What Is a Boston Roll?

Last Updated on October 4, 2022 by Lauren Beck

Craving sushi but not quite sure what to order? If you’re a fan of cooked fish, then the Boston Roll is a perfect choice. But what exactly is a Boston Roll?

Named after the city in which they were invented, Boston rolls are a type of sushi roll that typically contains cucumber, avocado, and cooked shrimp. Sometimes crab meat or imitation crab is used in place of shrimp.

Boston rolls are easy to make and can be a great option if you’re looking for a lighter alternative to sushi rolls that contain raw fish. Plus, they’re just as delicious as they are beautiful! Whether you’re making them at home or ordering them at a restaurant, Boston rolls are sure to please.

What is a Boston Roll made of?

A classic Boston Roll contains cucumber, avocado, and cooked shrimp. Some versions also include mayonnaise, lettuce, and/or tobiko. The roll is usually wrapped in nori (seaweed) and rice.

Boston Roll Sushi Recipe

Here’s a delicious and easy recipe for Boston Roll sushi. Enjoy!


  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 1 avocado, peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 6 cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon tobiko (flying fish roe)
  • 1 sheet nori (seaweed)
  • 1 cup sushi rice


  1. Lay the nori seaweed sheet on a cutting board.
  2. Spread a layer of sushi rice over the nori, leaving a 1-inch border at one end.
  3. Arrange the cucumber, avocado, and shrimp in a line down the center of the rice.
  4. Roll up the sushi starting from the end with the ingredients, using your hands to shape it into a tight cylinder.
  5. Slice the roll into 8 pieces and serve with soy sauce and pickled ginger (if desired). Enjoy!

The Difference Between a Boston Roll and California Roll

While both the Boston Roll and California Roll are sushi rolls that originates from America, there are some key differences. For one, a California Roll is usually made with crab meat rather than shrimp. In addition, a California Roll is often rolled inside out so that the rice is on the outside, while a Boston Roll is traditionally rolled with the rice on the inside. Finally, a California Roll typically doesn’t include tobiko, while a Boston Roll often does. Ultimately, both of these sushi rolls are delicious and easy to make at home.

How to make sushi rice?

steamed white rice in wooden mixing container

Sushi rice is a short-grain, sticky rice that is seasoned with a vinegar-sugar-salt mixture. It is what gives sushi its characteristic flavor and texture. Here is a simple recipe for sushi rice.


  • 1 cup sushi rice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Rinse the sushi rice in a fine mesh strainer until the water runs clear.
  2. In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a boil.
  3. Add the rinsed sushi rice and stir to combine.
  4. Cover the pot with a lid and reduce the heat to low.
  5. Simmer for 18 minutes, or until the rice is tender and cooked through.
  6. Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes to absorb the flavors.
  7. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt until the sugar has dissolved.
  8. Pour the mixture over the cooked rice and stir to combine.
  9. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Where to buy nori sheets?

Nori sheets are dried seaweed sheets that are used to make sushi rolls. They can be found in most Asian markets or online.

When selecting nori sheets, look for sheets that are dark green in color and have a smooth, glossy surface. Avoid nori sheets that are yellow or brittle.

What is tobiko?

Tobiko is the Japanese word for flying fish roe [1]. It is often used as a decorative topping on sushi and other dishes. Tobiko is bright orange in color and has a slightly sweet and salty flavor. It can be found in most Asian markets or online.

What kind of shrimp to use?

For this recipe, you’ll need cooked shrimp. You can either buy cooked shrimp or cook them yourself. To cook shrimp, simply peel and devein the shrimp and then boil them in water for 2-3 minutes, or until they are pink and opaque.

How to select avocado?

When selecting avocado for this recipe, look for an avocado that is dark green in color and slightly soft to the touch. Avoid avocados that are brown or mushy.

Are Boston Rolls Healthy?

Yes, Boston Rolls can be a healthy choice. Sushi rolls are typically low in calories and high in protein and healthy fats. This particular recipe is also relatively high in fiber due to the inclusion of avocado and cucumber. However, it is important to note that the healthiness of a sushi roll can vary depending on what ingredients are used. For example, a roll that is deep-fried or made with white rice rather than brown rice will generally be less healthy.

How Many Calories in a Boston Roll?

A Boston Roll typically contains around 200-300 calories. This will vary depending on the ingredients used and the size of the roll.


Boston Rolls are a type of sushi roll that is typically made with shrimp, avocado, and cucumber. They are often rolled inside out so that the rice is on the outside and may also include tobiko. Boston Rolls can be a healthy choice as they are typically low in calories and high in protein and healthy fats.


Lauren Beck
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