RECIPE: Thai Cucumber Salad | The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures - The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures RECIPE: Thai Cucumber Salad | The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures
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RECIPE: Thai Cucumber Salad

Following on the heels of cucumber water, here’s an easy recipe for a delicious cucumber salad, Thai-style. Serve this crunchy, low-calorie side with just about anything.

While European cucumber salads tend to use cider vinegar and lots of fresh dill, the Thai twist uses rice vinegar and some heat: Thai chiles if you like things really hot, jalapeños or less fiery chiles if you don’t.

If you can find Thai basil, by all means use it; it’s a lovely purple color and a bit stronger in flavor than conventional sweet basil. Add as much or as little onion as you like.

Olive oil is not a conventional ingredient in Thai salads, but it cuts the heat of the chiles.


Ingredients For 4-6 Servings

  • 4 tablespoons sugar*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium cucumbers
  • 2 medium green onions or one small sweet onion
  • 1 medium green or red jalapeño chile
  • 1 tablespoon fresh Thai basil or other basil, chopped
  • Optional: 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Optional garnish: chopped peanuts
    We love the flavors of Thai cucumber salad, shown here with fiery Thai chiles. Photo courtesy

    1. COMBINE the sugar, salt, vinegar, optional olive oil and water together in a medium bowl; whisk until dissolved.

    2. THINLY CHOP the green onions on an angle, using as much of the green stem as you like. Add to the dressing mixture.

    3. SLICE the jalapeño or other chile lengthwise; remove the seeds and ribs if you want less heat. Thinly slice and add to the dressing mixture.

    4. PEEL the cucumbers; slice lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Cut into 1/8″ slices. Add to the vinegar mixture along with the basil and optional cilantro. Combine all ingredients well,

    5. REFRIGERATE and marinate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 3 hours. Serve chilled, topped with optional peanuts.

    *While sugar offsets the heat of the chile, this is a lot of sugar. You can cut it in half, or use a lower glycemic alternative such as 2 tablespoons of agave nectar. We’ve also used a noncaloric sugar substitute.

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