This easy Asian Cucumber Salad recipe is made with thinly sliced English cucumbers, red onion, green onion, pistachios and cilantro all tossed in a simple vinaigrette. This healthy cucumber Asian salad comes together in a pinch and it rivals any restaurant salad out there!

Blue and white bowl filled with Asian cucumber salad with cilantro, pistachios and onion.

l love everything about this Asian salad with cucumbers! It’s refreshing, light and super low-cal. It makes a great side to serve with your favorite Asian meals, or grilled chicken and fish.

Glass bowls filled with sliced cucumber, red onion, green onion, and pistachios.

Asian Cucumber Salad Recipe

You’ll only need a few simple ingredients to pull this easy cucumber Asian salad together.

  • Cucumber – We use unpeeled English cucumber for this recipe, because they’re light tasting and crispy and they have few seeds and a delicate skin.
  • Onions – We use both purple and green onions for this salad which adds a lot of flavor to the mix.
  • Nuts – I like to use pistachios for this salad, but you can use peanuts, cashews or sesame seeds if you like.
  • Cilantro – This herb adds a lot of flavor to this simple salad.
  • Dressing – The dressing for this cucumber salad is made with rice wine vinegar, lime juice and a little sugar or honey.

How to Make Asian Cucumber Salad Recipe

This Asian salad with cucumbers comes together in a pinch. You’ll want to refrigerate the salad though for about 30 minutes before serving so it’s nice and cold (so refreshing)!

  1. Make Dressing – Combine the vinegar, lime juice and sugar (or honey) in a small bowl and set aside. This simple dressing is made with rice wine vinegar which gives this cucumber salad Asian flavors. So delicious!
  2. Slice cucumber – Rinse unpeeled cucumber under cold water. Take a fork and lightly run it lengthwise along the cucumber skin to lightly score it. This will help the cucumber to absorb more of the delicious dressing. After you’ve scored the cucumber, cut into thin slices either using a knife or a mandoline. Add slices to a small mixing bowl.
  3. Onion – Peel and slice the red onion into thin slices, and slice the light green parts of the green onion into thin rounds. Add to the bowl with the cucumber.
  4. Toss – Pour dressing over cucumber and onion slices and toss.
  5. Refrigerate – Chill salad in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before serving so it’s cold and crispy.
  6. Add nuts and cilantro – Just before serving, add the pistachios and chopped cilantro to the salad and toss. Enjoy!

Clear glass bowl filled with sliced cucumber, red and green onion, cilantro and pistachios

Types of Cucumbers

There are many varieties of cucumbers. Cucumbers that you eat fresh are typically classified as slicing cucumbers. English cucumbers are usually a little more expensive than garden cucumbers, but with English cucumbers you can consume the peel and tiny seeds and enjoy all the fiber and nutrients they provide.

  • American – The typical cucumbers found in the grocery stores are American cucumbers (also called slicing cucumber and garden cucumber). They have a thicker and darker green skin which is bitter tasting. They have a softer texture flesh with many large seeds that can give the flesh a slightly bitter taste. It’s best to peel them and scrape away the seeds before consuming.
  • English – English cucumbers are also called hothouse, greenhouse, seedless, burpless and European cucumbers. They are long with dark green skins that have distinct ridges running lengthwise. They have tiny seeds so the  flesh (and skin) don’t taste bitter like the garden cucumber does. Cucumbers are a member of the cucurbitaceae family (gourd family), which includes zucchini, squash, melons and pumpkins. Botanically speaking, cucurbits are actually a fruit. Most cucurbits are herbaceous tendril-bearing vines that are commonly grown in warmer climates.
  • Persian – Persian cucumbers are similar to English hothouse cucumbers in taste and texture, but they’re about half the size. Both of them are crunchy, have thin skins, few seeds and they are mild tasting. Neither of them need to be peeled before consuming.

Choosing the Best Cucumbers

When choosing the best cucumbers to buy for this salad, always look for firm English cucumbers that are free of soft spots, cracks or withered and shriveled ends, and the skin should be a rich green rather than a pale green. Always remove the plastic the cucumbers are wrapped in and rinse under cold water to remove any dirt and debris before slicing.

Blue and white bowl filled with Asian cucumber salad. Two silver spoons rest in the bowl.

Benefits of Cucumber

Let’s unpack all the nutritional benefits that cucumbers provide.

  • Promotes Hydration. Cucumber is made up of about 95% water, which helps keep the body hydrated. (1) (2)
  • Weight Management. Cucumbers are low in calories, carbs, and fat and high in fiber, they make a smart addition to any weight loss plan. (3)
  • Digestion. Cucumber is rich with fiber which helps to promote a clean gut, a healthy digestive system and possible weight loss.  (4)
  • Detoxification. Cucumber seeds act as natural diuretic that help to pass urine and flush out excess waste and toxins. Drinking cucumber detox water is an easy way to take advantage of cucumber’s detoxification benefits.
  • Antioxidants. Good source of antioxidants, including flavonoids and tannins which help block harmful free radicals which in turn may help reduce risk of chronic disease. (5)
  • Blood Sugar. Consumption of cucumbers may help regulate blood sugar levels. (6)
  • Blood Pressure. Excess sodium in the body may raise blood pressure. Cucumber is a good source of potassium which is an electrolyte that helps regulate the amount of sodium retained by your kidneys. Drinking cucumber juice helps you get more potassium in your body, which may help to lower blood pressure

Blue and white bowl filled with cucumber Asian salad

Looking for More Salad Recipes to Make?

Still want more ideas? Check out all my healthy salad recipes.

Asian Cucumber Salad
Yield: 4 servings

Asian Cucumber Salad

Prep Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

This easy Asian Cucumber Salad recipe is made with thinly sliced English cucumbers, red onion, pistachios and cilantro all tossed in a simple vinaigrette. This Asian salad with cucumbers comes together in a pinch and it rivals any restaurant salad out there!

Ingredients

  • 1 large English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 large green onion, sliced into thin rounds
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons pistachios
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

Instructions

  1. Combine the rice wine vinegar, lime juice and sugar (or honey) in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Rinse unpeeled cucumber under cold water. Take a fork and lightly run it along the cucumber skin to lightly score it.
  3. Using a sharp knife or a mandoline, cut unpeeled cucumber into thin round slices. Add slices to a small mixing bowl.
  4. Peel and slice the red onion into thin slices and slice the light green parts of the green onion into thin rounds. Add to the bowl with the cucumber.
  5. Pour dressing over cucumber and onion slices and toss.
  6. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes before serving.
  7. Just before serving, add the pistachios and chopped cilantro to the salad and toss.

Notes

Variations

Use peanuts or cashews instead of pistachios.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 57Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 28mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 2g

theharvestkitchen.com attempts to provide accurate information, however, this nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. The nutritional information provided comes from online sources and calculations. See full disclaimer on About page.