Cold peanut noodle salad

Cool off on a hot summer day with this COLD peanut noodle salad! This Thai-inspired recipe consists of noodles, healthy vegetables, a tasty and spicy peanut dressing, and is topped with sesame seeds. This is an easy vegan and gluten-free dish that you can whip up for weeknight dinners during hot summer days.

Last week here in Boston was really hot, like high 80s and humid. On most weekdays I take hour-long walks outdoors, and lately I’ve been such a sweaty mess afterwards that I’ve been trying to take my walks earlier and earlier in the morning. And it’s getting harder to keep my place cool indoors so I’ve been loathe to use the oven. So I have been drinking cold drinks like horchata (my favorite cinnamon rice milk) all the time and cold dinners have been on my mind.

I’ve had various Asian cold peanut noodle salads at restaurants over the years, and my recipe represents all of my favorite things about these peanut noodle salads: fresh red bell pepper slices, shredded carrots, chopped scallions, noodles (any kind will work!), sesame seeds, and chopped peanuts. These are all easy and healthy ingredients to assemble. Very little cooking is involved (you only need to cook the noodles!) and this recipe is vegan + gluten-free as well. If you want some meat, that would be delicious too — I recommend adding some shredded chicken.

Cold peanut noodle salad

  • 8 ounces rice noodles can substitute with linguini or spaghetti pasta
  • 1/2 red bell pepper thinly sliced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 2 scallions chopped
  • 1/3 cup peanuts chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds
  • For the peanut dressing:
  • 1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 tablespoons hot water

  • Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water in a colander until cool. Set aside.
  • Combine all of the peanut dressing ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix until smooth. Set aside.
  • Combine the noodles with all other ingredients including the peanut dressing. Toss and mix well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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