Most people rate sushi as healthy, and it can be, but it all depends on what you order. “Traditional” sushi rolls made with steamed rice, ultra lean fish and veggies provide about 200 calories per roll, but many rolls easily pack 500 or more calories. That’s more than a quarter pound burger, and calorie-wise, the max for what most of us need per meal (just for one roll!).
A lot of the “new wave” sushis are made with high fat, high calorie ingredients, including, creamy sauces, fatty meats, fried items, and even cheeses. One tempura roll packs 542 calories and a dragon roll contains 520.
Even if you go with an “in between” roll calorie-wise like a spider (360 calories) or spicy tuna roll (290 calories), it may not be all you eat, and extras like dumplings, teriyaki skewers or green tea ice cream can tack on a few hundred more.
So if you’re trying to lose or maintain your weight and you eat sushi often, go online to check the digits on your usual order, or switch it up.
Here’s a complete meal for under 450 calories:
- Cup miso soup – 50
- Seaweed salad – 60 (80 calories less than a side salad with ginger dressing)
- Half cup edamame - 125
- Salmon Pacific roll made with brown rice - 210
- Green tea - 0
Total: 445 calories
If you’re trying to eat out less often, make your own sushi at home. You can buy sushi-making tools including a makisu (the bamboo mat used to roll sushi) at any Asian market and even some mainstream grocery stores, and going the DIY route means you can control exactly what goes into your meal.