Napa Cabbage Chicken Salad with Ramen is colorful, crispy, crunchy and loaded with flavor. It’s a light but satisfying summer meal and perfect for picnics and potlucks!
The weather is starting to warm up, and today it was over 100 degrees already — ugh! We were enjoying some truly awesome spring weather for awhile there, and then BAM — back to reality. I should have known it was too good to be true.
But it isn’t all that bad. The kids have actually been counting down the days until it was warm enough to go swimming, and they finally got their wishes granted. I like them to go swimming later in the day when it’s not so sunny — just being a concerned mom, here. And, the Hubs sometimes joins them when he gets home from work, which means we eat dinner later.
And that’s why I love having salads for dinner during the summer. I can make them ahead of time, pop them in the fridge, and they’re ready when we are!
For this one, I used some leftover Crock-Pot shredded chicken, which made putting the salad together a breeze. You could also use rotisserie chicken from the store.
I got this easy ramen chicken salad recipe years ago from a friend of mine. Then, of course I had to change it a little. I think this is one of those recipes that you can easily customize and make your own. There’s really no right or wrong way to prepare it, and I’ve seen tons of different variations over the years.
I like to make salads that are as colorful as possible, and this one has a lot of color. The basic recipe calls for just one type of cabbage, but in this one, I use two. The main cabbage is napa, and for extra crunch and color, I add some purple cabbage. And because orange and purple go together, I add some carrots. Then, I throw in some snow peas, celery, chicken and the ramen noodles and toasted sesame seeds.
It may seem like an odd combo, but it’s so good! And I love the Asian flavors.
How to Make Napa Cabbage Chicken Salad with Ramen
Napa Cabbage Chicken Salad with Ramen
- 1 cups head napa cabbage shredded (about 4 )
- 1 cup shredded purple cabbage
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced or shredded carrots
- 2 stalks celery roughly chopped
- 2 cups cooked shredded chicken
- 1 cup snow peas optional
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 package ramen noodles chopped (discard the flavor packet)
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Carefully pound the ramen noodles with a rolling pin until they're broken into large pieces.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium sized skillet, and brown the noodles and sesame seeds over low to medium heat. Set aside to cool.
- Wash and chop the vegetables, and place in a large bowl
- Add the shredded chicken
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining olive oil, rice vinegar, sugar, ginger, pepper and soy sauce
- Pour over the salad, and toss until well combined
- Mix in the ramen noodles and sesame seeds, and serve immediately
- You can also add the ramen later if you aren't eating right away
If I’m making the salad in advance, I wait until right before serving to add the ramen noodles. Otherwise, they get soggy.
And personally, we like salads that aren’t drowning in dressing, and this recipe makes dressing that fully coats the ingredients, but it’s not sopping wet. You can always double the amounts for the dressing if you prefer more.
My family loved this Napa Cabbage Chicken Salad, and it made nice, light dinner on a warm day.
Oh, and if you have a potluck or picnic planned, this salad is perfect, but it goes fast, so make sure you get in line right away!
Have a super day, friends!