Thai Crunch Salad
This Thai Crunch Salad is my take on my favorite salad from California Pizza Kitchen. It’s loaded with veggies, packed with flavor and a great potluck dish for the summer!
I thought about writing a cute little post where I give you a little ditty like, “bring me all the vegetables! Summer is here and I’m rocking this whole weight loss thing and loving all the yummy lightened up food I’m eating. You’re gonna LOVE this Thai Crunch Salad!!!” But that would be a big, fat (no pun intended) lie. Right now I want to punch all the vegetables in the face, never look at another salad again and instead dive head first into a giant bowl of spaghetti carbonara.
Boom. I said it. Take that Monday.
(ps- this salad is awesome. And if I’m going to eat a giant bowl of raw veggies, this is the way to go. All the while dreaming of the creamy pasta that isn’t in my bowl.)
Hot damn, this whole weight loss thing is no easy task. Actually, that’s only partly true. The concept is easy: if you exercise and eat well, you’ll see the results you want. The hard part is staying on task. I can say that with much conviction as I’m one month in. It takes every effort to eat well at every meal- and trying to be conscious of making healthy food choices without getting narcotic is a struggle- seriously y’all. I’ve never really done this before. Like ever. The only other time I gained any significant weight that I wanted to lose, I was 21, just home from a semester in California and all it took was a winter of waiting tables at night and skiing during the day for it to come off. I didn’t really have to think about it. But fast forward 15 years, 2 kids and a much slower metabolism, I’m finding it isn’t that easy this time around.
The first 3 weeks were much easier than this last one. For whatever reason (hello to my monthly friend) I wanted cookies, pizza and decided it was perfectly accepatable not to exercise everyday. A few days of that mentality and bam- it’s like starting over again. (Note to self: as you get older, it’s not ok to have an entire winter where you eat whatever you want and stop exercising. And for that matter, even a few days of that will make you feel like shit.) I can’t imagine how tough, physically AND emotionally, it must be for someone who has a lot of weight to lose or is overhauling their entire lifestyle and/or diet. I eat pretty well and am moderately active and am still finding it difficult.
Thank God I’m not one to wallow for long. Even though I’ve been feeling a little discouraged, I’ve decided it’s totally normal to have ups and downs and I just have to move on. Each day is a new day and one that allows me to get back on track. So guess what, Monday? With a shift in thought, a recommitment to my goal and most importantly- kindness towards myself and my body as it is- I’m ready to tackle you like a boss. Bring on the veggies and let’s do this.
And in all seriousness, this salad is awesome. I’ve been eating so many veggies and salads I was getting bored. This is a nice departure from all the greens I’ve been consuming and the peanut dressing is the bomb dot com. Plus, this is the perfect salad to prep ahead and nosh on throughout the week. It holds up incredibly well in the fridge all prepped and ready to go!
Thanks for reading and have a great week! xo, KelleyPrint
For the dressing:
- 4 tablespoons natural peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 large clove garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
- 4 tablespoons avocado oil
- 4 tablespoons water
For the salad:
- 1/2 head napa cabbage, roughly chopped
- 1/2 head purple cabbage, roughly chopped
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1/2 english cucumber, diced
- 1/2 cup cooked edamame
- 1 head scallions, chopped
- 1 1/2 bell peppers, chopped
- 1/2 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped
- crushed peanuts
- To make the dressing, put all ingredients in blender except water and oil. Blend to combine. With the motor running, slowly add oil and then water to get a nicely thick dressing consistency.
- Add all the veggies to one large bowl and toss with about 1/2 the dressing. Serve in individual bowls and top with diced avocado, crushed peanuts, a sprinkle of cilantro and a drizzle of dressing.
- Alternately you could dress the salads individually if you want to make it ahead and eat it throughout the week. The prepped vegetables should stay fresh for about 5 days in the fridge.