This recipe is the perfect salad paired with a bright and zingy sesame ginger dressing that makes the simple salad leaves spring to life.

Easy to make with a few pantry staples, you’ll love the fresh and flavor-rich taste in this dressing.

A simple salad served in a white bowl with sesame ginger dressing.

Crunchy leaves topped with edamame beans and pretty sweet peppers. 

There is nothing more you need than this fresh salad, topped with a beautifully balanced dressing.

Why you’ll love this Simple Salad with Sesame Ginger Dressing 

The roasted and toasted nutty notes that come through from the sesame seeds deliver a rich and mouth-watering flavor.

  • Quick to make: whip the dressing and salad up in a matter of minutes.
  • It’s healthy: A simple salad with fresh greens and vegetables is a nutritious and healthy option. 
  • Versatile: You can customize this salad to your liking by adding your favorite vegetables and toppings. 
  • It’s budget-friendly: Making a simple salad with toasted sesame and ginger dressing is an affordable way to eat healthily. You can use a variety of vegetables and toppings based on what’s in season or on sale, making it an economical option for any budget.

Looking for more salad recipes? Here are some of my favorites:

Ingredients and substitution notes 

Here’s some detail on the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Fresh Lemon Juice: If you don’t have fresh lemon juice, you can use bottled lemon juice as a substitute.
  • Braggs Liquid Aminos: You can substitute Braggs Liquid Aminos with soy sauce, tamari, or coconut aminos. If using soy sauce, use a low-sodium option.
  • Freshly Grated Ginger: You can substitute freshly grated ginger with ground ginger powder. Use 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger powder for every 1 teaspoon of freshly grated ginger.
  • Garlic Clove: You can use garlic powder instead of a fresh garlic clove. Use 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder for every 1 clove of fresh garlic.
  • Agave Nectar: You can substitute agave nectar with maple syrup or brown sugar.
  • Olive Oil: You can use any neutral-flavored oil such as vegetable oil, canola oil, or avocado oil.
  • Toasted Sesame Oil: If you don’t have toasted sesame oil, you can use regular sesame oil. However, the flavor will be slightly different.
  • Green Onions: If you don’t have green onions, you can use finely chopped red onions or shallots as a substitute.
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds: You can substitute toasted sesame seeds with black sesame seeds or leave them out entirely.
  • Romaine Lettuce: You can use any lettuce you prefer such as iceberg, butter lettuce, or spinach.
  • Mixed Greens: You can use any mix of greens you prefer such as arugula, kale, or spring mix.
  • Edamame: If you don’t have edamame, you can substitute it with chickpeas, black beans, or kidney beans.
  • Red Sweet Pepper: If you don’t have red sweet pepper, you can use yellow or orange bell peppers, or leave them out.

Recipe variations and add-ins

Take a look below and see if any of these add-ins sound exciting to you!

  • Nuts and Seeds: You can add a crunch to the salad by topping it with toasted almonds, cashews, or walnuts. You can also add pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.
  • Fruits: You can add sliced fruits such as apples, pears, oranges, or strawberries for a sweet and tangy flavor.
  • Vegetables: You can add vegetables such as roasted sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli, or cauliflower. You can also add avocado or cherry tomatoes.
  • Grains: You can add cooked quinoa or brown rice to make the salad more filling and hearty.
  • Spices: You can add spices such as cumin, paprika, or red pepper flakes for a spicy kick.
  • Asian-Inspired Add-Ins: You can add water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, or pickled ginger to give the salad an Asian-inspired twist.

Top tips

  • Add the Dressing Gradually: Start with a small amount of dressing and add more as needed, tossing the salad well after each addition. This will help to ensure that the salad is evenly coated without becoming overdressed.
  • Use High-Quality Ingredients: The flavor of the salad will depend heavily on the quality of the ingredients you use. Use fresh, crisp greens, ripe vegetables, and high-quality oils to create a flavorful and satisfying salad.
  • Let the Salad Sit: Letting the salad sit for a few minutes after tossing can allow the flavors to meld together and make the salad more delicious.
  • Adjust the Seasonings: Taste the salad before serving and adjust the seasoning as needed. 

Make ahead of instructions and storage

You can prepare the dressing up to a week in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. 

You can also prep the vegetables and store them separately in airtight containers or resealable bags. However, it’s best to wait until just before serving to cut the lettuce to keep it fresh and crisp.

If  you have leftover salad, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. However, keep in mind that the lettuce will become wilted and soggy as it sits, so it’s best to eat the salad within a day if possible.

Separate Dressing: If you are bringing the salad to a potluck or gathering, you can pack the dressing separately in a small container or jar and drizzle it over the salad just before serving.

Serving suggestions 

Here are some ideas on how to serve this salad:

  • Main Course Salad: You can make this salad a main course by adding a protein like tofu or roasted chickpeas.
  • Appetizer: This salad also makes a great appetizer or side dish for a party or potluck. You can serve it alongside other finger foods like vegetable spring rolls, sushi, or potstickers.
  • Asian-Inspired Menu: This salad pairs well with other Asian-inspired dishes like stir-fry, fried rice, or ramen. You can also serve it with sushi rolls for a complete meal.


Can I make the dressing ahead of time? 

Yes, you can make the dressing up to a week in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Just give it a good shake or stir before using as the ingredients may separate over time.

Can I substitute the edamame with another ingredient?

Yes, if you don’t have edamame or if you want to switch it up, you can substitute it with other ingredients like cooked quinoa, chickpeas, or diced tofu. 

You can also omit it altogether and add in other vegetables like shredded carrots, sliced cucumbers, or diced avocado. 

Wrapping it up

I love how versatile this salad is and how it goes with so many other ingredients.

 Make it your own by adding to it and enjoy its bright and happy flavor!

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Simple Salad with a Toasted Sesame Ginger Dressing

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  • Author: Chef Ani


This recipe is the perfect salad paired with a bright and zingy sesame ginger dressing that makes the simple salad leaves spring to life.



Salad Dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Braggs liquid aminos (or soy sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon agave nectar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 12 sliced green onions
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds


Salad Greens:

  • 1 Romaine Lettuce
  • 2 cups of mixed greens
  • 1/2 cup of edamame (cooked & cooled according to package instructions) 
  • 1/4 red sweet pepper, thinly sliced


Salad Dressing:

  • In a small bowl, add lemon juice, Braggs, ginger, garlic, and agave nectar.
  • Stir to combine. While whisking, slowly add olive oil and sesame oil.
  • When emulsified, stir in green onions and sesame seeds.
  • If you desire a better emulsified dressing, double the recipe, add everything to the blender, except the oils, sesame seeds and green onion. Slowly add the oils while the blender is running. Stir in green onion and sesame seeds by hand.
  • Store in fridge if not using right away.
  • When ready to serve, toss with salad and serve.

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