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This quick and healthy soba noodle salad tosses chewy soba noodles and a medley of fresh vegetables with the best peanut sauce. Enjoy it chilled, at room temperature, or warm for a filling lunch or light dinner.

soba noodle salad on a large white serving plate.
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Healthy and Nutty 20-Minute Soba Noodle Salad

Let’s face it: eating salad every day for lunch can be boring. Instead, treat yourself to a salad that’s just as healthy as your usual, but with big and bold flavors!

The flavors alone in this soba noodle salad will have you counting down the clock to lunchtime. Delightfully chewy soba noodles are drenched in a savory-tangy peanut sauce and then tossed with carrots, edamame, cabbage, and green onions. It’s colorful, eye-catching, and actually makes eating crunchy raw vegetables exciting.

Not only is this soba noodle salad incredibly delicious, but it’s also packed with vitamins and minerals and is naturally gluten-free, just like our crunchy Thai peanut salad and peanut noodle salad. How’s that for a win-win recipe? 

And did we mention how flexible this peanut salad is? Customize it all you want with your favorite plant-based protein, use whatever vegetables you have on hand, or save time with frozen or pre-chopped veggies instead of fresh. Eating a healthy lunch or dinner doesn’t get much better than this!

Looking for more easy noodle dishes to try? Check out our delicious garlic sesame soba noodles, vegetable noodle stir fry, and easy teriyaki noodles!

The Ingredients and Substitutes

ingredients for soba noodle salad in individual white bowls with labels.

Peanut Sauce

  • Peanut butter: Our go-to is all-natural crunchy peanut butter (creamy peanut butter works, too!) for vegan peanut sauce. It doesn’t contain any added sugars, so the peanut sauce can taste its best. Feel free to use almond butter or cashew butter as a substitute.
  • Sesame oil: Toasted sesame oil adds a rich and nutty flavor to the sauce.
  • Soy sauce: You can use regular soy sauce, low-sodium soy sauce, or tamari if you’re gluten-free. 
  • Garlic powder: For a delicious savory flavor.
  • Agave syrup: Agave adds some sweetness to the sauce. Maple syrup or a pinch of coconut sugar also works well. 
  • Lime juice: You’ll need the juice of one whole lime. Freshly squeezed lime juice is best, but store-bought juice will work in a pinch. 
  • Water: Use more or less depending on how thick you’d like the peanut sauce. 
  • Sriracha: Just a touch of Sriracha gives the sauce a slight kick.

Noodle Salad

  • Edamame: Use frozen and thawed shelled edamame for a boost of protein in the salad. 
  • Vegetables: We loaded this salad with carrots, bell peppers, cabbage, green onions, and cilantro.
  • Soba noodles: Soba noodles are a type of Japanese noodle made from buckwheat. While most are naturally gluten-free, some brands contain wheat, so double-check the ingredients if you need the noodle salad to be gluten-free. 
  • Peanuts: For garnish. Toasted cashews are also good here!
  • Sesame seeds: Sesame seeds are another great garnish. We recommend toasting them in a dry skillet beforehand for a deeper flavor.

What Else Could I Add to This Soba Salad Recipe?

  • More protein: Instead of the edamame, you can stir crispy tofu, tempeh, chickpeas, or soy curls in the salad. 
  • Spicy things: For a spicy soba noodle salad, swap the peanut sauce for our spicy peanut dipping sauce
  • Herbs: Nothing takes a salad up a notch like fresh chopped herbs! Feel free to add Thai basil and mint in addition to the cilantro for a bright freshness.
  • Leafy greens: Like finely chopped spinach or kale
  • Ginger: Add grated ginger to the peanut sauce for a slightly sweet and aromatic flavor.
  • Nori sheets: Use thinly sliced nori sheets (seaweed) for a salty, crunchy garnish. 
  • Togarashi: A dash of this Japanese spice blend in the peanut sauce will take the spicy-savory flavors up a notch.

How to Make a Soba Noodle Salad

  • Mix all of the peanut sauce ingredients together in a bowl until smooth. Set aside. 
whisking peanut sauce in a glass bowl.
  • In a large pot, cook the noodles according to package instructions. 
boiling soba noodles in a pot of water.

Watch the noodles carefully as they boil. Buckwheat noodles can overcook easily and stick together, so only cook them for the time on the package instructions.

  • Drain the water and rinse the noodles under cold running water.
draining cooked soba noodles in a metal colander.
  • Transfer the cold cooked noodles back to the pot. 
cooked soba noodles tossed in peanut sauce in a large metal poopt.
  • Pour half of the peanut sauce over the noodles and toss to coat. 
pouring peanut sauce over cooked soba noodles in a large pot.
  • Add the vegetables to the pot with the noodles. Gently toss.
a medley of fresh vegetables on top of soba noodles in a large pot.
soba noodle salad tossed with peanut sauce and vegetables in a large pot.
  • When it’s time to serve, add the remaining dressing, mix, and enjoy chilled or at room temperature.

FAQS

Can I eat this soba noodle salad warm?

You can eat cold soba noodle salad, warm soba noodle salad, or room temperature soba noodle salad. The choice is yours!

Can I make this salad ahead of time?

You can save some time by making the peanut sauce a few weeks before assembling the salad. However, we don’t recommend assembling the salad more than a few hours before serving because the vegetables and noodles will start to soften.

Can it be made nut-free?

Yes, you can omit the peanut garnish from the salad and make the peanut sauce with tahini or sunflower seed butter instead of peanut butter.

Top Recipe Tips and Notes

  • Swap the veggies for coleslaw mix: If you’re low on time, you can swap the fresh carrots and cabbage for a store-bought coleslaw mix instead.
  • Make a double batch of the sauce: Consider doubling the peanut sauce recipe so you have extras to use in a stir fry or salad whenever a craving hits! 
close up on soba noodle salad on a large white serving plate.

Serving Suggestions

This soba noodle salad is filling enough to be served on its own for lunch or a light dinner. For the best presentation and flavors, top the salad with lime wedges, crushed peanuts, sesame seeds, and a drizzle of Sriracha.

If you’d like to stretch out the meal a little more or you’re serving a crowd, you can pair it with a side of:

Storage Instructions

Store the leftover soba peanut noodle salad in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Enjoy it straight from the fridge or heat the leftovers for about 1 minute in the microwave.

Any leftover peanut sauce (or the batch you made ahead of time) can be stored in an airtight container or glass jar in the fridge for 1 to 2 weeks. You can also freeze the sauce for 2 to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge or at room temperature before serving.

a serving of soba noodle salad in a glass container with a lid on top labeled "soba noodle salad".

More Asian-Inspired Recipes

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Soba Noodle Salad

5 from 50 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 2
This quick and healthy soba noodle salad tosses chewy soba noodles and a medley of fresh vegetables with the best peanut sauce. Enjoy it chilled, at room temperature, or warm for a filling lunch or light dinner.

Ingredients 

Peanut Sauce

  • ½ cup of crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons of garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon of agave
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • ½ cup of water, to start
  • ¼ teaspoon of Sriracha or other chili sauce to taste (optional

Salad

  • 2 cups of frozen shelled edamame, thawed
  • 1 cup of carrots, shredded
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup of shredded purple or green cabbage
  • 1 cup green onions, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup of cilantro
  • 1 (9.5-ounce) package of soba noodles
  • ¼ cup of crushed peanuts, garnish (optional)
  • Sesame seeds, garnish (optional)

Instructions 

  • In a small bowl or food processor, mix all the sauce ingredients until smooth and set aside.
  • In a large pot, cook the noodles according to package instructions. Run the noodles under cold water.
  • Put the cold cooked noodles back into the pot and pour half of the sauce over. Mix well and add all of the veggies and cilantro. Gently mix well.
  • When ready to serve, add the remaining dressing, mix and enjoy chilled or at room temperature.

Notes

Optionally serve with lime wedges, crushed peanuts on top, or sriracha. 
  • Swap the veggies for coleslaw mix: If you’re low on time, you can swap the fresh carrots and cabbage for a store-bought coleslaw mix instead.
  • Make a double batch of the sauce: Consider doubling the peanut sauce recipe so you have extras to use in a stir fry or salad whenever a craving hits! 

Nutrition

Calories: 1325kcalCarbohydrates: 163gProtein: 62gFat: 58gSaturated Fat: 9gPolyunsaturated Fat: 19gMonounsaturated Fat: 24gTrans Fat: 0.01gSodium: 2481mgPotassium: 2333mgFiber: 21gSugar: 26gVitamin A: 14074IUVitamin C: 150mgCalcium: 293mgIron: 11mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Asian
Method: Stovetop
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
About

Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Fresh and delicious and perfdect for meal prep – this salad makes the best lunches! Love the peanut sauce and could eat that on just about anything!

  2. 5 stars
    I love healthy and fresh recipes like this and I love soba noodles. The peanut sauce was delicious, I am still liking my plate as I write this. Yum.

  3. 5 stars
    The best part about this recipe is the peanut sauce – so savory and creamy! It’s definitely the star of the dish!

  4. 5 stars
    This recipe was so delicious! My whole family loved it. The dressing was particularly good! Everything held up in the fridge and I enjoyed the leftovers for lunch. Thanks for the great recipe!