Sesame Noodle Salad

Make-aheadVegetarianCilantroPasta and NoodlesSesame

Sesame Noodle Salad, so quick and easy! Thin noodles infused with a sesame, honey, soy sauce dressing.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Is it hot where you are? We’ve had an unseasonably cool several days, but the weather reports assure us that that’s about to change.

This sesame noodle salad is a perfect cold noodle salad for a hot day. Make the noodles and the dressing ahead of time and let the noodles soak in all the flavor from the dressing (sesame oil, honey, soy sauce).

Then toss it with green onions, cilantro, bell pepper and peanuts right before serving. Yum!

Sesame Noodle Salad

You can also add cubed cooked chicken to the salad to make it a more substantial meal, or some tahini for a creamier sesame flavor. If you take it to a potluck picnic, double the recipe! This one is a crowd pleaser.

Recipe and photos updated, first published 2006

Sesame Noodle Salad Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6


Honey Soy Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 3 Tbsp dark sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed dried red pepper or chili powder (optional)
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce (less if using tamari which is more concentrated than soy sauce)


  • 12 ounces of vermicelli, thin spaghetti, or angel hair pasta
  • Salt
  • 2/3 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1/3 cup chopped roasted salted peanuts
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds


1 Prepare the dressing: Put the dressing ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.

2 Cook the pasta: Put the pasta in a large pot in salted boiling water (1 Tbsp salt for every 2 quarts of water). Cook al dente, according to the directions on the pasta package. Drain.

3 Toss with dressing, chill: Stir together the cooked pasta and the dressing in a large bowl until the pasta is well coated. Cover and chill for several hours.

4 Stir in cilantro, peanuts, green onions, bell pepper: When ready to serve, mix in the cilantro, peanuts, green onions and bell pepper. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

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Sesame Noodle Salad

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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43 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Tamantha

    Tried this when a friend made it and now looking to make it myself! How long do you think you could store the dressing for?

  2. Laura

    I’ve been making this recipe from here for what feels like 10 years! Such a crowd pleaser! People constantly ask me to make it. I always add a tomato and sometimes prosciutto. It’s even better the 2nd day.


  3. Becky G.

    Excellent! Very tasty, I made it with homemade chive spaghetti noodles. 1/3 semolina, 2/3 organic all purpose flour. Super tasty!

  4. Jill Zumwalt

    I made this tonight here in the Sierras, on a warm summer night. I used whole wheat thin spaghetti, extra peanuts, cilantro, peppers and added garlic, salted shrimp. So yummy and great up her where I I have limited access to ingredients. Anyone can have some frozen shrimp and nuts to add pisazz to a meal. All of the textures in a salad make it fabulous.


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  5. Pam

    I made this yesterday for a Canada Day BBQ pot luck. A few attendees have food allergies so I separated the nuts and veg in various containers which allowed them to add the ingredients as the chose. When they were done I tossed all ingredients as posted and I must say, it was absolutely wonderful! This morning I received requests for the recipe and I forwarded your URL. Thank you Elise!

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