Vermicelli Noodle Stir-fry Salad

This is similar to this Salad-Roll Salad but it’s quicker and even more versatile. Here bean thread noodles are combined with quickly stir-fried vegetables (and meat if you like), fresh herbs and a bright fish sauce, lime dressing. You can change the ratio of noodles to vegetables/herbs to suit your likes and needs.

And a fully loaded version with lots of toppings.

Bean thread noodles aka mung bean, cellophane, glass or vermicelli noodles are made with mung bean starch. They are a popular noodle in Chinese cuisine. They’re quick to prepare and can be used in salads, stir-frys and soups.



  • for a vegan version omit the fish sauce and increase the amount of soy sauce, to taste
  • add thinly sliced, grilled steak or chicken
  • add fried or baked tofu or tempeh
  • serve with just hard-cooked eggs
  • substitute sauteed sweet peppers, eggplant, green beans, bok choi, or other vegetables you have on hand for the cabbage, carrots, etc.
  • add celtuce (either sauteed or raw)


Serves 4


2 1/2 – 3 ounces bean threads (vermicelli noodles) or less if you want a higher ratio of vegetables

2 tablespoons oil

4 cups shredded cabbage

2 carrots or 1 kohlrabi thinly sliced

2 cups broccoli or broccoli raab, chopped fairly small

2 green onions, white and green parts thinly sliced

1 medium cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeds removed (if watery) and slice thinly crosswise

1 – 1 1/2 cups fresh herbs such a cilantro, basil, mint, roughly chopped

2/3 cup roasted peanuts or 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds


2 tablespoons fish sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar or honey

1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1 teaspoon minced fresh jalapeno or serrano or 1-2 teaspoons sambal oelek or spicy chili crisp


In a bowl soak bean thread noodles in very hot water, to cover, about 5 minutes and drain well in a colander, rinse briefly with cold water. With scissors cut noodles into 3 to 4-inch lengths and put in serving bowl. Cutting the noodles makes tossing them with all the vegetables much easier.


Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large, heavy skillet over high heat. Add carrots, cabbage, broccoli and saute, stirring often until browning in parts and softening. Season with a few pinches of salt and continue stir-frying until reduced in volume and just tender, about 5 minutes. You can do this in 2 pans if you have too much volume of vegetables.


Mix the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Toss 2 tablespoons of the dressing with the cooled bean thread noodles. Add the cooked vegetables, the cucumber and scallions, herbs and peanuts and the remainder of the dressing. Toss well and adjust seasoning to taste with more lime juice, fish/soy sauce and chili.

6 thoughts on “Vermicelli Noodle Stir-fry Salad”

  • Simply Fantastic 🙂 I made this tonight using cauliflower, pak choi & zucchini –added some black sesame seeds as I didn’t have the recommended nuts. The sauce and herbs were delicately flavourful.

    • cookwithwhatyouhave says:

      Oh I’m so glad you liked it. I was pretty chuffed with it when I made it the other night so had to write it up.

  • Wow!!! This was delish! I definitely cooked with what I have, and kind of created a new recipe.
    I used brown rice Vermicelli noodles, and for the veggies I used peanut-sauce baked tempeh and eggplant, briefly sautéed kale with leftover takeout hot sauce!, cucumber, and a bunch of holy basil for the herbs.
    For the sauce, I didn’t have sesame oil, rice vinegar, or lime juice. Used chili oil, acv, tahini, and lemon juice instead.
    Served over shredded lettuce. So good! I think mint would be a really good addition, and more raw veggies like shredded carrots.

    • cookwithwhatyouhave says:

      Well I think you did create a new recipe! Your version sounds fantastic and I’m glad my template as a good jumping off point. You sure did cook with what you had! Thanks so much for sharing your substitutions and adaptations!

  • This was my kids’ first experience with a dish like this and they were huge fans (just kept the sambal oelek to a minimum and adults added at the table). Lovely recipe!

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