Chinese Cucumber Salad

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Garlic and spice lovers rejoice! This Chinese cucumber salad packs so much flavor it will have you second guessing how you ever ate cucumbers in any other way!

Collage of cucumber salad on white bowls

A few years ago I went on a solo trip to Asia and one of the activities I loved the most was to take cooking classes in Japan and China. I loved it so much that I put it on my bucket list to take cooking classes all over the world one day.

While in Beijing during the 70th celebration of the end of WWII, most tourist attractions were closed so I immersed myself into Chinese cuisine and fell in love with it.

To my surprise, Chinese cuisine is a lot more diverse than I knew with each region specializing in different dishes and the flavors can be vastly different. It is also very fresh and NOT deep fried as the Chinese food we are used to in the US.

Chinese cucumber salad on white bowl on top of pink napkin

This Chinese Cucumber Salad for example was one of the many recipes I just couldn’t stop eating!

It is so easy to make, but it does require many ingredients. The good news is most of the ingredients are widely available and probably already in your pantry.

Sichuan Peppercorn and Chinese leek are the most challenging to find, but if you have access to an Asian supermarket, you will most likely be able to find it. I can assure you that it’s worth it!

Chinese Cucumber Salad

Garlic and spice lovers rejoice! This Chinese cucumber salad packs so much flavor it will have you second guessing how you ever ate cucumbers in any other way!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: asian, cucumber, delicious, easy, easy side dishes, keto, keto diet, keto recipes, low carb, low carb recipe, salad, summer, vegetable
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients

  • 2 english cucumbers cut into cubes
  • 3 large garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 4 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon bark
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/3 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1 leek chopped finely
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp Sichuan peppercorn

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, combine cucumber, salt, sugar, cayenne pepper, garlic, soy sauce and vinegar. Mix well.
  • In a frying pan, combine oil, leeks, and remaining ingredients. Turn stove on low temperature and mix ingredients. Cook for 10 minutes for all ingredients to combine. 
  • Immediately after, pass this mixture through a sieve and combine the oil with the cucumber mixture. Serve it right away.

Notes

For more heat, add more cayenne pepper. 
For a more traditional recipe, use 1 medium fresh hot chili thinly sliced and 2 small dried red chillies instead of the cayenne pepper. Fry these with the oil.
Use Chinese leek if available instead of American leek. 
Sichuan Peppercorn can be found in specialty stores like World Market and unlike black peppercorn is not hot.
Chinese cucumber salad on white bowl on top of pink napkin

Is this Chinese Cucumber Salad very spicy?

No. I adjusted the recipe so that is not very spicy. Even the original version with the chillies is not very hot, but if you are feeding it to kids, like I am I’d suggest keeping the chillies out.

On the other hand, if you like it spicy, then turn the chillies up!

How long does it keep?

Not very long. Cucumber by itself doesn’t last very long after it is cut, so this salad will keep for a day in the fridge at most, but it is best served and eaten fresh.

If you make this Chinese Cucumber Salad recipe, be sure tag me on Instagram and share your photo with hashtag #GLXrecipes. I’d love to see what you create!

What recipe should I make next?

For more recipes, click here.

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1 Comment

  1. Ro
    March 26, 2019 / 4:28 pm

    Wow… I loved !!! Must be refreshing and healthy! Good job ! ❤️

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