Toasted or Untoasted Nori for Sushi?- Get Your Answer!

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If you are a new sushi maker, it is most probably a common question for you: should I use toasted or untoasted nori for sushi? The answer is so obvious.

Toasted and untoasted, both types of nori have their benefits. But only toasted nori is suitable for sushi as the toasted nori is crispy, not rubbery, and easier to bite.

You may still wonder why you should use toasted nori rather than untoasted. This article has covered everything that might clear all your doubts. So to know more, let’s go through the article.

Toasted or Untoasted Nori for Sushi?

Toasted or Untoasted Nori for Sushi

Both toasted and untoasted nori is available in the market. But In most cases, nori is already toasted when they are sold.

So, basically, you need to choose if you toast it yourself or not. You’ll mostly get sushi made with toasted nori in Japanese sushi shops. 

The main difference between toasted and untoasted sushi is in the texture. The untoasted sushi is chewy and rubbery, while the toasted nori is crispy and fragile.

Japanese nori is made from seaweed. After some processing, the makers usually dry out the seaweed and give them a shape like sheets. There might be germs in the sheet during the processing, so it’s a good idea to eat it after toasting. If you are not used to eating it, it might be difficult to digest. 

What Type of Nori is Best for Sushi?

What Type of Nori is Best for Sushi

Nori is the edible seaweed wraps, securing rice and other ingredients in your sushi. However, a common question the people ask – is toasted or untoasted nori better for sushi?

The straight answer is that it depends on your taste, what type of nori is best for sushi. You may use toasted nori, which is the traditional way to make sushi. But, you can also use raw nori. People from China usually eat raw nori.

Let’s learn about them in more detail.

3. Toasted Nori for sushi

You may ask, should I toast nori before making sushi?

Yes, if you want to make your sushi taste like the restaurant, try buying toasted nori. Toasted nori gives you a caramelized and roasted flavor. Toasted nori enhances the sushi’s taste and flavor.

If you buy toasted nori, you don’t need to toast it before making sushi. It gives your sushi a crispy texture, is easier to bite, and not chewy. Toasted nori is a Japanese delicacy; it will always make your sushi more delicious. Moreover, there is no need to soak toasted nori in water before use, unlike raw nori.

Here is a list of the top 3 toasted nori you can try for your sushi.

The Top 3 Toasted NoriWhy You Should Try Them
Daechun Toasted Sushi NoriPacked with crisp, flavorful 50 nori sheets
Jayone Premium Seasoned NoriThin and lightly salty
ONE ORGANIC Sushi NoriOffers maximum pliability and minimal tearing with crispy texture

4. Untoasted Nori for Sushi

Some people prefer untoasted nori for sushi as they are used to eating it. You can also use untoasted nori for sushi.

If you are a sushi lover and mainly used to eating sushi from restaurants, you might not enjoy the sushi made with untoasted nori. Untoasted nori gives an earthly flavor and rubbery texture. You may feel uneasy about biting into the sushi, and also, it is hard to digest.

Moreover, there may be living different creatures on the kelp, as the process of making nori is not that healthier. You ingest these creatures as well as sushi while eating untoasted nori.

Top 3 Untoasted NoriWhy You Should Buy Them
Raw Organic NoriNutritious, packed with 50 sheets
Emerald Cove Nori SheetHigh quality and tasty sheet, inexpensive
Nagai Shushi NoriBig size, 10 sheets

How to Toast Nori for Sushi

How to Toast Nori for Sushi

Normally, nori sheets are sold pre-toasted, you can use them in sushi as they are. But if your nori is exposed for a long time or you just want to add a more crispy texture to your sushi, you should toast it.

Toasting briefly can improve your sushi greatly, add a more crispy texture, and make it more delicious. 

In order to toast it:

  • First of all, cut the nori sheet into small pieces. You can give it a shape like a triangle or square.
  • Put the nori pieces in a large baking oven tray and brush sesame oil on the nori pieces.
  • Heat it over medium to high heat for two minutes on each side. The time may vary depending on the nori, so toast it until it is crisp. 

That’s it! Now, you can use the toasted nori to make sushi and enjoy the delicious food. 

Can Nori be Eaten Raw?

Yes, nori can be eaten raw. Raw nori is also available in the market. But we think you won’t enjoy eating raw nori as it has too much chewy texture. 

In general, raw nori is considered safe to be eaten. Still, you may face some side effects if you consume raw nori for a long time. 

As we have said earlier, the process of making nori is not that healthier. So on the kelp of the nori, there might be some living creatures you won’t want to eat. 

Can You Use Toasted Seaweed for Sushi?

Can You Use Toasted Seaweed for Sushi

Many often ask if they can use toasted seaweed for sushi. The answer is yes; you can use toasted seaweed for sushi. 

Nori is actually made of seaweed – dried edible seaweed normally used in Japanese cuisine. In fact, nori is the Japanese name for edible seaweed. 

There are so many types of seaweed, but all of them are not edible. Some of them are even toxic.

Similar to nori, you can use edible toasted seaweed for sushi.

Tips for Preparing Nori for Sushi

Before checking the suggestions to prepare nori for your sushi, let’s check how to make sushi first.

  • You will need a shiny nori sheet on your bamboo mat to cover the whole surface, the rough side facing up.
  • Put 2 handfuls of sushi rice on the nori after soaking your hands in water. Press down the rice thinly and evenly over the nori, leaving a one-inch gap between the rice and the top. You can use Nishiki Premium Grade Sushi Rice for your sushi.
  • Add fillings now. Try not to fill past the bottom quarter for easy rolling. You can use fish slices, seaweed salad, crab salad, shrimp, egg, etc., inside the sushi.
  • Now roll the sushi, covering the nori, rice, and other ingredients, and press gently to compress the stuffing.
  • Remove the bamboo mat and roll the remaining sushi all the way.
  • After rolling up the sushi, use the bamboo mat to press gently.
  • Finally, cut, serve, and relish the sushi.

Sushi making is not that challenging. However, you can give your sushi a restaurant look and taste by ensuring your nori sheet is perfect. Here are some tips to keep your nori sheet flawless for sushi.

  • Keep the nori as dry as possible. 
  • Toast the nori sheet before making sushi.
  • Keep your hands dry.
  • Never soak the nori in water.
  • The rice should be dry before use.
  • Make sure your nori is appropriately stored, don’t keep it open. 
  • High-quality rolling mats are better for making perfect sushi.
  • After making the sushi, consume the sushi as soon as possible. 

Where Can You Get Nori Sheets?

Where Can You Get Nori Sheets

Nori sheets are available in almost all super shops. You need to search for the best brand of nori sheets for great taste. 

You can also get your nori sheets online – both toasted and raw. Click here to buy some excellent quality seaweed or nori sheets. 

To buy quality raw edible seaweed, visit here.

You might be interested to read also our another comprehensive article of: Difference Between Sushi Rice and White Rice – You Should Know


  • What can I use instead of nori sheets for making sushi?

Try soybean sheets or soy paper if you don’t like nori sheets or prefer something less salty. 

Even if you don’t want to use any of these, you can just roll your sushi on a plastic wrap and add some sesame seeds. It won’t look like traditional sushi, but it can help.

  • Why is my nori chewy?

If you purchase a high-quality seaweed or nori sheet that is still chewy, it is probably because the nori sheet was open for too long. Exposed nori becomes chewy due to humidity and moisture in the air.

If you want a crispy texture, dry it out. You can also toast it again. The more you dry it, the crisper it becomes.

  • Is nori vegetarian? 

Yes, nori is vegetarian and a great diet for vegans comprising vitamin A and B12. Vegans usually don’t get sufficient vitamin A and B12 in a vegan diet.

Nori can help with this vitamin deficiency in a vegan body. So if you are a vegan, just enjoy your nori without any guilt. 

Take Away

A sushi night is a fun night. However, what should you use – “Toasted or Untoasted Nori for Sushi?”

It’s up to your taste whether you will use toasted or untoasted nori for sushi. But we will highly recommend you to use toasted nori. It will give your sushi crispiness and will make it more delicious.

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