Din Tai Fung Cucumber Salad

5 from 2 votes

Make Din Tai Fung Copycat Cucumber Salad at home using my super easy recipe. It bursts with flavors and can be served as a vegetarian appetizer or a side dish.

If you like this salad, try Cajun Potato Salad, Thai Green Papaya Salad, Malaysian Mango Salad, and Cucumber Avocado Salad.

Din Tai Fung cucumber salad served on a plate.
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About Din Tai Fung Cucumber Salad

Din Tai Fung is a famous Taiwanese restaurant chain (Michelin star) specializing in xiaolongbao, also known as soup dumplings.

Apart from their delicious soup dumplings and noodle dishes, the restaurant serves many sides, and this Spicy Cucumber Salad is their specialty.

A few years ago, Taiwan Tourism hosted a few bloggers on an 8-day trip to Taiwan, including myself. During the trip, they took us for dinner at Din Tai Fung. I tasted this salad there for the first time. Then we went to their branches in Singapore and Hong Kong, and I ordered this salad again as it was so good.

When I like something at a restaurant, I try returning home and replicating the recipe in my kitchen. That’s exactly what I did with this salad recipe, and I succeeded.

Din Tai Fung Cucumber Salad Recipe features thick slices of cucumbers marinated in rice vinegar, sugar, light soy sauce, and sesame oil. The cucumbers are then topped with chili oil, giving the dish a tangy and slightly spicy flavor.

This crunchy cucumber salad is a refreshing and light dish that pairs well with heavier dishes like steamed dumplings. It is also an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans looking for a healthy, flavorful dish.

Serve it as a perfect side dish with rice, noodles, or dumplings on a hot summer day. It can also be enjoyed as a refreshing appetizer.

Ingredients

Cucumbers – Opt for English or Persian cucumbers for this recipe, as they are seedless, sweeter, contain less water, and have thin skin.

If English or Persian cucumbers are unavailable, you can also use regular cucumbers. Smashed baby cucumbers also work great in this recipe.

For Marinating, you will need granulated white sugar, rice vinegar, light soy sauce, sesame oil, fresh garlic, and red pepper flakes.

You can substitute rice vinegar with red wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, or distilled white vinegar.

Use tamari in place of soy sauce to make it gluten-free.

Add honey or brown sugar instead of sugar as a substitute.

Adjust red pepper flakes as per your spice level.

You will also need chili oil and spring onion greens (scallions).

The restaurant also tops its salad with chopped Fresno chilies. If you have access to them, you can do it too.

How To Make Din Tai Fung Copycat Cucumber Salad

Rinse 1 pound (500 g) of cucumbers and pat them dry.

Cut them into ½-inch thick rounds.

Place the sliced cucumbers in a bowl and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Toss to coat evenly, then sit for 10-15 minutes to allow the excess water to drain.

Cucumber and salt added to a bowl.
Mixed well.

Rinse the cucumber slices under cold running water to remove excess salt, then pat the slices dry with paper towels or kitchen towels.

Rinsing the cucumbers with water.
Cucumber slices kept on a tray lined with kitchen towel.

Whisk together the following ingredients in a small mixing bowl until the sugar has dissolved.

  • 2 teaspoon granulated white sugar
  • 2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
Dressing ingredients mixed in a bowl.

Add the salted cucumbers to a large mixing bowl and pour the dressing.

Toss to coat evenly with the dressing.

Let the cucumbers sit in the dressing in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or up to 2 days.

Cucumber slices and dressing mixed in a bowl.

Stack the cucumber slices on a serving plate and drizzle with 1 teaspoon chili oil. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon chopped green onions on top and serve immediately.

Ready din tai fung cucumber salad drizzled with chili oil.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I peel the cucumber?

Din Tai Fung serves its cucumber salad with the peel still on, which adds a nice crunch and texture. But you can always peel it if you prefer it that way.

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Make Din Tai Fung Copycat Cucumber Salad at home using my super easy recipe. It bursts with flavors and can be served as a vegetarian appetizer or a side dish (vegan, can be easily made gluten-free).
5 from 2 votes

Din Tai Fung Cucumber Salad Recipe

Make Din Tai Fung Copycat Cucumber Salad at home using my super easy recipe. It bursts with flavors and can be served as a vegetarian appetizer or a side dish.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Resting Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Total: 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound English or Persian cucumbers (500 g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons granulated white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce (use tamari for gluten-free recipe)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon chili oil
  • 1 tablespoon sliced green onions
Want to save this recipe?
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Instructions 

  • Rinse cucumbers and pat them dry.
  • Cut them into ½-inch thick rounds.
  • Place the cucumber slices in a bowl and sprinkle with salt. Toss to coat evenly, then sit for 10-15 minutes to allow the excess water to drain.
  • Rinse the cucumber slices under cold running water and pat the slices dry with paper towels or kitchen towels.
  • Whisk together the sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a small mixing bowl until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Add the cucumber slices to a large mixing bowl and pour the dressing.
  • Toss to coat evenly with the dressing.
  • Let the cucumbers sit in the dressing in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or up to 2 days.
  • Stack the cucumber slices on a serving plate and drizzle with chili oil. Sprinkle chopped green onions on top and serve immediately.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

For this recipe, you can substitute rice vinegar with red wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar.
Add honey or brown sugar instead of sugar as a substitute.
Adjust red pepper flakes as per your spice level.
Din Tai Fung serves its cucumber salad with the peel still on, which adds a nice crunch and texture. But you can always peel it if you prefer it that way.

Nutrition

Calories: 45kcal, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 2g, Saturated Fat: 0.3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 839mg, Potassium: 172mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 156IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 20mg, Iron: 0.4mg
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