Tofu Katsu Onigirazu (Sushi Sandwich)

Tofu Katsu Onigirazu

Tofu Katsu Onigirazu (Sushi Sandwich)

I absolutely love Japanese food and any combination of rice and seaweed! Since it’s summer now, I’ve been making sushi sandwiches for my outdoor lunchbox.

Onigirazu is a Japanese-styled sandwich that I like to call the lazy version of sushi. It’s an easy, filling meal option, while being super yummy and indulgent. Additionally, Onigirazu is very customizable. You can swap the recommended ingredients here for what you have available. I normally fill mine with veggies and either tofu teriyaki or tofu katsu.

Ingredients and Substitutions

There are my favorite ingredients to add to my Tofu Katsu Onigiri:

  • Sushi rice or short-grain rice: this is a non-negotiable. I like to mix the rice with vinegar and sugar after cooking to make it more sushi-like.
  • Tofu Katsu: you can swap this with tofu teriyaki or other types of plant-based protein sources like mashed chickpeas (to imitate vegan ‘tuna’), edamame or mock meat.
  • A combination of carrots, cucumber and radish: these veggies make the wrap more colorful and vibrant. Alternatively, you can also use lettuce, shredded white or red cabbage. Pickled radish or red onions would also work well here!

Perfect to take for picnics or travelling

I’ve been making the Tofu Katsu Onigirazu in my traditional Japanese Bento Box and taking it to outdoor gatherings or picnics. Since it can be eaten cold, it’s perfect for travelling on warmer summer days.

How to wrap the Onigirazu

This recipe uses the traditional method of wrapping Onigirazu, with each layer of ingredients stacked on top of each other and folded the sides. To make it look like layers of sandwich, each ingredient is shaped into a compact square in the middle of the nori sheet. The trick is to make each layer as thinly as possible, as too many fillings can make the sushi sandwich harder to wrap. I also created a recipe with a ‘cheat’ method of Onigiri using the Tortilla Hack, this method makes the wrapping process much easier.

A compact layer of rice
Tofu Katsu and sauce
Cucumber and carrot
Another layer of rice
Fold the nori on top of the fillings
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Tofu Katsu Onigirazu

Tofu Katsu Onigirazu (Sushi Sandwich)

  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Ongirazu 1x


Onigirazu is a Japanese-styled sandwich that is perfect for travelling or picnic. This version of Onigirazu is made with tofu katsu, veggies and wrapped nicely in a Japanese bento box.


Units Scale

Tofu Katsu

  • 400 g firm or medium firm tofu
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • oil for frying

Other Toppings

  • 2 servings sushi or short-grain rice
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 4 sheets nori seaweed
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1 carrot
  • radish
  • tonkatsu sauce (or vegan sriracha mayo)


Make the Katsu Curry

  1. Pat dry the tofu and cut into thin slices.
  2. In a bowl or deep plate, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and water. In another bowl, add the panko breadcrumbs.
  3. Coat the tofu in the first plate, then coat with breadcrumbs.
  4. Fry the tofu in oil until both sides are golden and crispy.

Make the rice

  1. Cook the sushi rice according to package instruction.
  2. Add the mixture of rice vinegar and water to the rice and mix.

Prepare the other toppings

  1. Cut the cucumber, carrot, and radish into thin slices.

Assemble the Tofu Katsu Onigirazu

  1. Lay the nori on your working station (rough side up).
  2. Add a spoonful of rice to the middle of the nori and use a spoon to shape it into a compact square.
  3. Layer the other ingredients on top of the rice in the order that you like. I started with adding the tofu katsu, the sauce, cucumber, carrot, raddish. Lastly, add a thin layer of rice on top.
  4. Fold all corners of the nori on top of the filling to wrap it tightly. You can wrap a baking paper or plastic wrap around the Onigirazu to make the wrap tighter.
  5. Use a sharp knife to cut in half and enjoy!


You can keep the Onigirazu in the fridge for 2-3 days. Make sure to wrap it with a baking paper or plastic wrap to avoid the rice from being dried out.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Japanese

Keywords: 30-minute meal, comfort food, Japanese recipe, onigirazu, picnic recipe, sushi

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