Homemade California Rolls

California roll
John Gagne/Riser/Getty Images
Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 2 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1212 Calories
48g Fat
178g Carbs
20g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2
Amount per serving
Calories 1212
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 48g 61%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 15mg 5%
Sodium 1807mg 79%
Total Carbohydrate 178g 65%
Dietary Fiber 15g 53%
Total Sugars 24g
Protein 20g
Vitamin C 25mg 125%
Calcium 99mg 8%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 1325mg 28%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The California roll is one of the most favored sushi rolls and has been credited with popularizing sushi in the United States. California rolls are usually made inside-out – rice on the outside, nori (seaweed) on the inside – making them easier to eat. The center is studded with crab meat or imitation crab, cucumber, and avocado. 

There is some debate as to where the California roll was invented. Most people believe that a sushi chef at a Little Tokyo restaurant in Los Angeles came up with the idea. However, a Canadian sushi chef takes the credit, claiming he named the roll "California" due to its popularity with Southern Californian guests.

You will need a bamboo mat to roll the sushi, which is found at Asian markets as well as some supermarkets. The technique for rolling sushi isn't difficult but may take a little practice. Once you master it, you will be able to create any type of sushi you like.


  • 1 avocado

  • 3/4 cup imitation crab

  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 cucumber, peeled

  • 4 sheets nori (dried seaweed)

  • 6 cups prepared sushi rice

  • Sesame seeds, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Halve avocado. Using the end closest to the handle of the knife, swiftly wedge the blade into the pit; turn knife with pit slightly and pull out. Using the tip of the knife, slice avocado halves vertically and then once horizontally down the middle. Scoop out the sliced halves using a spoon. Alternatively, you can scoop out whole halves and then mash the avocado.

  2. Tear imitation crab into pieces and place in a bowl; season with mayonnaise and salt. Cut cucumber into 1-inch-long julienne.

  3. Cover a bamboo rolling mat with plastic wrap. Put a sheet of dried seaweed on top of the plastic. Spread 1/4 of sushi rice on top of the nori sheet. Sprinkle sesame seeds over the sushi rice.

  4. Using the plastic wrap, turn the sushi layer over so that the seaweed is on top. Remove the plastic wrap and place avocado, crab and cucumber horizontally on the seaweed. Roll the bamboo mat toward you, pressing the ingredients inside the cylinder-shaped sushi. When finished rolling, press firmly on the bamboo mat with hands, unroll the mat and then remove the rolled sushi.

  5. Repeat to make more rolls. Wipe a knife with a wet cloth before slicing sushi. Cut the sushi roll into bite-size pieces.