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Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad

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Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

It’s no secret that I adore color.

I love colorful food! And colorful artwork. And colorful sunsets. And colorful scarves. And colorful gardens. And colorful farmers market.

The only place where I have decided that I do not like bright colors? On my walls.

Oh man. I bought my first house when I was 23, and quickly discovered in that first year how easy (and cheap!) it was to buy a can of paint and completely transform a room. So I took a house whose interior was 100% gray and transformed it over the course of that first month into a veritable rainbow of colors. The living room was butter yellow, the dining room was “asparagus” green, the kitchen periwinkle, my bedroom teal, my bathroom yellow, and on and on. I thought it was the coolest thing. I mean, all of my favorite colors? In one house? What could be better??

The only problem was that it was a small 1920’s bungalow, and each of the rooms were connected and about thiiiis big. So it basically felt like a kaleidoscope walking in. Although instead of being pretty bright colors on tiny paint chips, the rooms began to feel like very bright colors the size of 1000 paint chips. Yes, I learned that there was such a thing as too much color.

So I swallowed my pride and traipsed back to Home Depot and eventually began neutralizing the house with the very creams and grays and whites that I used to think were oh-so-cliche about decorating. And then when I moved into my loft, I went for 100% light grey to go with my white kitchen and brick walls, and I could not be happier. To each his and her own, for sure. Some people rock out super-colorful houses. But for me, I prefer to go neutral with the paint colors, and let vivid food provide the “pop” of color in my kitchen.

Like this rainbow Thai chicken salad, of course.

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

I have been a Thai chicken salad lover for years, with Panera’s version actually being one of my favs. But whenever I make it at home, I love seeing how many different colors — er, ingredients — I can cram into it to make it all the prettier and tastier.

This version?

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

As you can see, we hit nearly every color of the rainbow. We have:

  • Red: bell peppers
  • Orange: carrots (and you could also throw in orange bell peppers)
  • Yellow: fresh mango (don’t use frozen)
  • Green: avocado, green onions, cabbage, fresh cilantro and fresh limes
  • Purple: cabbage

Plus chicken and thai peanut dressing and chopped cashews or peanuts. I still have yet to find an awesome blue veggie for rainbow recipes. Alas, maybe someday.

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

Anyway, this salad is super simple to make. The hardest part is just chopping all of that fresh produce. But if you pop on some tunes and have a little kitchen dance party while you chop, I guarantee the time will fly right by…

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

…and you’ll have a delicious salad ready to go in no time!

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

I also chose to just drizzle my salads with the peanut vinaigrette so that my friends could see and appreciate the rainbow-ness of the salad. But you can also toss it all together if you’d rather.

Either way, it’s a fabulous way to taste the rainbow. And oh man, is it a tasty one too. Enjoy!

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Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 13 reviews
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 0 About 4-6 servings 1x


This rainbow thai chicken salad is full of amazing colors and fresh flavors that you will love!



Thai Chicken Salad Ingredients:

  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 2 cups shredded purple cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded green cabbage
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 mango, peeled, pitted and diced
  • 1 (large) carrot, julienned or shredded
  • 1 red pepper, cored and julienned (or diced)
  • 1 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews or peanuts

Peanut Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
  • 23 tablespoons hot water
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce (if you are gluten-free, use GF soy sauce or tamari)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • pinch of red pepper flakes


To Make The Salad:

  1. Toss all salad ingredients together until combined. Drizzle with dressing or toss to combine, then serve immediately.

To Make The Dressing:

  1. Whisk all ingredients together until combined. If the dressing is too thick, add hot water a teaspoon at a time until it reaches the consistency you desire.

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad | #glutenfree

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139 comments on “Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad”

  1. Delicious!!!! I made it a few weeks ago and I will be making it again tomorrow. My husband said it was the best salad he has had & I make a lot. I substituted the chicken and used tofu for him, he has an allergy to chicken.

  2. This was so good!!!! Will definitely be making this again!

  3. I loved everything about this salad except the chicken. The chicken itself was fine, but contrasted with all of the super-crunchy ingredients, the chicken felt mushy. We picked around it. I made it again without chicken – perfect! The dressing is amazing.

  4. I adapted this to be FODMAP-friendly (no mango or avocado) and I have to say the sauce absolutely rocks – THANKYOU. Always struggling to find new and exciting things to adapt but I’ve bookmarked this one :)

  5. This is a wonderful salad! It’s beautiful and delicious. I doubled it and served it to a large group and everyone asked for the recipe! I had leftover dressing so I will save it for an Asian noodle dish.

  6. Amazing!!!

  7. Delicious! I forgot to get a mango and so I substituted a couple of peeled and sliced navel oranges. Worked perfectly!

  8. I’ve made this salad several times and have gotten many compliments. It’s so fresh and tasty!

  9. Made it for the first time for company. Everyone LOVED it! Healthy and delicious.

  10. Absolutely delicious, and so easy to prepare!

  11. Delicious! Followed recipe exactly and used your baked chicken recipe. This is a keeper.

  12. Everything about this was fresh and delicious! Our favorite flavors of Thai food in a bowl. My 2 kids asked me to make it again. I pan fried some boneless chicken thighs with seasoning and shredded them to add in. It was perfect!

  13. Amazing delicious salad! Thinking of adding a garlic clove to the dressing next time. :)

  14. Anyone know the nutritional info for the salad? I am trying to log it into my daily dairy.

  15. Comes out to be a $25 meal for me ?