Recipe: Thai-Style Noodle Salad

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As we creep toward our one-year anniversary of living in Oregon, we’re headed for a season of record-breaking temperatures. Not that I’m complaining. It’s going to take a lot more humidity to scare this Midwesterner who’s also lived through a few sweltering East Coast summers.

If I’ve noticed one thing, however, it’s that my desire to eat warm foods is inversely proportional to the number on the thermometer. So hot summer days call for a cold, protein-packed salad — and this one’s something I whipped up on a weeknight utilizing ingredients we already had on hand.

Because, if we’re being honest here, my willingness to hit the grocery store also plummets as the heat rises… 

Thai-Style Noodle Salad

Ingredients: 

Salad:

  • 1 package black bean pasta, cooked al dente
  • 1 bag matchstick carrots (approx. 2 cups)
  • 2 cups grilled chicken, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, halved lengthwise & chopped
  • 1/2 cup red onion, minced
  • 1 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 bunch green onion, chopped
  • 1 small container roasted peanuts

Sauce:

  • 2 cups all-natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup sweet chili sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 TBSP fish sauce
  • 1 TBSP ginger (minced or paste)
  • Dash of salt

Directions: 

  1. Once pasta is cooked and cooled, place all salad ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together all sauce ingredients.
  3. Pour sauce over salad, and toss to coat evenly.
  4. Serve immediately (with a sprinkle of peanuts), or refrigerate for an hour if you want to eat it cold.

Not only is the black bean pasta gluten-free, but it’s also a terrific source of protein — there’s a whopping 25 grams of protein and 12 grams of fiber in every serving!

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This salad is super-versatile, too; I’d serve atop leafy greens for a more nutrient-dense main dish or as a side salad to accompany a meaty entree on nights when I’m looking for more protein.

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Do you adjust your kitchen habits with the weather?

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