This vegan Peanut Noodle Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing is packed with flavour + protein and fibre to keep you full. Perfect as a side dish or lunch throughout the week!
Let’s hear it for Spring!
The sun is shining, the temps are warming and I’m into it. As we transition away from the colder weather, it’s common to begin craving more fresh foods and less comfort food. Let’s be real here, I love a good creamy mac and cheese any day, but the desire for more warming, cozy meals does lessen. Two things I always tend to want more as it gets warmer are ice-cold cold smoothies (especially after a workout) and cold, flavourful salads like this vegan Peanut Noodle Salad.
This recipe was actually inspired by a salad that I purchased at the Toronto Pearson airport on our layover home from Chicago back in January. You can read all about that trip (and some of my fave “healthy” travel tips) here. We were waiting for our flight home to Halifax and just that day I had come down with a serious cold. Anyone else seem to come down with a cold after every trip? So after a weekend of fun foods and travel, my body was craving micronutrients, and lots of them. While I was browsing for my airport dinner, a vibrant, fresh, veggie-noodle salad stood out to me at one of the snack kiosks. It had zucchini noodles, beet noodles, thinly-sliced bell peppers and sesame seeds topped with grilled chicken paired with a peanut dressing. I grabbed the salad and an orange and devoured both. The salad was crunchy and full of colour and flavour, and I was immediately inspired to recreate something similar at some point in time.
Well, that time is now! It’s almost April and I couldn’t think of a better season to share this. I also recently asked what my friends on Instagram were craving lately now that it’s Spring and many people said salads, so here we are. Now this recipe is similar to the one I enjoyed at the Toronto airport, but I put my own budget-friendly spin on it (less veggie “noodles”, more thinly-sliced or peeled veggies) and I also added some whole wheat noodles to balance out the meal with carbs. I added edamame beans for protein, but feel free to throw in some tofu or chicken if that’s your style. Whatever floats your boat! I hope you enjoy – and as always, if you make my recipe – let me know on Instagram or Twitter!
How to Make this Vegan Peanut Noodle Salad:
Start by cooking your noodles according to package directions. I usually have a variety of whole wheat noodles on hand, so whole wheat spaghetti noodles are what I use. Feel free to use rice noodles or soba noodles if you prefer! Don’t forget to rinse it with cold water immediately after cooking so it doesn’t get all sticky!
While the noodles cook, prep your veggies! Spiralize your zucchini (if it’s not already), peel the carrot strips, slice red cabbage, and chop your cilantro and peanuts.
Then make your dressing. Whisk together peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, rice vinegar, maple syrup, and sriracha. Add up to 6 tbsp of hot water to thin out the dressing as desired.
Toss the noodles, vegetables and cilantro together first. I like to use a set of tongs to do this. Then add the dressing and toss again. Finally add your edamame beans, peanuts and sesame seeds. Toss again lightly and enjoy!
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Vegan Peanut Noodle Salad with Veggies
For the Salad
- 2 cups zucchini noodles or 1-2 zucchini, spiralized
- 2 cups thin whole wheat noodles like linguine or spaghetti, cooked
- 1 large carrot peeled into long, thin strips
- 1 cup red cabbage sliced into strips
- 1/4 cup cilantro finely chopped
- 1 cup edamame beans
- 1/3 cup peanuts or cashews chopped
- 1-2 tbsp sesame seeds can sub hemp seeds
For the Dressing
- 1/4 cup natural peanut butter can sub almond butter
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 1 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 tsp sriracha
- 6 tbsp hot water to thin
In a large bowl, combine first five salad ingredients (save a little cilantro to garnish at the end).
In a smaller bowl, whisk all dressing ingredients together. Drizzle over top of salad and toss to coat salad.
Top salad with edamame, nuts, sesame seeds, and remaining cilantro. Serve immediately or store in refrigerator.