Last Updated on October 25, 2021 by Chenée Lewis
Today we’re making a delicious, gluten-free, vegan spicy peanut noodle salad with all the fixings, tossed in a creamy, spicy peanut sauce. It’s ideal for lunch, a low-key dinner, or an easy snack. And comes together in minutes. Once you’ve chopped your veggies and herbs, you’re pretty much done.
This peanut noodle salad reminds me of the quick lunches I would get working in downtown Chicago when I first moved here. One of my favorite places was Wow Bao, a fast-casual spot that is such a simple concept but so fun to eat! My favorite snack from Wow Bao was always the cold spicy peanut noodles. They were topped with ground peanuts and veggies and always felt like such a quick, filling meal without being too heavy. Even though I’m no longer working in the loop, this peanut noodle salad is still a go-to lunch of mine!
This noodle salad is full of goodies — not only good flavor, but also good nutrition. It’s a naturally vegan and gluten-free recipe, and it’s high in protein and fiber. Most importantly, it tastes amazing. What’s not to love?
This spicy peanut noodle salad recipe is completely plant-based! It’s great to be able to share a recipe I love that can fit so easily within a vegan lifestyle. As you’ll see in the ingredients below, the only ingredient that may not be fully vegan is your sweetener. You can use honey like I did, or opt for raw sugar, agave nectar to keep this peanut noodle salad fully vegan.
To make this recipe, I used Banza gluten-free chickpea spaghetti. I am such a Banza convert! (This post isn’t sponsored by the way — I just love it!) I don’t maintain a gluten-free diet, but what drew me to Banza is that it’s high in protein, high in fiber, and lower in carbs than regular wheat pasta. One 2-ounce serving has 23g of protein! The first time I tried it was to make this Lemon Shrimp Pasta with Kale, and I was hooked! The flavor and texture, while not exactly like wheat pasta, was delicious! It works especially well in dishes that really pack a flavor punch, like this one!
This peanut noodle salad also features tamari, a Japanese soy-based sauce made from miso paste. It has a similar flavor to soy sauce, but its flavor is a bit more mellow. And best of all, Tamari is gluten free! You can find various brands of tamari near the soy sauce at most grocery stores and on Amazon.
Besides the Banza pasta, this peanut butter noodle salad recipe is full of flavor, crunchy vegetables, and the creaminess of peanut butter. To make this peanut noodle salad, you’ll need:
- Banza spaghetti made from chickpeas – my favorite gluten-free pasta!
- creamy peanut butter – the base for the peanut sauce and the source of so much of its flavor and richness.
- tamari – similar to soy sauce, but gluten free and with a richer flavor!
- lime juice – gives the salad that tangy taste that makes it so good.
- spicy brown mustard – helps to emulsify the dressing and adds some extra spice.
- Sriracha – the best way to add a little heat.
- toasted sesame oil – adds SO much flavor! Make sure you use toasted sesame oil for the best taste.
- garlic – makes any savory dish better.
- ginger root – a valuable ingredient in Asian cooking. Like sesame oil, ginger adds SO much to this dish and can’t be omitted!
- sugar, or any sweetener – to tone down the spice a bit and round out the flavors.
Then comes the fun part — mixing in your veggies, herbs, and other toppings. I like to mix some in and leave the rest on top to serve the salad.
- peanuts – I love that crunch!
- green onions – may be my favorite savory ingredient. they make everything so good.
- cucumber – so good for you and perfect in this salad.
- cilantro – a great way to top everything off — perfect as a garnish and also as a boost of flavor.
- toasted sesame seeds – again, they should definitely be toasted, to maximize the depth of flavor!
- more Sriracha – because why not? This is a spicy peanut noodle salad, after all!
If you can chop veggies and boil water, you can make this spicy peanut noodle salad and then feel like you’re having a delicious al fresco lunch in a trendy restaurant! Let me walk you through how to make it.
- Boil your pasta according to package directions. Banza recommends 8-10 minutes. I never go over 8 because you want the pasta to still be a bit al dente.
- Once the pasta is done, drain it in a colander while running cold water over it to stop the cooking process.
- In a large bowl, combine all of the dressing ingredients – peanut butter, tamari, vinegar, sweetener, garlic, ginger, mustard, sriracha, and sesame oil. Whisk well until smooth.
- Toss the spaghetti in the dressing to coat it well. Be a little gentle with the noodles — unlike wheat noodles, gluten free pasta is slightly less stretchy and sturdy.
- Add your toppings and serve your peanut noodle salad!
Tips and F.A.Q.
Nope! I love the protein and fiber that comes from using chickpea pasta, but you can substitute rice noodles and it’ll still be delicious (and gluten free), or any other noodle you prefer!
Definitely! You can make it up to 24 hours ahead of time. Add your garnishes just before serving, though, to ensure that they’re fresh and crispy.
I just used regular creamy peanut butter, but a natural or organic peanut butter would work also. I wouldn’t use chunky peanut butter, though, because it might make it harder to mix up the peanut sauce.
I hope you enjoy this peanut noodle salad recipe! If you’re looking for another cool summertime dish, you might also like my Spicy Shrimp Pasta Salad — although it’s not vegan or gluten-free, it does have the same creamy, spicy kick and it’s perfect for a summertime meal!
You may also like my White Bean Dip with Lemon and Pistachio. It’s vegan and gluten-free as well, and amazing! Garlicky, crunchy, smooth and savory — it’s the perfect appetizer or snack!
Peanut Noodle SaladPrint Pin Recipe Rate Recipe
- 8 oz. Banza chickpea spaghetti - (one package)
- Bring at least 8 cups of well-salted water to a boil, add spaghetti and boil for 8 minutes. Run cooked spaghetti under cold water to cool it down.
- Whisk together all remaining dressing ingredients until smooth; pour over cooled spaghetti and toss to coat. Chill until ready to serve.
- Just before serving, top with your choice of garnishes.
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