Big Thai Peanut Quinoa Salad

Big Thai Quinoa Salad (Vegan)

Quinoa salad with sautéed baby corn, shiitakes, fennel, red cabbage, and toasted coconut, served with a creamy peanut coconut milk sauce.




  • 1 and 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Stir Fry

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch ginger, grated
  • 9 baby corns, diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fennel (about 1 large fennel), diced and leafy fronds cut off
  • 810 fresh shiitakes (or cremini mushrooms), sliced, stems removed
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

Peanut Coconut Sauce

  • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1/16 tsp sambal oelek (or use 1/4 tsp sriracha)


  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/2 cup red cabbage, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted coconut chips
  • 1 large avocado
  • optional: roasted peanuts, lime, sesame seeds



  1. In a medium size saucepan, combine the quinoa, water, and salt. Bring to a boil and let simmer uncovered 15-17 minutes, or until the quinoa is cooked and almost no water remains. Once cooked, transfer to a large salad bowl.

Stir Fry

  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add the chopped baby corn and fennel, increase the heat to medium-high and sautée until the corn starts to brown slightly, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low-medium, add 2 tbsp water and cover with a lid.  Continue to cook, stirring regularly to prevent sticking, for 15-20 minutes. The fennel and corn should be tender. If you prefer it a bit crunchy, cook for only 10-12 minutes.
  3. Add the shiitakes and soy sauce and cook uncovered for another 5-7 minutes, until the mushrooms are soft. Remove from heat and set aside.

Peanut Coconut Sauce

  1. In a bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed, more maple syrup for sweetness, soy sauce for saltiness or lime juice for sourness.


  1. You can serve this salad two ways: divide the quinoa into serving bowls, top with the sautéed vegetables, fresh basil, red cabbage, avocado slices, toasted coconut and a generous drizzle of peanut coconut sauce. Or, mix everything in a large bowl until well combined. I prefer the latter, the quinoa is super creamy and everything is well coated with the sauce.
  2. This salad is best served fresh, chilled for at least 2 hours in the fridge but is also delicious warm! It will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator, just make sure to give it a good stir before serving.


Basil can be subbed for fresh coriander and baby corn can be replaced with about 1/2 cup of whole kernel corn.

Nutrition information includes the add-ins (avocado, coconut chips, etc).