Chicken Nugget & Banana Sushi with Instant Pot Rice
Chicken Nuggets and Bananas? Sounds like a strange combo, but it is delicious and kid-friendly! We stumbled upon this combination while experimenting with different foods to roll up in our homemade sushi. This one is kid-approved!
A few months ago a friend recommended using our Instant Pot to make sushi rice and to roll our own sushi at home. It sounded like too much work, so we didn't try it right away. My son has multiple food allergies and we do not go out to many restaurants. Sushi is one that we normally stay away from. I was craving sushi one night, so I finally decided to give the DIY version a try and it was so much fun! We are so glad we gave it a go and it is now one of our favorite family meals.
1. It is an interactive experience and the kids get to help assemble their rolls.
2. Prep is super easy! The sushi rice is so simple to make in the Instant Pot and everything else is just slicing.
3. There are endless combos! We tried using chicken nuggets with cucumber and avocado. You can also buy traditional sushi grade fish. You can try any combination of foods you have on hand (a great way to use up leftovers!)...mangos, apples, kiwi, fish sticks, tofu, beans, sweet potatoes...anything goes, so think outside the "normal" sushi ingredients.
4. This meal encourages adventurous eating from picky kids. Be sure to serve some of their favorites (chicken nuggets, cucumbers, carrots are usually safe bets at our house!) and then sneak in some "new" foods or some things they haven't eaten in a while. Seeing familiar foods served with others will increase their likelihood of trying new foods!
-2 cups of sushi rice
-2 cups of water
-one pack of nori
Choose from desired fillings:
-1 banana (sliced)
-1 box of chicken nuggets (sliced)
-1/2 cucumber (sliced)
-1/2 sweet potato (steamed and sliced)
-1/2 carrot (sliced)
-1/2 avocado (sliced
-1/2 lb shrimp (sliced)
1. First cook your rice. We like to use Lundberg Organic Sushi Rice. Rinse the rise according to the package directions until the water runs clear. If you are using the Instant Pot you will use a 1:1 ratio. So for one cup of rice you will use one cup of water. Then place the rinsed rice and water in the Instant Pot and let soak for 30 minutes. Usually 1 cup of rise is not enough for our family of four so I recommend 2 cups of rice and 2 cups of water.
2. After soaking for 30 minutes you can set your Instant Pot for 5 minutes on High Pressure and a Natural Release (11-18 minutes). We have found a sweet spot at 15 minutes of Natural Release and then Quick Release the rest of the way, but Instant Pots will vary. You can also cook your rice on the stovetop according to the package directions.
3. Prep your seaweed. We like using Emerald Cove Organic Pacific Nori. To prep the seaweed, just hold it in some metal tongs and briefly pass it over a gas flame or electric burner until it turns bright green. This takes only a few seconds. Be careful as the nori is delicate and burns easily. You will get the hang of it after a few tries.
4. While the rice is still cooking, you can prep your other ingredients. You will want to thinly slice any fruits, vegetables, and proteins so that they will easily fit in the roll.
5. If you want to use chicken nuggets, heat them up according to package directions. We also like to use precooked wild shrimp from the grocery store, but of course you can prep your own and include whatever ingredients you want.
6. Once the rice is done you are ready to make your rolls. Lay your seaweed out on a mat or plate. Use an ice cream scooper to scoop up some rice. You will want to push the rice down on the bottom 3/4ths of the seaweed. To prevent it from sticking to your fingers, you can use a plastic wrap or a silicone mat to push it down with a towel on top so it doesn't burn your hand.
7. Once the rice is spread on your seaweed, it is time to add your ingredients. Lay them out horizontally on top of the rice. If you add too many it may be difficult to roll later, so start with a few until you get the hang of the rolling.
8. Now you are ready to roll! Keep a small bowl of water handy, dip your fingers in, and wet the top part of the seaweed. Roll the seaweed from the bottom up. The wet edge will help the seaweed stick to itself once it is rolled.
9. You can now cut the sushi into bite-sized pieces and they are ready to eat!
If you haven't made sushi before, don't worry about making a perfect looking roll. Just have fun and the kids will too! I also love serving our sushi with some edamame. I buy it frozen and just heat on the stove. We also serve with soy sauce, peanut sauce, or spicy mayo. The kids love sesame seeds these days, so I also put a bottle out so the kids can give a quick sprinkle on top.
Have fun! I can't wait to hear about your sushi combos!