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Thai noodle salad with peanut dressing with chopsticks in grey bowl.

Cold Thai Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 8 mins
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This Cold Thai Noodle Salad with Peanut Dressing has hearty noodles with tons of fresh veggies covered in a delicious peanut dressing and topped with crunchy peanuts. The leftovers are also amazing making this recipe the perfect meal prep option. No reheating required! 


Peanut Dressing Ingredients*:

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 1/2-1 tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste**
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • Up to 1/3 cup water***

Noodle Salad Ingredients:

  • 6 oz. spaghetti noodles
  • 1/2 cup Peanut Dressing, from above
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 cup cilantro, loosely packed
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1-2 tsp. lime juice

Optional Toppings:

  • sesame seeds
  • chopped peanuts
  • lime wedges


Peanut Dressing Instructions:

  • Combine: In a small bowl, whisk together all the peanut sauce ingredients (see water note below***). If the sauce looks mealy or separated, that means you're about halfway there. Just keep whisking until smooth!

Noodle Salad Instructions:

  • Cook Noodles: Cook the spaghetti noodles until they are al dente which means they are still slightly firm (but not hard) when bitten. Run the noodles under cool water and drain them well. Then drizzle the noodles with a tiny bit of olive oil and toss with your hands to coat (optional)****.
  • Prep Ingredients: Cut the cucumber and red bell pepper into small cubes or matchsticks. Roughly chop the cilantro. Drizzle the shredded cabbage with the lime juice. Set aside.
  • Toss Noodles: Toss the cooled spaghetti noodles with the peanut dressing. 
  • Add Fresh Ingredients: Add the cucumber, bell pepper, cilantro and cabbage to the noodles. Toss again until combined. 
  • Add Toppings: Top with sesame seeds and chopped peanuts. Garnish with lime wedges. 


*This recipe will likely make more Peanut Dressing than needed for the noodle salad. The actual amount of dressing used is based on personal preference. Because this dressing is a crowd favorite, the recipe makes more than may be needed because many like to use extra! If you don't think you'll want extra and don't want leftovers, cut the recipe in half for the Peanut Dressing Ingredients only. 
**Red pepper flakes add spice to the Peanut Dressing. For medium spice level use 1 teaspoon. For a mild spice level use 1/2 teaspoon. For minimal spice level use a pinch or omit altogether.
***The thickness of the sauce and amount of water needed to thin out the sauce depends greatly on the kind of peanut butter used. For example, natural peanut butters are thinner than traditional peanut butters. Thicker peanut butter needs more water. Thinner peanut butter needs less water. Start by adding a couple tablespoons of water and add more slowly until the desired consistency is reached. 
****Coating the spaghetti noodles with a tiny bit of olive oil before tossing them in the peanut sauce keeps the noodles from getting sticky and mushy. The olive oil acts as a barrier between the noodles and sauce so the noodles don't soak up too much of the sauce which causes the noodles to get sticky, thick and mushy. Adding a little olive oil is particularly helpful for meal prep and making sure leftovers are delicious. 


Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 485kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 24g | Sodium: 988mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 14g
Have you tried this recipe? Let me know what you think! Rate this recipe and leave a comment below.