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Crunchy Asian Rice Salad

Who says salads have to be boring? Kick your lunch or dinner up a notch with this Crunchy Asian rice salad, brought to you by Australian Women’s Weekly. Chock-full of colorful, vitamin-rich veggies and packed with spicy Asian flavor, this is a recipe you’ll crave again and again — and feel completely guiltless about eating.

Quick | Easy | Serves 4 | Cook time: 15 minutes


  • 2 cups packaged quick-cook brown basmati rice

  • 1 Lebanese cucumber

  • 1/2 small piece of Napa cabbage, shredded

  • 3/4 cup snow peas, sliced thinly

  • 1 small piece, 1/2 cup of carrot, cut into long, thin strips

  • 2 cups bean sprouts

  • 2 green onions (scallions), sliced thinly

  • 1/2 cup (70 g) salted peanuts, coarsely chopped

  • 1/4 cup fresh perilla leaves, loosely packed

  • 1/4 cup fresh Thai basil leaves, loosely packed

  • 2 Tbsp. sweet soy sauce (kecap manis)

  • 1/4 cup tahini

  • 1 tsp sesame oil

  • 2 Tbsp. rice wine (mirin)

  • 2 Tbsp. water


  1. Heat rice in a microwave oven, according to packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, half cucumber lengthways and remove seeds. Cut cucumber into long, thin strips.
  3. Place rice and cucumber in a large bowl with Napa cabbage, snow peas, carrot, and sprouts, then most of the onion, peanuts, torn perilla, and Thai basil. Toss gently to combine. Reserve some of the onion, peanuts, perilla and basil to top salad.
  4. Make sesame dressing. Whisk ingredients sweet soy sauce, tahini, sesame oil, rice wine, and water together in a small bowl.
  5. Add dressing to salad, toss gently to combine. Top salad with remaining onion, peanuts, perilla, and Thai basil.

Tip: Perilla leaves, also known as shiso leaves, belong to the mint family and are available in green and purple-red varieties from Asian grocers. Use the leaves whole or shredded, as an ingredient or a condiment; you can also use mint leaves instead.

This article originally appeared on our sister site, Food to Love.

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