Thai Salad (Gluten-Free and Paleo)

Thai Salad (Gluten-Free and Paleo)

When I was a college student in Santa Fe, I worked for a local kitchen store and cooking school called Las Cosas. There were lots of perks of working in a kitchen store for a budding foodie, not the least of which was that, if one of the cooking classes didn’t sell out, and we weren’t already scheduled to be working, we could attend that class for free.

Cool, right?

One of my favorites was a Southeast Asian cooking class where we learned to make this Thai pork salad that I made for my first-ever Google hangout video!

Love that recipe.  It’s super easy and impressive.

And I just figured out how to make it BETTER.

How, you ask?  Why, by using leftover meat (in this case, beef, but pork or chicken would also work) to make it EVEN FASTER.  Check it out:

Thai Salad (Gluten-Free and Paleo)

Thai Salad (Gluten-Free and Paleo)


  • 1/4 C soy sauce (see note for GF and Paleo options)
  • 1/2 C coconut sugar, or table sugar
  • 2 small red Thai chiles, seeded and chopped
  • 1 T minced ginger
  • 2 T fish sauce
  • juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 1/2 tsp Chinese five spice powder
  • 1 pound leftover pork, chicken or beef OR raw boneless pork chops, cut into thin strips
  • 4 C mixed salad greens
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 C basil leaves
  • 1/4 C mint leaves
  • 1/2 C cilantro leaves


  1. Heat a deep skillet over medium heat and add soy sauce, sugar, chiles, ginger, fish sauce, lime juice and zest, and five spice powder. Cook, stirring, for 4–5 minutes, until the mixture begins to thicken.
  2. If using leftover meats, add to the pan and cook until heated through and coated with sauce. If using raw meat, add the pork and cook approximately 4 minutes, or until pork is just cooked. Try not to overcook the pork. Remove meat from the pan and allow to cool while simmering pan juices until thickened.
  3. Assemble the salad ingredients, bell pepper, onions, and herbs. Top the salad with the pork and then drizzle over the pan juices to dress the salad. Serve immediately.


For gluten-free, be sure to use gluten-free soy sauce and fish sauce. For Paleo, use coconut sugar and try coconut aminos in place of soy sauce.



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