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Pick your dipping sauce of choice above and mix all the sauce ingredients together. Make sure to use warm water for the nuoc cham so that the sugar dissolves more easily.
Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings as necessary.
I like to prepare the sauce before making the spring rolls so that the flavors have a longer time to develop.
Fill a medium saucepan or small pot with water and bring it to boil on high heat (see note 6).
Once the water boils, add the shrimp and cook for 2 minutes. Remove the shrimp from the water and let them cool for 5 minutes. Peel the shells from the shrimp.
Lay a shrimp on its side on a chopping board. Gently press the shrimp down with one hand and use the other to slice the shrimp in half, horizontally (knife parallel to the chopping board). Repeat with the remaining shrimp.
Fill a large saucepan or small pot with water and bring it to boil on high heat.
Turn off the heat. Let the noodles sit in the hot water for about 5 to 8 minutes. Double check the package directions to see how long they should sit in hot water as the cooking time varies across different brands.
Once the noodles have softened, drain and rinse the noodles under cold water. I like cutting the noodles with kitchen scissors several times so they are shorter and easier to grab.
Fill a large bowl with lukewarm water to wet the rice paper sheets.
Transfer all the vegetables, shrimp, herbs, and noodles into bowls and arrange them on your work top.
Get a chopping board ready. Dip your hand in the water and brush water over the surface of the chopping board so that it is damp. I usually wet the surface again after every 2 spring rolls. Alternatively, lay a damp paper towel over your work surface.
Quickly dip a sheet of rice paper in the lukewarm water to moisten the entire surface. This should take no longer than a few seconds.
Lay the wet rice paper on your work surface. Place a piece of butter lettuce close to the bottom edge of the rice paper. Arrange a small pinch each of rice noodles, carrots, cucumber, red bell pepper, and mint leaves over the center of the lettuce leaf (see note 7).
Arrange 3 pieces of shrimp about 1 1/2 to 2 inches below the top edge of the rice paper. Make sure that the orange/pink side is facing down.
Grab the lower edge of the rice paper and lettuce and start rolling up the spring roll. Once you have reached the shrimp, fold in the left and right sides. Finish rolling up the spring roll all the way to the end.
Repeat the rolling process with the rest of the ingredients. If the chopping board is looking dry, brush some water over the board.
Serve the spring rolls with the dipping sauce.