Thinly sliced veggies and roasted tofu covered with a sweet and spicy peanut sauce. This salad is super filling and super tasty – a perfect main dish or side salad for any meal!Jump to Recipe
Broccoli is one of my favorite bases for a salad. It changes things up from the typical lettuce, it’s crunchy, it’s satisfying. It is packed with vitamin c, plus it has some fiber, iron, and protein. What an incredible vegetable!
This salad was inspired by my love of stir fry and peanut sauce dishes. Stir fry is a quick and easy meal when I am running low on time, and peanut sauce is my favorite thing to pour over them if I have an extra moment to make it. I find this is a great way to load up on veggies and clean out the fridge.
But I wanted to create this meal in a salad form for those extra hot evenings when just the thought of turning on the stove turns my kitchen into a sauna. This led me to create a broccoli salad, with shredded carrots and thinly sliced bell peppers, cilantro, and a sweet and spicy peanut sauce. It’s crunchy and cold, which is the exact texture I’m looking for on a hot evening, packed with flavor, and has plenty of room to improvise depending on what you have in your fridge!
I like adding crispy, oven roasted tofu to this broccoli salad. If you are having the same sauna kitchen predicament, I highly recommend roasting a few pounds of tofu once and then using it for a few meals during the week. It makes throwing together dinner so much easier and my kitchen so much more comfortable. You can throw it into a salad, put it on a sandwich, or make a breakfast burrito – really the options are endless.
Roasting the Tofu
To roast the tofu, preheat the oven to 400.
Cut about ½ pound or ½ container of drained tofu into bite sized cubes. Add the tofu cubes into a small bowl and coat with 2 tbs of neutral oil. Arrange the tofu on a lightly greased baking tray and bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until they get slightly crispy and brown on the outside. Set these aside to cool while you make the salad.
Prepping the Salad
Thinly slice two heads of broccoli into tiny bite sized spears and add them to a large bowl. If you are usually someone who hates broccoli stems, try peeling them first, and then chopping them into very thin strips. They are good, I promise. Anything in peanut sauce is delicious.
The base of this salad is broccoli, but there is also red bell pepper, carrots, and cilantro. Thinly slice one red bell pepper – and if you do not have a red bell pepper you can use another color. Shred 2-3 carrots – I ended up with 1 heaping cup of shredded carrot. Then mince a small bunch of cilantro. Add all the veggies and cooled tofu to the broccoli bowl.
You can either make the sauce by hand or chuck everything into the food processor, turn it on, and call it a day. But then you must wash the food processor, so you chose your priorities.
If you are making it by hand, grate about a thumb’s worth of fresh, peeled ginger and 3 cloves of garlic into a medium bowl. Add 4 tbs of peanut butter, 2 tbs of gluten free soy sauce, 1 tbs of sesame oil, 1 tbs neutral oil, 1 tbs maple syrup, ½ cup of water, and 1 tsp chili paste. Whisk vigorously until fully combined.
If you are choosing the food processor route, add 1 thumb’s worth of fresh, peeled ginger, 3 cloves of garlic, 4 tbs of peanut butter, 2 tbs of gluten free soy sauce, 1 tbs sesame oil, 1 tbs neutral oil, 1 tbs maple syrup, ½ cup water, and 1 tsp chili paste directly to the food processor. Blend until smooth.
The End Salad
Cover the broccoli salad with the peanut sauce and mix until fully coated. Optionally add in a handful of nuts or a few tablespoons of hemp hearts.
Broccoli Peanut Salad
- 2 heads broccoli, cut into tiny spears
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 2-3 medium carrots, shredded
- ½ block tofu
- 2 tbs neutral oil
- 1 small bunch cilantro, finely chopped
- 4 tbs peanut butter
- 1 thumb peeled fresh ginger
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbs neutral oil
- 1 tbs sesame oil
- 2 tbs gluten free soy sauce
- 1 tbs maple syrup or sugar
- 1 tsp red chili paste
- ½ cup water
- juice from a lime
- Preheat the oven to 400°
- Cube the tofu into small, bite sized pieces. Toss them with the 2 tbs neutral oil and then lay them out on a baking tray. Bake the tofu for 20 minutes in a preheated oven.
- Cut the broccoli into tiny, spear shaped bites and add them to a large bowl.
- Thinly slice the bell pepper and add that to the broccoli.
- Grate 2-3 medium carrots into the broccoli bowl.
- Finely chop a small bunch of cilantro and add it into the broccoli bowl.
- If you are using a food processor or high speed blender, blend everything else together until it forms a smooth sauce.
- If you are mixing by hand, grate the ginger and garlic into a medium bowl. Add everything else and mix by hand until smooth.
- Taste the sauce – you may need to add a bit extra maple syrup or salt to taste.
- Pour the sauce over the veggies and tofu and mix to combine. Optionally top with extra peanuts or hemp hearts.