blue bowl of noodle cabbage salad on wood table with spoons

This vegan cold soba noodle salad is so easy, and so delicious, it’s sure to end up on your weekly rotation. It has a juicy sesame ginger dressing and plenty of crunch from shredded cabbage and comes together in just 20 minutes! Makes a great picnic side, or add some plant-based protein to make it a meal!

blue bowl of noodle cabbage salad on wood table with spoons

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I can never get enough noodles. Really, I could eat them multiple times a week and be SO happy. However, my husband is apparently tired of my typical peanutty sauce/noodles combo… I honestly don’t know who I married, ha! So I came up with a solution to my noodle relationship woes.

Enter this vegan cold soba noodle salad with a light and refreshing sesame ginger dressing. It’s perfect for these hot days when you want a really healthy, light, yet substantial meal that doesn’t require much cooking. It’s also a great way to use up whatever veg you have in the fridge. The dressing is light and meant to highlight the ingredients instead of take over the show.

I haven’t included a huge amount of protein…the soba has a bit, as do the peanuts. But you guys know me, I think you should add an extra plant protein most of the time for better satiety and blood sugar control. The easiest would be to toss a cup of edamame, pan-fried tofu, rinsed black beans or even some diced smoked tofu in there. Easy peasy.

This ingredients list couldn’t be simpler, so get shopping!

This vegan cold soba noodle salad is really flexible, and you can use whatever you have on hand…but I wanted to load it up with phytochemical-packed herbs plus plenty of crunch.

  • Soba Noodles: Soba noodles are my favourite Japanese noodle for their texture and delicate flavour. Many moons ago, I ate a LOT of soba as a vegetarian in Japan.
  • Red cabbage: cabbage is HUGELY underrated as a plant food. It is a cruciferous veggie, just like kale and broccoli, meaning it’s packed with those powerful sulfur-based glucosinolates that fight inflammation.
  • Cilantro: I LOVE cilantro…and we forget that green herbs are loaded with anti-inflammatory phytochemicals while being generally pretty affordable. Don’t love it? Flat-leaf parsley is a great stand in.
  • Snap peas: I love the crunch of snap peas, and I usually have a bag lying around because my kids love them.
  • Salted peanuts: packed with protein, and just salty and delicious.
  • Sesame Ginger Dressing: I love a sesame oil salad dressing…and this one takes just 5 minutes to make with plenty of ginger, garlic and fresh lime!

FAQ: Are soba noodles gluten free? What are soba noodles actually made of?

If you are new to gluten free eating – or just curious! – you might have noticed that most soba noodles contain actual wheat. And thinking that I’ve lost my gluten free marbles. Buckwheat, the gluten free flour (that has nothing to do with actual wheat) used to make soba noodles, well, soba noodles, is very soft and unstructured and kind of tough to make noodles from. So most manufacturers add wheat to provide extra structure to the noods.

However, you can find 100% gluten free buckwheat noodles that are suitable for a celiac or low FODMAP diet. I usually buy King Soba brand as that is what is available, both at my local Donald’s Market but it’s also easy to find on Amazon if you don’t have an option where you live. And, if that’s not an option for you, thin Thai rice noodles are a great swap.

How to make this vegan cold soba noodle salad

If you aren’t in the mood for cooking, you can whip up this easy soba noodle salad in just 20 minutes! With a protein, it will easily serve 4 people as a main dish salad, and will serve many more as a side so it’s great for taking to a picnic or potluck.

Step one: cook your soba noodles according to package directions (it usually takes just 3-4 minutes!) then rinse with cool water and place in a large salad bowl.

Step two: chop your cabbage, snap peas and cilantro and add to the salad bowl.

Step three: shake up the dressing and toss the salad. Garnish with peanuts (and protein if using) and serve!

Looking for more easy, healthy salads?

blue bowl of noodle cabbage salad on wood table with spoons

Vegan Cold Soba Noodle Salad with Sesame Ginger Dressing

This healthy and refreshing cold soba noodle salad is the perfect summer dinner! It comes together quickly if you use pre-shredded cabbage so you can have a healthy, refreshing dinner without too much effort. I like adding a protein, such as boiled edamame or cubed smoked tofu.
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Ingredients

  • 8 oz package soba noodles , gluten free if needed
  • 4 cups shredded purple cabbage, about 1/4 medium cabbage. Use 2 cups for low FODMAP recipe.
  • 2 cups chopped cilantro leaves, about 1 bunch
  • 1 cup snap peas, sliced on the diagonal (omit for low FODMAP)
  • ½ cup salted peanuts
  • 1 batch Sesame Dressing with Ginger and Lime

Optional protein ideas

  • 2 cups cooked shelled edamame
  • 1 package smoked tofu, cubed

Instructions 

  • Boil soba noodles according to package instructions. Drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water, while gently tossing noodles, to stop the cooking and cool them down. Drizzle a tiny bit of avocado oil on the noodles and toss to help prevent them from sticking.
  • Meanwhile, In a jam jar or small bowl, shake or whisk together the lime juice, sesame oil, tamari, maple syrup, ginger, garlic and sriracha. This is a light and fresh dressing. If you want to punch it up, double the ginger and garlic.
  • In a large serving dish, place the noodles, cabbage, cilantro, snap peas and toss with the dressing. Garnish with peanuts, add protein if using, and serve.

Notes

Feel free to switch up the veggies as you wish, this is a great fridge clean up salad. Just use 7 cups of whatever veggies you have on hand, ideally making sure you’ve got something crunchy, something crisp, and something green!
 
Low FODMAP notes: 3/4 cup of cabbage is a low FODMAP serving, so I’m aiming for 1/2 cup per person here. Snap peas are high FODMAP, so omit, along with the garlic in the dressing.