Easiest Ever Asian Noodle Salad

Easiest Ever Asian Noodle Salad | Mama Papa Bubba

If you were to make me choose one favourite meal, hands down, no ifs, ands, or buts about it, it would be an Asian noodle salad.  Yum, yum, YUM.  The obsession started while working at Earl’s during my summers off of university, and for a good few years, I probably ate at least a few Thai noodle salads a week.  

Then, when we moved overseas I had to come to terms with the fact that I’d have to learn to make my own – ugh.  But thanks to one of my expat friends, I discovered the Pioneer Woman shortly after arriving in the desert {and promptly fell in love}.  Now real talk?  If you have the time and energy to shop for the 20+ ingredients and then wash and finely chop approximately 40 pounds of fresh veggies, make the Pioneer Woman’s Asian noodle salad.  It’ll be the best damn Asian noodle salad you’ve ever had in your life and you won’t regret it one little bit.  If I could, I’d make it every single week.  BUT – there’s just not time for that.  Not with two small kids, two online writing gigs, a site of my own, a seat on the PAC executive committee, a big old house that collects dust faster than I can clean it, and about a hundred other commitments.  And so, I created my own version… a cheater version. The easiest ever Asian noodle salad that still has all of the components {the yummy noodles, the hearty veggies, the crunchy cashews, and a delicious homemade dressing} of my fave, but takes a fraction of the time and requires very minimal chopping – win!  Plus it goes without saying that it’s delicious, so there’s that too.

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Here’s what you’ll need…  First up, the dressing ingredients – your favourite oil, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, ginger, lime, garlic, and a fresh jalapeño {which is optional, but highly recommended}.

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For the actual salad, you’ll need a package of your favourite Asian-style noodles, a couple of green onions, some fresh cilantro, toasted sesame seeds, cashews, and two bagged salads {quite possibly the best ever invention for busy mamas and the single most important ingredient in making this salad the easiest ever Asian noodle salad}.

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You can pick whichever bagged salads you like, but I love and buy these Eat Smart ones because they’re filled with hearty, nutrient-dense veggies like cabbage, kale, chicory, beet greens, broccoli stalks, and Brussels sprouts, all of which are perfect for an Asian noodle salad.  Plus, if you’re eating them as they come, the dressings and add-ins are some of the healthiest out of all of the bagged salad options out there, and fun fact – all of their products will include a ‘No Artificial: Colors, Flavors, or Preservatives’ label by the end of next year {and several of them already do}.

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Alright, now let’s get started, shall we?  First up, the noodles.  When buying these, I look for the ones with the fewest, cleanest ingredients and go with those.  The package I usually buy contains 16 oz of noodles and I usually use about half, but honestly – this is not a fussy recipe, so if you use a little more or a little less, it’s not going to matter in the least.  Now cook up your noodles according to the package instructions, leaving them a little on the al dente side.  When they’re done, you’ll want to give them a really good rinse in cool water and set them aside in a strainer to drain completely.

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While that’s happening, you’ll want to make the dressing.  Now, this is the one part of this meal that takes a little bit of time and effort, but I promise it’s worth it.  Add your oils, soy sauce, honey, and fresh lime juice to a mason jar, and the finely chop up the ginger, garlic, and jalapeño.  {I don’t have one, but if you do, throw the both the garlic and the ginger into a garlic press and save yourself some time.}  Add all three into the jar, put the lid on tight, and give the dressing a really good shake.  And that’s the dressing done.  Set it aside until it’s needed a little bit later.

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Alright, now back to our noodles.  Once they’re cooled and fully drained, pop them into a bowl and drizzle them with a little of your favourite neutral oil and a little sesame oil. How much you add is up to you, but you do want them fully coated to prevent sticking.  Just go easy on the sesame oil if you it’s not something you usually use because it definitely has a strong flavour.  Add in a really good sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds and your chopped green onions and give the noodles a good toss.  That’s all of our prep work done!  

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Transfer the noodles out into a really large bowl {the one you’ll serve the salad in} and then empty your two bags of pre-washed and ready salad into the bowl you prepared the noodles in.  Add the dressing you made earlier and toss it well.  It may seem like A LOT of dressing for the amount of greens you have, but remember, all of that extra dressing is going to soak down into the noodles and give them an amazing little flavour boost in just a bit – yum.

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Now these…  Even though we’re not using the little dressing and add-in packs that came with our bagged salads this time around, that does not mean they’re going to waste!  Pop them in the fridge and the next time you go to make a salad and only find a boring head of lettuce, these little bags of goodies will be your saving grace.  Now honest truth – I’m super picky when it comes to salad dressings and often just make my own, but by the end of next year, all Eat Smartproducts will also be free of high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated fats, and artificial sweeteners, which is a huge step in the right direction. {You can sign up to receive more information via their monthly e-newsletters here.  Just subscribe under ‘receive exclusive offer’ on the bottom right of the page.}

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Okay, now back to our salad.  Pour out the dressed greens and veggies onto the bed of noodles.  {Doesn’t this look so good already?}

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And top the salad with handfuls of cashews, an extra sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds, and a big handful of washed and dried cilantro leaves.  And that’s it!  Dinner is served!

Easiest Ever Asian Noodle Salad {inspired by the Pioneer Woman}

 

Noodles

  • Approximately 10 oz of Asian noodles, cooked according to the package instructions
  • a drizzle of your favourite neutral oil
  • a small drizzle of sesame oil 
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 green onions, washed and chopped

Rinse the noodles really well with cool water and allow them to drain throughly in a strainer.  Add in the oils, sesame seeds, and onions, and toss well.  

 

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup of your favourite neutral oil
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of liquid honey
  • 2 teaspoons of sesame oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1/2 of a fresh jalapeño, washed, seeded, and finely chopped
  • 1/2 of a lime, juiced
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped

Add of all the ingredients to a mason jar and shake well.

 
Greens & Veggies
  •  2 bags of your favourite bagged salad {you’ll want something filled with hearty greens and lots of chopped veggies}
  • the dressing you made previously
Toss the pre-washed and chopped salad in your homemade dressing.
 
 
 
Toppings
 
  • roasted and salted cashews
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • a big handful of cilantro leaves, washed and dried well
 
 
Place the noodles in a large bowl and top with the greens and veggies.  Add a generous sprinkling of cashews and sesame seeds and top with a big handful of cilantro.  Enjoy!
 
 
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This post was sponsored by Eat Smart as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central, but we really do love and eat Eat Smart salads and all opinions in this pos are my own.
 
 

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