If you have enjoyed spring rolls from your local Thai market or Japanese take-out, you have eaten rice paper.
Rice paper wraps are the almost-translucent wrappers that hold all of the delicious ingredients inside.
It is similar to an egg roll wrapper, but thinner and made from rice flour and water and steamed, rather than fried.
These wrappers have an interesting texture, too, and a lovely chew, probably due to tapioca, another common ingredient.
Where to buy rice paper?
Wherever you live, you can probably find rice paper online for delivery to your door at competitive price points. Some consumers may find rice paper and wrappers in their local grocery store or favorite health food venue. Asian markets, particularly Vietnamese and Lao stores, will also carry rice paper products for their customers’ convenience.
Looking for Japanese rice paper? Keep reading to learn where to find it!
Rice Paper Wraps
Do yourself a favor when shopping for rice paper wraps- do not buy wraps that are made primarily of tapioca.
While a little tapioca gives the wrapper a pleasant chew, look for wraps that list rice or rice flour as the first ingredient.
Rice paper is not expensive so if you have a few options, do not buy the cheapest one.
Spring for a more expensive rice paper wrapper- which should still be quite cheap per serving.
You will likely have the most luck finding rice paper in specialty or Asian markets and grocery stores. Vietnamese, Japanese, and Lao stores will have some variations of rice paper wraps available to buy.
The wraps are typically sold in packages of eight or more- and they are dried so they are easy to store and keep in the pantry.
Where to Buy Rice Paper in the US
For some reason, anything tastes better inside a tasty rice paper wrapper.
So, where do you find these unique rice paper wraps?
You can find Japanese rice paper at Asian markets, like Lao stores and Vietnamese grocers. Some Asian-style restaurants will sell wrappers to their customers upon request, depending on availability.
Don’t live near an Asian food venue? You can always buy rice paper wrappers from Amazon, which sells a respectable selection of wraps and paper to choose from.
Again, look for rice paper that contains more than merely tapioca for the best-tasting wraps.
Ideally, keep an eye out for wraps with rice (or rice flour) and salt as ingredients. For example, inexpensive rice paper wrappers by Cathay list rice flour as the first ingredient and tapioca as the second- so these are likely a fine option.
Those products that are made primarily from rice or rice flour simply taste and perform the best!
Storing and Preparing Rice Paper Wrappers
Now that you have found and acquired your rice paper wrappers, it would be a shame to store them wrong and risk your wraps.
Since rice paper wraps are sold in sheets that have been dried, they are easy to store wherever you would normally store your rice, grains, and pasta.
Make sure to keep them in a cool, dry place- airtight containers are also a wise idea.
These wraps have been dehydrated, so moisture is the enemy when it comes to storing this food product.
As long as these wrappers remain dry and away from moisture, they should remain shelf-stable for quite a while but- as with any food item- check the expiration date before consuming.
When you are ready to use your rice paper wrappers, you must first rehydrate them with water.
This will make them pliable and able to be rolled around fillings of your choice.
You don’t have to cook the rice paper wraps to consume them.
Some people like to steam or fry the wrappers, once filled.
There are also distinctive recipes that use rice paper and that create the perfect finger food for a party or special occasion.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rice Paper
Is rice paper easy to use?
Rice paper wrappers are easy to use as they are dried, and you rehydrate them first. Some recipes may call for steaming the wrappers after filling them, but others will simply require you to fill and roll the wrapper before serving.
What is the best substitute for rice paper?
Edible leaves- like spinach- or seaweed paper are both viable alternatives to rice paper. You may also substitute thinly sliced veggies- like zucchini- or wonton wrappers for rice paper wrappers in some preparations.
Can you eat rice paper on low carb diet?
Since rice paper is made from rice, and rice contains carbs, rice paper is not a low-carb food. Rice paper wrappers are also not pragmatic for anyone following a keto diet plan.
How many carbs does rice paper have?
Rice paper wraps are around 90% carbohydrates, but the number of carbs depends on the size and calorie count of your specific rice paper wrapper.
How many calories in rice paper?
The number of calories in your rice paper wrapper varies, depending on the size and brand. Typically, one rice paper wrapper has between 20-35 calories each.
If you have never used rice paper, you are missing out.
These unique wraps put a fresh spin on favorite sandwiches and dishes- but are easy to prepare.
Rice paper also makes a clever presentation, so they are perfect when entertaining or hosting guests.
Use these tips to find rice paper near you- and create something special for dinner tonight!