Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad

62 reviews / 4.8 average

Soba Noodle Salad!

It’s (mildly) spicy. It’s peanutty and noodley. It’s a friend to all vegetables. It’s salad that’s… not really a salad.

It’s got big punchy flavor from fresh garlic and lime juice, and it’s extremely filling thanks to that creamy peanut sauce and the tangled pile of carbs known as soba noodles, and it’s also colorful and crunchy and fresh, so yes, it is my favorite category of food.

Can We Talk About How Neat Soba Noodles Are?

First things first – soba is so cool.

Close-up of soba noodles.
Soba noodles boiling a pot.

It comes in those little bunches wrapped with a little strip of cute paper, and after it’s cooked and soaked in some sauce (peanut sauce is life), it becomes so satisfying and chewy in the way that only the BEST noodle-based salads of the world can be.

But hey, guess what? It’s also gluten free because soba = buckwheat.

And guess what x2? This noodle situation is a dream for all those low-key cooks out there because it can be eaten straight-up cold. Delicious and colorful and flavor-boss-mode, right out of the fridge. Which is basically how I eat half of my noodles to begin with, so I guess this is all working out according to plan.

Ingredients for Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad.

Soba Noodle Salad Your Way

For this recipe, I actually revisited an older soba noodle salad recipe from 2014-ish that had been long since forgotten and revised it just slightly:

A little more heat, some new veg, and a swap of lime juice for vinegar.

This is just how I did mine (bell peppers, chicken, sometimes some purple cabbage or cilantro), but you are looking at a recipe that is begging to be customized.

Make it with extra chicken. Or meatless. With only green vegetables. Or spicier peanut sauce. It’s totally your call, and it’s totally going to be bomb delicious when you pull it out of the fridge for lunch/dinner/snack/repeat.

Close-up of soba noodles and bell peppers.

So What Are Soba Noodles Made Of?

Soba noodles are made from 100% buckwheat flour.

So…what’s buckwheat flour then? Exactly what you’d think: flour ground from buckwheat. Buckwheat is naturally gluten-free and also has four times as much fiber than regular flour. Wowzers.

Buckwheat flour gives soba noodles a very yummy and very delicious texture and flavor. And it’s good for you to boot!

Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad in a bowl with a fork.

Would it be weird to say I am happy for you? Good things ahead, Soba Adventurer.

Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad wrapped around a fork.

Let’s Keep The Noodle Salad Love Going

Watch How To Make This Recipe

Common Questions About Our Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad

Can this salad be prepped ahead of time?

Yes! If you’re making this ahead of time, toss everything together except the veggies. Those are best when added just before serving.

This feels like salad that’s heavy on the noodles. Is that right?

Our favorite kind of salads are heavy on the noodles! As written, yes, this recipe is heavy on the noodles. If you want a higher chicken/veg to noodles ratio, you could double the amount of chicken, or vegetables, or whatever you want.

Is this enough sauce for 8 servings?

It is, technically, but sometimes I double the sauce because I am a sauce hog. In my opinion, you can never go wrong with a little extra peanut sauce in the fridge.

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Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad Recipe


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x

Description

This Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Salad features red peppers, cabbage, chicken, soba noodles, and a quick homemade spicy peanut sauce. Salads don’t get much yummier than this.


Ingredients

Units Scale

For the Spicy Peanut Sauce:

  • 5 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 5 tablespoons water
  • 5 tablespoons soy sauce, or tamari for gluten free
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil (optional – for flavor)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup chili sauce like sriracha (more or less depending on spice tolerance)
  • 1/2 cup peanuts

For the Salad:

  • 1 lb. chicken breast
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 34 cups chopped purple cabbage
  • 10 ounces soba noodles
  • fresh cilantro or basil to taste
  • crushed peanuts for topping

Instructions

  1. Spicy Peanut Sauce: Puree sauce ingredients in a food processor or blender. Add the peanuts last so you can control how chunky it is (I like to leave it a little more on the chunky side).
  2. Chicken: Cook the chicken in a skillet over medium high heat. Season with salt and pepper. When the chicken is cooked through, set aside until cool enough to handle and shred the meat.
  3. Vegetables: Chop the red pepper, cabbage, and cilantro to your desired size for the salad.
  4. Noodles: Cook the noodles according to package directions (usually just boiling for a few minutes).
  5. Assemble: Toss everything together with enough dressing to generously coat everything. Serve hot or cold!

Equipment

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Sauté
  • Cuisine: Asian-Inspired

Keywords: soba noodle salad, peanut soba noodle salad, spicy soba noodle salad

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Note: This post contains affiliate links.


One More Thing!

This recipe is part of our best healthy summer salads page. Check it out!

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Recipe rating

162 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lesan

    So good!! I made two versions this afternoon, one spicy with chicken and one mild without meat for our family this evening. Both were huge hits! Thanks so much, this is a keeper!






  2. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Laurie

    Terrible! So very disappointed. Served to the family (3), and 2 of the 3 refused to eat it. I only ate it because I spent time making it.

    I followed the recipe to the T, but it just didn’t work. I think the problem is soy sauce. 5 Tbls is way too much. It was very salty.

    I was planning on adjusting the recipe, but everyone hated it, so won’t try this again.






  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    KarenP

    Wow! So yummy, that sauce is the star and amazing with chicken. Will be on high rotation here. Thank you






  4. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Heather

    So easy to put together. Dressing is amazing. Will definitely be making it again. Thanks for the inspiration






  5. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Karen C.

    Amazing!! We’ve had a few variations of this type of meal, and this hits all the right notes! Delicious, and love seeing all those colorful veg!! Making again tonight!!

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Jennifer Sowers

    Absolutely the best peanut sauce, this will be the only peanut sauce I just from now on. The siracha gives just the right amount of heat and flavor.

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Tara

    This is so good and so easy to put together. Used coconut aminos and crunchy almond butter. It made a ton!






  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Naureen

    Wow! Such a delicious and healthy recipe! Love the soba pairing with chicken as I find it’s a much better pairing for gut health vs using wheat noodles.

    I managed to get only 5 servings out of the recipe instead of the 8 mentioned in the recipe. I recommend doubling the proportions especially if you’ll be serving it as a lone main dish.






  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Vicki

    This was beautiful and delicious. Makes a huge quantity and will be great for lunches after having it for dinner. I used Tamari instead of Soy Sauce and I think the sauce needed 1/2 t. salt. Otherwise it was perfection. Thank you!






  10. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Megan

    I made it vegan with tofu. I also tried it with almond butter once. I think I like it even better with almond butter! Very easy to prepare. A staple.






  11. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Micky N

    I fixed this tonight & was shocked how much Hubby liked it. Used a green & a red pepper & coleslaw. My only suggestion is to add salt at some point. Paired it with air fried asparagus. Delicious dinner!!!






  12. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Melissa

    Made this last night and it was fantastic.
    I heated up the sauce with a bunch of vegetables and soba noodles. I meant to put shrimp with it but I forgot and it was still great. My dad ended up getting a second portion and he can be picky with veggie dishes!






  13. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Erin M Lesko

    Ohh!! Whole Foods used to have a soba noodle salad like this that I loved. Absolutely going to make this.






  14. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Susan

    Whenever I print your recipes the copy is so light I can barely read it, although on the computer it looks black. This happens every time I print one of your recipes. Do you know why this is, or how I can correct it? Thanks.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      Great question, Susan! Could it be a setting on your printer or ink/toner that needs to be replaced? We’ve printed several recipes from the site and the text is always legible.

  15. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Carrie Purkeypile

    I loooooove this recipe and make it time and again! We usually leave out the chicken for this dish and have it meatless. Thank you so much for sharing!






  16. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Max

    This is simply amazing just done it for the first time and i loved it, never tried soba noddles before (THEY ARE AMAZING!!!), also i change a few things i added soy bean sprouts and cooked the chicken on sesame oil and soy sauce with a bit of coconut oil for moisture it was a 10/10 ps: Also dipped the chicken on a tad of flour before putting it on the pan.






  17. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Laurel

    I’ve bade this 2 times now and I eat it all day and can’t stop. It’s the BOMB. Only thing I should say is this recipe prep is NOT 15 minutes. Cutting the veggies, measuring out the ingredients for the marinade peanut dressing, even boiling the water, none of this happens in or around 15 minutes. I’d say the whole thing start to finish is at least 45-1hr

  18. Pinch of Yum Logo
    laurel

    perfect, came out so flavorful and crunchy. going to make this again! made it for a few lunches this week!
    reserved the sauce on the side until ready for eating, to not allow soba to soak up all sauce contents and become soggy