Ramen Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing (Easy Recipe)

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This Ramen Noodle Salad is simple, fresh, and so flavorful! It’s made with crunchy veggies and toasted ramen noodles tossed in a sweet, nutty, tangy dressing. 

Top down view of ramen noodle salad in a serving dish.

Simple Asian Salad with Ramen Noodles

This Ramen Noodle Salad is a tasty salad recipe you’ll keep coming back to. Not only is it simple to make, but it’s loaded with the perfect combination of colors, textures, and flavors. It can also easily be doubled to feed a crowd! 

This crunchy ramen noodles salad is perfect for parties, potlucks, a light lunch, a main dish, or a side dish with dinner! 

Ingredients Needed for Crunchy Ramen Noodles Salad

Dressing Ingredients:

  • Peanut Butter: We use ½ cup of creamy peanut butter as the base for the peanut sauce. Crunchy peanut butter also works if you’d like to add crunch and texture to the sauce.
  • Lime Juice: You’ll need the juice of 2 limes or about 2 tablespoons. The lime juice adds some acidity to mix with the oils and cut through the peanut butter.
  • Olive Oil and Sesame Oil: You’ll need 3 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil to give this sauce a thinner texture. The sesame oil adds another layer of flavor.
  • Soy Sauce: We use 2 tablespoons of soy sauce to give this sauce an Asian-inspired taste. Soy sauce is salty, so use a low-sodium variety if desired.
  • Chili Garlic Sauce: You’ll need 1 to 2 tablespoons of chili garlic sauce for flavor and a kick of heat. Adjust this ingredient to taste. Sambal Oelek or even sriracha work well if you can’t find chili garlic sauce.
  • Honey: We use 1 tablespoon of honey to balance the spicy chili garlic sauce.
  • Ginger Paste and Garlic Paste: You’ll need 1 teaspoon each of ginger paste and garlic paste for flavor. These are usually located in the produce section in the supermarket. If you can’t find the pastes, use ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger or garlic powder. One inch of raw ginger or one clove of garlic will also work.

Salad Ingredients:

  • Butter: You’ll need 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter to toast the ramen noodles. Swap the unsalted butter with salted if desired but consider using low-sodium soy sauce.
  • Uncooked Ramen Noodles: You’ll need 2 packets of ramen noodles. Discard the flavoring packet for each.
  • Cabbage: We use 3 cups each of shredded green cabbage and red cabbage to make the bulk of the salad.
  • Add-ins: Peanuts, cilantro, green onions, and sesame seeds make up the crunchy, flavorful add-ins. Any of these may be substituted for other ingredients.
Ingredients needed for ramen noodle sauce.

How to Make Our Crunchy Ramen Noodle Salad Recipe

Scroll to the recipe card below for full instructions and ingredient amounts! 

This crunchy ramen salad recipe requires just a few minutes of hands on time! Here’s a quick breakdown of the recipe:

  1. Start by discarding the seasoning packet for each package of noodles. In a skillet, melt butter, then add in the noodles. Stir and cook until light and golden brown, then set aside. 
  2. In a bowl, combine peanut butter, lime juice, olive oil, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, honey, sesame oil, ginger paste, and garlic paste. Set the dressing aside.
Cooked ramen noodles in a pan.
Soy sauce salad dressing in a bowl.
  1. In a large bowl, combine the green and red cabbage, carrots, peanuts, cilantro, green onions, and sesame seeds. Add in the peanut dressing, then toss in the toasted noodles until combined.
Top down view of salad with dressing in a bowl.
Top down view of ramen noodles on top of salad mix in a bowl.

Tips and Notes

  • Time saving tip: To keep the prep super minimal,, use pre-cut matchstick carrots as opposed to slicing them up yourself. Or, use a coleslaw mix instead of shredding cabbage.
  • No ginger paste? In a pinch, you can swap it out for dried ginger. The flavor won’t be quite as good, but it will work just fine.
  • Add more veggies. Try edamame, green onion, cucumber, pepper, mushrooms, water chestnuts, you name it.
  • Add a protein. Make your salad ramen Asian noodle salad even more filling by adding in rotisserie chicken, flat iron steak, salmon, or tofu to keep it vegetarian.
  • Spice it up. If you like an extra kick of heat, try adding some Sriracha to the sauce or drizzle it on top as a finishing touch.

Serving Suggestions

I love to serve a generous helping of this topped up with freshly chopped cilantro, sliced green onions, sesame seeds, and lime wedges! 

It’s a perfect light lunch on its own, but it also makes an excellent side dish next to Instant Pot Beef and BroccoliPan Seared SteakBaked Salmon, or grilled chicken!

Large dish filled with ramen noodle salad.

Storage:

Make-Ahead: If you want to prepare your ramen noodles salad in advance, you can assemble the salad the day before and make the dressing, but leave them separate. Store them in separate containers in the fridge, then combine them just before serving! 

Refrigerator: A fully assembled cold ramen noodle salad is best served immediately, but will last in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days!

Sure! We prefer the taste and texture of instant ramen noodles that are lightly toasted. If you’d rather cook them ahead of time, that works, too. Just prepare them according to the package directions and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.

Any soy sauce based or Asian-inspired salad dressing tastes great on this salad.

You can add a variety of fresh vegetables, fruits, and proteins. Some add-in ideas include broccoli slaw, green, yellow or red bell peppers, edamame beans, sunflower seeds, slivered almonds, or cashews for crunch and extra protein. 

Fruits like mandarin oranges or strawberries also work great in this salad as well. Add cooked proteins such as chicken breast or shrimp for an extra boost of protein. 

To make it even more flavorful you could also top the salad with your favorite condiments like soy sauce or Sriracha! 

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Close up view of a large bowl of ramen noodle salad.

Ramen Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing (Easy Recipe)

5 from 1 vote
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Author: Kimberly
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 packages ramen noodles, seasoning packets removed and the noodles crushed
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1-2 tablespoons chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • 3 cups green cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 3 cups red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and julienned
  • ½ cup peanuts
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 3 green onions, green parts sliced and white ends discarded
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

Instructions
 

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter then add the noodles. Stir constantly until the noodles are light and brown, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat, and set aside to cool.
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    2 packages ramen noodles
  • In the meantime, mix the peanut butter, lime juice, olive oil, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, honey, sesame oil, ginger paste and garlic paste together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
    ½ cup creamy peanut butter
    2 limes
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    2 tablespoons soy sauce
    1-2 tablespoons chili garlic sauce
    1 tablespoon honey
    1 teaspoon sesame oil
    1 teaspoon ginger paste
    1 teaspoon garlic paste
  • In a large bowl, combine the green and red cabbage, carrots, peanuts, cilantro, green onions and sesame seeds.
    3 cups green cabbage
    3 cups red cabbage
    2 large carrots
    ½ cup peanuts
    ½ cup cilantro
    3 green onions
    2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
  • Add the sauce mixture until completely incorporated then toss in the noodles just until combined.
  • Serve with freshly chopped cilantro, sliced green onions, sesame seeds and lime wedges if desired.
  • See post for storage options, tips, and FAQs.

Suggested Equipment

Nutrition

Serving: 1cups | Calories: 272kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 481mg | Potassium: 383mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 3154IU | Vitamin C: 36mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 1mg

Notes

*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of 1 cup of ramen noodle salad. Actual calories will vary.
 
*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.
 
*Photos courtesy of Karla Rae Photography.
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