Recipe Index

Coconut Watercress Spring Rolls (lumpia)

Makes 18-20

If you’re going to make one eggroll-type thing in life, make lumpia. The Filipino veggie version has the potential for interesting additions such as potato, watercress and even coconut (at least in my case), and taste pretty damned great baked as well as fried. Plus the vinegar soy garlic dipping sauce is always a win. Lumpia can be frozen before baking and enjoyed baked up in some distant future in need of lumpia. And of course, you can easily pan fry lumpia too.

Tip: To freeze lumpia, lay in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze solid before storing in zip top plastic bags. Don’t thaw, just bake directly in a 425 degree preheated oven on parchment lined baking sheets.

1/3 cup dried grated coconut

3 tablespoons oil, divided

1 grated carrot

2 cups shredded napa or other green cabbage

3 cups coarsely chopped watercress

1 cup peeled, diced yellow onion

3 tablespoons garlic

1/2 pound potatoes, peeled and grated

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoon light colored vinegar such as coconut, sugar cane or distilled

18-20 large, square vegan eggroll or lumpia wrappers

Olive oil or canola cooking spray


Lumpia dipping sauce


1/4 cup soy

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1 tablespoon agave nectar

1 clove garlic, grated or pressed

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 425 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In dry wok over medium heat toast the coconut until golden, then move into a large mixing bowl. Heat half of the oil in the wok and saute the carrot and cabbage until wilted and softened, about 4 minutes, add the watercress and saute another 2-3 minutes, then move everything into the bowl with the coconut. Add remaining oil and saute onion and garlic until translucent, about 4-5 minutes, then add potato and saute another 3 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer to the mixing bowl, add salt, pepper and vinegar and mix thoroughly. Taste mixture and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

2. To assemble a lumpia, scoop 1/4 cup of filling into the lower third of a lumpia wrapper and spread slightly to about 1 inch away from the edges. Lightly spray in insides of the wrapper with a little cooking spray. Fold over the opposite lengthwise edges of the wrapper over the filling, then fold the bottom horizontal edge over the filling and tuck around the filling. Firmly roll up the bottom of the lumpia to meet the top edge of the wrapper, wet the tips of your finger in water and seal the edge. Place seam side down onto a baking sheet and repeat with remaining filling and wrappers.

3. Generously spray lumpia with canola or olive oil cooking spray and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, turn them over, spray with oil again and bake another 8-10 minutes until crisp and golden. While the lumpia bake prepare the dipping sauce by combining all the ingredients and pouring into serving bowls. Serve hot lumpia rolls immediately with dipping sauce.

4. To pan fry lumpia, heat a tablespoon of oil in a 12 inch deep skillet over medium high heat. Place 3-4 rolls seam side down into the pan and cook for 2 minutes before turning the rolls occasionally to brown all sides. Add more oil when needed to prevent sticking. If desired lay hot lumpia on paper towels to drain a little before serving.