What is Soy Paper? And Why Use It For Sushi?

Published Categorized as Sushi Tips
soy paper sushi

Soy paper is mainly used as a wrap to “wrap” sushi in when making a sushi roll. This is the paper everything is enclosed in and what you see when you look at a sushi roll on the out side.

Soy paper typically has many ingredients, not just soy. For example, compressed soy beans, sesame seeds, soy flour, soybean oil, and organic rice syrup can all be found in soy paper, among others depending on the manufacturer or the way it’s made.

On a side note, soy paper is is digestible for people that are lactose intolerant due to the fact that soy is not a dairy product.

What is Soy Paper and Why Is It Used In Sushi?

Soy paper (wrap) is perfect for making sushi as is made from compressed soy beans. Sushi wrappers (known as “Mame nori” in Japanese) are thin, flexible, and entirely edible. Soy paper wraps are more fragile than traditional nori, but both work as same.

For more specifics on soy vs nori, check out my article on Soy Paper vs Nori here.

Soy paper has different ingredients, for example, sesame seeds, soy flour, soybean oil, and organic rice syrup. Since it is made from soybeans, you can’t feel the taste of other ingredients. Hence, it doesn’t give a fishy or other weird smell.

In addition, it is edible as a sushi wrap and only has a slight subtle aroma which is why soy sushi wraps are the best choice as far as not spoiling any subtle flavors you might be using in your sushi. This is unlike nori which most definitely has a strong seaweed smell as well as flavor.

What is Soy Paper Made Of?

Firstly, soy paper can contain any number of ingredients and it’s best to look at the manufacturer’s list of ingredients on the package to be completely sure. Basic ingredients are sesame seeds, soybeans, soy flour, soybean oil, and organic rice syrup, and extract food coloring.

All the ingredients are then mixed and ground together and pressed into sheets of a paper like material through the use of weight, similar to rolling out pizza dough. Soybean is the main ingredient in this process.

What Does it Taste Like?

Normally, there isn’t all that much taste since it is made primarily from soy beans which also have little taste. This is one of the reasons that there are so often many other ingredients added.

But this is a BIG plus when it comes to making sushi. You want to taste the freshness of the fish and/or other ingredients, and not necessarily the wrapper holding all of the sushi together.

This makes it a great alternative to seaweed wraps often used in sushi making as they have far less flavoring that seaweed wraps do, letting you taste the sushi and not the wrapper.

Soy paper Nutrition

soy paper nutritional facts

Gluten-free: Soy wrap is the best choice for gluten intolerance people. 

Low in Carbohydrates: each soy wrap contains 1 to 2 grams of carbohydrates making these one of the best choices for those who are on a Keto diet. In addition, being low in calories there are no saturated and Trans fats in soy paper. It is also low in calories; each sheet contains 15 to 205 calories.

Soy Paper for Sushi:

Making It Stick

The first time, when you make soy paper it creates some problems. Keep in mind important about soy paper it should stick to rice.

Follow a few steps to make the best soy paper:

  • To stick with the rice itself use sushi rice for the roll 
  • To close the soy paper dip a few drops of water on the edge
  • Apply more enough pressure when you are making the rolls
  • Don’t fill up with too many ingredients

Does Soy Paper Go Bad?

The shelf life of soy paper is about 3 to 9 months only, not longer. 

Furthermore, soy paper due to its delicate thinness is very susceptible to high degrees of temperature. So, after use seal it tightly and store it in a dry place or the sheets will end up sticking together and you’ll be left with a clump of unusable paper.

Soy Paper Alternatives

Beyond using soybean paper, there are also many other options that are available to be used as a substitute.

Cucumber Wrap

Cucumber is the best option for vegetarians as well. However, cucumber wrapping is the best alternative that doesn’t have any strong flavor. Moreover, you only need fresh cucumber peel to make the wrapping.

Rice Paper

Another way to make sushi rolls is in rice paper that emerges from Vietnam. Summer rolls also use rice paper. 

You can get it easily from a local market or can order online. Before use dip into water for 30 minutes, no more or no less than. If you dip for a long time it will become soggy.

Seaweed Wrap 

Seaweed nori wrap is a very popular choice in making sushi. 

Generally, seaweed nori is placed on a bamboo mat to be applied a layer of rice and other fillings before rolling. After finished rolling it is then cut into 6–8 pieces.

The Best Soy Paper for Your Sushi?

There are many brands selling soy paper but I would recommend Yamamotoyama Soy wrapper. It contains 20 sheets of soy paper and gives a mild taste to sushi rolls. 

These are neutral white in color and are around 7 3/4″ by 7 1/4 inches. So it’s definitely the proper size if you’re looking to make general sushi rolls.


Soy wrapping is the best option for sushi rolls In addition, it is the best choice for those who are lactose intolerant. Rather than it is edible. Soy paper contains many ingredients. Basic ingredients are sesame seeds, soybean, soy flour, soybean oil, and organic rice syrup, and extract food coloring.

Substitutes such as cucumber, rice, and seaweed are used. Many brands of soy paper are available but Yamamotoyama Soy wrapper is the best choice.

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