This Asian Cold Noodle Salad is an ideal side dish for the summer time. No heating required, make this salad ahead of time and chill it in the fridge. It makes the perfect accompaniment alongside grilled steak, chicken or shrimp. Packed with delicious and hearty vegetables, this noodle salad is bulked up by wholesome ingredients and is packed with flavor. Perfect to serve a crowd, or for meal prep for one.
What does this dish taste like?
This dish is light, packed with veggies, and a delicious side dish. It is not oily at all; even though it is very delicate in flavor, it is packed with flavor. Each bite has pieces of crisp, fresh vegetables, crunchy almonds, and sweet oranges. The dressing for the salad is sweet and savory: sweet from the addition of honey, and savory from the soy sauce, sesame oil, and broth used to cook the noodles.
A dish like this at a restaurant or deli (although it looks super healthy) can rack up calories because of the calorie-dense ingredients typically used here. My version is a lightened-up take on this dish, with the same great flavor profile.
This dish is perfect to prep ahead of time, and is ideal for meal prep. Not only does it not require any reheating (it is supposed to be eaten cold), but the flavors actually develop over time in the fridge as it sits. Talk about a win-win.
What will I need to make this recipe?
- spaghetti or angel hair pasta
- red bell pepper
- snap peas
- an orange
- bone broth or stock
- sesame oil
- reduced sodium soy sauce
- sliced almonds
Why do you boil the noodles in broth?
I do this for a lot of dishes, because it’s the first chance you get at flavoring every dish. When you are cutting back on other flavorful ingredients to make recipes lightened up, you need to introduce more flavor elsewhere. To me, the easiest way to do that is by flavoring the noodles while they are cooking. I also use this method for my Orzo Salad with Tomatoes and Feta and it works beautifully.
I also reserve the extra cooking broth for later, to add to the sauce ingredients for more deep flavor. If you haven’t tried this method of cooking noodles or rice, I recommend it!
How to make this Asian Cold Noodle Salad
This salad is super easy to throw together with just a little prep. The first step is to get your broth or stock boiling in a large pot, and then cook the pasta in that liquid. For this recipe you will need 6 oz (total, weighed uncooked). I use a kitchen scale to determine the weight. If you do not have a kitchen scale, I highly recommend ordering an inexpensive one on Amazon; you can find one for under $10 and it’s a great kitchen investment.
Cook the noodles in the broth according to package directions; careful not to overcook them. The noodles need to be able to stand up to the sauce and other ingredients, and they can not be mushy for that.
When the noodles are done, use a ladle to transfer them to a mixing bowl, and reserve the remaining broth for later. Do not discard the broth! And, more importantly, do not rinse the noodles! Rinsing noodles gets rid of all that amazing flavor we worked so hard to build up.
In the meantime, steam the broccoli, and prepare your other ingredients. You can steam broccoli quickly and easily in the microwave, which is what I do. At this point, you can combine the sauce ingredients as well, including the reserved broth.
At this point, it’s a matter of just combining everything. Incorporating the remaining broth stretches the sauce ingredients and add some extra starchy goodness and flavor. Finally, garnish with sesame seeds and the sliced almonds for some crunch.
If you want to bulk this dish up even more, you can add something like this Natural Heaven Hearts of Palm Pasta, which resembles noodles in shape and color, but is made of 100% hearts of palm, so it’s low calorie, 0 WW points, and low carb. My code for this website is STEPH.
Asian Cold Noodle Salad
- large pot
- mixing bowl or platter
- 6 oz spaghetti (weighed uncooked) or Angel Hair or Linguini, any long pasta will work
- 1 quart bone broth or chicken/beef/vegetable stock
- 4 cups broccoli fresh
- 1 red bell pepper
- 2 cups sugar snap peas
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 orange
- 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp sriracha
- 1 tsp ginger fresh or from squeeze tube
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 2 scallions chopped
- sesame seeds
- Bring the broth/stock to a boil and add the noodles.
- Cook according to package directions or until tender (do not overcook).
- Use a ladle to scoop the noodles out of the broth and place them in the mixing bowl.
- Do not discard the broth, we will use that later. Do not rinse the pasta.
- Steam the broccoli florets. Slice the red bell pepper. Remove the peel from the orange and cut it into bite-sized pieces.
- Add the steamed broccoli, red bell pepper, snap peas, chopped scallions, and orange pieces to the pasta.
- Mince the garlic. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, sesame oil, sriracha, and ginger.
- Add 1/3 cup of the reserved broth that you cooked the pasta in.
- Pour this mixture on top of the noodles and then toss to coat. Sprinkle with the almonds and sesame seeds.
- Chill in the fridge until ready to eat.
- 5 WW points (green and blue plans)
- 2 WW points (purple plan, if you use whole wheat noodles)
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