Thai Beef Salad with Herbs

When you're deep in an organizing project and you look around the room you just destroyed, it's best to just STOP. Before you get thoroughly overwhelmed, take a breather and make something good to eat. Don't examine your stuff!


The act of taking a break and chopping up vegetables, grilling steak outdoors and composing a bunch of colors on a plate will not only give you a nice break from the chaos in the other room, it will give you fuel to power through.

Don't think of the pile of papers you need to shred. Don't agonize over how much stuff you've accumulated in the past few years. Just eat this delicious salad. It's spicy, hearty and kinda light!

We spent so much of this weekend going through our unwanted items. Lucky for us, this bright/colorful salad was the light at the end of the tunnel.

Now excuse me while I get back to work sorting all the stuff I need to shred.

And we're off!

It all starts with the marinade. Soy sauce & fish sauce get mixed in with some sugar.

A clove of garlic gets minced and salt & pepper go on the flank steak in that marinade.

Vegetable & herb party!

Butter lettuce in a bowl.

Dressing being made.

Salad chop! It helps to drink a mojito during this process ;)

Steak gets grilled. Let it rest. Cut it up against the grain in thin small slices.

Toss your herbs in the salad bowl.

Add some peanuts in there too.

Dress the salad. Add in your meat.

Toss it all up.

And you have a Thai Beef Salad with Herbs.

Casey told me that this was one of the best things I've made. True story.



Thai Beef Salad with Herbs

serves 4

(recipe adapted from Everyday Food Magazine)

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 12 oz flank steak
  • 1 head butter lettuce, washed and torn into pieces
  • 1 cucumber, seeded, peeled and deiced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 yellow pepper, thinly sliced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and shaved with a vegetable peeler
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup mint, chopped
  • 1/4 cup basil, chopped
  • 1/3 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

Ginger-Lime Dressing:

  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon peeled, minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Combine soy sauce, fish sauce, and sugar in a glass 9×13 baking dish. Add steak, turning to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 15 minutes or refrigerate several hours.
While the steak is marinating I prepare the salad and dressing.

Heat oil in a large cast iron skillet, over medium high heat. Add steak, reserving marinade, and cook until dark brown on both sides, about 3-5 minutes per side for medium-rare. (Alternately, you can grill 3-4 minutes per side on a hot grill).

Add reserved marinade to skillet and turn steak once to coat. The marinade will get very thick and much of it will evaporate. (I just poured the marinade over the steak while it was cooking).

Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest 5 minutes before slicing against the grain.

In a large salad bowl, toss together the lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, pepper, carrots, mint, cilantro, basil & peanuts.

Add steak and dressing to prepared salad and serve immediately.

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  • April 16, 2012

    Oooh, I can't wait to make this! Plus, it's so pretty! Love it!

  • April 16, 2012

    I've been craving Thai food all week! This is totally going to the top of my to-eat list.

    Thanks for sharing!

    P.S.- I made a batch of your mom's sour cream coffee cake (scaled down to 2/3's) and it disappeared, like, instantly.

    • April 16, 2012

      when I made that cake...i was greedy and didn't share with ANYONE. It took me a week, but i finished it!!! Thanks for trying it out!

  • April 16, 2012

    I have never made thai food at home, this salad will be a good first step!

  • I love entree salads! This looks amazingly delicious.

  • Erika
    April 16, 2012

    It's really creeping me out how I had an amazing Thai Steak Salas this weekend and mojitos! All I can say is THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart <3 I was planning on trying to recreate the salad and you just did it perfectly.

    • Tracy
      April 16, 2012

      We're on the same wavelength. GO US!!

  • April 16, 2012

    Ive never been game to try this, I think I'll give it a go! You've inspired me! Thai beef salads always seem kinda unattainable. Looks delicious!

    • Tracy
      April 16, 2012

      This is super simple. I'm sure you'll love it!

  • April 16, 2012

    Do you buy your herbs or grow them? If you buy them, what do you do with the remaining ones?

    • Tracy
      April 16, 2012

      Currently, I grow mint, sage, rosemary & thyme. If I buy cilantro, I usually end up making something Mexican to go with it. If I have Italian Parsley leftover it goes into a lot of stuff that I make. The mint is great for mint tea or mojitos (which is what I used it for this weekend!)

      Hope that helps.

  • Shaleen
    April 16, 2012

    Oh. Hell. Yes.

  • April 16, 2012

    i adore thai anything. this makes me want a salad.

    • Tracy
      April 16, 2012

      same here! i would seriously smother peanut sauce on EVERYTHING if I could...

  • April 16, 2012

    This pretty much makes me want a salad and it's not even 7 AM.

  • April 16, 2012

    I'm thinking this is dinner tonight!

  • Tara
    April 16, 2012

    I think I just foudn dinner for tonight!

  • Boyfriend is on a MAJOR Thai food kick right now. I will probably have to make this for him.

  • April 16, 2012

    yes! saw this on your twitter, so glad the recipe is out. :)

  • Oh wow! That beef looks fantastic! I love the super thin slices.

  • Lucy
    April 16, 2012

    Was already going to make Thai beef salad for dinner, tempted to switch recipes and make this one, it looks so fresh and yum.

  • Vera
    April 17, 2012

    A wonderful splash of colours in this salad and a beautiful new design! The fonts are just looovely!

  • linda
    April 17, 2012

    Holy Moly!! I made this for dinner last night and it was DELISH!
    The dressing is amazing, the meat is a wonderful addition, all of the veggies are great together, the balance of the herbs is perfect (though I must confess, I left out the mint, not a fan) and the peanuts are a fun little crunchy surprise. Thank you so very much for sharing the recipe. Girl, you rock! Keep up the awesome work.

  • April 18, 2012

    Tracy! I just made this salad for dinner. It is beyond delicious. My boyfriend and I absolutely loved it! I'm considering making a noodle salad variation for the Design Sponge lunch I'm going to this Friday. Yum!

  • heather
    April 19, 2012

    i'm making this tonight. just found the original recipe myself on the day you posted this while looking through my old everyday food magazines. it must be a sign. love your blog. thanks.

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