Deliciously moreish, the nutty flavours of our spicy peanut dressing will be a hit with the crowds. A great Asian style salad dressing recipe that goes with everything!
Why You’ll Love Our Spicy Peanut Dressing
Savoury with a tangy finish, our spicy peanut dressing is absolutely addictive!
It is so easy to make at home with pantry staples that you no longer need to search for pre-made spicy peanut vinaigrette bottles at your local grocery store.
Sweet, nutty, savoury and spicy, I love the perfect balance between smooth, creamy peanut-y flavours.
This is a versatile Asian style dressing that goes well with so many salads, including a great alternative dressing for a classic crunchy coleslaw or broccoli salad. Plus, you can also use it as a dipping sauce for spring rolls, grilled pork or even chicken wings.
The measurements are flexible enough to adjust to your liking and consistency.
If you prefer a lighter spicy peanut vinaigrette recipe, add a little more water and/or lime juice.
Alternatively, add a little more peanut butter for a thicker dipping sauce. For an extra kick, add finely chopped jalapeno peppers and chilli powder. So many variations for you to play around with to create your own perfect peanut butter salad dressing.
Why is Peanut Salad Dressing So Popular?
Peanut salad dressing is one of the popular Asian style salad dressings we’ve seen pop up in many different variations. The creamy and moreish nutty flavours definitely hit the spot, and we can see why everyone loves to recreate it.
Many popular peanut salad dressing recipes are often synonymous with Southeast Asian cooking.
The ever-so-popular Indonesian gado gado salad is the first to come to mind. A combination of fresh vegetables like cucumber, beansprouts, green beans and cabbage bulked up with fried tofu or tempeh and boiled egg, gado gado is finished with a spicy peanut dressing that ties everything together.
You can try Amy’s tofu puff salad with peanut butter dressing if you like gado gado. A great variation of the classic recipe.
Peanut dressing is also a very popular pre-made salad dressing that people buy at the grocery store, thinking it is too hard to make at home. Not anymore!
Which Peanut Butter To Use In Peanut Salad Dressing?
I use smooth peanut butter as I prefer the smoother texture compared to crunchy peanut butter. However, you can use crunchy peanut butter if you like or if that’s all you had in the pantry!
If you use unsalted peanut butter, best to taste and adjust with soy sauce if it needs more flavour.
Peanut butter: I prefer smooth peanut butter for this peanut salad dressing. It is not to say you can’t use crunchy peanut butter, but the texture will be lumpier.
Rice wine vinegar: Quintessential vinegar for many Asian salad dressings. There is subtle sharpness in rice wine vinegar that is great for balancing the creaminess of the peanut dressing.
Lime: Not only does it help balance the richness of peanut butter, but it also adds a zesty citrus aroma.
Garlic: I love garlic in salad dressings to give a punchy flavour.
Chilli: For heat and colour, adjust the heat as you please with the type of chilli you choose to use in the dressing. For less heat, use a larger red chilli than a smaller bird’s eye chilli, which can be dangerously hot!
Soy sauce: Adds a little more savoury flavour to balance the peanut butter.
Variations and Substitutions
Peanut butter: I prefer to use smooth peanut butter in this recipe, but it does work with crunchy peanut butter as well. I haven’t tried other nut butter like cashew or almond before but you can give it a go if you don’t have peanut butter available.
Rice wine vinegar substitute: If you don’t have rice wine vinegar, white or apple cider vinegar will work too.
Chilli variation: I have used fresh chilli in this recipe but you can use a chilli paste or crushed chilli like sambal oelek if available.
Step by step instructions for how to make spicy peanut dressing:
Mince one garlic clove.
Finely chop chilli to yield ½ teaspoon. Adjust to taste. If you prefer more chilli, add more chilli.
In a food processor, add peanut butter, rice vinegar, lime juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, chopped chilli and water and blitz until a smooth paste.
Adjust consistency to your liking with more water.
How To Make This Dressing Perfectly [Expert Tips]
Get the right consistency: To combine everything together, I used a food processor but you can also whisk by hand.
Warm up the peanut butter in the microwave for about 10 seconds to help loosen it up and make it easier to whisk together with the other ingredients. Adjust the consistency to your liking by adding a little water.
Adjust taste: If you prefer more heat or tang, add extra chilli or lime juice to balance the flavours.
How to Store
Place leftover dressing in an airtight container or bottle. Store in fridge for up to a week. Give it a good shake or stir before using.
Best Salad For This Dressing
Grilled sweet pineapple slices with fresh crunchy cucumber layered with a spicy peanut dressing takes this Asian salad to the next level of deliciousness.
Spicy Peanut Dressing
Click on the toggle below for conversion to US Cooking Units.
- Mince one garlic clove.
- Finely chop chilli to yield ½ teaspoon.
- In a food processor, add peanut butter, rice vinegar, lime juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, chopped chilli and water and blitz until a smooth paste.
- Adjust consistency to your liking with more water.
- Smooth peanut butter is preferred but crunchy peanut butter is suitable as well.
- If you don’t have rice wine vinegar, white or apple cider vinegar will work too.
- You can use a chilli paste or crushed chilli like sambal oelek if fresh chilli is not available.
- Warm up the peanut butter in the microwave for like 10 seconds to help loosen it up and make it easier to whisk together with the other ingredients.
- Adjust the consistency to your liking by adding a little water.
*Disclaimer: Nutritional information provided is an estimate only and generated by an online calculator.
Disclaimer: This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links at no additional cost to you.