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Pickled Vegetable Salad with Sesame Seeds Recipe

Contributors: Roberta Duyff, MS, RD, FAND

Published: July 28, 2018

Pickled Vegetable Salad with Sesame Seeds Recipe
Rebecca Clyde MS, RDN, CD

In Japanese, "sunomono" — which means "vinegared things" — refers to a salad of thinly sliced vegetables that are marinated in rice vinegar and soy sauce. The result is a salad with a slight pickled quality, sweetened with a touch of sugar. Among the many nutrient-rich fresh vegetables that may be prepared sunomono-style include broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, daikon radish, mushrooms, onions, red radishes, scallions (green onions), snow peas, spinach, string beans, seaweed and turnips.


⅓ cup rice wine vinegar*
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
½ medium English cucumber, halved lengthwise, very thinly sliced on a diagonal
2 medium carrots or daikon radishes, very thinly sliced
1 cup (3 ounces) snow peas, stem ends removed, halved crosswise
1 medium green onion, sliced lengthwise, then in 1-inch strips
1 tablespoon minced, peeled ginger root
⅛ teaspoon crushed chili pepper flakes
3 cups shredded leaf lettuce
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds


Before you begin: Wash your hands.

  1. Combine vinegar and water in a small microwave-safe bowl. Whisk in sugar. Heat for 30 to 60 seconds on medium power, then stir until sugar dissolves. Whisk in the soy sauce and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, place cucumbers, carrots, snow peas, green onions, ginger root and chili pepper flakes. Pour vinegar-soy sauce mixture over vegetables and toss gently until the vegetables are well-coated. Cover bowl and place in refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight.
  3. After vegetables have marinated, remove from refrigerator. Serve on a bed of lettuce. Drizzle remaining marinade over the salad and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Cooking Notes

  • Substitute rice wine (mirin) or any sweet white wine for rice wine vinegar.
  • Vary the veggies! An array of colorful vegetables — prepared sunomono-style — makes a great side dish for a party buffet or as a picnic salad, which can be prepared up to two days in advance.

Nutrition Information

Serves 6

Calories: 60; Calories from fat: 10; Total fat: 1; Saturated fat: 0; Trans fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 170mg; Total carbohydrate: 13g; Dietary fiber: 2g; Sugars: 9g; Protein: 2g

Roberta Duyff, MS, RD, FAND, is author of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Complete Food and Nutrition Guide and 365 Days of Healthy Eating.

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