Why You Should Never Pile Up Cooked Egg Rolls

One simply cannot dine in a Chinese restaurant without ordering a plate of egg rolls. The combination of vegetables and protein encased in wrappers and fried to perfection works perfectly as a crispy side dish, appetizer, or snack, per TheRecipe.

Egg rolls date back to 1917, when a cookbook (supposedly) featured the first egg roll recipe, named "Dan Gun," according to Ocean Palace. A visual of the recipe shared by World Turn'd Upside Down instructs the reader to whisk a few eggs in a bowl. Then, 1 tablespoon of the whisked eggs should be poured into a warm pan. The idea is to create a thin layer of eggs on the pan, as this serves as the wrapper for egg rolls. Cooked vegetables and meats (like chicken, Chinese ham, and dry mushrooms) are then added to the egg wrapper, wrapped up, and sliced. Eventually, these "egg wrappers" were replaced with actual dough, though the dough often required eggs to be made, per Ocean Palace. This evolved into rice paper wrappers, per TheRecipe, and wrappers made of wheat.

Now, these types of egg roll wrappers are able to maintain their shape while cooking, so surely, they should be able to hold up while cooling down in piles on a plate, yes? Nope. Not according to The Spruce Eats, at least. Here's why you should never pile up cooked egg rolls.

Farewell crispy textures

When you're cooking a giant batch of egg rolls all at once, it's tempting to pile them all on a plate so they can cool down. But, as The Spruce Eats discusses, the egg rolls won't be as crispy anymore; In fact, they'll likely turn out soggy. This is because the oil from the wrappers needs to drain out somewhere, and that somewhere ends up being the egg rolls underneath. Furthermore, Carlsbad Cravings says the residual heat from cooked egg rolls will cause steaming to take place, which, again, affects the texture of the wrappers.

So, what's the best course of action for cooling egg rolls? Well, as Carlsbad Cravings points out, the egg rolls should sit on layers of paper towels. There should be some space between each egg roll, and of course, don't place any extra egg rolls on top. If you have to use multiple plates and multiple sheets of paper towels, do so because these extra steps will ensure perfectly crispy egg rolls.

Egg rolls are easy and fun to make but don't make the mistake of piling them on top of each other simply because it's the easy thing to do. In this case, it's best to take Carlsbad Cravings' advice and separate the rolls from one another, so crispy textures can be retained.