Eating more vegetables is one of the single best things we can do to improve our health. It’s a simple way to add antioxidants and fiber to our meals, which translates to powerful disease-fighting benefits. But let’s be honest: Sometimes we need something more filling than the same ole’ green salad.

Enter spring rolls. With less than five minutes needed to get these on the table, they’re a refreshing addition to your eating plan. They are great at lunch, dinner, or between meals as a snack. Plus, step away from the hot oven! There’s very little cooking required, which you’ll appreciate this summer as the weather heats up.

These spring rolls are filled with tasty, low-carb add-ins to make them diabetes-friendly and nourishing. They’re perfectly balanced with protein, fiber, and healthy fats to regulate blood sugar while keeping you satisfied. Try these three tasty spring roll combinations, or create your own. Anything rolls.

1. Shrimp and vegetable spring rolls

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Makes 4 spring rolls

Serving size: 1 spring roll with 1/4 of the peanut dipping sauce (2 1/2 teaspoons)

For the peanut sauce:

  • 1 tbsp. natural peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 1 tsp. sriracha

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until blended. Pour into small ramekin and set aside.

For the shrimp rolls:

  • 1/2-lb. wild caught shrimp
  • 1 tsp. canola oil
  • 1 package rice paper
  • 1 cup shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • large bowl of room temperature water
  1. Heat a nonstick skillet to medium and add 1 tsp. of canola oil. Add shrimp and sauté until curled and pink. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  2. Mix carrots and cabbage in a bowl.
  3. Submerge 1 rice paper round in bowl of water. Let stand for about 30 to 60 seconds. Rice paper should be soft and pliable, but not limp. Place softened roll on dampened cutting board. Place 3-5 pieces of shrimp, cut side down, in a single layer. Place 1/2 cup vegetable mix on top of the shrimp. Fold in the left and right ends of the round, and then roll from bottom to top tightly into a cylinder. Repeat with remaining ingredients to form 2 to 3 more rolls with shrimp.
  4. Cut rolls diagonally in half. Arrange on plate, and serve with peanut sauce.

Nutrition info: 186 calories, total fat: 4 g, saturated fat: 1 g, sodium: 487 mg, total carbohydrates: 28 g, fiber: 2 g, sugar: 3 g, protein: 9 g

2. Vegan avocado spring rolls

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Makes 4 spring rolls

Serving size: 1 spring roll with 1/4 of the peanut dipping sauce (2 1/2 teaspoons)

For the peanut sauce:

  • 1 tbsp. natural peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 1 tbsp. sriracha

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until blended. Pour into small ramekin and set aside.

For the avocado rolls:

  • 1 medium avocado
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 package rice paper
  • large bowl of room temperature water
  1. Thinly slice bell pepper lengthwise, and slice avocado into 8 slices. Set aside.
  2. Submerge 1 rice paper round in bowl of water. Let stand for about 30 to 60 seconds. Rice paper should be soft and pliable, but not limp. Place softened roll on dampened cutting board.
  3. Place 2 slices avocado in single layer. Place 1/4 cup of bell pepper slices on top of the avocado. Fold in the left and right ends of the round, and then roll from bottom to top tightly into a cylinder. Repeat with remaining ingredients to form 3 more rolls with avocado.
  4. Cut rolls diagonally in half; arrange on plate, and serve with peanut sauce.

Nutrition info: 210 calories, total fat: 9 g, saturated fat: 2 g, cholesterol: 0 mg, sodium: 149 mg, total carbohydrates: 30 g, fiber: 4 g, sugar: 3 g, protein: 2 g

3. Tofu spring rolls with peanut dipping sauce

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Makes 6 summer rolls

Serving size: 1 summer roll with 1/4 of peanut dipping sauce (2 1/2 teaspoons)

For the peanut sauce:

  • 1 tbsp. natural peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 1 tsp. sriracha

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until blended. Pour into small ramekin and set aside.

For the tofu spring rolls:

  • 1 14-ounce block of firm, organic tofu
  • 1 tbsp. sesame oil
  • 2 cups shredded white cabbage
  • 1 medium watermelon radish
  • 1 package spring roll rice wrappers
  • mint leaves, for garnish (optional)
  • large bowl of room temperature water
  1. Cut tofu square in half so you have 2 squares. Quarter each square so you have 8 smaller squares.
  2. Heat nonstick skillet on medium heat with oil. Sear each quarter of tofu 1 minute per side on all sides. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  3. While tofu is cooling, cut watermelon radish in half. Place cut side down and slice half-moon pieces about 1/8 inch thick.
  4. Cut cooled tofu into 1/4-inch slices.
  5. Submerge 1 rice paper round in bowl of water. Let stand for about 30 to 60 seconds. Rice paper should be soft and pliable but not limp. Place softened round on dampened cutting board.
  6. Place 3-4 slices of watermelon radish, cut side down, in single layer. Place 1/3 cup shredded cabbage and 2-3 slices of tofu in a single layer on top of the radishes. Fold in the left and right ends of the round, and then roll from bottom to top tightly into a cylinder.
  7. Repeat with remaining ingredients to form 5 more rolls. Cut rolls diagonally in half; arrange on plate, and serve with sauce.

Nutrition info: 188 calories, total fat: 6 g, saturated fat: 1 g, cholesterol: 0 mg, sodium: 152 mg, total carbohydrates: 26 g, fiber: 2 g, sugar: 3 g, protein: 7 g

Takeaway

With never-ending combinations that can be customized to your tastes and dietary preferences, spring rolls are a healthy and delicious option. And there’s no cooking required. So the next time you find yourself craving more than just a salad, consider spring rolls instead!

Lori Zanini RD, CD, is a nationally recognized, award-winning food and nutrition expert. As a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator, she helps others learn how to use food to manage their blood sugar and improve their lives! She is the author of Eat What You Love Diabetes Cookbook and is featured regularly in the media, including LA Times, CNN, DoctorOz.com, SHAPE, SELF, Forbes, and others.

For more delicious, diabetes-friendly recipes, visit to her website at www.LoriZanini.com or follow her on Facebook.com/LoriZaniniNutrition