Spicy Smacked Cucumber Salad. Refreshing cucumber marinated in a delicious spicy garlic soy-based sauce. Ready in just 10 minutes!
Easy to make!
This smacked cucumber salad recipe is extremely easy to make and only takes 8 ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes to make! I share a video on how to make spicy cucumber salad below. It's great as a side dish and it's also vegan.
What does it taste like?
Imagine crunchy cucumbers marinated in a garlic savoury and sweet sauce with a hint of nuttiness from the sesame oil and a spicy kick from the Chinese chili oil. This concoction makes my Chinese spicy cucumber salad a winner!
Popular Way to Eat Cucumbers in Asia
This spicy cucumber salad recipe is common way to eat cucumbers in Asia and there are many different variations of it from garlicky to sweet. But I want to make mine spicy since I had a lot of homemade Sichuan chili oil left that I needed to use up. You can of course use store bought chili oil if you have it! If you’re looking for a recipe for homemade Chinese Chili Oil, check out my recipe here.
Why my recipe?
There are many spicy cucumber salad recipes online, but you’ll love mine because:
- It’s packed with umami, sweet, savoury and spicy flavour
- Easy to make
- Made in less than 10 minutes
- Only 8 ingredients!
- Addictive and delicious!
- You can omit the spice to make this not spicy
What You’ll Need
You will need the following spicy cucumber salad ingredients:
- mini cucumbers
- salt, to drain water
- regular soy sauce, not light or dark soy sauce!
- sesame oil
- Chinese black vinegar
- sesame seeds
- white granulated sugar
- garlic, minced
- Chinese Chili oil, store bought or check out my recipe for a homemade version here
How to make Smacked Cucumber Salad
Below are brief steps on how to make this Chinese cucumber salad. For full measurements and details, please scroll down to the recipe card.
Slice the ends off the mini cucumbers.
With the side of the knife, smash cucumbers a few times until they’re a bit flattened and broken down the centre.
On an angle, slice cucumbers into long diagonal strips.
Transfer to a bowl. Add salt and massage. Allow cucumbers to sit in salt for 5 minutes (or ideally 10 minutes) to draw out excess liquids. Discard liquid.
Rinse cucumbers under cold water to remove excess salt, to prevent it from competing with sauce.
Strain the rinsed cucumbers.
Season with sauce ingredients and mix well. Enjoy!
Tips for making Spicy Smacked Cucumber Salad
Below are tips on how to make spicy cucumber salad:
Source fresh cucumbers
If you use older cucumbers, you’ll definitely taste that they’re not fresh and almost slightly bitter.
Smack that cucumber
Smack hard a few times with the side of a knife until the center of the cucumbers are broken down. This helps the cucumber absorb the seasoning better.
Do not skip salting cucumbers
This step is crucial to crunchier cucumbers. By allowing them to sit in the salt, this forces some of the water content out of the cucumber to make them crunchier in texture.
Strain any excess liquids
Strain out all the liquids as best as possible, so it does not interfere with the seasoning.
Rinse the cucumbers of the salt
Since our seasoning contains salt, rinsing the cucumbers off under cold water helps to remove any excess salt that may compete with the sauce.
Below are frequently asked questions about this Asian cucumber salad:
Can I omit the spice?
Yes! Just remove the chili oil and it’ll taste just as delicious!
How long does this cucumber salad last?
It’ll last for 1-2 days in the fridge.
Can I use normal cucumbers?
Yes! Feel free to use long seedless cucumber for this recipe.
Can I use store bought chili oil?
Of course, but I would recommend using a Chinese style chili oil. An excellent brand is one called “Lao Gan Ma”. It has a red label with a picture of a Chinese man on the label.
How hard do I need to smack the cucumber?
Pretty hard and hard enough to split it. Please watch my video to see how hard you would need to smack it.
Other recipes you may like!
If you enjoyed this easy spicy cucumber salad, then you may like these recipes:
Or check It's Not Complicated Recipes' Spicy Cucumber Pickles! She's my friend and she shares easy delicious no fuss recipes!
Well, I hope you give my Spicy Smacked Cucumber Salad a try! It always excites me when you make my recipes and I hope this is one you try and most importantly, enjoy.
Sharing is caring
If you enjoyed my smashed cucumber salad, please share it with your family and friends or on social media! Take a picture of your re-creation and make sure to tag me @ChristieAtHome in your feed or stories as I would love to see it!
Did you enjoy it?
If you genuinely enjoyed my crunchy Asian cucumber salad, please leave a 5-star review. I would appreciate it 🙂
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10-min. Easy Spicy Smacked Cucumber Salad
- 6 mini cucumbers
- ½ tsp salt to drain water
- 2 tbsp regular soy sauce not light or dark soy sauce!
- 1.5 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp Chinese black vinegar *can be omitted if you prefer not spicy
- ½ tbsp sesame seeds
- 1 tbsp white granulated sugar
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tbsp Chinese Chili oil store bought or homemade version here
- Slice the ends off the mini cucumbers.
- With the side of the knife, smash cucumbers a few times until they’re a bit flattened and broken down the centre.
- On an angle, slice cucumbers into long diagonal strips.
- Transfer to a bowl. Add salt and massage. Allow cucumbers to sit in salt for 5 minutes (or ideally 10 minutes) to draw out excess liquids. Discard liquid.
- Rinse cucumbers under cold water to remove excess salt, to prevent it from competing with sauce.
- Strain the rinsed cucumbers.
- Season with sauce ingredients and mix well. Enjoy!