Satay Chicken Noodle Salad
Fast, simple, and flavorful, this satay chicken noodle salad – with all the yummy flavors of the delicious satay sauce – makes a perfect weeknight meal! Plus, the leftovers, straight from the fridge, are insanely good.
First up today, thanks to all of you who have purchased a Simple Weeknight Dinners eCookbook! Your support and response has been amazing.
Now. Let me tell you about this amazing satay chicken noodle salad.
It’s fast (20- or 30- minutes).
It’s delicious (these curry/Thai/satay flavors get me every time).
It makes the best leftovers (or make-ahead lunch or dinner) in the universe.
I’ve gushed over savory peanut sauces before. You know I love ’em. And I certainly know I love ’em. But throwing that delectable satay sauce over tender noodles, curried chicken, and crunchy vegetables is about the most perfect combination ever.
If you care to leave a comment, I’m really curious to know: are you a peanut sauce fan?
What about curry?
Can we have a little informal survey here? I pinky swear we can be still friends no matter where your opinion falls.
This satay chicken noodle salad really is spectacular. It’s perfect for hectic weeknights when I’m wondering how I’ll ever get dinner on the table again (sidenote: I have a post coming up to tackle this very issue; hooray!). It’s fast enough to throw together quickly when you need it OR even better, it can be made ahead of time and eaten straight from the refrigerator.
I packed it in little containers stashed in a cooler for a road trip I took a few weeks ago with a couple friends, and we devoured it at about 6:47 p.m., while driving in the middle of nowhere Idaho on our way to Bear Lake when there wasn’t even a soggy gas station sandwich to be spied for miles and miles.
I thought our rave reviews were because we were deliriously hungry (we were running late for our scheduled arrival time and hadn’t eaten in hours!), but later, when I was back home and made it for my family, it was as delicious as I had remembered (although a little easier to eat since I wasn’t trying to drive and balance it on my lap).
If you love Thai satay sauce flavors, this one is a no-brainer. And if you don’t? I’m still almost certain you will. It is that delicious.
Satay Chicken Noodle Salad
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter, natural or regular
- 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon sriracha or chili paste, more to taste if you want extra heat
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice, about 3 limes
- ⅔ cup light coconut milk
- Salt to taste
- 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 teaspoons curry powder (see note)
- 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil or other cooking oil like vegetable, avocado, coconut
- 10 to 12 ounces spaghetti noodles or fresh egg noodles, depending on how noodle-y you want the salad
- 2 cups shredded green or red cabbage, or a combo
- 2 cups chopped kale (see note)
- 1 large carrot, grated on the large holes of a box grater (about 1/2 to 1 cup)
- Chopped peanuts for garnish (optional)
- Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a blender and process until smooth. Set aside (this can be done several days in advance and refrigerated).
- Cook the noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- While the noodles cook, toss the chicken with the salt, pepper, curry powder, and soy sauce.
- Heat the oil (sesame oil is my favorite for this recipe!) in a large, 12-inch nonstick skillet until rippling and hot.
- Add the chicken in a single layer and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, 3-4 minutes.
- In a large bowl, toss the prepared noodles with the cabbage, kale, and carrots. Add the chicken. Pour over the dressing and toss to combine.
- Serve immediately (although this also makes great leftovers straight from the fridge).
Recipe Source: adapted from Recipe Tin Eats (increased and adapted the overall recipe to serve make more than 3-4 servings, used spaghetti noodles, subbed in kale/cabbage mix instead of just cabbage and a bunch of other little changes)
92 Comments on “Satay Chicken Noodle Salad”
Mel!!! I’ve been following you for a very long time now. I’ve tried a ton of your recipes and you seriously never disappoint. But I just wanted to say how absolutely delicious this recipe is! I’m a big fan of the peanut butter sauce because I lived overseas for 5 years. And in the Netherlands they call it “satay sauce”. They have a huge Indonesian community over there. Anyway this was fabulous… so thanks!
Thank you so much, Samantha! So happy you loved this one!
This is so good! I ended up with a ton of sauce, so next time I might cut it in half. But it’s really easy and delicious, this recipe is a keeper!
Huge winner! We loved it! My husband took one bite and started raving about how good it is. I used chicken thighs and grilled them, and I realized after we ate that I completely forgot the brown sugar in the sauce.
I was a little nervous about this recipe with all the strong flavors, especially after I made the sauce and didn’t really like it. But I’m glad I kept going, because it all blends so well at the end! I added one zucchini and one red pepper that I needed to use up, but otherwise kept everything the same. I did serve some without sauce to my picky husband, who ate his with vinaigrette and still liked it, ha. This will go in my summer dinner rotation!
Just made this today! Hubby asked me to half the peanut butter and I did. Still very yummy! I used red cabbage and arugula, but waited to add arugula until serving. This will be our lunch all week!
Could you sub almond butter in the sauce? I LOVE satay, but I have one who hates peanut butter (can you imagine???).
I wonder what I could use in place of the lime. Darn citrus allergies!!
Try rice vinegar. I have substituted with that before.
Try rice vinegar. I have subbed with that before. 🙂
Love this recipe and have made it often. I asked my husband to get the kale and cabbage mix at Trader Joes and he said they didn’t have it. Do you know if your Sam still carries it?
I think the last time I was at TJ’s (a few weeks ago) it was there…but I’ll check more specifically next week!
One of our families favorite recipes. My husband requested it for his birthday dinner tonight and my kids ate it! Seriously a miracle.
I’m glad you love this one, Amy – it is still such a favorite of mine, too!
We have peanut allergies in the family-do you think almond butter could be substituted? Thanks!!
I think so!
My son went to Indonesia and brought back a recipe for gado gado with peanut sauce and beef rendang. Then he went back and brought back an Indonesian wife! Then they made chicken satay. I highly recommend both!
Excellent dish. I use my home made noodles for a healthier bit of carbs.
If you use a spicy curry try adding chopped mango for a bit of punch.
Mel I love this! I eat it warm and it’s delicious
Thanks for all the amazing recipes Mel! I’m always a little confused if I should use toasted or regular sesame oil? Which do you use for this recipe? Thanks!
I use toasted but regular will work in a pinch!
I don’t know why I waited so long to make this recipe, but both my kids (6 & 3) requested that we have it again for dinner soon. Leftovers could have used some extra sauce, so next time I may leave a tiny bit out to save for that, but the flavors in this are delicious!
Easy and so so SO good! Definitely making this again and again! Thanks!
Loved this! These are all my favorite flavors. I garnished with cilantro (yum!) and am so excited for leftovers. I’m also looking forward to using up all my extra dressing on other salads/stirfry dishes. The only change I made was I used coconut sugar instead of brown sugar, but that’s pretty insignificant. I will definitely make this again!
Successfully added to my teenage daughter’s lunch rotation! Thanks for the yummy recipe with plenty of adaptions.
Super easy and tasty!
Easily a five star recipe. As expected, another hit from Mel 😉 Just wish I lived in a country that sold kale and purple cabbage so mine could be pretty and colorful too, haha
One more comment…when I ate the leftovers I was out of noodles so I used quinoa instead. It was delicious!
P.S. I used half spaghetti noodles and have zucchini noodles. SO good!
I love all your recipes but THIS ONE has to be one of my very favorites. I’ve been sharing it with everyone I can think of. The chicken is amazing, the dressing is drinkable, the various textures and flavors all together are DIVINE. Thanks Mel! You knocked it out of the park with this one.
This recipe is delicious. My husband loved it and had seconds. A definite repeat dinner recipe in my house.
I love this dressing– I honestly crave it! I always think I’ll open a can of coconut milk and use the other portion in some other recipe– but then I just end up making more dressing before it goes bad in my fridge…. I just use chili powder bc that’s what I keep on hand. Thank you– so delicious!!
I made this recipe this week and we loved it! I used Dreamfields pasta to reduce the carb count and subbed in xylitol/stevia blend for the brown sugar. Found you on Pinterest. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks, Sheila – glad you loved this one!
Hi Mel, we love this recipe! I’ve made it twice now and my family gobbles it up. One question, what do you use to juice lemons and limes? I have used a couple of different instruments and honestly, I hate doing it! I broke one of them and the other leaks. Does anything make the job easy?
Hi Amy – I have a citrus press. Honestly, I can’t remember the brand name of mine but it is similar to this one: https://www.amazon.com/Cucisina-Lemon-Squeezer-Juicer-Citrus/dp/B010TFF6AE/ref=sr_1_6?s=kitchen&ie=UTF8&qid=1485583595&sr=1-6&keywords=citrus+press
I know it’s been awhile, but my MIL taught me a FANTASTIC trick for getting lemon (and I assume lime) juice out for lemon squares. I don’t have a juicer or anything like that. So she had me zest it as much as was needed first, then place the whole lemon in the microwave for 10–30 seconds (you don’t want it so hot that you can’t hold it, but you want it hot enough that it squishes easier). Then slice it in half, put one half in your palm, and, over a bowl, use the other hand to stick a fork into the lemon half and twist. You will be AMAZED at how much juice just FALLS out of your lemon!!! Keep going, squeezing in an opposite twisting motion as you twist the fork into it with your other hand. Then repeat with the other half. Fish out (or strain) the seeds and pulp and voila!! A bowl of lemon juice without the hassle and frustration!!!
You’re welcome. 😉 Seriously, though, I hope it helps!! She taught me how to do that as we made lemon squares together while I was pregnant with my now-6 year old—and I’ve never done it any other way since then and it’s AWESOME!!
Hi Mel, I’ve been wanting to try some of the Penzeys curry powder you recommend, but where do you recommend getting it?
Hi Lauren – I don’t live near a Penzey’s store so I order it online (penzeys.com)
HI Mel…excited to try this! Could you tell me if the coconut milk is from a can? or carton…like almond breeze(example)? Probably a “rookie”question! ~Eleisha
Hey Eleisha, it’s coconut milk from a can (you can use light or regular).
I made this last weekend, finished up the last leftovers today. No noodles because stupid middle age says I need to limit carbs, but extra cabbage and kale because the garden says “here’s a bunch of veggies.”
Excellent recipe. Next time I’m adding cilantro.
Try Dreamfields pasta! It’s low carb but is made with 100% durum wheat! You’d never know! I promise!
I made this last week, and everyone loved it! I didn’t have any sriracha, but I bought some yesterday so I could try this again!
Made it just because I happened to have all the ingredients on hand. HUGE hit with the family, and I used up all the veggies in the bin. (Added peppers, zucchini, and cilantro). Even better for leftovers the next day! I can always count on your recipes to be a hit with my family.
I love peanut sauces, but I’ve been on the fence about curry. I just bought the sweet curry spice you recommended from Penzey’s, so I was excited to try this recipe out with that. I made this last night, and it was very good! I thought the lime in the peanut sauce went with the curry very nicely. I subbed regular milk for coconut milk (because, sorry, but coconut makes me gag), and I used ramen noodles instead of spaghetti. I also used a package of Asian salad mix, which was a mixture of cabbage, carrots, and cilantro. Someone above asked if cilantro would be good, and it was! My husband and I both enjoyed the dish – thanks for the great recipe!
I made this for dinner for us two nights ago and devoured a huge portion! YUM! Then last night I used the rest of the dressing to make a vegetarian version for my sister-in-law with rice noodles instead of spaghetti. I toss the kale in some of the curry sauce to try to incorporate that flavor too. It definitely didn’t come through like it did on the chicken. Any ideas on something vegetarian that could marinate in the curry sauce and fit with this recipe? Chickpeas? Lentils? Not a fan of tofu over here.
Hmmm, I’m not really sure, but I like the idea of chickpeas.
Thai curry, Indian curry, peanut sauces, or whatever kind of curry we LOVE! So I love when you post new recipes like this. We are big fans over here!
I don’t think I’ve ever tried peanut sauce, but I should. I’m just chicken. I do love the curry we get at work sometimes.
I need to try it, I loooove the sauce.
I love peanut sauces and I love curry! I should clarify that I love Thai curry flavors. I am not such a fan of Indian Curry flavors. I bought the Penzeys Sweet Curry but I haven’t used it much because it seems to be more on the Indian Curry side and not the Thai curry. Does that make sense? I’m guessing this dish with the Peanut Satay will be more Thai curry type, right?
Hey Stacy – sorry to hear you don’t love the sweet curry powder, especially since I’m the one who recommended it. It probably is on the Indian curry end of things but because I love curry so much, I haven’t really put it in one cuisine or another. The satay sauce in this dish is definitely Thai-inspired so whatever curry powder you use will have it’s own flavor (in your case, you might want to use more of a Thai-flavored curry powder?).
I knew my husband would love this and he did. The miracle was that all four kids ate it too! Thanks for another favorite.
Mel, do you have an update on how much money had been raised now? Thanks for all you do!
Last I heard, it was at $29,315!
I love curry but my tummy doesn’t. I have a similiar recipe for just the peanut butter and soy sauce. How do you think it would be with cocunut milk and everything else and leave out the curry? Am I missing some sort of balance with taste that needs to be there?
Certainly worth a try!
Just wanted to tell you we love all your recipes! Thanks for making it easy to find great new recipes to add to our family binder. When I make a new recipe my kids even know to ask “Is this from Mel?”
In case you didn’t know, the links for the weekly menu don’t appear to be working right now. I can search for the recipes and find them though. Thanks for all you do.
Thanks for letting me know Heather. I fixed the links!
Thanks! You’re the best!
I am ok w peanut sauce but not so much of a fan of curry. That being said I am willing to try it again (it’s been a while!) to see if my taste buds have changed. I def will b making this recipe, what w the purple cabbage, kale & carrots, along w the chix – it throws a major nutritional punch. Good thing it has the noodles to keep it completely delicious.
Love it, love it ,love it. I adore satay sauce, I like to use a super crunchy peanut butter in mine, I can’t get enough of those crunchy little bits in the creamy sauce. Thanks for another Stirling recipe. Have a great day.
Everyone here likes curry! Unfortunately, I am the only one who loves peanut sauce. In fact, I really, really like it. But my two small children and my husband do not. I still make it sometimes when the craving is strong enough and they just have to deal. Then, I end up feeling bad since I know I’m cooking selfishly. 🙂
My husband likes pb sauce, but I LOVE it! We both like curry too.
Yes, curry!! Yes, peanut sauce!! And both together!!! My 15 yr old daughter and I LOVE your recipes. She has developed her own peanut sauce for chicken/veg/noodle stir fry, but we will look forward to trying this one ASAP! Thanks!!
Yes to both peanut sauce and curry! My husband served in Thailand, so those flavors are always a win, as long as they’re authentic enough. 😉 We’re going to Thailand this fall (my first time), and maybe I can gather ideas and recipes and send them you’re way to play with. 🙂
Curry: YES! Peanut sauce: YES! My favorite flavors. I’m going to make this as soon as I’m not throwing up every day because if morning sickness. Until then I only have the energy to make cereal
My husband and I both love curry and peanut sauces 🙂
I want to like curry, I keep trying it thinking I will like it if I try it again. Maybe my problem is buying the wrong curry mix. Since you asked me my opinion, I’m going to tell you that I’ve tried to get along with the spice, but still am on the opposite side of the curry fence! This dish looks fabulous….so maybe I’ll have to try again. I’ll still love your recipes even if I can’t get over my lack of curry love!
Hey, that’s ok! No guilt over not liking curry. Some people love it…and others just don’t. I still love ya.
I have to say, I don’t like peanut sauces… Don’t like peanuts used in savory anything! When I was a kid, at a Girl Guide sleepover, they served us this awful peanut butter stew. Haven’t been able to do savory peanut anything since then! I don’t mind the taste of curry, but I am always leery of it being too spicy. But so many recipes on this site have become favourites for our family even though there is the occasional recipe with savory peanuts on the list 🙂
Ok, I think I’d be traumatized by PB stew, too, Kristi!
Mmm I wonder if it was something like an African Peanut Soup, which can be delicious! I can see, though, if you weren’t expecting the flavors and textures, it might be off-putting.
Two of my very favorite things! Sweet or not. I love it all. This dish is right up my alley!
Love, love, love curry in Thai or Indian food. In fact, I could forgo the meat in an Indian dish and just sop up the sauce with Naan…yummm!
I’ll be making this tonight…I swear I can smell the peanut sauce coming out of my phone! Thanks Mel…you’re the best!
This looks like cilantro would taste really good with it. Have you tried it before?
Yes, cilantro is a great add-in!
Huge curry fan. Once upon a time I went to India for a month and ate it in some form for literally every meal. Peanut sauce is hit and miss. For me a hit but my husband hates it because it makes everything taste “like a sandwich. Should I put jelly on this?” I prefer not to answer those kind of questions at dinner.
Haha, he’s not the only one, I’m sure. I hear that a lot but more often than not, people come around to the deliciousness of peanut sauce. Just tell him he’s missing out. 🙂
Oh, oh, oh…..the memories of the beautiful blue waters of Bear Lake !
I LOVE all curry and most peanut sauces (as long as they aren’t super sweet!). I can’t wait to try this recipe!
I love curry, but peanuts are a no-go in our house. My son is allergic. This looks beautiful though, I wonder how the sauce would taste if I just left the peanut butter out completely?
Hi Amanda – could you sub a PB substitute like sunflower seed butter?
This looks amazing! We LOVE curry-anything (or Thai-anything, or Indian-anything) at our house, although I have never made a peanut sauce. I’m going to swap out what was on tonight’s menu for this.
Made this tonight. Wow!! Talk about a party in your mouth!! My whole family was two thumbs up, and my husband asked if we could add this to the regular-rotation list. This is a huge winner!!
I adore peanut sauce. I adore peanut sauce turned into a salad dressing. I grew up on curry. My mom used to put it on chicken. And we would make curried chicken cashew salads to put on croissants for trips. My boyfriend and I still make the salad regularly. Curry in most everything is wonderful. Even on eggs!!
This will be dinner tonight since I already have all the stuff in the fridge except the satay sauce! Thanks Mel.
I LOVE curry, though I’m pretty wary of peanut sauces. The only dinner my husband and I couldn’t finish (and ended up throwing out) was a peanut noodle dish from Martha Stewart. We couldn’t put our fingers on what it was exactly that was so off-putting, but it was not good. Haven’t made a peanut sauce since! Maybe this recipe will break my streak…