Oh this salad! I’ve made this Asian Chicken Noodle Salad at least six times since Memorial Day weekend and I still crave it for lunch or dinner on a hot day. It’s so easy to make and looks beautiful when it all comes together. I brought this along on our last camping trip and used it as our recovery food after our long hike. Cold refreshing crunchy salad with buckwheat soba noodles and little pieces of shredded chicken covered in an Asian style dressing with a hint of ginger. It just hit the spot!
The reason that I mentioned Memorial Day weekend is because this was the first time we made the salad (without the chicken) and realized we had something special. My husband’s old co-worker hosts a potluck every year where they ask everyone to bring a salad. The salads are judged and the top 3 salads are chosen. This is serious salad business, there are prizes at stake 🙂 ! Out of 15 salads, this salad was chosen as one of the three winners and judging by how cleanly the bowl was left on the potluck table, it seemed to be a hit with everyone.
My daughter actually found the recipe by Guy Fieri called Dang Cold Asian Noodle Salad that we started from and adapted to our tastes. We thought it needed some ginger and a little bit of garlic. Also, I like more of the veggie crunch so we added more napa cabbage and bok choy. I’ve made the salad with just napa cabbage or substituted cucumber slices for the bok choy and it all tasted fantastic. I also add a little less olive oil to keep it fresher. Adding shredded chicken (or any protein like shrimp) makes this salad a complete meal, leaving them out makes it a great side dish. On those hot summer days, make this salad ahead of time and chill in the refrigerator, leaving the dressing out. When dinner time comes, throw everything in a big bowl with the dressing, mix and serve immediately. Now that the kids are home during the summer, this is a great recipe to get everyone busy and helping out. I had my daughter put together the dressing, slice the napa cabbage (gotta practice those knife skills), chop the cilantro and shred the chicken. With all that “work” she put into the salad, she made sure she had her fill!
Asian Chicken Noodle Salad
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic Salad:
- 2 bundles of buckwheat soba noodles (soba noodles come in bundles inside of a package)
- 1 carrot, thinly sliced
- 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
- 1/2 red bell pepper, cored and seeded, and thinly sliced
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 1 cup napa cabbage, sliced
- 1 cup cucumber or bok choy, sliced
- 3 tablespoons cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1 cup chicken breast, shredded
- sesame seeds for garnish (optional)
- Combine carrots, celery, red bell pepper, green onions, napa cabbage, bok choy and cilantro in a large bowl, set aside.
- In a medium pot, boil water and cook noodles. (Directions on the package says cook for 4 minutes). Strain and run noodles under cold water to cool. Set aside and let drain thoroughly.
- In a small bowl, combine sesame oil, vinegar, soy sauce, hoisin, olive oil, ginger and garlic. Whisk ingredients together.
- Add drained noodles to vegetables and pour dressing over everything. Gently mix together, then sprinkle some sesame seeds on top for garnish (optional) and serve.
Note: If you want to serve it later, just wait to mix the dressing with the salad until you’re ready to serve.