Thai Crunch Salad with Peanut Dressing

Tested & Perfected Recipes Cookbook Recipe

Inspired by California Pizza Kitchen’s recipe, this Thai crunch salad with peanut dressing always satisfies.

Photo by Alexandra Grablewski, Chronicle Books 2018

This recipe was inspired by the popular Thai crunch salad served at California Pizza Kitchen. It’s made with crisp Napa cabbage, crunchy vegetables and edamame, but it’s the creamy peanut dressing that makes it so good. I guarantee you’ll want to put it on everything!

Serve this salad as a light lunch or pair it with grilled chicken for a more substantial meal. It’s excellent with my Honey, Lime & Sriracha Chicken Skewers.

What You’ll Need To Make Thai Crunch Salad with Peanut Dressing

peanut-dressing-ingredients

This is one of those recipes with a long list of ingredients but don’t let that deter you; you can use many of the prepared vegetables available at the supermarket today, and the dressing is quickly puréed in a blender.

salad-ingredients

How To Make Thai Crunch Salad with Peanut Dressing

Begin by making the dressing. Simply combine all of the ingredients except for the cilantro in a blender and process until completely smooth. It’s best to roughly chop the garlic and ginger beforehand, as most blenders aren’t able to process large pieces.

ready-to-blend

Add the cilantro and process for a few seconds until the cilantro is finely chopped. (If you add it in the beginning, it will completely blend into the dressing and give it a greenish hue.)

blending-in-cilantro

It will look like this.

finished-peanut-dressing

Next, make the salad. I typically use a blend of Napa cabbage, cucumbers, red bell peppers, shredded carrots, shredded purple cabbage and edamame, but you can use any crunchy vegetables that you like.

chopped-veggies

If you use cucumbers, be sure to remove the seeds, as they can make the salad watery.

seeding-cucumber

Combine all of the vegetables in a bowl along with the chopped spring onions and cilantro, and toss to combine.

ready-to-mix

If you’re serving the salad right away, drizzle the peanut dressing overtop and toss; otherwise serve the dressing on the side so the salad doesn’t get soggy.

Thai Crunch Salad with Peanut Dressing

Inspired by California Pizza Kitchen’s recipe, this Thai crunch salad with peanut dressing always satisfies.

Servings: 4
Total Time: 30 Minutes

Ingredients

For the Thai Peanut Dressing

  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, from one lime
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (use gluten-free if needed)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2½ tablespoons sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1-inch square piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves

For the Salad

  • 4 cups chopped Napa cabbage or shredded coleslaw mix (I like to toss in a little shredded red cabbage for color)
  • 1 cup prepared shredded carrots
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 small English cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup cooked and shelled edamame
  • 2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  1. For the dressing, combine all of the ingredients except for the cilantro in a blender and process until completely smooth. Add the cilantro and blend for a few seconds until the cilantro is finely chopped. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  2. For the salad, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl and toss to combine. If serving right away, drizzle the peanut dressing over top and toss; otherwise, serve the dressing on the side so the salad doesn't get soggy.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (4 servings)
  • Serving size: Approximately 2 cups
  • Calories: 282
  • Fat: 18 g
  • Saturated fat: 2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 28 g
  • Sugar: 17 g
  • Fiber: 6 g
  • Protein: 7g
  • Sodium: 505 mg
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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Comments

  • What a delicious salad! The dressing is beyond tasty! Love your recipes!!

    • — Doris on May 23, 2022
    • Reply
  • I am serving this salad, along with another salad, as a side for 8 people. I am wondering if I should double the recipe. This is the site I trust most for recipes and I am very rarely disappointed. Excellent recipes and well written.

    • — susan black on May 14, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Susan, if you’re going to have another salad, I think you could get away with keeping the recipe as is (or for extra insurance, you could make 1.5 times the recipe). Hope everyone enjoys!

      • — Jenn on May 15, 2022
      • Reply
  • Love this recipe just as is. I add any veggies I have but love to always use edamame and sprouts. I’m curious if there’s a way to use PB powder (as a lower-fat alternative) as a dressing ingredient?

    • — Lauren D. on April 13, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Lauren, so glad you like this! I’ve never worked with peanut butter powder so I can’t say for sure how it would impact the dressing but I suspect it would work. I’d love to hear how it comes out if you end up trying it!

      • — Jenn on April 13, 2022
      • Reply
  • I could take a bath in this dressing! It is so beloved amongst my family, and neighbors that I’m asked to make it for them at parties, since they only know limited English. I’ve also doubled the recipe with great success.

    • — Robin on March 28, 2022
    • Reply
  • So glad I made this for lunch today – it was perfectly delicious, and has definitely made its way onto my MA (make again) list. Thank you!

    • — Helen on March 25, 2022
    • Reply
  • This is simply delicious. One of my top 5 favorite salads. My husband loves it too. He generally isn’t overly enthusiastic about salads…he likes them okay but isn’t blow away by them and he said this one is REALLY GOOD. My mom asked for the recipe and makes it now too. Family favorite!

    • — Michelle G on March 25, 2022
    • Reply
  • My go-to Asian style dressing. Quick, easy and perfectly balanced. Thank you for sharing, Jenn!!

    • — Rita on March 3, 2022
    • Reply
  • I live alone. I made this salad last night for dinner. It is delicious – 5 stars. The peanut dressing is perfect. I liked the tiny bit of heat on my palate, but the next time I make it I might add an additional 1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes. The ingredients of each item in the salad were perfect for me – loved them all.

    I’m embarrassed to say it was the first time I ever purchased Napa cabbage. I have enough cabbage left to make another batch of this recipe in a few days.

    I have your cookbook, Once Upon a Chef, and have purchased the ingredients to make the Creamy Wild Mushroom soup. Looking forward to another delicious meal.

    Thank you,

    Paige Marshall
    LaPorte, IN

    • — Paige Marshall on February 16, 2022
    • Reply
  • My husband avoids salads, UNTIL NOW! He LOVES this salad and so do I. I cannot wait to serve it to guests and have already notified friends who love to cook and eat well that they should make this recipe(and visit your site for others) because it can be prepped ahead for a quick to serve meal that is wonderful! I had it with salmon, my husband with chicken, and the extra dressing spooned over the meat was a real treat!

    Time to order your cookbooks. I have time to try out LOTS of recipes, and hope to give copies to several friends next Christmas if all goes as I expect it will. Thank you so much for such tasty, healthy, and simple to prepare recipes so carefully presented.

    • — Barb on February 15, 2022
    • Reply
  • We LOVE this recipe. We leave out the cucumber and sprinkle roasted peanuts on the top at the end as a garnish. We also add rotisserie chicken if we have it to make a hearty meal.

    • — Lisa on February 5, 2022
    • Reply
    • Also, we often use bagged coleslaw mix to make super quick prep.

      • — Lisa on February 5, 2022
      • Reply
    • Another winner! The dressing is the bomb and came together very quickly. I used my food processor. For the salad, I used a bag of shredded cabbage, then added the green onions, chopped up mini cucumbers, edamame, and chopped red peppers. I added some grilled chicken breast and it was out of this world! Love the blend of flavors.

      • — Carol D on May 6, 2022
      • Reply
  • This salad is so delicious. I’ve made it four times lately for company and it’s been enjoyed by all. I would cut down on the sugar next time. I add chopped snap peas instead of the edamame beans. So good and crisp.
    Thanks Jenn for this great idea for a refreshing healthy salad.

    • — Jacqueline on February 2, 2022
    • Reply
  • delicious!
    added a dash of fish sauce to the dressing… it’s just not thai without a little bit o that wonderful funk!

    • — dawn on January 24, 2022
    • Reply

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