Quick Asian pickled cucumbers

Whip up a delicious salad in just 5 minutes? Absolutely! With this quick Asian pickled cucumbers recipe it is possible! Fast and delicious – be prepared to make them again and again!

The post has extra tips to make sure the recipe comes out amazing on your first try. If you're in a rush, use the link above to jump to the recipe card at the end! 👩‍🍳🔝
Asia pickled cucumbers with sesame seeds

Quick Asian pickled cucumbers

These Asian pickled cucumbers are the perfect dish – delicious and nutritious. Despite only requiring 5 minutes and a few ingredients, this pickled salad is sure to impress! Whether as a snack for your kids or a part of a BBQ or dinner party, it’s a hit with both big and small eaters.

Ingredients for quick Asian cucumbers

This quick pickled cucumber recipe has ONE main ingredient – a cucumber! And as for marinade, only a couple of simple ingredients are needed. I bet you already have them in your fridge and pantry anyway:

  • Cucumbers: Any type will work, whether it’s English cucumbers or Persian cucumbers – the choice is yours.
  • Rice vinegar: You can also use apple cider vinegar or white vinegar as alternatives.
  • Light soy sauce: If you’re not following a gluten-free diet, regular soy sauce works just fine, but I prefer using Tamari sauce, which is gluten-free.
  • Toasted sesame oil
  • Pinch of sugar: Opt for raw and organic. It is a much better alternative to white sugar.
  • Toasted sesame seeds. They add even more Asian flavor. Plus they look great tossed on top of the cucumbers. 
ingredients for quick Asian pickled cucumbers recipe

See the full ingredients list in the recipe card below.

How to make pickled cucumbers

Making this Asian pickled cucumber salad is incredibly easy, making it perfect for those in a hurry or new to the kitchen. Just follow these three simple steps:

  1. Chop the cucumbers and place them in a mixing bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together rice vinegar, soy sauce (such as tamari), sesame oil, and organic brown sugar until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Pour the vinegar mixture over the cucumbers, give it a good stir, and enjoy the crunchy cucumbers. For even more flavor, refrigerate the salad for a couple of hours.

That’s it! You’ll have a delicious, crunchy, and tangy Asian pickled cucumber salad ready to be savored.

You can see the full recipe and watch how to make it in the recipe card below.

Variations

Variations: This quick pickle recipe is highly versatile and can be customized to suit your preferences. Here are a couple of ideas to explore:

  • Spice it up: For some heat, add a pinch of red pepper flakes to give the dish an extra kick.
  • Fresh green onions: Slice some green onions and sprinkle them over the salad just before serving for an added burst of flavor and freshness.
  • Garlic: Add some minced garlic to the vinegar mixture for a subtle garlic flavor that complements the cucumbers.
  • Ginger Zing: Grate fresh ginger and mix it into the marinade to give the salad a vibrant and zesty twist.
  • Fresh Herbs: Toss in some chopped fresh herbs like cilantro, mint, or basil for an aromatic and refreshing touch.
  • Chili or Sriracha Sauce: For an extra kick of spiciness, drizzle some chili sauce or Sriracha over the pickled cucumbers.

How long can pickled cucumbers last?

These Asian pickled cucumbers can be easily stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container or a mason jar for up to 3 days. In fact, you can even prepare this simple cucumber recipe ahead of time and refrigerate them.

Just note that as the cucumbers marinate, they will soften slightly, enhancing their flavor and making them even more delicious!

quick Asian pickled cucumber bites on a plate

Is this pickled cucumber recipe gluten-free?

As you may already know, soy sauce is not gluten-free and should be avoided if you follow a gluten-free diet. That’s why it’s crucial to choose a gluten-free variety when preparing this pickle recipe. I personally use organic tamari sauce, which has a flavor similar to regular soy sauce but is safe for those avoiding gluten.

What to serve with Asian pickled cucumbers

Asian pickled cucumbers pair well with a variety of dishes. Here are some ideas on what you can serve them with:

  • Rice or Noodle Dishes: Serve the pickled cucumbers alongside steamed rice or your favorite noodle dishes, such as stir-fried noodles or fried rice. The tangy and refreshing flavors complement the savory flavors of these dishes.
  • Grilled Meats: The pickled cucumbers make a fantastic accompaniment to grilled meats like chicken, beef, or pork. Their crispness and tanginess provide a refreshing contrast to the rich and smoky flavors of grilled meats. Try my EASY GARLIC CHICKEN THIGHS.
  • Asian-inspired Tacos or Wraps: Add a twist to your tacos or Asian wraps by including pickled cucumbers as a topping. They add a delightful crunchy texture and tangy flavor to your handheld creations.
  • Asian Salad Bowls: Incorporate the pickled cucumbers into Asian-inspired salad bowls. Combine them with fresh greens, protein of your choice (such as grilled tofu or shrimp), and other toppings like carrots, edamame, or sesame seeds. Drizzle with a sesame ginger dressing for a complete and flavorful meal.

I also like adding it to my POKE BOWL RECIPE, served with FURIKAKE – JAPANESE RICE SEASONING.

Frequently asked questions

What cucumber is best for pickling?

In my opinion, the best cucumbers for pickling are the long continental cucumbers, also known as telegraph, English, or continental cucumbers. However, you can use any fresh regular cucumber
 in this recipe as well. The key is to choose a cucumber that is firm and fresh for optimal texture and flavor in your pickles.

Should I deseed cucumber?

Many people deseed cucumbers, I don’t. I find it to be a waste of vegetables. But if you prefer to deseed it, just cut the cucumber in half, lengthwise. Using a teaspoon simply run a spoon down the length of the cucumber, allowing the gentle curve of the spoon to remove all of the seeds as you go. Here is an excellent blog post on how to deseed a cucumber

Can I use other vegetables instead of cucumbers?

You can use this Asian pickled cucumber recipe to pickle all kinds of vegetables, such as carrots, radishes, green beans, daikon, or cauliflower. You can add it to the rice noodles to make a quick Vietnamese salad. This marinade is delicious and the recipe is really worthy of being saved. Enjoy!

Have you tried this recipe? If so, I'd greatly appreciate it if you could leave a star rating and share your thoughts in a comment. Your feedback means a lot to me, and it can also help others who are interested in trying it out. Thank you! 🌟👩‍🍳

How to make Asian pickled cucumbers – printable recipe & video

cucumber salad on a plate

Quick Asian pickled cucumbers

Elena Elliott
Delicious and super quick Asian pickled cucumbers salad. The easy way to add some more veggies into your diet! Very kid friendly 🙂 
5 from 11 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine asian
Servings 4 serves as a side dish

Ingredients
  

  • 1 large continental cucumber or any other cucumber you have in the fridge
  • 4 tablespoons of rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of gluten-free soy sauce I use tamari
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon organic brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon chilly flakes optional and not used in the recipe featured in this post
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

Instructions
 

  • First, wash and cut the cucumber into bite-size pieces. Put in a bowl.
  • Combine the rice vinegar, gluten-free soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil in a glass jar or a salad dressing mixer and shake well.
  • Add marinade to the cucumber and mix to combine.
  • Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the cucumber. Serve!

Video

Notes

This salad will taste even better the next day. Simply put it in a glass jar or any other air-tight container and refrigerate. It will last like this for up to 3 days.
Keyword Asian cucumber salad, gluten-free
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
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25 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Hey there! I just wanted to drop a quick note to say how much I loved your post on Asian pickled cucumbers. Your recipe is absolutely fantastic! The flavors are so well-balanced, and the pickles have the perfect amount of tanginess. I appreciate how simple and straightforward your instructions are, making it easy for anyone to recreate this delicious dish. Thank you for sharing this gem with us—I can’t wait to try more of your recipes. Keep up the great work!

  2. 5 stars
    Love this quick Asian pickled cucumbers recipe, easy to make and looks delicious!! in my house we use to make it also but different recipe as Japanese style. Will try this version. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    Lovely! Perfect subtle flavours of sesame oil and mild enough to pair with a bunch of dishes without it overpowering other flavours. Will definitely make this salad again.

  4. 5 stars
    This is such a quick and tasty recipe that does not disappoint! So delicious; quite possibly the best way to enjoy cucumbers!

  5. 5 stars
    One of the best pickle recipes I’ve tried. It is so simple and quick and satisfyingly good. Must-try!

  6. Yum! Made this cucumber dish to go with Korean Bibimbap and it was a perfect accompaniment! So quick and easy!

  7. Cucumber is so refreshing in the heat and I love quick tasty salads like this. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Made this for dinner tonight and absolutely loved it! Definitely a winner that I will make again. So easy and still super flavorful!

      1. 5 stars
        These easy picles are such a wonderful complement to almost any meal. The acidic sweet/sour brine balances the rich fattiness of almost any protein. Delicious!

5 from 11 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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