This delicious Asian inspired rice salad uses black rice which gives it a totally different look and flavor. The coconut dressing is a must try!

Asian salad with black rice |

Asian rice salad

I can’t believe it is March already. Whatever happens to time these days. Is it just me or is it part of getting older, that time just seems to slip away soooo easily! The weather keeps being slightly unpredictable. We went from -15˚C to +15˚C in about a week time. Talk about temperature differences! And right now it is just boring and raining. But… when I woke up this morning I heard the birds sing! A sure sign that spring can’t be very far away.

Asian salad with cucumber and rice |


While I love comfort food and heavy curry’s and one pot meals in winter, now that we’re getting closer to summer I am looking more and more at light and spring-like dishes. This dish kind of falls in between as it doesn’t scream summer all the way but it does have some nice touches in it which makes it perfect for this time of year.  It has vibrant flavors and colors and will be a sure pick me up if you need it.

Asian salad with black rice

The base of the salad is wild rice. Technically wild rice is not a true rice but more a grass species in the term wild is also not very accurate as it is commercially grown. But whatever you call it, I like the flavor of this particular kind of rice as it is a bit nuttier than regular rice. It works perfect in this recipe and combined with the sweet mango and the crunchy red cabbage it is delicious.

Don’t forget the dressing

The dressing in this salad plays an important role. I initially thought it would be an odd combination blending three kafir lime leaves into the coconut so I started with one leave. Tasted it and it just wasn’t what I had expected. So I added the two additional leaves and bam… Perfect creamy dressing.

Which rice to use in this salad?

Like I said I used black wild rice for the Asian rice salad. The cooking time was pretty long in this case, but that largely depends on the type of rice and the brand. Having said that; you can definitely use any kind of rice you like. From regular basmati or pandan rice to black or red rice. (I love red rice for this as well)

Can I keep the Asian rice salad?

Yes you can. This salad lends itself very well to make ahead of time and bring with you as a lunch. Make sure to leave out any fresh herbs until the last minute. Sprinkle those on just before eating.

Is this dish vegetarian?

Well technically it is not, as I have used fish sauce in the dressing. But if you want it vegetarian you can leave out the fish sauce. Adjust the flavor if necessary with extra salt and pepper.

Asian rice salad with coconut dressing
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5 from 1 vote

Asian rice salad with coconut dressing

The cooking time is based on the rice I had. Yours might be different
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 people


  • 150 gr wild rice
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves
  • 4 cm ginger
  • 200 gr sugar snaps finely sliced (snow peas)
  • 240 gr red cabbage thinly sliced
  • 150 gr mango in cubes
  • 1/2 cucumber in ribbons
  • basil
  • 2 red chili seeds removed and cut into small pieces
  • freshly shaved coconut
  • pepper and salt


  • 125 ml coconut milk
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves
  • 1 tsp ginger grated
  • 2 tsp fish sauce


  • Place the rice, kaffir lime leaves, ginger slices and water into a medium sized pan and turn the heat on high. Bring to the boil and cook the rice according to package instructions. Once cooked, drain and leave to cool.
  • Make the dressing by mixing the coconut with the kaffir lime, ginger and fish sauce in a measuring cup. Use a stick blender to mix it all.
  • Cut the sugar snaps a bit smaller and cook them briefly (about 1-2 minutes)
  • Place the rice, red cabbage, mango, sugar snaps, basil and red chili together in a bowl. Add half of the dresing and mix it all together.
  • Divide over four bowls and top with the red chili and shaved coconut. Divide the cucumber ribbons over the bowls.
Course: lunch, Salad
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: kaffir lime, rice
Diet: Gluten free
Author: Adapted from Donna Hay

Nutrition Information

Calories: 271kcal, Carbohydrates: 46g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.4g, Sodium: 263mg, Potassium: 671mg, Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 12g, Vitamin A: 1868IU, Vitamin C: 112mg, Calcium: 76mg, Iron: 4mg


The nutritional values above are calculated per portion. The details are based on standard nutritional tables and do not constitute a professional nutritional advice.

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