Spicy, Crunchy Sesame Cucumber Salad

Average ()
It’s refreshing and crisp with just the right amount of heat.
spicy, crunchy sesame cucumber salad
Katherine Gillen

Inspired by the flavors of pai huang gua, a Chinese cucumber salad that’s seasoned with rice vinegar, chili oil and soy sauce, this spicy, crunchy sesame cucumber salad recipe is everything we want in a side dish: It’s refreshing, crisp, juicy and savory with just the right amount of heat to bring us back for another bite. Sure, it’s also further proof that you don’t need lettuce to make a good salad…but that’s beside the point.


2 English cucumbers

Kosher salt

¼ cup unseasoned rice vinegar

½ teaspoon sesame oil

1 hot pepper (such as Fresno), thinly sliced

1 garlic clove, grated Sesame seeds and flaky salt, to garnish


1. Using a vegetable peeler or mandoline, thinly slice the cucumbers into ribbons. Toss the cucumber ribbons with a generous pinch of salt and transfer to a colander or strainer over the sink or a bowl to drain some of the moisture, 25 to 30 minutes.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, sesame oil, Fresno pepper and garlic.

3. Place the drained cucumbers in a serving bowl and toss with the dressing. Garnish with sesame seeds and flaky salt before serving.

Nutrition Facts
  • 36 calories

  • 1g fat

  • 7g carbs

  • 1g protein

  • 3g sugars

Powered By

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

Made it? Rate it!


Senior Food Editor

Katherine Gillen is PureWow’s senior food editor. She’s a writer, recipe developer and food stylist with a degree in culinary arts and professional experience in New York City...