Fish Musubi

Tonight, stay in for Japanese food! Our easy-to-follow recipe will have you cooking fish and rice and wrapping with nori like a pro. Heads up; you WILL want this sauce for almost everything from now on.


  • 12 even-sized pieces of any firm white fish, cut and patted dry (each piece measuring 2½ in x 2 in; 908 g / 2 lbs total)
  • 2 cups (300 g) uncooked OR 4 cups cooked sushi rice (Japanese short grain rice or Calrose rice)
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) canola oil
  • ½ tsp (3 g) salt
  • ½ tsp (1 g) black pepper
  • 3 tbsp (25 g) furikake seasoning or toasted sesame seeds (optional)
  • 12 strips of nori sheets, preferably roasted, each cut to a width of 1–1½ inches (using 3 to 4 nori sheets in total)
  • For the musubi sauce:
  • ⅓ cup (80 ml) soy sauce
  • ⅓ cup (72 g) brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) maple syrup OR honey
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) sesame oil


To Prep

  1. Lightly grease and line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment or plastic wrap. Ensure there is at least 2 inches of overhang on all sides.

  2. Cook rice as directed on the package. Let cool slightly or until easy to handle. Transfer and evenly spread the rice into the lined pan. Cover the surface of the rice with a piece of parchment paper or a piece of plastic wrap. Use another 8-inch square baking pan and firmly press down on the rice if available. Alternatively, use a flat-bottomed glass to smooth and compress the rice into an even layer.

  3. With the rice evenly pressed and covered, place into the fridge to firm up; 10 minutes.

For the Musubi Sauce

  1. In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan combine soy sauce, brown sugar, maple syrup (or honey), rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil. Place over medium heat and simmer until reduced, thick, and glossy; about 10 minutes. Cover to keep warm and set aside.

  2. Remove rice base from the fridge and uncover. Brush some of the glaze onto the surface of the rice. If using, evenly sprinkle the furikake seasoning (or toasted sesame seeds) over the glaze.

  3. Loosely cover the pan and place back into the fridge to set; 5 minutes.

For the Fish

  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Lightly grease parchment paper or foil with cooking spray or lightly brush with oil.

  2. Move the oven rack to about 4 inches from the top. Preheat oven to broil (500°F (260°C)).

  3. Brush all sides of the fish with the oil. Place fish onto the prepared baking sheet. Mix the salt and pepper together and season the fish.

  4. Slide the baking sheet into the preheated oven and broil for 4 minutes. Remove and brush the glaze on the top and sides of the fish. Place back under the broiler and cook for an additional 2–4 minutes or until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork.

  5. Remove from oven and brush the fish with additional glaze, if desired.

To Assemble

  1. With the overhangs, lift and transfer the compressed rice onto a cutting board. Divide and cut the rice into 12 rectangles.

  2. Place a glazed fish onto each portion of rice. Lay a strip of nori across the top of the fish, gently pressing the strip onto the top of the fish and down the sides of the fish and rice. Carefully lift the portion and wrap the nori under the rice to seal. Repeat process with the remaining fish.

  3. Serve immediately.

Chef's Tips

  • If using Fish Sticks, only glaze the rice. You may dip or drizzle your musubi with the extra glaze or kewpie mayo.
  • Serving and Storage:
    • Moisten the knife for slicing rice to prevent sticking.
    • Best enjoyed on the day of making for optimal texture.
    • For storage, individually wrap portions and place in a sealed container for up to 3 days.
    • Musubi can be served cold or heated.
    • Salmon is a great alternative for this dish.
  • Reheating Methods:
    • Microwave: Remove wrap, cover with a moist paper towel, and warm for 60 seconds.
    • Oven: Reheat at 375°F (190°C) for 5–10 minutes.
  • To make a maki roll with the same ingredients:
    • Lay rice on a full sheet of nori (longer side facing you).
    • Brush with glaze and sprinkle with furikake.
    • Put glazed fish in the centre.
    • Fold nori from the bottom, over top of the fish. Then fold again from the top to make a roll.
    • Cut the roll into pieces with a wet knife.
Species Icons White Halibut

Health Benefits of Halibut

  • Bone and Teeth Health: Halibut is a good source of vitamin D and phosphorus, both essential for the formation and maintenance of strong bones and teeth while also enhancing calcium and phosphorus absorption.
  • Energy and Growth: As an excellent source of niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, halibut may support energy metabolism, tissue formation, and normal growth and development.
  • Antioxidant Protection: Halibut is an excellent source of selenium, a dietary antioxidant that defends against oxidative stress.