We absolutely adore this Asian Wombok Salad for its unbeatable crisp and fresh flavours! Imagine tucking into a bowl filled with crunchy wombok (or Napa cabbage), vibrant carrots, refreshing mint and coriander/cilantro, and a kick of fresh chillies, all tied together with a homemade coconut vinaigrette. It’s the epitome of easy salad recipes!
Why make this Asian wombok salad, you ask? With its simple ingredients and minimal prep, it's a go-to option for busy weeknights or last-minute gatherings.
And talk about versatility! This salad plays well with others, whether you're serving it as a side dish, pairing it with protein for a main course, or enjoying it solo for a light and satisfying snack.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Chinese/Napa cabbage: the star of our Asian wombok salad, adds a delightful crunch and sweetness, absolutely perfect for a base that absorbs our coconut vinaigrette beautifully. You can use a savoy cabbage instead as it has a milder flavour than regular cabbage.
- Carrots - for a pop of colour and sweet earthiness. Swap for some red, orange or yellow capsicum/peppers instead.
- Bok Choy and Pak Choy: provide some nice crunch and for their vibrant green colour. The difference between the two is that pak choy has a light green stalk and bok choy has a white stalk. You have the option to use either a Pak Choy and a Bok Choy or two of each.
- Fresh Mint and Coriander/Cilantro: these herbs are not just a garnish; they’re integral for that 'fresh-from-the-garden' taste. Mint lends a cooling sensation, while coriander/cilantro incorporates a citrus-like zest.
- Fresh Chillies: to spice things up! The heat from the chillies contrasts wonderfully with the cooler elements. Feel free to adjust the quantity to suit your heat tolerance. You can leave them out if you don't like the heat or swap for some red capsicum/bell peppers instead.
- Coconut Vinaigrette: the dressing that ties it all together, offering a sweet and tangy experience that enhances every ingredient in the salad.
Feel free to swap for our Thai Vinaigrette or Vietnamese Dressing instead.
Consider Adding - a crunchy element such us dried noodles or toasted cashew nuts or peanuts.
Get your hands on our guide to common salad fails and how to fix them. We've got your back for all your salad mishaps!
Gather your ingredients and lets get chopping!
Step 1 - Start with the Cabbage
Alright, let's kick things off with the star of the show - the wombok!
Trim the end and any damaged leaves, then gently wash and pat the leaves dry.
Grab that sharp chef’s knife and finely shred it up.
Step 2 - Prep the Rest of the Crew
Moving on to the rest of the veggie crew - wash the bok choy and pak choy thoroughly (those little guys love to hold on to dirt!), cut out the hard cores and separate the leaves.
Then slice them up diagonally.
Then onto the carrots! Wash, trim, peel, and then either finely julienne them with a sharp knife, use a mandoline or v-slicer, or simply grate them with a trusty box grater.
Step 3 – Fresh Herbs and Garnish Galore
Time to bring in the herbs for that fresh flavour! Wash them up, strip the leaves, and set aside a cup of each.
If you can handle the heat grab a chilli, rinse and then slice it on the diagonal, we are going to use it as a garnish so we want it to look pretty.
Or you can just julienne up some red capsicum/bell pepper instead.
Step 4 - Dress to Impress
Time to bring our Asian salad to life with a zesty dressing! Gather all the dressing ingredients, pop them into a glass jar or sealed container, season to taste, and shake it up until everything is perfectly combined.
Step 5 - Assemble Your Salad
Now, let's bring it all together - add all the prepped veggies in a large bowl, pour over the dressing, and give it a good toss.
The key to maximum crunch and flavour? Toss it right before serving!
That’s all guys, now all that is left to do is arrange it on a pretty salad platter or bowl, garnish it with the chillies and serve and enjoy!
Serving Suggestions 🍽
Its bright crunchiness perfectly balances rich and spicy mains so great with curries or chilli steaks and stir-fries.
Tips and Questions💡
Can I make Asian wombok salad ahead of time?
- Yes, it can be made ahead of time, but it's best to dress it just before serving to maintain its crispness.
- You can prepare the vegetables and dressing in advance and store them separately in the refrigerator. Combine them just before serving for the freshest results.
How long will this salad keep?
Freshly made, enjoy it within 2-3 days for best flavour and texture. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
What diets is it suitable for?
- The Asian wombok salad itself is naturally gluten-free, keto, vegan and vegetarian-friendly, as it primarily consists of fresh vegetables and herbs.
- However, you should double-check the ingredients in the dressing to ensure they are gluten-free, especially the soy sauce and coconut flakes as some may contain gluten.
- To make it paleo and whole30 compliant you can swap the soy sauce for tamari.
- 1 kilogram Chinese/Nappa cabbage/Wombok (one small Wombok approximately 2.2 pounds)
- 360 grams carrots (2 medium, approximately 12.7 ounces)
- 80 grams pak choy 80 grams (1 medium pak choy, approximagely 2.8 ounces)
- 160 grams Bok Choy 160 grams (2 medium bok choys, approximately 5.65 ounces)
- 1 cup mint leaves
- 1 cup coriander/cilantro leaves
- ¼ cup coconut flakes
- 2 tablespoons MCT or melted coconut oil
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup lime juice
- 3 tablespoons coconut flakes
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1-2 whole chillies sliced on the diagonal
- Wash and trim all your vegetables, then finely shred your cabbage and grate your carrots either on a box grater or with the fine julienne attachment on your v- slicer.
- Cut your bok and pak choys in half then slice on the diagonal.
- Wash your herbs and shake dry, strip the leaves from the stems to get one cup each of mint and coriander leaves.
- Place all the vinaigrette ingredients in a glass jar. Season and shake until emulsified.
- Place all the cut vegetables, herbs and the coconut flakes in a large mixing bowl, season and pour over the dressing.
- Toss the salad well to combine, taste and adjust seasonings according to your liking.
- Arrange in a salad bowl and garnish with the sliced chillies and serve.