Cucumber Salad with Soy & Sesame Dressing

overhead view of cucumber salad dressed with soy sauce and sesame oil in a glass storage container
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This fast and easy cucumber salad is the perfect side dish recipe to make when you’re hot, tired, or hungry because the recipe involves no cooking, is easy and fast to make, and filling. You can serve it as a refreshing side dish during the spring or summer, or basically when cucumbers are available or in season.

Disclaimer: Please check that all ingredients are suitable for your allergies and be sure to ask your medical care team regarding any allergy related questions (I do not share medical advice). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Reasons to Love Cucumbers

My favorite cucumber to buy are the Persian cucumbers. They’re about 5-6 inches long and about 1 inch thick. They’re easy to eat because the skin and seeds are tender and as a result there’s no waste. We think of cucumbers as vegetables even though they’re botanically a fruit and so tasty. They’re mostly water, low in calories (5 calories per 1/2 cup), and high in nutrition.

If you shop at an Asian or Japanese market, try making this cucumber salad recipe with Japanese cucumbers. They’re usually longer than Persian cucumbers (about 6-8 inches long) and have a bumpier skin.

I eat cucumbers plain, add them to salads, make Easy and Allergy Friendly Cucumber and Avocado Sushi Rolls, and make a quick pickle side dish with them. They add crunch and color to potato salads.

However, cucumbers become slimy and/or soft which are signs of spoilage and need to be tossed or composted. To avoid waste, I use them up within a day or two of purchase by making this cucumber salad.

overhead view of cucumber salad dressed with soy sauce and sesame oil in a glass storage container
I like the roll cut (cut diagonally, roll the cucumber, cut again) because it exposes more of the inside of the cucumber, and it’s easier to stir and toss due to the irregular shape. You can cut your cucumbers any way you like but I recommend you try the roll cut!

This Recipe is a Must Try!

It takes less than 5 minutes to make this cucumber salad and you can serve it right away. Or you can make it when you have a few minutes and refrigerate it until your next meal.

But best of all, this salad can keep for a few days and save you from throwing out forgotten cucumbers. The cucumber salad stays refreshingly crunchy and delicious for 1-2 days. I like using air-tight, leak-proof glass storage containers.

I did not eat salads during my childhood. Chinese people seldom eat raw vegetables, perhaps due to culture, environment, or traditional Chinese medicine beliefs. But pouring hot chili oil over cucumbers might be considered “cooked” enough. I personally cannot handle spicy heat nor a lot of oil in my food, which is why I make my cucumber salad with a simple dressing of soy sauce and sesame oil.

Allergy Aware Cucumber Salad

This recipe is free of peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, dairy, shellfish, and fish as written. Because of the simplicity of the recipe, you can make a few easy swaps to make it suitable for your allergies.

People with a soy allergy can season the cucumbers with Soy-Free Soy Sauce Recipe, Top 9 Allergen Free or one of the store bought soy-free options.

If only wheat- or gluten-free, the easy swap is a gluten free tamari sauce.

I haven’t found a perfect swap for sesame oil. I think that the oily portion of a fresh jar of sunflower seed butter might be close. Often times, it’s easier to omit the sesame oil or use something completely different such as chili oil or saute some chopped garlic in olive oil.

overhead view of cucumber salad dressed with soy sauce and sesame oil in a glass storage container
5 from 1 vote
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Cucumber Salad with Soy & Sesame Dressing

This fast and easy cucumber side dish is the perfect side dish recipe to make when you're hot, tired, or hungry because the recipe involves no cooking, is easy and fast to make, and filling. You can serve it as a refreshing side dish during the spring or summer, or basically when cucumbers are available or in season.

Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine Asian
Keyword cucumber salad
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 4
Author Sharon (Nut Free Wok.com)

Ingredients

  • 5-6 Persian cucumbers
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce

Instructions

  1. Roll cut or smash cucumbers into bite sized pieces and transfer to a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the sesame oil and soy sauce, toss to thoroughly coat the cucumber. Refrigerate while you prepare the rest of your meal or as a make ahead option.

Related Spring/Summer Time Recipes:

The last few summers have been so hot that I do not want to cook in our west-facing kitchen. Instead, I rely on fast-cooking meals such as Pasta with Chicken Sausages, Tomato & Brie Recipe.

My Broiled Teriyaki Chicken Thighs Recipe is also super fast and heats up the kitchen minimally since the broiler is on only for less than 10 minutes.

Recipes that can be prepped earlier in the day such as Cantonese-Style Poached Chicken Recipe and served cold or at room temperature can also help us manage our time.

We often associate using pressure cookers and slow cookers for hot and comforting stews and soups. But they’re also great for summer time use due to their time and energy efficiency. Try my recipe for Chinese Five Spice Soy Sauce Chicken Drumsticks or my Instant Pot Chicken Thighs with Teriyaki Sauce Recipe.

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Disclosure/Disclaimer:

I may mention the names of stores and/or brand names of products that I use because readers ask and I share products and sources which I use and think may be helpful to readers, all opinions are my own. Please note that manufacturing practices and ingredients can change at anytime without notice and readers are always responsible for assuring allergen safety before buying or consuming foods. NutFreeWok.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Thank you for reading!

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About Sharon Wong 271 Articles
Welcome to Nut Free Wok, a blog about Allergy Aware Asian Fare. I hope that you will find my food allergy mom experiences helpful and enjoyable to read as I write about recipes, cooking techniques, Asian ingredients, and food allergy related awareness and advocacy issues. My professional experiences include education, teaching, and a little bit of science and computers. Thank you for visiting! ~Sharon Wong, M.Ed.

2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    That’s a refreshing twist! 🥒🥗 I bet the combination of flavors is amazing. Thanks for sharing this tasty and healthy recipe!

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