Alaska Roll Sushi Recipe

Roll your way up to Alaska!

Claire Onidi By
Claire Onidi
Passionate about food and pastries since always, Claire spends most of her time in the kitchen to develop new recipes. She is French but lived many years abroad.
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Updated August 18, 2022

Alaska Roll Sushi Recipe
If you have never tried Alaska roll sushis, you are missing out! Alaska roll is a basic sushi recipe where the roll is filled with crab and avocado, and it has salmon sashimi on top.

Normally, you make it “inside out,” so the sticky sushi rice is on the outside and the nori (seaweed) is on the inside. Other rolls, such as kappa maki (cucumber), have the seaweed on the outside and the rice inside.

Therefore, it’s really nice if you make a sushi platter with a couple of different kinds because it will be visually interesting. And the Alaska roll is a great addition because it’s salty, creamy, and meaty all at the same time.

What is an Alaska Sushi Roll?

Alaska roll sushi is a dressed-up California roll. So on top of the regular crab meat and avocado roll, you place some raw salmon. And many chefs also add cucumber for a bit of crunch.

Like a California roll, an Alaska sushi roll is made “inside out.” This means that when you roll it up, the sushi rice will be on the outside of the roll instead of inside the dried seaweed paper.

So the nori sheet needs to hold all the fillings together, and the rice wraps around that. And lots of sushi chefs also put sesame seeds on the outside of the rice for looks and a nice crunch.

Also, other versions exist. Some roll the sushi in panko bread crumbs and then deep-fry it. And others make it in the shape of regular maki, with the nori sheets on the outside, smoked salmon, crab, and avocado.

The Best Ingredients for the Best Alaska Roll Sushi


Any type of salmon will work in this roll, whether fresh salmon, frozen salmon, canned salmon, smoked salmon, or sushi-grade salmon.

To get the freshest fish, try frozen-at-sea salmon. Because it’s frozen just after harvesting, it is actually really fresh.

And don’t be fooled by the label “sushi-grade salmon.” Actually, there’s no government regulation because this isn’t an official standard.

Stores use this term to convince you that their raw fish is very fresh. However, this is still kind of a warranty of freshness. Business owners don’t want to make you sick and reserve this label for the freshest salmon they have.

Sushi Rice

For the best result, use short-grain sushi rice only (no arborio or paella rice!).

Look in particular for Japonica rice. It has rounder grains and a texture making it perfect to shape sushis. It also has more starch than other types of rice. So the rice gets a bit sticky when you cook it, and it will hold together in the Alaska rolls.

Nori Sheets or Seaweed Paper

Nori sheets are made from dried seaweed, and they’re used in dishes like sushi and rice balls, called onigiri. They’re here to wrap all the ingredients for the Alaska roll.

The strong flavor is salty and pairs really well with the rice, fish, and veggies.


Avocado is creamy and delicate, and it pairs very well with fish. To find the perfect avocado, first look at the skin. Try to choose one with a dark color.

Also, it shouldn’t feel like a rock, but it also shouldn’t be very soft.

Imitation or Real Alaskan Crab Meat

If you can find it, real Alaskan king crab meat will give you the best Alaska roll sushi. It tastes really delicious, and it’s sustainable.

But if you can’t find real crab meat, or it’s too expensive, you can always use imitation crab meat. Imitation crab is a type of white fish that’s cut up and mixed with starch. Then, the manufacturers shape this into logs or pieces that look like real crab meat.


Cucumber is a really popular ingredient in lots of sushi rolls. For the tastiest variety for sushi, look for Japanese cucumbers. They’re thinner and straighter than regular field cucumbers. And they’re also less watery, so the flavor is more concentrated.

Tips and Tricks for Making Baked Talaba

​​Use a Sharp Chef’s Knife

To cleanly slice salmon without ripping it, use a sharp knife. In Japan, there’s a special knife for this. In English, it’s called a “raw fish knife.”

But you can just use a regular knife to cut the fish as long as it’s sharp. And then you can use the same one later to slice the alaska roll sushi into pieces. Simply make sure you wipe off the blade of the knife after every cut to get a clean cut every time.

Sprinkle Lemon Juice On the Avocado

To keep your avocado green, you can sprinkle a little lemon juice on top after you slice it.
This won’t negatively affect the taste of the Alaska roll sushi recipe. In fact, it will add a brightness to the flavor, and lemon goes very well with seafood.

Cook the Rice Properly

To get the perfect sushi rice, you need to follow a few steps you might skip with regular rice.

  1. First, rinse your rice. And rinse it multiple times until the water runs clear. Rinsing removes excess starch. So when the rice is cooked, the grains will be well-defined and won’t taste mushy.

  2. Second, try steaming your rice instead of boiling it. This will make your rice very fluffy and keep it from getting sticky.

  3. Third, add some flavorings to your rice. Traditionally, chefs add seasoned rice vinegar or sushi vinegar to the rice. As well, they’ll add salt and sugar to make it taste really good.

  4. Finally, make sure your rice has time to rest. Once you cook it and add your flavorings, let it sit for at least half an hour at room temperature. That way, you won’t burn your hands and it’ll be nicer to work with. But don’t try to cool your rice in the refrigerator. If it cools off too quickly, the cooked rice can develop a strange texture.

Invest in a Makisu

A makisu is a Japanese bamboo mat made specifically to roll sushi – helpful for getting the perfect sushi roll shape.

The bamboo mat is made of very thin strips that are also flexible. This helps get the nice rounded shape for your sushi roll.

The Best Sauce for Alaska Roll Sushi

  • The sauce is totally up to you. But the most common accompaniments are soy sauce, pickled ginger, and wasabi.

  • One yummy option for an Alaska sushi roll is eel sauce drizzled on top. Eel sauce has a soy sauce base, but it’s much thicker and sweeter.

  • You can also add some heat to your Alaska roll sushi with spicy mayo. To make this, simply add sriracha sauce and sesame oil to regular mayonnaise. Then mix everything until you have a smooth sauce.

  • With any sauce you choose, dip don’t douse. If you drown your Alaska roll sushi in a strong sauce, you’ll ruin the delicate flavors in the sushi. To get the right amount of sauce, don’t dip the rice, just the fish. If you dip the rice, it will absorb the sauce, and the sushi will be too salty. But if you just dip the fish, you’ll get a little bit of sauce to complement the other flavors in the sushi roll.

Alaska Roll Sushi Recipe

  • Prep Time30 min
  • Cook Time20 min
  • Total Time50 min
  • Servings1
  • Yield

Level: Easy





  1. Cook the Rice

    Rinse the rice several times until the water comes out clear. Or, soak the rice in clean water for about 5 minutes, and then drain it.

    Next, put your washed rice into your instant pot or regular pot and add the water and salt.
    For an instant pot, use the setting for 6 minutes. For a regular pot, boil for 15 minutes or simmer the rice for 20 minutes.

  2. Cool and Season the Rice

    When it’s cooked, let your rice cool to room temperature. Then pour in the rice vinegar and mix to combine.

  3. Slice the Ingredients

    Slice long, thin strips of your salmon, avocado, and cucumber (if using).

  4. Add the Rice

    Put a piece of nori horizontally on the bamboo mat with the rough side facing upwards.
    Then, put a little water on your hands so the rice won’t stick to them.

    Spread your sushi rice over the seaweed, but leave a 1-inch gap of plain nori at the top of the sheet.

  5. Flip the Nori and Fill

    Carefully flip the nori so the rice side is against the mat (or plastic wrap, if using). Then add a quarter of each of your filling ingredients, and line them up horizontally.

    Lay down the salmon. Then add the crab meat on top, followed by the avocado and cucumber.

  6. Roll It Up

    Hold the mat and nori together, and roll them forward to form a log. And make sure you squeeze the sushi roll tightly so that it holds together.

    If needed, dab a little water onto the nori to help the roll stick together.

  7. Slice and Enjoy

    Afterward, unroll the mat and place your Alaska sushi roll on the cutting board. Slice it into approximately 6-8 equal pieces.

    Repeat these steps for the other 3 rolls, and then enjoy your Alaska roll!

Alaska Roll Sushi Variations

  • Make this regular inside-out sushi roll, but cover it in panko bread crumbs. Then, deep fry it – it’s crunchy and incredibly delicious.

  • Make a regular maki roll instead of inside-out sushi. In this case, the cooked rice goes inside the seaweed. And use smoked salmon instead of raw fish for a twist.

  • And if you’d like to flavor the rice even more, add a small piece of kombu to the water while it’s cooking. Kombu is another type of dried seaweed, and it adds a delicious savoriness.

  • For more decadence and richness, add cream cheese.

  • Add black sesame seeds to the outside of your roll to make it more elegant.

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Can You Store an Alaska Roll?

Yes, but the ingredients will determine how long you can keep it.

In an Alaskan roll, the ingredient that will go bad fastest is the raw salmon. Therefore, you can keep your sushi rolls in the refrigerator for a day or two.

However, if you’re using cooked salmon, you can keep the sushi rolls for 3-4 days.

To store your Alaska rolls, first wrap them individually in plastic. Then put them in an airtight container and stick them in the refrigerator.

You can put an Alaska roll in the freezer, but it will negatively affect the flavor and texture.

Regardless of how you store it, don’t leave your Alaska roll out on the counter for longer than 2 hours.
alaska roll sushi recipe 2

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
  • 665Calories
  • 15.9g Fat
  • 99g Carbs
  • 28.8gProtein
Show Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 roll
Amount per serving
% Daily Value*
Total Fat15.9g 20%
Saturated Fat2.9g 14%
Cholesterol41mg 17%
Sodium2370mg 127%
Total Carbohydrate99g 36%
Dietary Fiber6g 22%
Total Sugars7.6g
Calcium110mg 8%
Iron2mg 28%
Potassium730mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.
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