The Most Popular Sushi Rolls Ranked

The top ranked sushi rolls to order

There are so many big decisions in life, career decisions, romantic decisions, what car you will buy, where you want to live, if you do or don’t want to have kids.

most popular sushi rolls displayed on a restaurant table

But one of the biggest decisions you need to make, is which sushi rolls are the best choice when you shimmy yourself down to your local sushi bar

You can choose rolls based on their calories, their contents, some are vegan, some are vegetarian, some are not. You can even choose a sushi roll based on your personality.

There are so many choices, you want to make the right one. So, for your benefit we have compiled a ranking of the absolute best sushi rolls you can get, so you never need to worry again. 

1. Rainbow Roll

Contents: Imitation crab, cucumber, avocado, salmon, tuna, shrimp, yellowtail

Rainbow Sushi Roll with salmon, eel, tuna, avocado, royal prawn, cream cheese Philadelphia, caviar tobica, chuka

A rainbow roll is a roll that doesn’t just give you every texture and taste you could dream up, but it also gives you the ultimate best Instagram worthy food pic.

It is a multi-colored roll platter that absolutely trumps other rolls. It is basically a California roll with an extra helping of multiple different fish options. Who can say no to this! 

2. California Roll

Contents: Imitation crab, cucumber, and avocado. 

California roll maki sushi

A California roll is one that takes you to heaven and back, rich in flavors and textures.

It has a perfect combination of different foods, with the taste of the crab, the crunch of the cucumber, and the smoothness of the avocado, why haven’t you ordered it already?

3. Spicy Tuna roll

Contents: Tuna and spicy mayo.

Any artist will tell you less is more, and that is the case in sushi too, because sushi is definitely an art form.

The combination of spice and tasty tuna makes for a wonderful flavor that will leave you gasping for more.

Its even an easy one you can make at home if you wanted to try making sushi yourself. Give it a go.

4. Spider Roll

Contents: Tempura soft-shell crab, cucumber, avocado, and spicy mayo.

spider roll maki roll

The spider roll is like the older sibling of the California roll, The tempura crab and spice gives it a beautiful kick, and the cucumber and avocado balance that out beautifully.

You can eat these until the cows come home, thanks to their addictive combo taste.

5. Shrimp Tempura Roll

Contents: Shrimp tempura, avocado, and eel sauce.

crispy ebi tempura maki sushi roll

Avocado, smooth and silky, shrimp, crunchy and flavorful, what more can you ask for, the balancing of two food types, blended into one glorious sushi roll that leaves your mouth watering.

Eel sauce is also a unique addition, it’s a bit like marmite, you either love it or you hate it. But don’t hate on this roll just because of the sauce, give it a chance. Its worth it.

6. King Crab Roll

Contents: King crab and mayonnaise.

We all have our guilty pleasures in life, and if crab isn’t on that list yet, it sure will be soon.

The king crab roll isn’t for everyone as it is pretty much just king crab, however, it mixes so well with the rice that it’s hard to turn it down.

If you like a bit more of a flavor burst in your sushi roll though, maybe try it out with a sauce or a side.

7. Dragon Roll

Contents: Eel, cucumber, crab sticks, eel sauce, and avocado.

Traditional Dragon Roll

If you aren’t a fan of eel, maybe avoid this one. However, if you don’t mind it or are open to try, test out this roll.

The seafood combo with the gentle vegetables goes a long way. It is a heaven on earth for seafood fans.

8. Boston Roll

Contents: Shrimp, cucumber, and avocado.

Shrimp is a big favorite sushi roll non-stop, who doesn’t love shrimp?!

The Boston roll is a popular choice, and with this you can even double up on the shrimp if you are a big fan, and have shrimp on the inside, and the outside of the roll.

It’s a win-win shrimp thing.

9. Alaska Roll

Contents: smoked salmon, cucumber, avocado, and optional asparagus.

Smoked salmon is a joy of joys, a flavorful treat that tingles the taste buds. You can pair it with so many things, why not whack it on a sushi roll too?

You can get asparagus in this sushi roll, but that is a personal choice, it’s not for everyone. If you enjoy asparagus though give it a try, you won’t regret it, we promise.

10. Philly Roll

Contents: Salmon, avocado, and cream cheese.

Some may argue that sushi and cream cheese are just not a good pairing, however, evidently, some people disagree.

It is a unique taste for a unique palette. Like some of the other rolls it is not an all round glorified choice, but it is still tasty, you can’t argue that salmon and cream cheese go together, because they do, besides this addition makes this roll unique.

11. Cucumber Roll

Contents: Cucumber, rice, nori.

The cucumber roll is a humble friend, a good friend to non-meat eaters who just want to have some sushi. We can’t deny anyone that joy. Also called kappamaki in Japan.

It doesn’t have much flavor, but its tasty crunch really goes well with the rice, and you still get that sushi flavor you are here for.

While it doesn’t have any additional pieces, it works well and means that even with sushi, there is something for everyone, no matter what your dietary preferences are.

Best Classic Sushi Rolls Ranked

  1. Rainbow roll
  2. California roll
  3. Spicy tuna roll
  4. Spider roll
  5. Shrimp tempura roll
  6. King crab roll
  7. Dragon roll
  8. Boston roll
  9. Alaska roll
  10. Philadelphia roll
  11. Cucumber roll

Final Thoughts

There is no end-all-be-all of sushi ranking, there is no way that everyone will always agree on the rankings, and there are still so many other sushi rolls out there.

You can’t even begin to imagine, you can get Temaki rolls, Nigiri, Umaki rolls, and so much more, so many roll options, and don’t forget sashimi.

However, everyone will have their own tastes and the best thing about sushi is that there is always something for everyone.

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  1. Decided on the California Roll although I don’t eat sushi. I figured the ingredients are all to my liking. I loved it! I even tried a couple with a little wasabi…yummy. I can finally eat sushi. Next I’ll try the Boston Roll. I can’t wait. Thanks for the description list.

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Written by Ryan F.

Ryan is a local foodie who enjoys checking out the area's restaurant scene every chance he can. Ryan also enjoys traveling and checking out local eateries in every city he visits.