Types of Sushi in Israel


Sushi has gained immense popularity worldwide and Israel is no exception. Israeli cuisine has adapted sushi to suit local tastes and preferences, resulting in unique variations of this traditional Japanese dish. In this article, we will explore the main forms of sushi in Israel, highlighting their characteristics and ingredients.

1. Nigiri Sushi

Nigiri sushi is a classic sushi style that consists of a small mound of vinegar-seasoned sushi rice with a slice of raw or cooked fish, shellfish, or other toppings placed on top. In Israel, nigiri sushi is commonly made with locally available fish such as salmon, tuna, and sea bream. The freshness of the fish is crucial in nigiri sushi, and Israeli sushi chefs take pride in sourcing high-quality ingredients.

1.1 Salmon Nigiri

Salmon nigiri is one of the most popular forms of sushi in Israel. It features a slice of fresh salmon delicately placed on top of the sushi rice. The salmon can be served raw or lightly seared, offering a melt-in-your-mouth texture and a rich, buttery flavor.

1.2 Tuna Nigiri

Tuna nigiri is another beloved choice in Israeli sushi restaurants. It showcases a slice of fresh tuna, either maguro (red tuna) or toro (fatty tuna), on a bed of sushi rice. The deep red color and meaty texture of the tuna create a delightful contrast with the vinegared rice.

1.3 Sea Bream Nigiri

Sea bream, or dorade, is a popular fish in the Mediterranean Sea and is widely used in Israeli cuisine. Sea bream nigiri combines the mild, delicate flavor of the fish with the subtle tanginess of the sushi rice, resulting in a refreshing and light sushi option.

2. Maki Rolls

Maki rolls are cylindrical sushi rolls wrapped in seaweed, with a variety of ingredients such as fish, vegetables, and sauces rolled inside. Israeli sushi chefs have put their own twist on maki rolls, incorporating local ingredients and flavors.

2.1 Spicy Tuna Roll

The spicy tuna roll is a popular maki roll in Israel. It typically consists of a filling of spicy tuna, made by mixing diced tuna with spicy mayo or sriracha sauce, and is accompanied by cucumber or avocado. The roll is then coated with sesame seeds for added texture.

2.2 Veggie Roll

Given the growing popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets in Israel, veggie rolls have become a staple in sushi restaurants. These rolls are filled with a variety of fresh vegetables such as cucumber, avocado, carrot, and bell peppers, providing a refreshing and crunchy bite.

2.3 Tempura Roll

Tempura rolls are a fusion of Japanese and Israeli cuisine, combining the crispy texture of tempura-battered vegetables or seafood with the traditional maki roll. Popular fillings include tempura shrimp, sweet potato, or eggplant, creating a delightful contrast between the crunchy coating and the soft rice.

3. Sashimi

Sashimi is a Japanese delicacy consisting of thinly sliced raw fish or seafood, served without rice. In Israel, sashimi is often appreciated for its simplicity and focus on the quality of the fish.

3.1 Yellowtail Sashimi

Yellowtail, also known as hamachi, is a prized fish in sushi cuisine. Served as sashimi in Israel, it showcases the delicate flavor and buttery texture of the fish. The slices are expertly cut to highlight the natural marbling and freshness of the yellowtail.

3.2 Scallop Sashimi

Scallop sashimi is a luxurious choice for sushi enthusiasts in Israel. The sweet and tender scallop meat is sliced thin and served raw, allowing the natural sweetness and freshness to shine. It is often accompanied by a light dipping sauce to enhance the flavor.

4. Fusion Sushi

Israel’s diverse culinary scene has influenced the creation of fusion sushi, which combines Japanese techniques with other global flavors and ingredients. These innovative sushi creations reflect the multicultural nature of Israeli cuisine.

4.1 Mediterranean Sushi

Mediterranean sushi is a unique fusion that incorporates ingredients commonly found in Mediterranean cuisine. It often features fillings such as hummus, roasted peppers, olives, and feta cheese. The combination of these flavors with sushi rice and seaweed creates a delightful blend of cultures.

4.2 Israeli Street Food Sushi

Inspired by the vibrant street food culture in Israel, sushi chefs have created rolls that pay homage to popular Israeli dishes. These rolls may include fillings like falafel, tahini, pickles, and even crispy fried onions. The result is a fusion of Israeli street food flavors with the artistry of sushi-making.

5. Kosher Sushi

In Israel, where kosher dietary laws are observed by a significant portion of the population, kosher sushi has gained popularity. Kosher sushi adheres to the strict guidelines outlined in Jewish dietary laws, ensuring that the ingredients and preparation methods are kosher-certified.

5.1 Kosher Fish Sushi

Kosher fish sushi is made with fish that have scales and fins, meeting the requirements of kosher dietary laws. Common fish used for kosher sushi in Israel include salmon, sea bream, and mackerel. These fish are carefully sourced from kosher-certified suppliers.

5.2 Kosher Vegetarian Sushi

For those who prefer vegetarian options, kosher vegetarian sushi is a great choice. These rolls are filled with a variety of kosher-certified vegetables, such as cucumber, avocado, and pickled radish. The kosher certification ensures that all ingredients meet the dietary requirements.


Sushi in Israel offers a diverse range of flavors and styles, combining traditional Japanese techniques with local ingredients and influences. Whether you prefer classic nigiri sushi, creative maki rolls, delicate sashimi, fusion creations, or kosher options, Israeli sushi restaurants have something for every palate. Exploring the various forms of sushi in Israel allows both locals and visitors to experience the fusion of cultures and tastes that make Israeli sushi unique.

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