Thai Chicken Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
Thai Chicken Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing is bursting with flavor and is quick to pull together for a busy evening. The peanut dressing gets a little kick from a must-have pantry item you will use again and again. This is the perfect way to use up leftover chicken or a rotisserie chicken.
The day before trash day is always a rude awakening. I’m always dumbfounded by the amount of leftovers that I end up tossing into the trash. My family hates leftovers. They refuse to eat them unless it’s unsauced pasta…you know…plain pasta. THAT, my friends, is always devoured. We are a house full of carbovores. Bread….that vanishes without a crumb. Especially the English muffins. We like to fill the nooks and crannies with extra melty butter. We have a system….I’ll share it with you sometime.
In my efforts to waste less food, I developed this Thai Chicken Salad. It was created with the contents of my refrigerator pre-trash day. Don’t worry if you are missing a few things, the recipe is a loose interpretation of many Thai Chicken Salads I’ve had over the years. But the dressing…..you may want to be prepared for this one if you don’t have everything. The good thing about making the dressing is it will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week AND all the pantry items you need you’ll either already have (like peanut butter…unless you’re nut-free….then I’m sorry. I truly am.) OR you will find other uses for them in other recipes. My favorite and most used pantry item is the Chili Garlic Sauce or Chili Paste. It comes in a jar with a green lid and is sold in the ethnic food section of your local grocery store. I use this in a ton of recipes and I promise…you will too especially if you make this Kalua Pork, these chicken wings or this easy stir fry! Unless you don’t like spicy food….then I guess you can be lame and leave it out. Just kidding. (sorta)
Leftover chicken is a lifesaver for this Thai Chicken Salad….I’ve even use marinated, grilled chicken with jaw dropping results. (I just described a salad as jaw dropping….ha ha ha!) But honestly, it’s a great main course salad that will make your weeknight meal planning a little easier. Especially if you plan ahead and make the dressing in advance….AND add a little extra chicken to your “Chicken Night” meal so you have leftovers later in the week to whip this baby up.
So spicy and flavorful, you’ll think you’re in Thailand….or not, but it’s really, really fresh and amazing. Trust me on this.
Dressing adapted from Ellie Krieger’s Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
Get the Recipe: Thai Chicken Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
- For the dressing:
- 1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
- 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 1/2 tablespoons honey
- juice and zest of one lime
- 1 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste or curry powder
- 1 shallow, chopped
- 2 tablespoons chili paste
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- For the salad:
- 2 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 romaine heart, torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup chopped cooked chicken breast
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
- 1/4 cup canned rice noodles
- 2 scallions, green and white parts sliced
- 1/2 English cucumber, sliced
- 1/2 cup chopped carrots
- 1/2 cup shredded purple cabbage
- In the bowl of a food processor, blend together all the ingredients (peanut butter through vinegar) until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- In a large bowl, toss together the romaine, chicken, cilantro, scallions, radish, cucumber, carrots and cabbage. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. Sprinkle the peanuts and rice noodles over the salad and serve immediately.
- Note: The dressing can also be served on the side and added as desired.