A wholesome Thai peanut salad that’s protein dense, flavour filled, and perfect for feeding a crowd! Crunchy slaw with a rich and creamy, peanutty dressing makes this one unforgettable.
This recipe was originally published in January 2019. It has been updated for content and photos.
This Thai peanut salad is perfect for potlucks, gatherings, or meal prep. It’s so simple to make and can be prepared in advance.
Serve it next to these juicy seitan burgers, or top some onto your potato tacos.
Ingredients + Substitutions
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Cabbage: I like a mix of green and red, but you can use all one colour if you’d like. You may also purchase pre-shredded slaw for convenience.
- Cilantro: Adds freshness to the salad, but you may sub for another fresh herb if you’re not a cilantro fan, such as parsley. Or you may omit.
- Chickpeas: Cooked or canned will work, just drain and rinse if using canned.
- Peanut Butter: Use smooth natural peanut butter without any added sugar or oil. For a peanut allergy, you may substitute almond butter in its place.
- Tamari: This is gluten-free soy sauce, but you may use regular soy sauce if that’s what you have on hand and if you’re not avoiding gluten. The soy sauce adds the salt element, so no extra salt is needed.
- Rice vinegar: Adds tang to the Thai peanut sauce, but if you don’t have any on hand, apple cider vinegar works as well.
- Sriracha: Optional for a hint of heat. The overall dish is not spicy, so adjust to your taste, or omit, it if you prefer.
(This is a summary with step by step photos, full recipe measurements and instructions are in the recipe card below.)
Shred the veggies (except the cilantro) and add them to a large mixing bowl, along with the chickpeas. (photo 1)
Then add all the dressing ingredients to a small bowl and mix well using a fork to help incorporate the peanut butter. (photos 2-3)
If serving straight away, pour the dressing on top of the Thai peanut salad and mix well to evenly coat it. (photos 4-5)
NOTE: If you’re preparing in advance, store the salad and dressing separately.
Serve with extra lime wedges (if you’d like) and enjoy!
You may prepare the salad ingredients up to 3 days in advance and keep it refrigerated, WITHOUT the dressing.
Store the Thai peanut salad dressing in a separate container and when you’re ready to serve, pour over the salad and mix well.
Leftover Thai peanut salad (with the dressing) will keep refrigerated for 1-2 days. I do not recommend freezing.
What else can I add?
- Add some extra crunch to your salad with cashew or peanut pieces.
- Use green onion instead of cilantro or parsley for a slight peppery/zesty flavour. (Especially if you belong to the ‘I hate cilantro’ club.) 😉
- Thinly sliced bell pepper would add extra colour and a hint of sweetness to your salad. Opt for yellow, orange or red bell peppers.
- For extra spice, increase the hot sauce, and/or add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes to the dressing.
To prepare the veggies for your Thai peanut salad, use the shredder attachment of a food processor, or similar tool. You may also use a cheese grater if you don’t have an automated tool, but do so with caution.
- If you’re working in advance, store the salad and the dressing separately until ready to serve.
- For convenience, you may purchase pre-shredded slaw to cut down on preparation time.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of water to the peanut dressing, if needed, to thin.
- This Thai peanut salad tastes best when freshly dressed, but leftovers keep refrigerated for 1-2 days.
More vegan salad recipes
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For The Salad
- 1.5 cups chickpeas cooked or canned (approx. 15 ounce can)
- 4 cups red cabbage shredded, approx. half a small cabbage
- 4 cups green cabbage shredded, approx. half a small cabbage
- 2 cups carrots peeled & shredded, approx. 2 medium
- ¼ cup red onion shredded
- 1 cup fresh cilantro chopped, thick stems removed (or parsley)
For The Dressing
- ½ cup smooth peanut butter
- 3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce if not avoiding gluten
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons lime juice approx. 1 large lime
- 2 teaspoons sriracha or to taste
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- Shred your veggies and add all the salad ingredients to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients, using a fork until smooth.
- When ready to serve, pour the dressing on your salad and mix well until evenly coated.
Do you think reconstituted pb2 would work well here to replace the peanut butter in order to cut down on fat?
Hi Amelia, I haven’t tried that, but I think it would work. Enjoy!
Hi, looking forward to trying this recipe! For the nutritional info what is the serving size? Thank you!
Hi Elizabeth, the nutritional info is for one-eighth of the salad. Eight servings in total. Enjoy 🙂
Another winner! This was our entire meal. It was delicious, healthy, colorful, with just the right amount of heat! Thank you.
Yay! Thrilled you enjoyed Nancy. Thanks so much for the review. 🙂
Made this yesterday, so pretty and full of flavor! YUM!
So glad you enjoyed Sheila!
Yum! I’ve made this several times already and it is so versatile and easy and perfect – loving it at potlucks and family summer picnics!
Thrilled you’ve been enjoying this peanut coleslaw Cheryl. Thanks very much for the review. 🙂
I am a sucker for thai flavors and I LOVED this. what a perfect healthy salad!!
Thanks Danielle! 🙂
I am actually a cilantro hater. I read somewhere that it’s genetic. But I tried it with parsley, and it was fantastic!
Glad you enjoyed it with parsley! 🙂
This was a great idea to use peanut sauce on coleslaw – the dressing was so good, I could drink it, it’s sooo good. I would never have thought to try it like this before! Thanks for the recipe. YUM
Agreed, totally drinkable, glad you enjoyed. 🙂
This is the perfect dish for any potluck or picnic all summer long! Loved it!
This coleslaw salad is so vibrant and was absolutely delicious!
Thanks Shanika! 🙂