This quick and easy Korean salad made with cucumber and imitation crab stick is a great way to bring color and texture to your table! A great side dish that’s light, creamy and delicious! Serve and enjoy it cold with your favorite Korean or Asian dishes! Try this easy salad recipe today!
In the past, I had tasted crab stick salad served with my entree in few of the Korean restaurants. Unfortunately It’s not a common side dish and can’t be ordered as a take out. So when I had cravings for this dish, I decided to come up with my own version. Follow along to see how I made my version!
What are imitation crab sticks?
Imitation crab meat does not contain any real crab meat. Its actually made with white fish meat like pollock, starch, egg whites, sugar and crab flavoring. They are typically sweet and savory in taste. The colors resemble crab legs with it’s white on one said and red the other. Visually long and slender and can be easily pulled apart.
The one I used for this recipe came in a shorter form and was not as stringy when pulled apart. You can find imitation crab meat in Asian grocery stores, typically in the freezer section. Mine however was stored in the refrigerator section.
What are the ingredients needed?
- shredded crab sticks (thawed out)
- fresh cucumbers: Persian or Kirby
- green onions
- Japanese mayonnaise (Kewpie Mayo)
- rice vinegar
- garlic powder
- black pepper
- white sesame seeds
- sea salt
Pro-tip: Make sure to fully defrost the imitation crab meat. Frozen crab meat will not shred instead break into pieces. You can defrost in the fridge overnight. Unused crab meat can be refrozen again.
How do you make this dish?
- Defrost the crab stick in the fridge until easy to work with.
- Julienne cucumber and toss with salt. Set aside.
- Make the creamy sauce in a small bowl and set aside.
- shred or slice crab meat.
- Squeeze moisture from cucumber.
- Into a large bowl, combine crab meat, cucumber and sauce.
- toss gently and serve cold.
can you use english cucumber?
I don’t recommend using English cucumber for this dish due to their higher water content and tougher skin. Even after being salted, the English cucumber will not provide the crunchy texture like Kirby or Persian cucumbers.
If you want to experiment with the flavors, here are some suggestions. But only use in moderation!
- soy sauce
- lemon juice
- sesame oil
- sriracha sauce
- red pepper flakes
- lime juice
If you want to give more texture to this salad, here are some suggested ingredients.
You made need to make additional creamy salad sauce to accommodate extra veggies.
- sweet corn
- julienned onion or red onion
- kelp noodles
- black sesame seeds
- bread crumbs
How to serve and store cucumber and Crab stick salad?
This salad taste best when served cold. Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for 2-3days if it was untouched and stored in an air-tight container.
How is Japanese Mayonnaise different from regular mayonnaise?
They taste and look different! Compared to the regular mayo, I felt like Japanese version tasted more sweeter, creamier with a bit of nutty. Personally I recommend Kewpie Mayo for this recipe.
Did you enjoy this recipe?
If you like Japanese crab salad /kani salad, you will enjoy this easy crab salad recipe too! Did you know that imitation crab sticks are very versatile and work well with many Asian dishes! If you want to know more ways to use crab sticks in your daily recipes, please check out below!
- Crab Rangoon (Crispy Recipe)
- More to come!
You can also check out more recipes with cucumbers here:
Korean Cucumber and Crab Stick Salad
- 1 Persian cucumber
- 6 oz imitation crab sticks cold and defrosted
- ½ tsp fine sea salt2
- 1½ Tbsp Kewpie Mayo (Japanese Mayo)
- 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp sugar
- 1 pinch black pepper
- 1 stalk green onion chopped
- 1 pinch roasted white sesame seeds
- Julienne cucumber. Place into a small bowl and sprinkle with sea salt. Toss and set aside for 5-10 mins. Squeeze excess water and set aside.
- Shred imitation crab meat sticks. Or slice lengthwise. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine creamy sauce ingredients. Mix until smooth.
- In a large bowl, combine crab meat, cucumber and creamy sauce. Toss gently than garnish. Serve cold.