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Simple Asian Cucumber Salad with Cilantro and Honey

Refreshing and hydrating, this Asian Cucumber Salad recipe is just a quick whisk and toss away!

Asian cucumber salad in a white bowl.

In my kitchen, cucumbers are everywhere. They silently make themselves useful in almost every single salad, side dish, or even main dish.

But now, it’s their time to shine. Enter: this Asian Cucumber Salad. With the flavors of toasted sesame oil, basil, and cilantro, this dish will disappear pretty quick!

I never run out of cucumbers. If I do, I always get more. Have you had that one ingredient that you just can’t figure out what to do with it? You’ll look at it and think, “what can I use you for?!?”

Well, cucumbers are never a stress ingredient like that. They pretty quickly assimilate to almost any dish. If I need a last-minute side to lunch, I like to just cut them up and serve with other sliced veggies with just a sprinkle of salt on top.

But today, cucumbers will make their bright appearance in this perfect and easy Asian inspired salad. Sliced thin on a mandolin slicer and combined with a whisked dressing, you can make this salad as crunchy as you want. To do so, just pat the cucumbers with a paper towel after resting with salt.

Key Ingredient

asian cucumber salad ingredients spread with labels- honey, salt, sesame seeds, sesame oil, garlic, vinegar, zucchini, basil, scallions, and cilantro.

English cucumbers are rich in antioxidants, which help to fight free radicals in your body.

Garlic supports your immune system and helps to fight high levels of cholesterol.

Basil helps to reduce high levels of blood sugar and supports heart health.

Cilantro helps to protect your body against food poisoning and fills you with vitamins A and C.

Scallions are rich in fiber and vitamin K, supporting the digestive system and helping your blood to clot.

Honey adds the perfectly light sweet touch to this cucumber salad and promotes healing while preventing infections.

Along with those ingredients, you will need salt, rice wine vinegar, toasted sesame oil, and sesame seeds

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

How to make a Simple Asian Cucumber Salad

Step 1: Salt the cucumbers

Place sliced cucumbers in a medium-sized salad bowl and sprinkle with salt. Set aside to rest.

Sliced cucumbers in a bowl.

Step 2: Whisk the dressing

In a small bowl, whisk together rice vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, and honey.

Salad dressing in a brown bowl with a small whisk.

Step 3: Drain the liquid

Drain any excess liquid formed from cucumbers. For a crisper cucumber salad pat cucumbers dry (optional) then add the whisked ingredients and toss well.

Step 4: Add herbs and scallions

Next add basil, cilantro, and scallions and toss well to incorporate.

Cucumber salad ingredients mixing in a blue bowl with a wooden spoon.

Step 5: Garnish

Top with sesame seeds and serve.

Asian cucumber salad in a white bowl.

Expert Tips:

  • After slicing, sprinkle the cucumbers with salt and allow them to drain for a short time to remove excess water. I recommend waiting 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Chop fresh cilantro just before adding to the salad to maintain its vibrant flavor.
  • Customize the spice level by adding red pepper flakes or finely chopped chili for a hint of heat.
  • Refrigerate the salad before serving to enhance the crispness and refreshment.
  • This Asian salad recipe is gluten free, so no need to make any substitutions!

Recipe FAQs:

How can I make the salad less sweet?

Adjust the amount of honey to your taste preference; start with less and add more if needed.

Can I add other vegetables to the salad?

Certainly! Thinly sliced red onions or radishes can add additional crunch and flavor.

What can I substitute for honey?

Use maple syrup or agave nectar as substitutes for honey.

What type of dishes does this salad pair well with?

This Asian cucumber salad complements dishes like grilled meats, stir-fries, or as a refreshing side for sushi.

Asian cucumber salad in a white bowl.

Check out these lunch recipes:

More cucumber recipes

If you tried this Asian Cucumber Salad with Cilantro and Honey or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you enjoyed it in the📝 comments below. I love hearing from you!

Asian cucumber salad in a white bowl.

Simple Asian Cucumber Salad with Cilantro and Honey

A refreshing, Asian-inspired salad with thinly sliced cucumbers purged in toasted sesame oil, basil, and garlic.
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Course: Dinner, Lunch, Salad, Salad Dressing, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian
Allergy: Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nut Free, Vegetarian
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings5
Calories: 93kcal
Author: Marina Rizhkov

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 English cucumbers, thinly sliced, preferably with mandolin slicer
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • ½ cup basil, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced (white and green part)
  • 1 Tbsp sesame seeds, (optional)

Instructions

  • Place sliced cucumbers in a medium-sized salad bowl and sprinkle with salt. Set aside to rest.
    2 English cucumbers,, ½ tsp salt
    Sliced cucumbers in a bowl.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together rice vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, and honey.
    3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar, 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil, 1 Tbsp honey, 2 cloves garlic,
    Salad dressing in a brown bowl with a small whisk.
  • Drain any excess liquid formed from cucumbers. For a crisper cucumber salad pat cucumbers dry (optional) then add the whisked ingredients and toss well.
  • Next add basil, cilantro and scallions and toss well to incorporate.
    ½ cup basil,, 2 Tbsp cilantro,, 2 scallions,
    Cucumber salad ingredients mixing in a blue bowl with a wooden spoon.
  • Top with sesame seeds and serve.
    1 Tbsp sesame seeds,
    Asian cucumber salad in a white bowl.

Nutrition

Calories: 93kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 236mg | Potassium: 207mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 311IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 1mg
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