Vegan Lumpiang Shanghai (Filipino Spring Rolls)

July 29, 2020


By: Jasmine Briones 

Learn how to make the perfect vegan lumpiang shanghai aka Filipino Spring Rolls. It has the same exact taste and texture as the authentic recipe, but it is made with 100% plant-based ingredients. Let’s get cookin’!

shot of Filipino Lumiang Shanghai in a white bowl with dipping sauces by sweet simple vegan

Lumpiang Shanghai is one of my favorite Filipino recipes. I made it my goal this year to finally put together a vegan version for the blog. I wanted this recipe to have the same authentic look and taste that I grew up with, but since I have not had the nonvegan version for almost 10 years, I recruited my family to taste test it! They all gave it their seal of approval and trust me if they approved of it, then it is for sure the real deal!

overhead image of ingredients for lumpiang shanghai on wooden tray by sweet simple vegan

Every Lumpiang Shanghai recipe is different depending on who is making it/what family it is coming from, and I adapted this from my Aunt’s famous recipe.

Lumpia are various types of spring rolls commonly found in Indonesian and Filipino cuisines. They are a snack or an appetizer that is made with thin pastry skins and filled with either sweet or savory ingredients, depending on the recipe. Lumpia exists in both fresh (unfried) and deep fried forms, depending on the recipe.

macro image of lumpiang shanghai cut in half in bowl surrounded by more by sweet simple vegan

Today we are making (vegan) Lumpiang Shanghai, which is regarded as the most basic type of lumpia in Filipino cuisine. It is differentiated from other types of Filipino lumpia by its small size and thinner dough.

This specific type of lumpia is usually filled with ground meat (pork or beef) and sometimes even shrimp and beaten eggs. Obviously none of those ingredients are vegan, so I set off to experiment and create a veganized version of the dish with the same authentic taste and texture, just with no animal products included I made and tested this recipe about a dozen times in order to perfect it, and I am so excited to finally be sharing it.

I learned that the idea of lumpia originated from Fujian, China, but that the Lumpiang Shanghai that is made and served in the Philippines today has been nativized over the years so much so that it is a different recipe all together.

Make sure you tag us on Instagram @sweetsimplevegan and @consciouschris and hashtag #sweetsimplevegan if you recreate any of our recipes, we love to see your photos!

shot of Filipino Lumiang Shanghai in a white bowl with dipping sauces by sweet simple vegan
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shot of Filipino Lumiang Shanghai in a white bowl with dipping sauces by sweet simple vegan

Vegan Lumpiang Shanghai (Filipino Spring Rolls)

  • Author: Jasmine @ Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: About 50 lumpia
  • Diet: Vegan


Learn how to make the perfect vegan lumpiang shanghai aka Filipino Spring Rolls. It has the same exact taste and texture as the authentic recipe, but it is made with 100% plant-based ingredients. Let’s get cookin’!


  • 2 flax eggs (2 tablespoons flaxseed meal + 6 tablespoons water)
  • 1 (8 oz) can water chestnuts, drained
  • 1/2 cup green onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 large carrot, roughly chopped
  • 1 sheet of nori, torn into small pieces
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1 pack (3/4 lb.) Impossible Foods plant-based ground beef* (see notes)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (or tamari)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Lumpia or spring roll wrappers * (ours were 5 1/2-inch squares; see notes)
  • Oil, for frying
  • Serve with dipping sauces of choice, such as sweet and sour, banana ketchup or garlic and vinegar


  1. If your wrappers are frozen, thaw them according to the package directions, or the night before.
  2. Prepare the flax egg by mixing together the flaxseed meal and water in a small bowl and setting it aside for 15 minutes to thicken.
  3. In the bowl of a large food processor, add in the water chestnuts, green onions, carrot, nori and fresh garlic. Process until everything is very finely chopped and uniform in consistency.
  4. Transfer this mixture to a large bowl along with the vegan ground beef, soy sauce, salt and pepper, along with the prepared flax egg. Mix everything well until evenly combined. Set aside.
  5. Prepare your frying oil. Fill your pot with 2-3 inches of oil and heat it to to 350 degrees. If you don’t have a thermometer, set it over medium-low heat (between 3-4) to start. I like to start the heat low and adjust it later because if it is too hot, it will take a long time to cool down to the correct temperature.
  6. Fill a small cup with water and keep it handy for later. Carefully peel one sheet of wrapper off of the pile and place it straight down (in a square no a diamond) onto a clean work surface. Place 1 1/2 tablespoons of filling towards the bottom of the wrapper (about 1/2 inch from the bottom) and spread it out into a long line (see photos in post). If you have any excess on your fingers you can just wipe it on the inside of the wrapper so you don’t waste it.
  7. Fold the bottom over the filling and tightly tuck it under. Roll the lumpia tightly into a long cigar shape. Dip your fingers into the cup of water and then use that to wet the ends of the wrapper. Roll the lumpia over the end and make sure it sticks. If it does not, you can add more water but if it still does not stick, you may need a cornstarch “glue” which I will put in the notes. Using kitchen sheers or sharp scissors, cut the long roll into 2-3 pieces, depending on how big you want your lumpia. I cut mine into 2 to be about 2 3/4 inches long.
  8. Line a large plate or platter with paper towels and set side. This will be used to drain the oil when the lumpia are fried.
  9. Test the oil with one lumpia to see if it is hot enough. It should take about 4-5 minutes to become golden brown. If it is a lot faster, then it is too hot. If it is a lot slower, then it is too low.
  10. Once the oil is at optimal heat, working in batches, add about 5-8 lumpia to the oil (depending on the size of your pot) and fry the lumpia for 4-5 minutes, or until golden brown. If you are cooking them from frozen, it may take a minute or two longer. Place the lumpia on the paper towel lined plate to drain off excess oil.
  11. Serve immediately with dipping sauce of choice. Enjoy!


  • Air fryer instructions: You can air fry these from fresh or frozen, both work and there is no need to precook the filling! Coat the outside of the lumpia with a thin layer of cooking oil and place it in a single layer in the air fryer. Air fry at 360°F for 14 minutes, flipping halfway through. Cool before serving to allow it to crisp up and enjoy!  
  • I have tested this recipe with beyond meat and although the recipe did work, it had an overpowering “beyond meat taste” that took away from the recipe, in my opinion.
  • If your food processor is small, you will need to process the vegetables in batches. I suggest doing a mix of everything in each batch. By this, I mean some water chestnuts, green onions, garlic, carrots and nori in each batch. I find that the moisture of the water chestnuts really brings everything together and this will also guarantee that everything is of a similar consistency.
  • Instead of or even along with green onions, white or yellow onions also work well in this recipe.
  • If the spring roll wrapper does not stick with just water, you can opt to make a cornstarch glue instead. To make this, mix 2 tablespoons cornstarch with 1/3 cup water in a small saucepan, bring to a boil over low heat, and stir often until thickened into a glue-like consistency. Allow it to cook until it is easy to handle so that you do not burn your fingertips.
  • I have seen some recipes also add celery which would be tasty! I left it out just because my family doesn’t add that but if you want to use celery, I would add 1 large or 2 small ribs.
  • The lumpia wrappers that we use are found in the frozen section of our local asian market. We like to use the wrappers that say “extra crispy” on the package. Wonton wrappers will work BUT the lumpia will look bubbly on the outside.
  • To make these gluten-free, you can opt to use rice paper instead of lumpia wrappers, just as you would in Vietnamese Spring Rolls. Refer to this youtube video for tips on how to prevent them from splattering and to ensure that you have the best possible results when frying with rice paper. Her recipe is NOT is a vegan recipe, but I am sharing it for the sake of the technique she used to wrap and fry her rolls. 
  • You can keep the lumpia covered in a single layer in the refrigerator with a damp paper towel over top until ready to fry (if you are preparing it the same day) or you can freeze for future use. To freeze it, place all of the lumpia a baking sheet and place that into the freezer until frozen. Once frozen, transfer the lumpia into an air tight container or bag and place back into the freezer until ready to use.
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Appetizer, Snack
  • Cuisine: Filipino

Keywords: Appetizer, Snack, Filipino, Lumpia, Spring Rolls

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Recipe rating

  1. Kristen Basco says:

    When I saw that you posted this recipe, I knew I immediately had to make this! I did, and wow! It impressed my filiphino omni fiance. Your filiphino recipes hit the spot.

  2. mary vella-hibdon says:

    I made these and cooked them for 8 mins in my air fryer and they came out wonderful! Everyone ate them up really quick!

  3. Laura Zwirn says:

    I made these with my boyfriend who is Filipino and he said he felt like he was eating dinner at home lol. Thanks for the great recipe, delicious 🙂

  4. Alyssa says:

    Jasmine, you nailed it with this recipe!! I’m half Filipino and haven’t had lumpia since becoming a vegetarian a few years ago. This brought back all the nostalgia of classic lumpia from my childhood. I followed the recipe pretty much exactly, only left out the nori. I’ll definitely be making this again for future family gatherings, or whenever I have some free time on my hands. 🙂 Thank you for putting together such an authentic and great tasting recipe!

  5. Tami says:

    What would you use next time in place of the Beyond Meat crumble?

  6. Rosie P says:

    Thank you for the recipe Jasmine! I made these today and they were yummy. My first time ever making lumpia. My impossible meat mixture oozed out the ends for some of the pieces. Do you have any tips to prevent that?

    • Chris Petrellese says:

      Hey Rosie,

      So glad you enjoyed the recipe. We would recommend filling them a little bit less and leaving some room on the ends. Hope this helps 🙂

  7. Candy says:


  8. Claire says:

    I made these for my boyfriend, who is Filipino, and he said they were even better than the ones he had growing up! His family loved them too. We have made them 4 times already. Sooo good, Jasmine!

  9. @spiceupyourplants says:

    these turned out yummy and the recipe was very simple to follow. made them in advance and froze for a christmas appetizer.

  10. Rowena says:

    I can’t wait to make these for a friends pot luck. Quick question. Do you cook the filling before assembling if these are traditionally fried? It looks like I don’t need to cook the filling if I air fried them?


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