Cold Noodle Salad

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   I made this salad for the first time in the summer when we were having temperatures in the 90’s everyday.    I didn’t want to turn on the oven or even cook on the stove at any point past 9 am, so I was looking for cold salads to make early in the morning that are filling enough for lunch and dinner.  However, I liked this noodle salad so much that I often make it for my lunch even in the winter.

    I wanted some type of cold noodle salad because noodles are so filling.  I looked around for a while and finally found an Asian inspired one that sounded perfect.  I substituted in red bell peppers for the peas (because I hate peas) and it made for a very tasty and refreshing cold noodle salad.  I recommend making it a day before you want to eat it so the noodles absorb the sauce and actually turn brown from it.  The sauce is slightly spicy, a little tangy, and vaguely Asian.  The shredded carrots, and thinly sliced red peppers pair perfectly with the noodles.  The cold noodle salad was filling enough to eat for lunch or dinner.

Cold Noodle Salad  (adapted from Allrecipes)
8 oz. spaghetti noodles
1 1/2 t. sesame oil
1/4 c. rice vinegar
1/4 c. soy sauce
Juice from 1 lime
Zest from 1 lime
1 T. brown sugar
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 t. red pepper flakes
3/4 c. finely grated carrots (about 2 carrots)
1/2 red bell pepper, cut thin, then chopped into thirds
1/4 c. fresh cilantro, chopped

1.  Cook the spaghetti noodles according to package directions.  Drain and run cold water over top of them until they are cooled then drain again.  Set aside.

2.  In a large bowl with a lid combine sesame oil, vinegar, soy sauce, and lime juice.  Mix in the lime zest, brown sugar, garlic, and red pepper flakes.  Toss in the carrots, peppers, and cilantro and gently toss to coat.

3.  Pour the noodles into the bowl with the dressing and stir to coat the noodles.  Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour, though it’s best overnight.
4.  When ready to serve mix the noodles well with the dressing and serve cold.

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