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Friday, 13 July 2012

Gluten Free: Chicken Noodle Salad

I have been known to cry in the Free From aisle of the supermarket when I discover that a much-loved product has been discontinued. I'm sure that the people at my local Asda think I'm mentally unstable, but (in my defense) when you come to rely on certain products it can be rather disappointing when they vanish from existence. Most of my unhinged moments seem to revolve around rice noodles. I'm a big fan of rice noodles, after all, they're about as close to a convenience food as you'll find on a gluten free diet.

Thankfully, there are still many places you can find the humble rice noodle. Chinese supermarkets are always a good place to look (and a bit of an adventure too, I always come home with at least one item that I'm not really sure what it actually is). It's also worth checking your local delicatessen, health food shop and branches of Waitrose. If you've no luck there, then Ocado and various online sources stock them as well.

I make a lot of noodle salads. Mainly because I tend not to think about the need for a packed lunch until about ten minutes before I have to leave the house, and rice noodles are so quick and easy to prepare that I can have lunch and still make it to work on time! The recipe is fairly fluid so feel free to use what ever you have in the fridge. This is one my favourite incarnations of my many and various noodle salads and since cucumbers and radishes are in season it seemed like the perfect moment to share it!

You'll need
  • juice from 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp wok oil (or 1 tsp sesame oil and 2 tsp mild olive oil)
  • 1/2 tsp schezuan peppercorns, finely ground
  • 1/2 tsp fish sauce (double check it is gluten free, some aren't)
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 300g cooked chicken, sliced or shredded
  • a 10cm chunk of cucumber, thinly sliced
  • about 8 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 red chilli, sliced (use more or less, depending how hot you like it)
  • 100g dried rice noodles, soaked until tender then rinsed in cold water until cool)
Make it!
  • Put the lime juice, oil, ground pepper, fish sauce and sesame seeds into a bowl and whisk together.
  • Add the chicken, cucmber, radish, chilli and noodles and toss together.
It's that simple! This recipe serves 2 or 3 people, but it's easily doubled (or halved) to feed a crowd (or to make a last minute lunch for yourself).


  1. I love this recipe, I use green bean noodles quite a bit, reckon they will also be perfect for this and gluten free too :)

    1. Another good excuse to go to the Chinese supermarket!

    2. Second time this week I've heard of green bean noodles.


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