Gỏi Cuốn: How To Make Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Vietnamese spring rolls are also known as fresh spring rolls, cold rolls, or rice paper rolls. They are a Vietnamese dish consisting traditionally of pork, prawns, vegetables, bún (rice vermicelli), and other ingredients wrapped in Vietnamese bánh tráng (commonly referred to as rice paper).

Like other spring roll dishes, it is suspected that they have an origin in China and that Chinese immigrants brought them to Vietnam. However, the Gỏi Cuốn was adapted to suit local tastes.

Vietnamese can be seen making bánh tráng in Vietnam and various parts of Southeast Asia and placing them on the rectangular bamboo trays around their houses. Traditionally, this dish is eaten in a home setting with a large group of people. 

Gỏi Cuốn: Vietnamese Spring Rolls

  • Author: Romae Chanice Marquez
  • Recipe Category: Appetizer / Main Dish
  • Cuisine: Vietnamese

The whole preparation and cooking time is 1 hour. This recipe is suitable for at least five servings. 

Photo credit: @melseyes / Instagram.com.

Gỏi Cuốn: Vietnamese Spring Rolls Ingredients

  • 1 pound pork (loin, shoulder, and/or belly)
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3 stalks lemongrass, crushed (optional)
  • 5 ounces rice vermicelli
  • package (12 ounces)  rice paper wrappers
  • leaves lettuce, iceberg or romaine, torn in half
  • 2 cups carrots, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 cup cucumbers, cut into matchsticks
  • 2 handful fresh mint
  • 1 handful fresh Thai basil
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro
  • 2 handfuls garlic chives

Gỏi Cuốn: Vietnamese Spring Rolls Instructions

Step 1: Add pork, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a medium dish. Add enough water to plunge the pork in. Bring water to a boil, and then reduce to medium heat. Boil for 30 minutes, until the pork floats.

Step 2: Let cool, then slice the meat into very thin slices. Set aside some of the broth to make the dipping sauce.

Step 3: Cook the shrimp. In a large pot filled with water, add a pinch of salt and the lemongrass. Add the shrimp and bring the water to a boil, then reduce to low heat and simmer until shrimp are no longer translucent, around 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow the shrimp and poaching liquid to cool to room temperature.

Step 4: Cook the vermicelli as instructed on the package. Rinse thoroughly into cold water to stop the cooking and drain.

Step 5: Fill a large, shallow plate with warm water. Dip one sheet of rice paper into the warm water and let it soak until it begins to bend but still has 10 to 15 seconds of structure. Switch to the surface where you roll the spring rolls. Place a ripped leaf of lettuce flat on the bottom third of the rice paper.

Step 6: Finish with carrot and cucumber. Cover with pork slices and some vermicelli. Finish with garlic chives and cut herbs. Place 3 to 4 halves of shrimp across the rice paper core.

Step 7: Start rolling, sides tucking in as you roll. Transfer the roll to a dish and repeat until all the ingredients are used up.

Gỏi Cuốn: Vietnamese Spring Rolls Additional Information

  • Fresh rolls are not fried. This makes it easy to distinguish them from similar rolls, and the ingredients used differ from deep-fried Vietnamese egg rolls.
  • Per serving, this recipe has 99 calories, 20g of carbohydrates, 3g of fat.
  • It will take about 1 hour to make these spring rolls. 
  • This recipe will make enough spring rolls for five people.

Image source: thespruceeats.com

About Gỏi Cuốn: Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Fillings can vary between traditional pork slices, pork sausage slices, and shrimp to fish, pan-fried seafood, beef poached in a lemongrass broth, tofu, braised pork, and egg. As such, spring rolls are highly customizable to an individual’s taste.


Vietnamese recipes commonly use lemongrass, ginger, mint, long coriander, Saigon cinnamon, Thai basil leaves, bird’s eye chili, and lime. Traditional Vietnamese cooking is highly admired for its fresh ingredients, minimal dairy and oil use, complementary textures, and herbal and vegetable reliance.

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Featured Image: @theinspiredtastebuds / Instagram.com, @theinspiredtastebuds / Instagram.com