Crunchy veggies, mangoes, peanuts, almonds and quinoa tossed with a lip smacking delicious peanut dressing. This scrumptious salad with incredibly flavorful peanut dressing is going to knock your socks off. It’s truly everything you could want in a salad. Not only it is pretty to look at but is also fresh, crunchy and salty and has the most crave able peanut dressing that is equally nutty and tart and just so so good. It’s pretty quick to make and won’t make you slave away in the kitchen. It has chock full of veggies that up that satisfying crunch that we expect in a salad and at the same time it is quite light in calories. It has literally been my summer salad anthem.
The base for this salad is quinoa, greens, cabbage, carrots, cucumbers, mangoes, bell peppers and nuts. The addition of bell peppers and tropical mangoes add a sweet and tart taste to the salad and also balances the strong taste of greens and cabbage. You can always choose your own set of veggies while making this salad.
The dressing is simply heavenly and full of flavors, thanks to the peanut butter. It’s salty, nutty, smooth, and it perfectly coats every bit of the salad to make each mouthful hit the spot. The peanut butter is mixed with soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame seed oil, chili paste, honey, ginger garlic and lime. I know it seems like a long ingredient list but don’t let it intimidate you. They are very simple ingredients and all you need to do is put them in the blender and blend, nothing too fancy or complicated. You can always tweak the ratio of the ingredients as per your liking and taste. You can feel free to add more soy sauce, honey and/or chili paste to make the dressing saltier, sweeter and/or spicier. The dressing tastes delicious on its own, but when it is combined with veggies the whole thing tastes much tastier.
This salad is packed with nutrients. Each bite contains a powerhouse of fresh superfoods and protein and a peanut flavor punch to match. Always top your salad with some extra peanuts and almonds for that extra crunch and texture and squeeze a dash of lime for an instant refreshing flavor kick.
For the salad
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup carrots, shredded
- 1/2 cup purple cabbage, shredded
- 1 mango, thinly sliced
- 2 cups, mixed greens, roughly cut
- 1/4 cup toasted almonds and peanuts
For the dressing
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 4 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce or tamari
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sesame seed oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon sriracha or sambal oelek
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1/2 inch ginger
- To cook the quinoa, rinse it in a fine colander under running water. Then add the quinoa along with 1 cup of water in a pot and let it come to a gentle boil over medium heat. Then reduce the heat on low and simmer the quinoa until it has absorbed all the water. Remove from heat and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- To make the dressing, combine all the ingredients for the peanut dressing in a food processor and process until smooth. Add some water for a thinner consistency.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the cooked quinoa, cucumbers, bell peppers, carrots, cabbage, mango, nuts and the greens.
- Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and toss it nicely. Adjust the seasoning if required.
- Divide the salad into bowls and serve.
- If you wish to make this salad ahead, store the veggies and dressing separately. Cover them and refrigerate for a day or two and pour on the dressing before serving.
- You can always choose your own veggies and nuts. If you have peanut allergy, you can use another type of nut butter that’s mild and nutty, like almond or cashew butter.
- This recipe is pretty high on protein with quinoa and peanut butter in it. But if you wish to get a more dense serving of protein,simply add some tofu or hard boiled egg.