How To Make Spam Musubi

spam musubi sushi

I know this seems like it’s blasting out of left field. No, spam musubi is not a cake or a dessert of any kind – in fact, it’s a slice of canned pork, pan fried and caramelized in its own fat and laid on top of a rectangular shaped rice block, wrapped in seaweed! It’s extra salty, extra tasty and pretty much the perfect snack – if you can handle the fact that you’re eating meat from a can, that is! If you’re a Coco Cake Land reader, you might know that my family is quite obsessed with all things Hawaii. We love it there; I feel at home there. Maybe it’s because I have naturally darker skin, I’m Asian, I have a few tattoos, and I’m a pretty chill person? I also adore swimming and sunshine, plus snorkelling happens to be one of my favourite things ever to do… I also love the mix of Asian cultures you find in Hawaii, and all the super cute hapa (half Asian!) children. But you know who is probably the biggest Hawaii fan of them all? My dad, Gerry! Half of his wardrobe is Hawaiian shirts, his email signature is even a classic “Aloha”! My dad couldn’t make it to my cousin’s wedding in Hawaii last month because of some health issues. So for Father’s Day, I knew what I wanted to do for my dad: bring Hawaii to him, and make him spam musubi! (and haupia chocolate cream pie, but I’ll save that recipe for a future post!)

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After searching for recipes online, plus armed with my tastebuds – having freshly been to Hawaii last month (and I ate my share of spam musubi from Shirokiya - the Japanese department store in Honolulu!) – I was confident I could come up with a decent semblance of this simple lunchbox food. At first I was wishing I had bought one of those plastic spam musubi molds online, but I ended up just using the Spam can, and I didn’t even have to cut the bottom out! Spam – the original “nose to tail!” (haha)… So here you go: how to make spam musubi!

Spam Musubi

8 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 can of Spam
  • ½ cup teriyaki sauce
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 cups uncooked short grain white rice (sushi rice)
  • 3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 sheets of toasted nori

Make It!

Note: I used a nonstick mini rolling pin to pack down my rice. You can use any kitchen tool that will help you do this, or clean fingers dipped in water! 

  • Make your sushi rice – I used a Tiger brand rice cooker, and I used a ratio of one cup of uncooked white rice to 1¼ cups of water.
  • While your rice cooks, cut strips of nori with clean scissors. I cut my strips about two inches wide.
  • Once your rice is finished, add the seasoned vinegar; mix to combine with a rice paddle.
  • Open up your can of Spam. Try not to be horrified by the sight and scent of pale packed meat glistening in its own gelatin. Ha! Slice the Spam into eight equal slices.
  • In a medium bowl, mix the teriyaki sauce and brown sugar until combined. Marinate the Spam slices in the mixture for a few minutes.
  • In a medium frying pan set on medium high heat, fry up your Spam slices until caramelized and browned, around 2 minutes per side.
  • Move to a clean countertop or table workspace.
  • Spoon 1/3 cup of rice into your empty Spam can. Pack the rice down in an even layer. Turn the can upside down and whack it flat down on your workspace countertop. If the rice is packed down well, it will plop out in a pleasant rectangular rice puck!
  • Place a slice of browned Spam on top of the rice.
  • Wrap the Spam and rice with a strip of nori! Use a bit of water to adhere the nori edges together.
  • You did it!! Eat the first spam musubi (you have to test it!). Then continue the process with the remaining ingredients; serve warm.

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Cook and season your sushi rice, fry up your Spam slices, cut your Nori – you are ready!

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Pack your rice down into the empty Spam container.

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Whack the can onto your workspace and pop out the rice block.

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Place your salty delicious slice of fried Spam on top! Perfect fit!

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Nori strip wrapping time! Place your nori on top; it will stick right to the Spam.

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Fold the Nori over the musubi and seal the edges with a little bit of water.

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Oy yoy yoy! Delicious salty stack of perfect snacky-ness!

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How many Spam musubi can you eat? I admit, biting into a piece of Spam makes you feel like a salt vampire has vaporized every last molecule of water in your body. It is some salty stuff. But biting into a spam musubi, freshly made and still hot – crispy soft pork with a touch of caramelized sweetness on top of tender packed rice and light as air crunchy nori – pretty darn tasty! I want to try it next with thin slices of yellow oshinko pickle and omelette style egg, too!

When I was searching around for recipes, I came across these great posts, too:

TOTORO Spam Musubi from Steph at I Am A Food Blog! OMG with a slice of Spam on top.

Cynthia of Two Red Bowls and her Spam Musubi recipe!

If you have time to kill on a kawaii insaneo link labyrinth, I recommend going down this bento box rabbit hole: Kawaii Kakkoii Sugoi 

Let me know if you make these crazy things! Stay tuned for my post on haupia chocolate cream pie! Happy Monday, cake pals! xo Lyndsay

13 Responses to “How To Make Spam Musubi”

  1. Michelle @ Hummingbird High

    Okay, I’m a recent convert to spam musubi. For a long time I refused to try it (because spam, you know?), but then I finally did and LOVED it. That’s what I get for being snotty. Thanks for sharing this recipe, hopefully one day I’ll be brave enough to make it at home!

    Reply
    1. Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land

      haha! michelle, i know what you mean! i used to collect Spam cans as “art” when i was a teen because i thought the concept was so weird and funny!! i admit it is kind of icky when you first open the can. but once it’s fried up and hot, it’s really delicious! ^__^

  2. cynthia

    YAYAYAY SPAM MUSUBI!!!! Ahhh yours are so so perfect! I’m pretty sure I could eat my weight in these… Looove. And ee thank you for the shoutout :D

    Reply
    1. cynthia

      PS I forgot to say that I love what you said about Hawaii, so so much! I feel the same way — the first time I went with B2 I felt like I’d come home. <3 Let's all move there together and have B2's mama feed us Korean food all day long.

    2. Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land

      cynthia!!!! your post was awesome, that’s so cool B2 ate them growing up!! so fun you have such a great family connection there! lucky!!!

  3. steph

    mmm…i think i need to make some spam musubi now!! these look absolutely delish!! :D

    Reply
    1. Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land

      steph!! i was sooo craving them when i came back from hawaii!! thanks so much! xo

  4. Nancy @ gottagetbaked

    My husband gets down on his knees and thanks you for this post. He LOOOOOOOVES spam! I’m not a fan but even I enjoy spam masubi. Yours looks perfect. And I seriously want to move to Hawaii. I’m not much of a chill-vacation-lover but the most relaxing trip I’ve ever had in my life was Maui last April. I adored every second and I can’t wait to go back. I might now leave next time!

    Reply
    1. Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land

      haha! nancy that’s hilarious! oh man Spam is really just so tasty when it’s fried!!! yes i can’t wait to go back to hawaii too! thanks for stopping by!! xo

  5. Food Love + Minor Rambling - A Cookie Named Desire

    […] Spam Musubi – Um, what?!  […]

    Reply
  6. Jamie

    Lyndsay, you’ve won my heart. This is the first SPAM masubi blog post I’ve seen and it’s delicious and lovely!

    Reply
    1. Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land

      thank you, jamie, haha! i still can’t believe i posted about spam musubi on my cake blog. :)

  7. Kaleinani

    Hi Lindsey,

    Your musubi looks very tasty! I’m from Hawaii so I make musubi often. We don’t typically season the rice with vinegar in Hawaii, but it sounds like it might be good. Instead, I sprinkle a little furikake on the teriyaki spam. My kids love it and we get requests from my kids basketball team to bring it on our snack day.

    Reply

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