I don’t know about you, but I’m continually challenged to find side dishes my entire family will enjoy. My husband will, literally, eat anything. My two boys … not so much. However, I enjoy making interesting side dishes and we absolutely love having yummy leftovers. While The Best Homemade Coleslaw Recipe is still one of my favorites, I decided to research a few Asian slaw recipes. I developed this Crunchy Asian Slaw recipe that combines my favorite ingredients.
The Secret to Crunchy Asian Slaw
I first had a version of this recipe at a friend’s house a few years ago. She told me then that the secret to her recipe was super-crunchy ramen noodles and almonds. So, I took her advice to heart. It takes a few extra minutes and a bit of babysitting the oven, but the results are well worth the effort. To start, combine the ramen noodles with the almonds and spread evenly on a baking sheet. Bake for 4 minutes at 400 degrees. Stir and bake another 2 minutes. Continue to stir and bake in 1-2 minute increments until evenly toasted.
Once the ramen and almonds are toasted thoroughly, set aside to cool. Next, shred the cabbage and carrot; add sunflower seeds and peas. I know the bagged slaw from the store is convenient, but lately, I’ve had a difficult time finding it. And when I do, it’s not fresh and it’s expensive. I bought my cabbage from Aldi for $.69. It was the perfect size and was fresh and crunchy! To shred, slice the cabbage in half. Using a knife, cut out the core. Place the cut side down and thinly slice the cabbage. If you don’t like long strands, slice the cabbage again in the opposite direction. I like to rinse it in a salad spinner before adding the other ingredients.
Once your salad ingredients are mixed in a large bowl, go ahead and make the dressing. I placed everything in a measuring cup and used my immersion blender to combine. It worked great! If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can use a whisk or a regular blender. Whichever method you choose, be sure to allow the sugar to dissolve before adding the dressing to the salad.
Keeping it crunchy!
Refrigerate the salad, without the ramen/almond mixture, until you’re ready to serve. Right before serving, add the ramen and almonds. Stir thoroughly. If I know we aren’t going to finish the salad in one meal, I often mix just what we’re going to eat with the ramen and almonds. Then, when we have leftovers, our salad is crunchy and not full of soggy ramen!
- 18 oz. cabbage, shredded
- 1 carrot, shredded
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 3/4 cup frozen peas
- 1/2 cup almonds
- 2 packages ramen noodles, seasoning packets discarded
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 T soy sauce
- 1/4 t sesame oil
- Combine the ramen noodles with the almonds and evenly spread on a baking sheet. Bake for 4 minutes at 400 degrees. Stir and bake another 2 minutes. Continue to stir and bake in 1-2 minute increments until evenly toasted. Set aside
- In a large bowl, combine cabbage, carrot, sunflower seeds and peas.
- Thoroughly mix the dressing ingredients using an immersion blender, whisk or regular blender. Be sure the sugar fully dissolves before pouring it over the salad.
- To keep salad crunchy, add the ramen and almond mixture just before serving.