How to make Philadelphia Rolls? Easy Sushi Guide

What is a Philadelpha Roll?

Smoked salmon, cream cheese, and cucumber are wrapped in nori seaweed sheets and served over seasoned rice to make the Philadelphia sushi roll. It is an inside-out sushi roll (Uramaki) with rice on the outside and nori on the inside. A Philly roll or a Japanese bagel roll are two more names for this sandwich.

This sushi was first made in the 1980s in North America and is named after the Philadelphia cream cheese firm. The combination of smoked salmon and cream cheese is prevalent on a bagel, hence the Japanese bagel roll is the second name for Philly roll sushi. This recipe is excellent for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Philadelpha Roll Sushi: What is in it?

Smoked salmon, cream cheese, and cucumber are among the traditional fillings of a Philadelphia sushi roll. After rolling the sushi in the seaweed sheet and rice, sprinkle sesame seeds evenly on top of the rice to give it additional flavor.

Philadelphia Roll (Homemade)

One of our favorites is the Philadelphia Roll! These scrumptious homemade sushi rolls, also known as Philly Rolls or Japanese Bagel Rolls, are very easy to make and only require a few ingredients.


  • Raw sashimi-grade salmon (3-4 oz) or gently smoked salmon
  • 1/2 Cup rice for sushi
  • 2 Tbsp rice vinegar (seasoned)
  • 1 Nori seaweed sheet
  • 2 Ounces cream cheese (or as desired)
  • 1-2 Tsp sesame seeds, roasted
  • Dipping Sriracha chili sauce and/or soy sauce

Tools Required

  • Bamboo sushi mat
  • plastic wrap to prevent stickiness (totally optional)

Extra’s available as options

  • Everything bagel seasoning 
  • Sliced cucumber
  • Chives or scallions


  • Using a mesh strainer, thoroughly rinse 1/2 cup sushi rice. Rinse until the water runs clear, then drain through the strainer by shaking it a little.
  • Heat 2/3 cup cold water and rice in a medium saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, then lower a low heat and cover to keep warm. Cook for 20 minutes, then take off the saucepan from heat (lid on) and steam for another 10 minutes.
  • Using a fork, fluff the mixture in a non-metallic basin. Mix in 2 tablespoons of seasoned rice vinegar. Allow it cool while you prepare the other ingredients for your sushi.
  • Chilled cream cheese should be rolled or shaped into ropes long enough to be horizontally placed on your seaweed sheet. 
  • Cut salmon into strips. If you want cucumber or scallions (or both – they are delicious in any combination!) Prepare them as well. But they are optional. Chop cucumber into matchsticks and then only use the green sections of the scallions.
  • Next, cover a bamboo mat with plastic wrap and place nori on top, rough side up.
  • Spread a thin layer of rice on the seaweed sheet and turn it. Place toppings straight on the rice for the seaweed on the exterior. Flip your sheet of nori so the rice touches the plastic-wrapped mat and set the filling straight on the nori for rice on the outside with the filling inside.
  • Place sliced salmon, cream cheese, and any vegetables in a horizontal row on top of the rice, roughly 1 inch from the bottom.
  • Roll about 1/4 of the mat over the filling and gently squeeze (so it sticks) to the rice beneath it, then unfold the bamboo mat. Repeat until the sheet of rice, seaweed, and vegetables has been rolled into a spiral. To cement the deal, give it one more squeeze. Click here for a step-by-step photo guide.10-With a newly sharpened chef’s knife, cut each roll into 6 bite-sized discs. Sesame seeds are sprinkled on the cut side, then soy sauce and/or Sriracha chili sauce are poured over the top.

Calories in a Philiadelphia Roll

Due to the smoked salmon and cream cheese, Philadelphia rolls have more calories than regular sushi rolls. A whole roll contains approximately 320 calories, while a single piece contains approximately 40 calories.

How to select Nori Sheets?

Nori sheets with a faint green tint are the best. There should be no holes and they should be the same thickness. When you fold them in half, they are crisp and easy to break.

What kind of Smoked Salmon to use?

The flavor and color of good smoked salmon are both rich. If the color is quite dense, it has not thawed sufficiently and may have a mushy texture. Before you use them as fillings, you will need to cut them into thin strips or roll them up.

How to select Cream Cheese?

This recipe traditionally calls for Philadelphia cream cheese, although any cream cheese will work. Use low-fat or non-fat cream cheese to lower calorie intake.

Bottom Line

That’s it for now. There are many other sushi rolls recipes coming your way so stay tuned with our blog to get your hands on the easy homemade sushi in lower-budget markets. In our next posts, we will talk about the preparation of California rolls, Dragon Rolls, Maki Sushi Rolls, and Spicy Tuna Rolls.

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