This simple chopped Thai chicken salad has BIG flavors – peanut, lime, soy, chili, cilantro. Topped with a homemade peanut dressing! Healthy and fresh.
Chopped Thai-Inspired Chicken Salad
It’s June, which means, HELLO! It’s time to go for a swim in this Chopped Thai Chicken Salad.
This salad is so delicious and fresh and exciting! My boyfriend asks for it weekly, and I swear, would eat it every day. Thank you for such a great, easy, healthy recipe!
The flavors in this dreamboat Thai chicken salad are going to rock your face off.
Lime, peanuts, cilantro, carrots, green onions, vinegar, green papaya or mango, soy sauce, chili pepper, garlic, all packed together in a highly textured salad bowl? Oiyyyy! I love it all.
- Chopped cabbage
- Grated carrots
- A bitey green papaya, or green mango, or maybe you can’t find either – not a big deal
- Shredded chicken
- Chopped peanuts
- Lime squeezers
- Cilantro and green onion
- Cute little red serrano peppers
- And the very best peanut dressing your lips have ever touched.
Thai Chicken Salad Meets Green Papaya
I first made this recipe when we were living in the Philippines, so I used a green papaya because I HAD ACCESS TO THESE THINGS. (Green papaya salad is a zippy little number that is a staple of Thai cuisine, and we had lots of similar salads in the Philippines as well.) The semi-spicy, puckery punch is equal parts shocking and mesmerizing.
If you don’t live in the tropics, here’s what I want you to do:
Make a 60-second effort to locate a green papaya or green (under-ripe) mango, which is a great substitution. Peel it and grate it, but don’t taste it yet because it’s so sour and you’re going to be ruffled. Just add it into the salad with all the other parts, and the whole thing will sing.
(If you’re coming up empty-handed, you could go with a ripe mango which will be sweet and delicious, or another crunchy vegetable that you like. Raw cucumber, raw zucchini, bell pepper, or more cabbage or carrots.)
Whichever choose-your-own-adventure path you take, I really don’t think you’re going to be sad about this punchy, crunchy, super-fresh salad.
BRB gotta go take a salad dip.
Check Out Our Video For How To Make Chopped Thai-Inspired Chicken Salad:
Chopped Thai-Inspired Chicken Salad
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: 4–6 (4 for me! I love a big huge salad) 1x
This simple chopped Thai-Inspired chicken salad has BIG flavors – peanut, lime, soy, chili, cilantro. Topped with a homemade peanut dressing! Healthy and fresh.
Thai Chicken Salad
- 3–4 cups cooked shredded chicken
- 1 head of green cabbage (3–4 cups shredded)
- 1–2 large carrots (2 cups grated)
- 1 green papaya or mango (1–2 cups grated) (optional)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 cup peanuts, chopped
- 1/2 cup green onions, sliced
- 3–4 red serrano peppers, sliced
- salt and lime juice to taste
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 1/3 cup sesame oil (toasted or dark)
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons chili paste (sriracha works, too)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- a small knob of fresh ginger, peeled
- a clove of fresh garlic, peeled
- 1/4 cup water to thin to desired consistency
- Chop: Put on some good music, pour a drink, and start choppin’!
- Dressing: Pulse all ingredients in the food processor or blender. Adjust consistency with water.
- Thai Chicken Salad Assembly: Toss the salad ingredients in a big bowl with a drizzle of peanut dressing so everything gets coated. Season with salt and lime juice, and maybe a shot of fish sauce if you’re feeling wild. Serve chilled.
Chicken: Pulled rotisserie chicken works great. You can also cook chicken breasts in the Instant Pot (12 minutes, with about a cup of water, plus salt and pepper) and then shred them.
Cabbage: You want the cabbage to be very thin, like it would be for coleslaw. I did this with a mandoline.
Vegetarian: You can make this with tofu instead of chicken! Just follow one of the methods in this post.
Leftovers / Make Ahead: You can keep this for a few hours once it’s tossed with dressing – like if you make it for lunch, it’ll be pretty okay for dinner. But for best results, keep the leftover salad and dressing separate until ready to serve.
- Prep Time: 45 mins
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Salad
- Method: Chop
- Cuisine: Thai-Inspired
Keywords: chopped thai chicken salad, thai chicken salad, thai salad
One More Thing!
This recipe is part of our collection of favorite peanut butter recipes. Check it out!
This salad looks phenomenal! Loving all the unique flavors you added – salad perfection!
This looks delicious and I’m looking forward to making this today. Luckily I have access to green papaya and was wondering when you say shredded can this be done with the blade attachment on the food processor? Also to get the cabbage thin can it also be done on the food processor? Thanks for your help!
Hi Londa! Yes, you can shred both the papaya and cabbage in the food processor! Enjoy!
Looks amazing!! I’m allergic to peanuts. Is there an alternative for the peanuts in the dressing?
Cashews will work!
I can’t do Cashews or peanuts. Would almonds work in here instead? Also not allowed soy and wondering if anyone has tried using coconut aminos instead.
Almonds and coonut aminos would be great substitutes!
oh this looks lovely! I can’t imagine the work it must take to make this for you, but I will think of you this week when I whip up one of these salads! YUM.
This sounds and looks delish! I love a crunchy Thai salad! And chopping it makes it even more fun to eat! Enjoy the tropics while we are getting yet another snow storm. You picked a good winter to be gone 🙂
This salad looks like it was worth the work. You truly made me appreciate how convenient our food here in the US is.
I’m totally craving this!!
This salad looks so delish & refeshing on a HOT day (just snowed this weekend in
Chicago. Ugh!). I love love peanut sauce & asian inspired dishes. Thanks for the recipe!
Greetings from Grenada! Salad looks great! Going to try it out today…
Forgot to mention that, I feel ya’ with the heat…it’s been super hot on the island lately! 🙂
oh my god – i love the idea of salad and have been looking for green papaya here – no luck yet:( I cant imagine all the trouble you have to go through to make salad..wow but im sure eat bite will be worth it
I buy a bag or two of coleslaw that includes carrots. Cook the chicken I the instant pot for 15 min.
I love papaya but woud’ve never thought of using it in a chicken salad. It looks absolutely beautiful and delicious
I absolutely love salads for lunch. I tend to throw all sorts of crazy things into the mix but never have I tried adding fresh fruit. I love peanut sauces as well.
Quick question about the dressing, think I could leave out the fish sauce or do you have suggestions for a vegan substitute flavor-wise?
Yep- not a big deal to leave it out.
What fish sauce?
The mere sight of this salad has my taste buds going crazy. I love these flavors and can’t wait to make this!
YUM! I’ve been on a huge chicken salad kick lately. The flavors in this one look amazing!
I so glad you did go through all that trouble this salad looks amazing. I love calamansis, I can find them in chinatown (here in Honolulu) and I got some to experiment with a while ago and I loved them, then I had to search the internet to find out what they were. I can’t wait to try this recipe.
They’re my fave!
This salad looks SO GOOD! I love all those ingredients. 🙂
I love this salad and have made it tons of times but the recipe has changed! The one I followed didn’t have that much sesame oil but had fish sauce and soy sauce. Are you able to send me the original One?
Sorry didn’t mean to comment here. Meant on the main thread. Will repost.
I don’t think I’d eat raw veggies either, wow that is a lot of work! Makes this salad all the more impressive!
I want in on this crunchalicious fresh party. YUM. 🙂
Mmm, thai chicken in a salad- delish! Its great to have a recipe for a cooked veggie salad to mix it up. I eat salads almost every day for lunch and it can get kind of blah sometimes- especially if its a little chilly outside! This one looks so colourful, healthy, and heartwarming.
Lol I thought the same thing!
I hate wasting paper towels so if I don’t pull out my salad spinner I have dish towels that I use only for drying lettuce. Another thing that works really well, especially for larger amounts, is a clean pillow case. Just dump your stuff in and give it a good whip around. You might need more than one depending on how much water you leave on your veg and of course how much veg you have to dry. Just a thought.
Great idea! Never thought of the pillowcase!
LOVE all these flavors! Im always looking for new salads!
I have to say, this totally looks worth all of the trouble! Also, I want to try calamansis! They’re adorable 🙂
SHUT THE DOOR! OK, first, thank you for going through the hassle to share this with us. Second, I have calamansi juice in my fridge right now. No, seriously, I do. Third, just scrapped plans for tomorrow night’s dinner and I am making a double batch of this. All of those flavors are my favorites and with a quick substitution of tamari for the soy, I have a gluten-free dinner my entire family will chow on. Thank you Thank you! (We will be asking to share this one!)
Wow Lindsay that is some serious effort to go to for a salad! I have the same feelings as you. I’m not a big fan of the green stuff unless it has lots of other hearty things with it like chicken and peanuts. Yum.
Has anyone made this yet??
These comments are not very helpful to others that have not made it. Of course it looks delicious or we wouldn’t have stopped by to view the recipe!
What is with all these comments on how great this recipe looks. I can see that for myself. I want to hear from people who actually made it, but I can’t find those reviews because of all the “this LOOKS great comments”.
I agree. There is something fishy about all the comments about how something looks but no one is making it and commenting.
No dried fish here, that’s for sure! 🙂
I just started reading your blog and I love it! I think Saturday I spend an hour just clicking around. I attempt to blog, but have failed for right now. Maybe this summer I’ll try to get into the habit again. I especially like your blog because I’m a teacher and lived a 1 1/2 in Thailand with my husband. I’ll put this salad on this next week’s dinner menu! Thanks for sharing!
Fun! Thanks for the comment Mary!