of Sriracha – 15mL
  • 1 Tbsp of heavy mayonnaise – 15mL
  • 1 tsp of Shichimi Togarashi – 5mL
  • Sharp knife (ideally a yanagiba)
  • Makisu (wrapped in cellophane)
  • Cutting board
  • Stirring utensils
  • Mixing bowl

This recipe makes 4 Spicy Crab sushi rolls.

Making Spicy Crab Salad

The best part about this recipe (besides the taste!) is that it only has one ingredient: spicy crab salad.

1. Open your two cans of sustainable crab meat and drain the water.

sustainable crab meat


2. After draining the water, grab a small amount of the crab meat and squeeze the excess water out over a sink. For each 6 oz. can, I grabbed 3 handfuls of crab meat and squeezed them out. Put the squeezed crab meat into a separate bowl.

squeezed crab meat for sushi

It’s important to get as much water out of the crab meat as possible. Excess water in your crab salad will make your nori soggy or it will cause your pieces to fall apart after cutting your roll.

3. Add your heavy mayonnaise, Sriracha, and shichimi togarashi and mix together. I used two spoons to do this, but you can use whichever stirring utensils you would like.

spicy crab salad


Making the Spicy Crab sushi roll

1. Add a handful of sushi rice to your nori and sprinkle on some sesame seeds. Make sure the rice goes all the way to each edge!

sushi rice

2. Flip over the rice and nori mat and add your spicy crab salad. I usually aim for approximately 2cm width in the center of the nori.

spicy crab sushi roll


3. Placing your thumbs underneath the makisu, use your fingers to hold the spicy crab salad in place and roll your thumbs to your finger tips. For additional information about rolling, check out my article on How to Roll Sushi.

spicy crab sushi roll

4. Cut your Spicy Crab sushi roll into 8 even pieces and plate it! I’ve got some awesome plating tips in my email newsletter (which you can sign up for at the top or bottom of this website!) if you are interesting in learning how sushi chefs do it.

spicy crab sushi roll

Finally, you can add your wasabi, ginger, and/or your favorite sushi sauce. For additional heat, try adding Spicy Mayo! Or if you would like it to be slightly sweet, I would recommend adding Eel Sauce. You can also substitute real crab meat for imitation crab! For info on how to cook imitation crab meat at home, click here.

I’m excited to hear about what you think about this recipe! Did you try it at home? How did it go? Feel free to leave me a comment if you have any questions!


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Bryan Sekine with Secrets of Sushi

Bryan Sekine

I’ve been a professional sushi chef since 2008, but my passion is in teaching others. I have taught over 300 people in my live sushi classes and countless others online!

My goal is to teach people how to make sushi at home while educating them about sustainable seafood practices.

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