This delightful Asian Pasta Salad is seriously heavy on the crunchy vegetables with a flavourful garlic and ginger soy vinaigrette. Serve by itself as a great light summer meal or with any number of grilled meats or fish!
I’m a pretty big vegetable lover. My husband is serious vegetable guy, too. In fact, when I met him, he introduced me to the phrase “run it through the garden” when ordering subs.
We assumed this meant all of our kids would be big vegetable fans. The two eldest are huge vegetable eaters, so we figured that anyone who came after them would be as well. Boy were we wrong.
The three youngest are the definition of picky when it comes to vegetables, each having an extremely limited number of vegetables they like. Today’s dish isn’t for them. It’s for their big brothers, their daddy, and me.
Asian Pasta Salad is a vegetable lover’s dream come true. Purple cabbage, snow peas, green onions, spinach, Napa cabbage, three colours of bell peppers, cucumber, and pea shoots or bean sprouts all make an appearance in large quantities in Asian Pasta Salad.
Of course, there’s pasta, too, or it would be called Asian Salad instead of Asian Pasta Salad. The pasta, however, is more of a counterpoint for the vegetables than the main attraction.
With all those gorgeous colours and fabulous textures, Asian Pasta Salad is a feast for the eyes as well as the mouth.
Granted, the recipe for Asian Pasta Salad makes a lot. This is not a bad thing, though, because once you start eating Asian Pasta Salad, it’s really, really, REALLY hard to stop.
When there are so many gorgeous, great for you vegetables, stopping is highly overrated anyway. Right?
Asian Noodle Salad
-Please cook your linguine noodles to al dente for Asian Pasta Salad. Please, please, please. If your salad is going to sit in the refrigerator for anything over 2 hours, it will absorb the dressing and begin to soften a bit. If you’ve started the process with soft noodles, they’ll be borderline mushy after sitting in the dressing.
-Asian Pasta Salad is at its very best within 2 hours of being made. Everything is tremendously crunchy and vibrant.
That being said, I’ve been known to double the recipe to have planned leftovers for summer days. My husband and I happily munch on it for three days or so after its made.
The main difference is that the noodles have softened just a wee bit and some of the vegetables are crunchy tender. Not an issue for us. Yum.
-Eaten by itself, Asian Pasta Salad is wonderful. Served with grilled fish or chicken on the side or on top, it’s an absolute masterpiece.
-There’s no getting around it, there’s a lot of slicing and dicing involved in making this dish. If you tend to freak out over doing a lot of cutting, you can cut down on the work (KNIFE PUN) by purchasing a bag of pre-sliced purple cabbage. Many grocery stores also carry pre-sliced bell peppers in the summer.
-Please note that I suggested pea shoots or bean sprouts (also called mung bean sprouts). My preference is for pea shoots, but they’re not always easy to find.
If you can’t get them, bean sprouts (which are far easier to find) are also delicious. If you can’t find fresh bean sprouts, you can add drained and rinsed canned sprouts.
And if you should happen to have a handsome, strapping teenage son around to serve the salad on a huge, gorgeous salad plate, even better. Lawn work and salad service, that’s why I had them.
Calling all pasta and potato salad fans! I have you covered in abundance for your summer salads! Check out our Salmon Pasta Salad, Potato Salad with Bacon, Spicy Bacon Cheddar Pasta Salad, Dill Pickle Egg Salad, Easy Bacon Pea Pasta Salad, Veggie Lover’s Greek Pasta Salad, Loaded Baked Potato Salad, Easy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Salad, and Bacon Horseradish Potato Salad.
Use these to make this Asian Noodle recipe:
Are you looking for something to serve with this gorgeous Asian Pasta Salad? I’d highly recommend this Big Batch Lemon Garlic Grilled Chicken, Chinese Barbecue Pork, Chimichurri Chicken, Carne Asada, or Easy Garlic Ginger Glazed Sticky Pork. And you’ll be pretty pleased with yourself if you serve it with a Watermelon Margarita and a bowl of 3-Ingredient Strawberry Ice Cream!
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Asian Pasta Salad
In a quart sized mason jar, combine all of the dressing ingredients.Reach a fork into the jar and give it a swirl to get the brown sugar lifted from the bottom of the jar. Lid the jar tightly and shake to dissolve the sugar and combine evenly. Set aside.
In a very large mixing bowl, toss together all of the salad ingredients with your hands or a pair of tongs. Shake the jar of dressing vigorously to recombine, pour over the salad, and toss to coat.
Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately. Leftovers can be stored in a tightly lidded container for up to three days in the refrigerator.
Asian Pasta SaladRate Recipe
For the Dressing:
- 2 limes juiced
- 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup of ginger about a 4-inch section, frozen and grated or peeled and minced
- 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 3 jalapenos stemmed, seeded, and minced
- 3 cloves garlic peeled and minced or pressed through a garlic press
For the Salad:
- 1 pound linguine cooked according to package directions, drained, and shocked with cold water, then chilled
- 1 small head Napa cabbage thinly sliced
- 1 container baby spinach
- 1/2 a head of purple cabbage thinly sliced
- 1 English cucumber seedless, quartered lengthwise, then thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper stemmed or 3 baby red peppers, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper stemmed or 3 baby yellow peppers, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 1 orange bell pepper stemmed or 3 baby orange peppers, seeded, and thinly sliced
- 1 bunch green onions trimmed of hairy root ends, thinly sliced
- 2 bunches cilantro washed, tough stems removed, roughly chopped
- 2 cups snow pea pods roughly chopped on a diagonal
- 2 cups pea shoots or bean sprouts
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- In a quart sized mason jar, combine all of the dressing ingredients.Reach a fork into the jar and give it a swirl to get the brown sugar lifted from the bottom of the jar. Lid the jar tightly and shake to dissolve the sugar and combine evenly. Set aside.
- In a very large mixing bowl, toss together all of the salad ingredients with your hands or a pair of tongs. Shake the jar of dressing vigorously to recombine, pour over the salad, and toss to coat. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately. Leftovers can be stored in a tightly lidded container for up to three days in the refrigerator.
Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.
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If you like Asian Noodle Salad, you might like:
- Blackened Salmon Caesar Salad
- Creamy Tomato and Bacon Linguine
- Cowboy Pasta Salad
- Avocado Pasta Salad
- Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad
This post was originally published August 5, 2015. Updated July 2017 and again in July 2019.
Hey there!! Made this last night and it is Spa quality cuisine, in my opinion. So healthy and fresh, I used gluten free high protein noodles made from rice and quinoa. Thinking about it this morning, this dish could easily be tossed in a saute pan and served warm as well!! Perhaps a bit of almond butter or tahini added for some extra healthy fats and richness… just might try it and see!! Thank you for sharing the good stuff!!
I am vacation starting tomorrow, I just did all the chopping and put into individual bags and made pasta and tossed with dressing, and veggies right before serving. I hope this works!
It’ll work! I hope you love it as much as we do!
A fantastic, but VERY HUGE salad! I contemplated making 1/2 the recipe, but made the whole thing. I did divide it into two big bowls and put pasta and dressing in one that we had for dinner. I had one ahi tuna in the freezer that I cooked and shared on the salads. I will add pasta and dressing to the other bowl when we eat it..
Oh my goodness, this plus ahi tuna has to be wonderful! Thanks so much for taking the time to rate the recipe, Fern!
Tyler Finley says
This was fabulous! I currently live in Asia, and even the sauce is pretty spot on. The veggies give it a great crunch, and I even substituted and added, like zucchini and cherry tomatoes (because I had them in the fridge). My kids ate it well, only complaining about my personal addition of zucchini…so I’d say that’s a win!
That’s fantastic, Tyler! Thank you so much for the great feedback and for taking the time to rate the recipe. I truly appreciate it!
Wow! this asian pasta salad looks so colourful and tasty. I’m surely going to try this on the next few days with my kitchen master mandoline slicer. Thank you for sharing this.
I came home last night late after an exhausting day at work. I was hoping husband would suggest going out, but alas, he suggested thawing ground beef. Somewhat irritated, I remembered that you had posted an Asian pasta salad. Hmmm. Well, I don’t have cabbage, but I have arugula. Hmmm, I don’t have red peppers, but I have shrimp. Convinced that the deliciousness of this recipe would be the dressing and the pasta with crunchy vegetables, I subbed with the veggies I had, and added the shrimp. Oh it was lovely! Not as pretty as yours, but oh, that dressing! Thank you, thank you for rescuing a bad cooking evening… (Husband said WOW, this is a keeper.) Next time I’ll try the real recipe… 🙂
That sounds like a fantastic dinner save, AppleHillCottage!
Sabrina B says
Nice recipe, love all of these ingredients, nice change to my standard vegetable recipes, thank you for this, love it!
Thanks, Sabrina! I’m glad you liked it!
I made this using buckwheat pasta and had the clumping issue but it was amazing! I added cooked edamame so we ate it as our entire meal. Next time I might try it with no noodles and stir-fried chicken. Everyone loved it! Thank you for another wonderful recipe!
This sounds great, and I’d love to make it for our dinner party. How many people does this recipe serve?
Hmmmmm. That depends on how hungry they are and how much of a variety of other foods you’re offering. 😀 Sorry to sound vague, but my idea of “portion size” is drastically skewed by feeding three teen boys, two almost teens, and a husband. I can say it feeds a lot!
I wondered the same and made a double recipe for my clients and me. (small vegan foodie prep business) Id say serves 3 per recipe and thats a big full meal serving especially if using a high protein noodle or adding some edamame or some extra protein to it.
Amy Tetta says
This was AWESOME! We loved it so much! Since certain family members don’t like spicy foods, I left the jalapenos out of the dressing and just served them diced on the side. I actually somehow forgot the red cabbage (?!) so next time I will make it with that. But even without it, it hit the spot. I served it with chicken that I had marinated in a very simple (made up) marinade of oil, vinegar, lime juice, salt, pepper and garlic. I will be making this again & again. Thank you!!! 🙂
That sounds wonderful!!! I’m so glad it went over well at your home!
Coco in the Kitchen says
Found you on IG. This is perfect for a hot summer night when no one wants
Love the addition of jalapenos to the dressing. Going to try this tomorrow night!
Rebekah Esch says
I had difficulty as well fitting it into a bowl. I couldn’t add the peppers or cilantro because of family dietary issues but it still tasted great. I kind of mixed your recipe with Pioneer you adapted from. We love cashews but we love more limes and garlic. Husband approved and kid ate it up! What is ratio of salad to dressing? I had to eyeball splitting in half to get it better mixed and save some in fridge to mix later (I kept salad and pasta separate too). I would like to carry it in travel lunches like Karen said but not sure how much dressing I need to keep the taste great. I tend to put too much in one batch when I eyeball it.
With all those colors and shapes this pasta salad looks like a real work of art! Would love to prepare this for a party this weekend — now just have to find all those veggies!
leah brunson says
Have you ever had this without the pasta? If so, was it good?
I have not made it without the pasta. I’ve made it with other pastas (Rice noodles or some-such), but I’ve never gone pasta free with it.
Great recipe! I am in my third trimester in Houston and can’t get enough cold meals! If I wanted to make this to take for lunch during the week, would you just leave off the dressing and then add a little to the portion for the day? Also, I am skipping pea shoots and snap peas, but how about water chestnuts?
Yes to all of the above, Karen! Add whichever crunchy veg you like and add the dressing last minute!
This looks so delicious!!!
Saw this recipe and just had to stop at the store last night to pick up all the ingredients and make it. So glad I did – it was delicious! It does make A LOT (didn’t have a bowl big enough so divided the ingredients into two). One question though….my linguine kept clumping together and was hard to get it to separate (even when coated with the dressing)…is there a tip/trick to get it to distribute better? Should I have cut the linguine into pieces before cooking to make them smaller? I will definitely be making this again – highly recommended!!!
Hi Julianna! I’m so glad you enjoyed the salad. Let’s talk about that linguine… First a couple of questions: was it clumped in the pan? Or was it boiling freely? And when you drained it, did you rinse it with copious amounts of cold water? A trick I learned when I worked at a deli where I made macaroni salad every day was to get my hands in under the pasta in the colander and lift the stuff from the bottom to the top to make sure all the starch was rinsed off. That’s the usual culprit for clumping. I wouldn’t cut the pasta, personally, because I like the long strands. Maybe tossing the pasta and veggies together with your hands would help it distribute better in the end product?
after you cold water shock your pasta….you drop a bit of olive oil on your cold pasta and toss around ….no clumps whatsoever…
Hi Laurie- While that does indeed prevent clumping, I usually don’t do it because it also prevents the pasta from soaking of the flavours of the sauce or -in this case- the dressing.
Joan Hayes says
Rebecca, first off, that salad is huge! I love that there’s noodles in it. My middle child (the picky one) would totally go for this salad. You may be the reason I’m able to convert her to the green side. Can’t wait to make it!
Annalise @ Completely Delicious says
I want to eat this every day for the rest of the summer, and maybe into fall and winter too. YUM!
Angie | Big Bear's Wife says
I would totally devour this and even thought I’m a veggie person I’d love to throw some grilled shrimp or grilled chicken to it!