Crab Spring Rolls

  • Serves

    serves 4-6


For making spring rolls, most Vietnamese-American home cooks use the spongy, wheat-based wrappers called TYJ Spring Roll Pastry, which are made by the Spring Home company. They’re available frozen at most Asian food stores.


  • 4 oz. backfin crabmeat (small chunks from the rear fin area), picked through to remove any bits of shell
  • 4 oz. medium shrimp, finely chopped
  • 3 oz. ground pork
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. grated carrot (use the large-holed side of a box grater)
  • 14 tsp. kosher salt
  • 14 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large shallots, finely chopped
  • 12 8"-square spring roll wrappers
  • 1 oz. bún (Vietnamese rice vermicelli), cooked according to step 1 in our Crab Soup
  • 1 egg white, beaten
  • Corn oil, for frying
  • 12 bibb lettuce leaves, for garnish
  • 12 sprigs Thai basil, for garnish
  • 12 purple perilla leaves (called tía tô), for garnish (optional) Nuoc châm, for serving
  • Nuoc châm, for serving


Step 1

Stir together crabmeat, shrimp, pork, garlic, carrots, salt, pepper, and shallots; set filling aside.

Step 2

Make rolls: Working with 1 wrapper at a time, arrange wrapper so that a corner faces you. (Keep remaining wrappers covered with a damp towel.) Place 2 tbsp. crab mixture and 1 tbsp. vermicelli on bottom third of wrapper, near corner facing you. Brush top corner with a little egg white. Lift bottom corner of wrapper over filling; pull wrapper back against filling to tighten cylinder. Fold in sides; roll cylinder forward, to form a 4"–long roll about 1" thick. Transfer to a platter.

Step 3

Pour oil into a large pot to a depth of 2"; heat over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer inserted into oil reaches 350°. Fry rolls until golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Using tongs, transfer rolls to a paper towel–lined plate. To serve, wrap lettuce, basil, and perilla around rolls; serve with nuoc châm.

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