Tuna Mayo Onigiri aka The Best Japanese Rice Ball

Rice balls, or onigiri, are a traditional dish in Japan. Fish and veggies are placed within triangle-shaped rice before being wrapped in nori sheets. The tuna mayo onigiri recipe is loaded with a blend of canned tuna and mayonnaise. One of the most popular rice ball fillings is tuna mayo. It's not only delicious but also very accessible, quick, and simple to create. It's a delightful snack that you can eat whenever you like. The creamy, savory flavor of the filling wonderfully balances the plain rice in each bite. This blog will teach you how to make Tuna Mayo Onigiri, the ideal portable snack. These Japanese rice balls come in various fillings and flavors, but we'll focus on the most popular.

What can I fill my onigiri with?

Seaweed, pickled vegetables, eggs, and fish are common onigiri fillings. Because the rice has a mild flavor, intensely flavorful fillings are frequently used. What is the most popular onigiri? The most popular Onigiri fillings in Japan include tuna, salted salmon, umeboshi, tarako, katsuobushi, and kombu. There are several ways to make your filling. However, tuna mayonnaise is the most simple and popular. You may also add wasabi to the mix for an extra kick. You can customize it to your preference and level of spiciness. It's entirely up to you.

Best Onigiri Fillings (Japanese Rice Balls) - Onigiri Rice Balls | Snack Cuisine (Onigiri Recipes)

Tuna Mayo Onigiri

Modern Japanese rice balls filled with canned tuna and seasoned with soy sauce and Japanese-style mayonnaise are known as onigiri. Rice is packed with tasty tuna and Japanese mayonnaise, molded, then wrapped in a sheet of nori seaweed. These rice balls are quite simple to make, but several specialty ingredients exist.

In the early 1980s, the Japanese convenience shop chain 7-Eleven popularized the combo. It has eclipsed more conventional flavors like umeboshi (pickled plum) and tarako during the past 40 years to overtake other onigiri fillings as the most popular in Japan. This onigiri and its recipes can be bought in any local Asian grocery store.

Ingredients for tuna mayo onigiri rice ball:

  • Japanese short grain rice (sushi rice) - this is the best rice for rice ball making because it can hold the desired shape of an onigiri.
    take note: you can also use medium-grain rice and long-grain rice, short grain rice is just suggested.

  • Nori Sheet Seaweed - any type of seaweed, nori sheets or nori strip is suggested and you can buy this one at any convenience stores.

  • Tuna (canned tuna) - any type of tuna is accepted as long as you drain any excess liquid before making a tuna mayo mixture.

  • Mayonnaise - you can use regular mayonnaise or American mayo but Japanese mayonnaise is suggested for a better outcome.

  • Soy sauce - this not only boosts the umami content of the tuna mayo mixture but also makes it saltier, ensuring that the rice is suitably seasoned.

Instructions on How To Make Tuna Mayo Onigiri

Here's the step-by-step procedure for making onigiri simple recipe at home for your quick snack:

  1. Cook your rice in a rice cooker. When the rice is almost done, place the tuna can in a small pan over medium heat.

  2. Combine the sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar (if you have one), and mirin in a small bowl or mixing bowl and pour over the tuna. Cook and stir until the tuna has absorbed all of the sauce.

  3. Put some salt on a square of plastic wrap that has been spread out. Spread out the cooked rice that has been scooped out onto the wrap. Add some tuna and a small amount of mayonnaise on top.

  4. Form a triangular shape with wet hands and a little salt on your palm. Press softly with both palms and gently shape it to form a triangle shape. Wrap it in nori sheets to make it look like it is perfectly shaped.

  5. Enjoy your tuna mayo onigiri rice ball and you can also add a side dishes and toppings such as sesame seeds and bonito flakes on top!

Tuna Mayo Onigiri | Tuna Mayo Filling (Tuna Mayonnaise Onigiri)

Helpful Tips

  • USE AN ONIGIRI MOLD - To make a perfectly shaped outcome, use an onigiri molder. This will make your process so much easier to compress the rice together perfectly.

  • USE A PLASTIC WRAP - using plastic wrap is optional, you can use it if your rice is too hot and hard to shape using your bare hands.

  • WRAP YOUR ONIGIRI WITH SEAWEED WHEN YOU'RE GOING TO EAT IT - this is the only way to eat your onigiri crispy and fresh.

  • WET YOUR HANDS - it will prevent the rice to be so sticky in your hands.

  • USE FRESH WARM RICE - this will be easier to shape and it will ensure that the rice will stick together.


What is Onigiri's most popular flavor?

Tuna Mayo is the most popular tuna onigiri filling. Probably because we always have tuna in the cupboard and Japanese mayo in the fridge. Because it is sustainably caught, tastes better, and is of good quality. Because the filling needs to season the rice surrounding it, it should be properly seasoned and salty. The combination of Japanese-style mayonnaise and soy sauce gives tuna mayo its distinct flavor. Onigiri should stick together, but they're supposed to be light and fluffy, so don't over-squeeze them, or they'll turn into a dense, hefty mochi ball. Wrapping the Onigiri in herbs or nori seaweed helps to hide any fishiness from the tuna.

Tuna Mayo Onigiri | Japanese Rice Balls - Plastic Wrap Mayo onigiri

How many calories are in a tuna mayo onigiri?

Tuna is an excellent source of protein. However, when people make tuna salad, they tend to stay moderate on the mayo, adding unnecessary calories and fat. One cup of mayo contains 1440 calories, 160 grams of fat, and 24 grams of saturated fat. It will also add nearly half of your daily salt need. However, the majority of the time, the calories you consume or will consume will always be decided by the ingredients and brand you use in a dish.

Tuna Mayo Onigiri - rice paddle - Mayo Onigiri Rice Balls

Is Kewpie or Japanese mayonnaise good for tuna?

When you combine this authentic Japanese mayo with your tuna, you get a more flavorful onigiri. Kewpie Mayonnaise is predominantly used in Japanese cuisine to flavor dishes. Kewpie's sweet, tangy creaminess can quickly improve a dish, whether in a sushi roll or drizzled on top of a salad.

Mayo Onigiri Recipe card | Super Tasty Onigiri Classic Flavors - Tuna Mayo Onigiri Recipe

Experiences by Japan Crate: Onigiri Experience Set

It is difficult to resist the allure of onigiri because it's portable and infinitely adaptable. The Japanese rice balls can be plain, seasoned simply with salt, or filled with anything from umeboshi to fish roe wrapped in a sheet of nori or rolled in furikake. This tuna mayo version uses largely cupboard ingredients, making it ideal for lunch or dinner. Assembling the onigiri for the first time might be an adventure. These onigiris are intentionally large, practically overflowing with filling. It's fine if the triangles look more like blobs, they'll still taste wonderful. If all else fails, skip the filling and shape, spoon warm rice into bowls, and top with tuna mayo and furikake sprinkles.

Experience by Japan Crates' Onigiri Experience Set is now available worldwide. With this set you can now make your own onigiri at home. Instead of buying those already made in the convenience stores, you can easily make one of it. The Onigiri Experience Set includes instant rice, a rice mold, filling, a condiment, furikake seasoning and a seaweed wrap.

Onigiri Experience Set


Because they are easy to transport and can be consumed at room temperature, onigiris are great for on-the-go snacking. That is why many people love onigiri. Tuna Mayo Onigiri are modernized versions of traditional Japanese rice balls made with canned tuna and seasoned with soy sauce and mayonnaise in the Japanese style. It doesn't even need to be heated or stored in a container! All you have to do is carefully cover it in plastic wrap.

You can now order your Onigiri Experience Set at the Japan Crate website even without a subscription. Japan Crate offers free shipping, exclusive deals, and promos worldwide. Visit the Japan crate website to know more about their products.



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