Spicy Thai Carrot and Kale Salad

This spicy Thai carrot and kale salad is coated in a creamy sriracha peanut butter dressing and makes a takeout worthy vegan salad.

I asked my mom when we were in the car together the other day and her horrific lite-FM station was on when the tipping point was that she stopped listening to new music and started listening to “oldie” stations.

I’ve honestly wondered this many times as each year passes and I continue to listen to whatever is new at the time.

Her response was “when I had to start listening to the school closings on the radio for your brother and you”. That was age 35 for my mom.

I’ll be 32 in about 50 days. 

Spicy Thai Carrot and Kale Salad with sriracha peanut butter dressing

The whole conversation disturbed me.

I don’t have kids and even if I popped one out tomorrow, I’d be closer to the 40 year old mark if her scenario held true but, it’s still disturbing.

So, the conversation changed subjects and I vowed to never lose my grip on “good” music.

Sriracha Peanut Butter Salad Dressing

Fast forward to last weekend where there were five 30, 31 and 32 year old women in my house drinking wine (lots of wine), eating pizza, playing politically incorrect board games and Pandora in the background. What station immediately went on?

90s hip hop.

We were buzzed (some of us full out drunk) and there wasn’t anything better in the world than Biggie circa 1994 and a bunch of lyrics we could all belt out word for word like we did at many a high school parties involving kegs, boys and eventually, the police.

But I chalked that one up to the wine.

Now fast forward to yesterday when I’m in the kitchen for 5 hours and turned on Pandora.

I had full intentions of switching the station but then Jay-Z came on before I could find anything else. 1998 jigga man with “Can I Get A”.

I mean, come on. Does it get more iconic 90s hip hop than that?

Memories of driving to the SAT prep course my mom forced me to take (much to my annoyance), speeding down side roads with my friend who was also forced into the same fate by her parents and blasting this song to the point where the speakers in my 1993 Nissan Altima almost exploded.

Now fast forward to 4pm yesterday after potato pancakes and this Thai carrot kale salad have been made, photographed and edited and my throat is sore from singing to Jay-Z, Warren G, Usher, Keith Sweat and Biggie for 5 hours straight.

Thai Carrot and Kale Salad with Sriracha Peanut Butter Dressing

And that’s when I realized, the turning point already happened for me.

It may not have been induced by school closures for my non-existent kids, but it happened.

And ya know what? I’m cool with that.

Because no song today can even compete with a little “Twisted” by Keith Sweat.

This Thai carrot and kale salad? Well, it’s timeless.

The whole peanut sauce (or almond butter sauce like in this Pad Thai salad recipe) Thai thing has yet to get old.

This version is spiced up with some sriracha and tossed with some carrot strings (made with a julienne peeler) and thinly sliced Tuscan (lacinto) kale for a creamy, spicy side salad.

I love using either Tuscan or baby kale in salads like this because I find both so much more tender than the curly variety which can be a bit much to chew raw.

My best baby kale salad recipe and this baby kale chicken cherry salad are great ones to try too!

If this carrot kale salad were a 90s song, I’d call it “Money Ain’t A Thang”. Badass and fun.

More Thai recipes like this:

Thai Kohlrabi Noodle Salad
Thai Pineapple Fried Rice
Thai Chicken Zucchini Noodles
Sticky Thai Chicken

Spicy Thai Carrot and Kale Salad

Spicy Thai Carrot and Kale Salad

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

This spicy thai carrot and kale salad is coated in a creamy sriracha peanut butter dressing.


  • 3 cups carrot strings using a
  • julienne peeler
  • 2 cups thinly sliced tuscan kale
  • 3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1½ teaspoons sriracha
  • 3 tablespoons almond milk
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tablespoon maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • pinch of salt
  • sesame seeds for garnish


  1. Toss carrots and kale together in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together the remaining ingredients except sesame seeds in a small bowl. Add more milk if necessary to get the desired consistency.
  3. Pour dressing on top of the carrots and kale and toss until fully coated.
  4. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve.


Please leave a comment & rating below or share a photo on Instagram and tag @runningtothekitchen


  1. Tina Muir

    Haha, I went through the same transition! I guess we all just end up becoming our mothers, and trying to hold on to the past!

    The salad looks wonderful, love the addition of sirachia, yet another way I can use my julienne peeler….I am happy :)

  2. Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness

    This post made me laugh! I’m only 23 and I much prefer the classic 90’s song of my childhood.
    Ugh, now I feel really old. But, I’m ok with that.
    Thai peanut sauce really does never get old and I am loving the simplicity of this salad!

  3. Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen

    Totally dying right now! Some many high school and college flashbacks! I can never decide if it’s awesome or totally horrific that I still know all the words to 90’s hip hop.

    On a serious note, I don’t think I’ve been this excited about a salad (and I love salad!) in a long time!! Amazing flavors!

  4. Nutmeg Nanny

    Dude, Keith Sweat…dear God I love that man! You know how excited I was when Montell Jordan mentioned me in a tweet. I’m pretty sure he hasn’t’ been popular in 20 years….which makes me feel really old. Also, this salad looks amazing! Peanut butter sauce is slowly growing on me and I’m pretty sure I would happily eat this whole bowl!

  5. Jennie @themessybakerblog

    I’m so happy to hear that we listen to the same music. I either have the 80s station or 90s station playing in the background, and, sure enough, I’ll be singing along with the tunes. This salad looks delicious. Psht, peanut sauce will forever be in style.

  6. Kat

    At least you didn’t disclose any names. Or blame any carpet spills.

    So I swear I just had this conversation with Jon and Janice separately the other day – how funny that you did too. And I was all like, why isn’t RAP timeless? Like, how many people our age are listening to rap that we used to listen to in High school and college and then have kids turn around and call that “oldies”

    Side note: PERFECT transition.

  7. Jet

    This looks absolutely delicious! Unfortunately Im not allowed to eat peanuts : ( What kind of nut could I substitute for this recipe?

    Thank You.

    P.s. I heart 90’s : )

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      You could use any other nut butter you like. I almost made this with almond butter instead so I’d go that route.


    First the photo of this salad grabbed my attention over on Pinterest. Second, your words had me smiling and nodding my head in agreement. Sub in some 80s British “modern rock” (U2, Cure, Smiths, Depeche) for the 90s hip hop and I can totally relate. :)

  9. Kira - Healthable Old Soul

    I love a creamy peanut sauce and I found that nut butters go so good with kale! I love the Thai infused flavors of this recipe!

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  12. Melanie

    Hi! This looks great, but I am doing paleo which cuts out peanuts. How do you think this would turn out using almond butter instead of peanuts? Maybe cashew butter?

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      I think it’d be great with almond butter instead! I actually almost made it with that but changed my mind last minute. I’d go for a salted almond butter though or add more salt if you don’t have that. Cashews would be great too. Honestly, I think it’s pretty flexible to whatever nut you want to use.

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  18. Nickeya

    Hmm this is a recipe I definitely need to try.. This week.. and I’ll let you know how it taste?
    out of curiosity how do you get your picture to show in the comments on here?


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