For a quick and healthy side dish, try making Japanese Cabbage Salad. It’s easy to make, vegan, gluten-free, and low-carb. It’s perfect for lunch or dinner, and you can add sesame seeds or green onion stalks. This recipe calls for napa cabbage, which is thinner and more like lettuce than cabbage. You can also use a mix of green onions and napa cabbage.
Japanese Cabbage Salad Recipes
Japanese Cabbage Salad
- 3 cups coleslaw mix pre-shredded
- 3 tbsp sesame seeds toasted
- Cup bonito flakes
- In a mixing bowl, add all the dressing Ingredients.
- Mix until well combined then pour the mixture on the shredded coleslaw.
- Toss to coat well then top with toasted sesame seed and a cup of bonito flakes.
- Serve and enjoy.
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This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the Spoonacular Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
Alternative Method: Japanese Cabbage Salad with a Grill Pan
- 1/2 small cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- For the dressing: 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon honey, and a pinch of red pepper flakes
- Preheat the Grill Pan: Place your grill pan on medium-high heat and allow it to get nice and hot.
- Prepare the Vegetables: In a large bowl, toss the sliced cabbage, red bell pepper, and red onion with olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper.
- Grill the Vegetables: Carefully place the marinated vegetables on the hot grill pan. Grill them for about 2-3 minutes on each side or until they develop those beautiful grill marks and become slightly tender.
- Make the Dressing: While the vegetables are grilling, whisk together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, honey, and a pinch of red pepper flakes in a small bowl.
- Combine and Toss: Transfer the grilled vegetables to a serving bowl. Drizzle the dressing over the top while they’re still warm. Give it all a good toss to ensure the dressing coats the vegetables evenly.
- Serve: Your Japanese Cabbage Salad with a hint of grill is ready to be enjoyed. It’s a fantastic side dish for grilled meats or a tasty standalone salad. Sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds on top for that extra layer of flavor.
Tips for making Japanese Cabbage Salad
- Thin Slicing: To achieve that signature delicate crunch, ensure you slice the cabbage thinly. A sharp knife or a mandoline slicer works wonders.
- Salt and Rest: After slicing the cabbage, sprinkle it with salt and let it rest for about 15 minutes. This draws out excess moisture and keeps the salad crisp.
- Dress Just Before Serving: To keep your salad fresh and vibrant, don’t dress it until you’re ready to eat. Mix the dressing and veggies right before serving.
- Balance the Dressing: Tweak the dressing to your preference. Want it tangy? Add more vinegar. Sweeter? Increase the honey. Adjust until you achieve your perfect balance.
- Experiment with Toppings: Elevate your salad with toppings like toasted sesame seeds, crushed nuts, or even some crispy fried shallots for an extra layer of flavor and texture.
- Overdressing: Adding too much dressing can make the salad soggy. Start with a little, toss, and add more if needed.
- Skipping the Rest: Rushing the salting and resting step can result in a watery salad. Patience is key for the best texture.
- Neglecting Freshness: Cabbage is at its best when it’s fresh. Use it within a few days of purchase for the ultimate crispness.
- Storing with Dressing: Leftover salad with dressing can wilt quickly. Store the dressing and salad separately, combining only when ready to eat.
- Overcooking on the Grill: If you’re grilling the cabbage, don’t leave it on the grill for too long. You want those beautiful grill marks, but still, want it to be slightly crisp.
- Main Course Side: Serve it alongside grilled chicken, salmon, or a juicy steak for a well-rounded meal.
- Sushi Night: Elevate your sushi night with Japanese Cabbage Salad as a refreshing, crunchy side dish.
- Garnish Galore: Top your salad with toasted sesame seeds, crispy fried shallots, or slivers of nori seaweed for a burst of flavor and texture.
- Beverage Pairings: Pair this salad with a light and crisp Japanese beer, green tea, or a glass of chilled sake for a delightful Japanese meal.
- Summer Picnics: Japanese Cabbage Salad is the perfect addition to your picnic basket. It stays crisp and is incredibly refreshing on a warm day.
FAQs about Japanese Cabbage Salad
- Can I prepare Japanese Cabbage Salad in advance? Yes, you can prepare the salad in advance by keeping the vegetables and dressing separate. Combine them just before serving to maintain the freshness.
- How do I store leftovers? Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. However, keep in mind that the salad may lose its crispness over time.
- Can I use a different type of cabbage? A3: Absolutely! Napa cabbage or savoy cabbage can be excellent substitutes for the traditional cabbage in this salad.
- Is this salad gluten-free? A4: Yes, the salad is naturally gluten-free. Just ensure that the soy sauce you use for the dressing is a gluten-free variety.
- What if I don’t have a grill pan for the alternative method? A5: If you don’t have a grill pan, simply follow the original recipe. The grill pan method is optional and adds a smoky dimension to the salad, but the original is equally delicious.
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I'm James F Anderson, a noted sous chef from London and a Le Cordon Bleu alumnus. My career began in a Michelin-starred Parisian eatery, where my blend of classic and contemporary cooking, using seasonal ingredients, earned accolades. Recognized in culinary publications and on cooking shows, I’m committed to mentoring aspiring chefs and delivering memorable dining experiences, marking me as a standout talent in the culinary world.