Naruto Roll


Cucumber wrapped sushi roll

A refreshing, low carb twist on traditional sushi, this cucumber wrapped sushi roll utilizes thinly sliced cucumber sheets as a wrap instead of nori, and is packed with a flavorful trio of fresh salmon, creamy avocado and cream cheese, completely eliminating the need for rice.

Using thinly sliced cucumber sheets as a wrap is an innovative twist to traditional sushi. Not only does this naruto roll replace the standard nori for those who don’t like the taste of seaweed, but white rice isn’t required making it a welcomed low carb solution to the Japanese favorite.

Cucumber rolls filled with sockeye salmon and cream cheese on a stack of white plates.

This cucumber roll is filled with a vibrant trio of fresh, raw salmon, creamy avocado and smooth cream cheese, but you can fill your sushi roll with anything – tuna, shrimp, asparagus, furikake, masago! The rice is no longer required since we don’t use nori sheets to hold it all together. The sticky rice served as a glue to help adhere the seaweed to rest of the sushi roll. Since our roll is wrapped in cucumber slices, we cleverly sidestep the need for rice.

Note about the macros. Even though 2 cucumbers are used, I only counted the macros for 1 cucumber since each cucumber, you are only eating about half of it. 


How to make a cucumber sushi roll

Once you get the cucumber sliced, the rest of the assembly is easy when making cucumber rolls. This method of slicing the cucumber is the safest and fastest as well – unless you are good with a knife or a professional sushi chef.

  1. Cut the cucumber into very thin slices. Instead of using a sharp knife and risking injury from cutting your finger, use a vegetable peeler or mandoline. 
  2. Layer the cucumber slices on a bamboo mat with a sheet of plastic wrap on top, ensuring they overlap to prevent your filling from falling out when you roll.
  3. Add your sushi ingredients – raw salmon, avocado slices, strips of cream cheese.
  4. Sushi roll. Start to roll the mat tightly over the sushi, then release and pull the plastic wrap out so you aren’t rolling the plastic wrap within the sushi roll.
  5. Freeze or refrigerate. Doing a short chill (5-10 minutes) with the roll covered in plastic wrap, allows the cucumber sushi roll to firm up so it will hold together when slicing.
  6. Slice into naruto rolls using a sharp knife.
  7. Top with sesame seeds, furkake, masago, sriracha sauce or teriyaki sauce.

Equipment needed


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Naruto Roll Ingredients

  • 2 long cucumbers (English or Japanese)
  • 1/2 avocado, thinly sliced
  • 4-6 oz raw sushi grade salmon, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 oz cream cheese, thinly sliced strips cut in half lengthwise

Naruto Roll Directions

  • Naruto Roll
  • Close up of salmon Philadelphia sushi roll wrapped in cucumber and topped with sesame seeds.

    Ways to cut cucumber for sushi

    When it comes to using cucumber to hold sushi together, there are different ways to cut the cucumber so it will effectively hold your ingredients without the filling spilling out.

    Use a peeler or mandoline

    If you want thin strips of cucumber to serve as your wrapping, using a vegetable peeler or mandoline is the easiest and somewhat, safest solution.

    • Starting with one side of the cucumber, cut thin slices by sliding the vegetable peeler down the shaft until you reach the center.
    • Then turn to the other side and repeat, retrieving thin slices until you reach the center of the cucumber.

    The center of the cucumber has sends which contain excess moisture making these strips more prone to breaking if you were to use them. 

    Use a knife

    This technique is best for someone who has excellent knife skills in the kitchen or a lot of patience. With this technique, you end up with one sheet of thinly sliced cucumber and there is no need to layer slices. Since it is one sheet, you don’t need to use a bamboo mat to rolling the sushi.

    • Starting with a sharp knife, peel the outer dark green skin of the cucumber.
    • Then cut your cucumber in half into 3-4 inch chunks.
    • With the cucumber in one hand and the knife in your dominant hand, slide the blade under the cucumber flesh and peel toward the other hand, running the blade almost parallel to the cucumber. This is similar to paring the skin off a potato or apple. Rocking the knife in small motions up and down will ensure that you don’t cut off the slice as you cut.
    • Continue these small rocking cutting movements until you get to the center. You should be left with a long sheet that is 3-4 inches wide.

    Make cucumber rings or boats

    Instead of slicing the cucumber into thin strips, just make little boats or rings to hold your ingredients.

    • To make cucumber rings, cut the cucumber in half and carve out the seeds and most of the center of the cucumber, keeping about 1/2 cm of the flesh and the peel. Stuff your cucumber with avocado, salmon and cream cheese. Then cut into 1/2 inch thick pieces.
    • To make cucumber boats, slice 1 inch chunks of cucumber. Using a spoon, hollow out the inside of each chunk but leave some flesh on one side so that you make a boat. Fill each boat with your favorite sushi components.
    A plate of naruto rolls sushi wrapped in cucumber and filled with salmon and cream cheese. On the plate there is also a bowl of soy sauce, pickled ginger and green wasabi paste.

    Topping & filling ideas for sushi

    Beyond the cucumber wrap, this naruto roll recipe is completely customizable and you can add various toppings and fillings to make unique creations each time.

    Sushi fillings

    • avocado
    • sprouts
    • green onion or spring onions
    • shiitake mushrooms
    • asparagus
    • jalapeno
    • cream cheese
    • smelt eggs
    • crab meat
    • shrimp
    • salmon
    • tuna

    Sushi toppings

    • masago or smelt eggs
    • furkake
    • sesame seeds or everything bagel seasoning
    • sriracha sauce
    • spicy mayo (Japanese mayonnaise + sriracha sauce)
    • teriyaki sauce
    • soy sauce
    • wasabi mayo (Japanese mayonnaise + wasabi paste)

    Storage information

    Like most sushi, these cucumber wrapped rolls are best consumed right away. Otherwise the cucumber slices can get soggy and you run the risk of bacterial contamination with consuming raw fish.

    However, if needed, you could leftover naruto rolls in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Freezing sushi is not recommended.

    Naruto Roll: FAQS

    What type of salmon should I use? Should it be raw or cooked?

    Sockeye salmon is commonly used in sushi rolls. It is a fattier cut so it adds flavor especially when consumed as sashimi. Salmon is sushi is usually consumed raw, but you can cook it or use smoked salmon if raw fish doesn't appeal to you.

    What is sushi grade salmon?

    Sushi grade salmon is a grade of fish meaning that it is safe to consume raw and generally safe from bacterial contamination.

    How to roll sushi without a bamboo mat?

    You can use a towel to wrap sushi without a mat. Lay out a clean kitchen towel and place a sheet of plastic wrap on top of the towel. Roll as you would with using a bamboo mat.

    Nutritional information & Macros

    Nutrition Information

    Naruto Roll

    Servings: 2

    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 392
    Fat 28.9g
    Protein 24.4g
    Total Carbs 8.3g
    Net Carbs 5.4g

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