Chinese Broccoli Salad with Sesame Sriracha Dressing

It happened just over a year ago. I walked up to a farmer’s market stall, poked a toothpick into a shiny green stalk of a sample salad, and was smitten. It was the first time I’d tasted Chinese broccoli, also called gai-lan and kai-lan (pronounced guy-lan).

Chinese Broccoli Salad

I’ve always loved what I consider ‘regular broccoli’ and my favorite part is not the florets, but the peeled stalk. Chinese broccoli delivers that peeled stalk flavor without peeling and the leaves are delicious too, similar to bok choy but with more chew and the flavor of, well, broccoli. 

chinese broccoli

Photo Credit – Jules: Stone Soup

If this vegetable is new to you as it was to me, have a look at this post by Jaden of Steamy Kitchen. She offers a great description of Chinese Broccoli and what to look for when you go to buy it.

I whisked up the dressing for this salad on a weeknight and we liked it so much that I had to share it with you. There’s nothing to it. You probably have the ingredients in your refrigerator. And if you can’t find Chinese broccoli, toss it with regular broccoli, bok choy, or most any veggie you can think of.

Chinese Broccoli Salad with Sesame Sriracha Dressing
You can make this salad a couple of hours ahead of time. Just refrigerate and toss again just before serving.
  • 4 bunches Chinese Broccoli (about 1½ pounds)
For the dressing:
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons ponzu sauce (or soy sauce if you prefer)
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce (or more)
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  1. Fill a large bowl with water and ice. Set aside.
  2. Trim ends from Chinese broccoli, then cut in half crosswise, separating the leaves from the stalks. If any stalks are thick, cut them in half lengthwise.
  3. Heat about 1-inch of water in a large lidded pot or wok, bring to boil. Lay stems in an even layer over the boiling water and place leaves across the top. Cover and steam 3 to 5 minutes, to desired tenderness.
  4. With a slotted spoon, transfer broccoli to ice bath.
  5. While the broccoli cools, prepare the dressing. Combine garlic, ponzu sauce, and sriracha sauce in a small bowl then slowly drizzle in sesame oil, whisking constantly. Set aside.
  6. Transfer cooled broccoli with a slotted spoon to a serving bowl. Pat dry with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels.
  7. Drizzle dressing over broccoli and toss to coat evenly. Serve.
Makes 4 generous servings

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  1. says

    I love the idea of sriracha in the dressing. I never would´ve thought to use it with sesame oil. I have to go to the asian market one of these days and buy all those greens that I can´t find elsewhere. The thing is to use them before they wilt! I can start with this recipe!

    • says

      That’s the challenge, right? I’m surprised that it’s not more commonly available. I think it’s that so many haven’t tried it!

  2. says

    Love the look of this salad! I grew up eating kai lan, but I have never thought of making it into a salad like this (isn’t it funny how you get just get caught in a rut?!) I will definitely be trying this – thanks for sharing :)

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