Asian Ramen Cole Slaw Still Popular Picnic Fare

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Memorial Day this year will certainly be a lot more fun than last year. You remember it, don’t you?  Still sheltering in place, not having our usual gatherings inside or out. 

Well, I’m hoping where you are mask requirements are relaxed enough to enjoy family and friends on this most meaningful day.

Now when I was a kid, we called it “Decoration Day.” Even though the name has changed, we still attend our outdoor church service, “decorate” graves of our loved ones in the side yard of the church, and honor all who died fighting for this glorious country.

Memorial Day kicks off picnic season. Which I guess is why a request came in for an oldie but goodie, Asian noodle salad aka Ramen noodle cole slaw. Most recipes contain Ramen noodles. Some incorporate the seasoning packet included with the noodles as part of the vinegar/oil dressing. Other recipes are more purist – Ramen noodles are in, seasoning packet is out.

My dilemma as to which one to share was solved pretty quick: you get both. Salad ingredients are the same; dressings are different.

Both are yummy. 

You can also make your own salad base with Napa/Chinese or regular cabbage, chopped with shredded carrots added. Count on a good 8 cups. 

If your slaw mix is 12 oz., use a bit less dressing.

Picnic Ramen noodle cole slaw without seasoning packet

Ingredients salad

1 14-16 oz. bag Cole slaw mix (cabbage & carrots)

1 bell pepper, cut into matchsticks (optional but good)

2 packages any flavor Ramen noodles (discard seasoning packets), crushed but not too fine

1 cup sunflower seeds 

1 cup sliced or slivered almonds

1/4 cup sesame seeds (optional but good)

Green onions (5-6, white and green part both), sliced thin

Ingredients dressing

3/4 cup canola or other oil (not olive oil)

1/3 cup rice vinegar, unsweetened or plain white vinegar, or bit more to taste 

1/3 to 1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon soy sauce or to taste

1 teaspoon sesame seed oil (optional but good)


Toss salad ingredients together. 

Whisk dressing ingredients together. Cook just until sugar dissolves. Cool, then pour over salad and toss.

Cover and chill 2 hours or up to a day or so. 

Give it a stir before serving either chilled or room temperature.

Picnic Ramen noodle cole slaw with seasoning packet

Ingredients salad

Same as for slaw without seasoning packets, except use Ramen chicken flavored noodles, since seasoning packets are part of dressing.

Ingredients dressing

1 cup canola or other oil (not olive oil)

1/3 to 1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup rice vinegar, unsweetened, or plain white or cider vinegar, or bit more to taste

1 teaspoon sesame seed oil or to taste

2 teaspoons soy sauce or to taste

2 seasoning packets from chicken flavored Ramen noodles


Same as for slaw without seasoning packet.


One of my older recipes says to cook the noodles and almonds in a bit of butter until golden. 

Cool, then add to salad.

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