Spicy Tuna Roll Recipe

Spicy tuna roll with special sesame-mayo spicy tuna sauce

Be prepared to be "wowed" by this spicy tuna roll recipe. And although I say that, I have to admit that I am also a big fan of just the plain old tuna roll (or tekka-maki if you wanna get technical...) too.

But...sometimes the cravings for this spicy tuna roll are just to strong when I know that the plain old tuna roll just ain't gonna cut it. Usually it's because I got a hankerin' for tuna mixed with this special sesame-mayo sauce.

('hankerin' is a word used exclusively in the deep south and basically means that you are seriously wanting to woof down a particular food item...explaining what 'woof' means is beyond the scope of this clarification...)

Spicy Tuna Roll Recipe


Sushi Rice (this will yield 4 cups of rice and this recipe 4 rolls)

(Try to buy a high quality Japanese short grain white rice if you can)

Sushi Nori

White and Black sesame seeds

4 tsp toasted or roasted white sesame seeds (or 8 tsp if you don't have black sesames seeds)

4 tsp toasted or roasted black sesame seeds (or 8 tsp if you don't have white sesames seeds)

Cutting 1/4 inch slabs off of sushi grade tuna block using straight cut
Stacking the 1/4 inch tuna slices and making 1/4 inch matchsticks
Making 1/4 inch cubes from the 1/4 inch matchsticks

4 oz. Sushi grade Tuna diced or minced

(In the leftmost picture above, we are slicing 1/4 inch slabs of tuna using the "straight cut". In the middle picture, stacking the slabs to make 1/4 inch matchsticks. In the rightmost picture, dicing the matchsticks into 1/4 inch squares. You can also mince the tuna if you prefer).

1/2 salt-scrubbed english (hot house) or Japanese cucumber sliced into slivers (optional)

Sesame-Mayo Spicy Tuna sauce


Bamboo Sushi Mat

How to make the Sesame-Mayo Spicy Tuna sauce for this Spicy Tuna Roll Recipe

Ingredients (makes enough for 4 rolls)

2 Tbsp Japanese or Regular Mayonnaise

2 Tbsp finely minced green onions

2 Tbsp Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce

1 tsp hot sesame oil (rayu), or to taste

imitation wasabi or real wasabi


Unmixed ingredients for spicy tuna sauce. Mayonaisse, hot sesame oil, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, and green onions
Mixed ingredients for spicy tuna sauce. Mayonaisse, hot sesame oil, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, and green onions

Combine mayonnaise, green onions, hot chili sauce and hot sesame oil in a bowl and mix well. 

Spicy tuna sauce mixed with tuna

Add the diced tuna to the spicy tuna sauce. Cover and store in refrigerator until you are ready to use in your spicy tuna roll.

Assembling the Spicy Tuna Roll

Bending 8x7 inch nori sheet in half on 8 inch side
Bending 8x7 inch sheet the other way on the 8 inch side
Separating 8x7 inch nori sheet to make 4x7 inch sheet

1. A Spicy Tuna roll is normally made by taking a 8 x 7 inch sheet of Nori and cutting or folding the sheet in half on the 8 inch side so that you end up with two 4 x 7 inch sheets, although I recommend not using this method, but rather the next one where we cut the nori into a 5 x 7 inch sheet. 

The following is just to show you how to make a 4 x 7 sheet in case you decide to try it this way later.

In the leftmost picture above, I am bending the nori sheet over on the 8 inch side. When the left edge is even, I take my right hand and pinch up and down the right edge.

Next, in the middle picture the nori is folded back the other way to help make the break.

In the rightmost picture, the final separation is made. 

Measuring 5 inches on the 8 inch side of the nori sheet
Showing the 5x7 inch nori sheet

I think a 5 x 7 inch sheet is better and easier for making a Spicy Tuna roll. This is the way I'd recommend you making this roll, if nothing at least for the first few times.

When you've built your confidence then you can try it with a 4 x 7 sheet and see how you like it.

Anyway, measure 5 inches from the edge of the 8 inch side and either cut it with scissors or fold and break. 

Putting the sushi mat (makisu) in a gallon plastic bag to keep rice from sticking

2. Put the bamboo sushi mat in a gallon ziploc bag or wrap it entirely in saran wrap.

If you use a gallon ziploc bag, buy the cheapest ones you can find. The plastic will be thinner and more flexible and easier to roll. This is the one time when cheaper is better :-)

Dipping fingers in vinegared water
Tapping fingers on towel to remove excess vinegared water

3. Dip your hands in vinegared water (1/4 cup rice vinegar + 1 cup water) and tap your fingers on a folded damp rung-out towel to remove any excess water.

Measuring 1 cup of rice
Placing 1 cup of rice on 5x7 inch nori sheet for spicy tuna roll

4. One of the best ways that I have found to make your spicy tuna rolls a consistent size is by measuring your rice each time. Take your 1 cup measure and moisten the inside with vinegared water so that the rice will not stick. Shake out any excess. Then measure out 1 cup of rice and put it on your nori sheet. Refer to the pictures above.

Spread the rice all over the nori sheet

5. Spread the 1 cup of rice over the entire nori sheet so that it goes to all four of the edges. If you want to distribute roe, tempura, or sesame seeds over the rice, you can do it here before flipping the sheet over or wait to sprinkle it over the top of the roll when finished; it is up to you. 

Mix the 4 tsp of black sesame seed with the 4 tsp of white sesame seeds

6. Mix the white and black sesame seed together. 

sprinkle 1 tsp of sesame seeds evenly over rice

7. Spread 2 tsp of sesame seeds evenly over the rice. 

Swipe some wasabi across the nori a little closer to you than centered...

8. Flip the sheet over so that the nori side is now facing up. Swipe wasabi across the nori not quite centered on it but a little closer to you. 

Add 1/4 of the spicy tuna over the wasabi

9. Spread about 1/4 of the spicy tuna mixture over the wasabi. 

Add 2 or 3 slivered cucumbers in front of the spicy tuna if you want to add the crispy crunch to your roll...

10. Add a row of 2 or 3 slivered cucumbers in front of the spicy tuna if you want to add a crispy crunch to your roll.

Start the rolling by lifting the edge of the mat with your thumbs under the mat while lifting up...use your fingers to hold the fillings in place

11. Lift the edge of the mat closest to you with both hands by putting your thumbs under the mat and while lifting up, use your fingers to hold the fillings in place.

Keep rolling until the mat touches down on the nori on the far side of the roll...

12. Keep rolling the mat until the end of the mat touches the nori straight down, enclosing all of the fillings.

Lift the edge of the mat so that it doesn't get turned under and continue rolling...while holding the mat on the end farthest away from you, tug 3 times...once in the center, left, then right

13. Now, lift the edge of the mat with your fingertips (so that it won't get turned under) and continue rolling until it is all sealed. 

Finished Spicy tuna roll

14. Flying fish roe, tempura or sesame seeds can be sprinkled on the top or you can roll it in them (if you did not do it earlier).

Cover the roll with plastic wrap and then slice first in the center...
Slice each half in half again...
Slice these 4 pieces in half one more time...

15. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap over the roll. Moisten your sushi knife with vinegared water and cut the roll exactly in the center (leftmost picture above). Then cut each half in half again (middle picture). Finish by cutting the 4 pieces in half. 

Spicy tuna roll with special sesame-mayo spicy tuna sauce

Remove the plastic wrap, arrange on a sushi plate and serve!

And there you have it. The Spicy Tuna Roll Recipe with a special Sesame-Mayo sauce.

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David Guthrie, EzineArticles Basic Author