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Magical Maki Rolls [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

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These magical maki rolls are part recipe and part inspiration since you can use it as a base to make your own unique rolls. Sushi rice is cooked in water that has been dyed bright blue using purple cabbage — no food coloring needed. Here's the magic part: then, you turn the rice from purple to pink using just lemon juice. You could also add colorful veggies inside to create a rainbow roll, there are honestly so many different ways to have these roll that you’ll never get tired of them. If you’re feeling adventurous you can even add some fruits like mango.

Magical Maki Rolls [Vegan, Gluten-Free]


For the Maki:

  • 2 cups uncooked sushi rice
  • A chunk of purple cabbage
  • Nori sheets
  • Lemon or lime juice

For the Suggested Filling:

  • Avocado
  • Roasted sweet potato
  • Tempeh
  • Mango


  1. Wash rice thoroughly until the water runs clear.
  2. Add 4 cups water to a pot, followed by a chunk of purple cabbage. Heat over medium-low until the cabbage has turned the water a deep blue color.
  3. Remove 1 1/4 cups water from the pot, then add another chunk of cabbage to the pot to create an even deeper blue cabbage. Separate the rice into both pots — the lighter blue should have 1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons rice while the other pot should have the remaining rice.
  4. Turn on heat to the lowest possible setting and simmer for 25 minutes. Using this low heat will ensure the color doesn’t go from lilac/blue to brown.
  5. When the rice is done remove it from the pots to let it cool before placing on the nori sheets. Once you’ve placed it on the nori you can squeeze some lime or lemon on the spots you’d like to transform the color of. You can do it like a gradient, starting with purple rice, then adding a row of pink rice.
  6. Roll the maki, cut it and voila, you’re done. Note that the rice that got the acid keeps getting brighter so when you cut it you might be surprised to find it became a bit brighter.





Colorful desserts and dinners inspired by cuisines all over the world. I'm a twenty something yogi from the Netherlands who loves sharing colorful and cruelty free recipes. Eat plants not friends!



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