This nutty green veggie crunch salad ranks among my all-time favorite recipes. It's chock-full of nutritious green vegetables and so, so fun to eat. The best of both worlds wrapped up in one crisp, refreshing salad!
Many, many years ago, California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) used to be a favorite of mine. It was my mom and my mother-daughter "date night" spot.
We'd grab dinner at CPK and then shop or go to the movies. Of course, times have changed and on the rare occasion that date night is an option, I pick Dan to be my date and we tend to frequent smaller, cozier, veg-friendlier establishments.
But several weeks ago, while we were out on a Container Store run with my mom, we grabbed lunch at a CPK I literally hadn't been to in 15 years.
It reminded me of old times and conjured up memories of spilling all the latest boy drama to my mom while home from college for summer break. If only I'd known Dan was in the pipeline... I'd (probably) have chilled out a bit.
It also brought up memories of a salad my mom and I used to split. A super green, crisp salad with a nutty sesame dressing, little cucumber rounds, and chicken. I believe it's still on the menu all these years later. Either way, the mere memory of it inspired me to create a veggie-foward vegan version.
And so, here it is. I'm calling it the Nutty Green Veggie Crunch Salad. Because it's PACKED with all the green veggies, super nutty, and ultra crisp and crunchy.
This salad. Oh, this salad. If you make just one recipe from my blog this spring/summer, please let it be this one. It's packed with flavor and so, so fun to eat.
And did I mention it's way easy, too? You might have noticed that I'm alll about the simple recipes lately. Quick, easy, or both. #momlife
To make this salad, you'll start by prepping the veggies and topping components.
Shred the romaine + green cabbage.
Slice the cucumbers + scallions.
Chop the cilantro.
Grab your shelled edamame (and defrost if using frozen), nuts, and seeds.
Add everything to a roomy serving bowl...
Then, prepare the nutty sesame dressing. Which, side note, I could eat by the spoonful.
Whisk together creamy peanut butter (or sunflower butter to make it nut-free), pure maple syrup, tamari, rice vinegar, and toasted sesame oil.
Once the dressing is ready, pour it over the salad and toss to coat. This dressing is quite thick and clings to the veggies extremely well.
Then, serve and enjoy. That's it!
If your tastebuds are anything like mine, this salad will strike your fancy in a special way. I find it's nearly impossible not to go back for seconds, and I could probably eat it every day for weeks on end.
It's that good. Please, please, please make it!
Nutty Green Veggie Crunch Salad
- ½ large head romaine, washed, patted dry, and shredded
- ½ to ¾ large head green cabbage, cored and shredded
- 2–3 mini cucumbers, thinly sliced
- 1 bunch scallions, ends trimmed and thinly sliced
- ½ to 1 bunch cilantro, stemmed and finely chopped
- 1 cup shelled edamame*
- ½ cup chopped peanuts, almonds, or sunflower seeds (or a mix of all three—my favorite), plus more for topping
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds (optional)
Nutty Sesame Dressing
- 3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower butter
- 1 ½ tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 ½ tablespoons tamari**
- 1 ½ tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 ½ tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- For the salad: Add all salad ingredients to a large serving bowl.
- For the dressing: In a medium mixing bowl, vigorously whisk together all dressing ingredients until completely smooth and emulsified.
- Pour as much of the dressing over the salad as desired, and toss to coat.
- Serve immediately and top with more nuts and seeds, if desired.