Cold Thai Noodle and Vegetable Salad (gluten, grain, and dairy free)

Crispy vegetables and thin, crunchy kelp noodles, topped with a nutty lime dressing with an Asian flair. This salad works perfectly as a side dish for any meal, no matter the season. Make it a complete meal and serve it with chopped chicken or fish. This twist on a classic Thai noodle salad with peanut dressing gives you a real food, allergen-free dish that is sure to please.

One of my favorite dishes when dining out at Thai restaurants were their noodle salads with the creamy peanut dressing. Since going gluten, grain, and legume free, I have have longed for something to soothe that craving. This salad hits the spot, and dare I say, it’s much tastier than any takeout dish. As with all salads, you can customize the vegetables to fit whatever you have on hand, or what is in season. I make this salad year round and pair it with chicken, fish, and even beef. The kelp noodles are a wonderful pasta substitute for those avoiding grains and their neutral taste allows them to soak up whatever flavoring they are surrounded by. Kimi recently did a review of grain-free noodles and I was excited to see kelp noodles included in her post! I love them!

My original recipe for this salad called for thin strips of red bell pepper for the salad, and a dash of cayenne pepper in the dressing. Since going nightshade free, I have had to leave those two ingredients out, but if you can tolerate nightshades, feel free to add them back in. I’ll list them in the ingredient list as optional items. Lemon juice will work in a pinch, but there is something about the fresh lime juice that really makes this salad pop. If you love cilantro as much as I do, you may find that doubling or tripling the cilantro makes the salad even better. But, I’ll leave that up to you, since not everyone is the cilantro fanatic that I am!

Cold Thai Noodle and Vegetable Salad (gluten, grain, and dairy free)
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Thai
Serves: 4

This crispy, crunchy Thai noodle salad makes the perfect side dish to any meal, no matter the season. Mix it up a bit and use whatever vegetables you have in season!
  • Salad
  • 1 package of kelp noodles (12 ounces)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced cucumbers
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
  • 1 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper (optional)
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onions
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • Dressing
  • ¼ cup sunbutter
  • ⅛ cup coconut aminos
  • ⅛ cup lime juice
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger (dried)
  • 2-3 tbsp. coconut milk
  • ⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  1. In a small bowl, mix together all of the dressing ingredients until smooth and creamy. Set aside.
  2. Rinse your kelp noodles and let them drain in a colander to get rid of excess water.
  3. Prepare all of your veggies and place in a large bowl.
  4. Once the noodles have finished draining, place them in the bowl with the sliced veggies.
  5. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss until everything is coated with the dressing.
  6. Let the salad chill in the fridge for an hour or two before serving to give the flavors time to develop. This salad also holds up well, so you could make it in advance if needed.
  7. Serve as a side, or make it a complete meal and serve with a protein of your choice. Garnish with extra chopped cilantro and a fresh squeeze of lime juice if desired.

Hi! My name is Jessica and I am a real food nut, avid reader and researcher, blossoming yogi, and animal lover. I have had a life-long passion for food and being in the kitchen is where I am the happiest and most comfortable. I began helping my mother cook and bake around the age of three and I’ve been in the kitchen ever since. I ended up working in a restaurant in my hometown for almost a decade, working in every position there and finally becoming the lead chef. My main mission in life is to provide real food recipes that are simple, yet delicious, as well as show how eating healthy doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. I love to show people how making even small changes in their diet and food selections can make a huge difference in their lives. Along the way, I’ll share stories of my own real food and health journeys, as well as ideas for how to live a healthier, more natural life. I’d love it if you’d stop by and visit me at my blog, Delicious Obsessions.


  1. heather says

    Hi, This looks fabulous. Would love to know what sunbutter is and when you say coconut milk, is it the kind from a can when we make coconut curry or from a box, that people are using in place of dairy?

  2. says

    Thank you, thank you, a thousand thanks! I am newly on a diet which does not allow gluten or legumes (among many other things) and this dish is absolutely perfect. I can’t wait to try it!

  3. Darcie says

    Oh, I’ve been trying to replicate the Silver Noodle Salad my favorite Thai restaurants serve in a homemade, allergy-free way. Come fairly close, but I’m trying your version next! I’ll probably stick to the skinny, clear mung bean noodles instead of kelp though.

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