Cream Cheese California Roll

Introducing my delightful Cream Cheese California Roll recipe, a delicious twist on the classic California roll! If you’re seeking a simple, healthy, and utterly delicious sushi roll, this one’s for you. Featuring a homemade crab mix, creamy cream cheese, and cucumber slices, it’s a creamy, crab-packed delight with a satisfying crunch!

Cream cheese California roll being picked up with chopsticks and dipped into soy sauce.

Why I Love This Recipe

I absolutely love this Cream Cheese California Roll recipe for my inventive take on a classic dish! I combined the flavors of Japanese cuisine with a refreshing twist, using cucumber slices instead of traditional nori, providing a mess-free and enjoyable sushi experience you can make right in your home kitchen!

What sets my recipe apart? This California roll skips the rice, just like my Lobster Sushi Rolls and Cucumber Wrapped Philly Roll, making it incredibly easy to prepare at home! If you’re looking for a simple, delicious, and healthy sushi roll with all-natural ingredients and no fillers, this one’s for you. Get ready to create a sushi masterpiece that’s as delightful as it is easy to make!



  • Crab Meat in Water – premium canned crab meat. We have found higher-quality crab meat will contain fewer shells in the crab meat.
  • Mayonnaise – use Japanese Kewpie Mayo. Can substitute with regular mayo but will alter flavor.
  • Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
  • Rice VinegarRice Vinegar distilled from rice used in Asian cuisine.
  • Cucumber – thinly sliced using a vegetable peeler.
  • Avocado – use ripe, sliced avocado.
  • Cream Cheese – cut into long cubes.
  • Jalapeno – used to give California rolls a little kick. Optional.
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds – optional garnish.

Crab Substitutions

You can replace crab meat with Imitation Crab if you prefer. However, keep in mind that imitation crab is already pre-made with sweetener, so be sure to omit any additional sweetener when using it in your recipe.

Cream cheese California roll served on a wooden serving plate, top down shot.

Essential Kitchen Equipment


Step 1 Mix the ingredients for the crab, sweetener, mayonnaise, and rice vinegar and stir to mix.

California roll mix in a bowl.

💡 California Roll Mix Pro Tip

It’s crucial to ensure that you thoroughly squeeze out all Excess Liquid from the crab meat. Even a small amount of water can impact the texture of the California roll mixture, especially since it will be mixed with mayo.

Step 2 Use a mandolin to thinly slice cucumbers. Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and flip.

Sesame seeds sprinkled sliced cucumbers.

🥒 Cucumber Slicing Pro Tip

Ensure that your cucumber slices are Thinly Cut. Thin slices provide the necessary flexibility when assembling the roll, preventing it from breaking during the process.

Step 3 Place a spoonful of the mix onto a slice of cucumber. Add in your desired toppings like cream cheese, avocado, cucumber and roll them together.

California roll mix being wrapped up in a cucumber.

📄 Serving Note

Serve these sushi rolls with Soy Sauce and Wasabi dipping sauce. For an extra kick of flavor, consider adding a drop of sriracha or spicy mayo to these rolls.

Recipe Variations

You can create a Bacon Wrapped California Roll by simply replacing the cucumber with a strip of cooked bacon. This variation adds a savory twist to the classic California Roll, combining the flavors of bacon with the creamy crab and cream cheese filling.

Paring Recommendations

Pair your sushi rolls with Tofu Miso Soup, of if you’re in the mood for seafood, Clam Miso Soup for a comforting soup option. If you prefer a refreshing side, consider Seaweed Salad or Tako Su. To complete your meal, enjoy a warm Matcha Latte.

Cream cheese California roll served on a wooden serving plate, close up.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why use cucumber slices instead of seaweed?

Cucumber slices are used instead of traditional nori because they don't get soggy when in contact with the crab mixture, ensuring a mess-free and enjoyable sushi experience.

Can I substitute the mayo with a different type of sauce?

Yes, you can substitute the mayo with a different type of sauce. However, it's important to note that since mayo is a key ingredient, the flavor of the dish will be affected.

Is it necessary to use Persian or Japanese cucumbers, or can I use regular cucumbers?

Persian or Japanese cucumbers are recommended for their thinner skin and crisp texture, but you can use regular cucumbers if needed.

How many rolls does this recipe yield, and what is the serving size?

The number of rolls that this recipe yields may vary based on how thinly you slice the cucumber. However, as a general guideline, this recipe typically yields around 24 pieces. When it comes to serving size, most people would consume between 12 to 18 rolls.

Storage Tips

These rolls  are best enjoyed right after making for the freshest taste and texture. However, if needed, you can store any leftovers by wrapping them in plastic wrap. They will hold in the fridge for 2-3 days.

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Watch How To Make It

Cream cheese California roll served on a wooden serving plate.

Cream Cheese California Roll

Enjoy a delectable California roll with cream cheese, a delightful twist on the classic. Creamy, savory, and perfect for sushi lovers!
4.56 from 9 votes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian Fusion
Keyword: California roll with cream cheese
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 24 Pieces
Print Recipe
Calories: 36kcal


Cream Cheese California Roll


  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for cream cheese California roll.
  • Peel the avocado and cut into 1/4" slices longways and and then again in half short ways per picture below. You will need 24 pieces.
    Sliced avocado.
  • Cut cream cheese into 1 oz slices (using the marker on the cream cheese wrapper). Then cut into 1 oz sticks into 1/8s, so each 1 oz of cream cheese will yield 8 pieces and set aside. You will need 24 pieces.
    Sliced cream cheese.
  • De seed jalapeno (leave some seeds in there for the spice) and finely dice.
    Chopped jalapeno.
  • Drain canned crab meat from water VERY well by pressing the meat down with a spoon. There can be no water in there or it will affect the end texture. In a mixing bowl , add crab meat, Kewpie Mayo, sweetener, Rice Vinegar, and diced jalapenos. Mix well until potato salad-like consistency.
    California roll mix in a bowl.
  • On a plate, sprinkle Toasted Sesame Seed and set aside.
    Sesame seeds sprinkled on a plate.
  • Use a slicer to make 24 thinly sliced cucumbers long ways. Place the sliced cucumbers on top of a paper towel and use another paper towel to pat dry. Once dried, transfer cucumber slices on top of the sprinkled Toasted Sesame Seed as pictured below.
    Sliced cucumbers.
  • In the middle bottom half of each sliced cucumber, place a piece of cream cheese and avocado. Follow this up with about 1/2 tsp of the crab mix as shown on picture below.
    California roll mix being wrapped up in a cucumber.
  • Grabbing the bottom of each cucumber, carefully roll upwards to form roll. Repeat with all the rolls and transfer to serving plate. Serve with optional dipping Soy Sauce.
    California roll mix being wrapped up in a cucumber.


Calories: 36kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 87mg | Potassium: 19mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 48IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 1mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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