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Kelp Noodle Salad (Cheonsachae Salad)

Easy and delicious Korean style kelp noodle salad.

Try this savory and slightly sweet and tangy Korean kelp noodle salad. This seaweed noodle salad is made with gluten free and low calorie kelp noodles. It is pleasantly crunchy, light and delicious. It goes well with Korean BBQ and other Korean dishes.

kelp noodle salad served on a blue plate

What are Kelp Noodles

Kelp noodles, Korean name – cheonsachae (천사채), are semi-transparent noodles made from edible kelp (sea tangle). Cheonsachae is also known as angel noodles as cheonsa (천사) means angel in Korean. It was named like this by the Korean manufacturer as he hoped ‘Once you eat these noodles, you will feel so light that you may be able to fly like an angel’.

Kelp noodles are made without the addition of grain flour or starch, so it is used as a gluten free noodle alternative. They are also low in calories, so they are popular amongst the low carb diet community. If you want to learn more about the health benefits of kelp noodles, read this article.

The noodles have a nice crunchy texture and they can be eaten raw or cooked. It has a neutral taste so it will absorb any seasonings or sauces you mix in well.

In Korea, kelp noodles are commonly used as decorative ingredients under raw fish at a raw fish (hoe, 회) restaurant. Apparently, it helps keep the fish moist longer.

Some people also use the kelp noodles as a glass noodle alternative when making japchae, but most commonly it is used in raw salad such as today’s recipe.

Korean kelp noodle package

What is Kelp Noodle Salad

Kelp noodle salad is sometimes served at a Korean restaurant as a complimentary side dish. The noodles are simply mixed with mayonnaise based sauce. Sometimes they add thinly sliced carrots and cucumbers to add visual interest and more texture.

My recipe today also includes mustard sauce and surimi (imitation crab meat), a popular ingredient in Korean cooking. They do add a nice taste to the kelp noodle salad.

 

Where to Buy Kelp Noodles

You can buy kelp noodles from a Korean grocer, at some asian grocers, or at a health food store. Online stores such as Amazon also sell it too. 

 

Other Korean Salad Recipes

These are some other Korean salad recipes you could try. 

Ingredients for Kelp Noodle Salad, Serves 4 to 6

Kelp noodle salad ingredients

Main

  • 300g / 10.6 ounces kelp noodles, equivalent to 1 pack kelp noodles excluding packaging water
  • 80g / 2.8 ounces cucumber, julienned
  • 60g / 2.1 ounces carrots, julienned
  • 60g / 2.1 ounces crab sticks, thinly sliced or shredded
  • 1 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp raw sugar
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt

Dressing

  • 5 Tbsp mayonnaise (whole egg)
  • 1 Tbsp yellow mustard (mild American mustard)
  • 1 Tbsp raw sugar

*1 Tbsp = 15 ml

How to Make Kelp Noodle Salad

1. Wash kelp noodles with cold running water and drain the water for 10 minutes.

2. Cut kelp noodles with a pair of kitchen scissors a couple of times and squeeze the noodles to remove any excess water.

Cutting kelp noodles with a pair of scissors

3. Place the kelp noodles in a mixing bowl, add the white vinegar, raw sugar and fine sea salt and marinate for 10 minutes.

Marinating kelp noodles in a clear mixing bowl

4. When ready, add the cucumber, carrots, crab sticks, and salad dressing into the bowl and mix them well and evenly. (If time permits, cover the bowl with cling wrap and chill in the fridge for about 1 hour to further develop the flavor.) Serve. Any unused portion can be refrigerated in an air tight container for two days. 

Step by step collage picture - how to make kelp noodle salad

kelp noodle salad close up photo

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kelp noodle salad close up photo

Kelp Noodle Salad

Easy Korean style kelp noodle salad recipe.
Print Pin Rate Save
Course: Appetizer, Side dishes
Cuisine: Korean
Keyword: cheonsachae salad, kelp noodle salad, kelp noodles
Prep Time: 22 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
(Optional) Chilling Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 116kcal
Author: Sue

Ingredients

MAIN

  • 300 g kelp noodles (10.6 ounces), equivalent to 1 pack kelp noodles excluding packaging water
  • 80 g cucumber (2.8 ounces), julienned
  • 60 g carrots (2.1 ounces), julienned
  • 60 g crab sticks (2.1 ounces), thinly sliced or shredded
  • 1 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp raw sugar
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt

DRESSING

  • 5 Tbsp mayonnaise (whole egg)
  • 1 Tbsp yellow mustard (mild American mustard)
  • 1 Tbsp raw sugar

Instructions

  • Wash kelp noodles with cold running water and drain the water for 10 minutes.
  • Cut kelp noodles with a pair of kitchen scissors a couple of times and squeeze the noodles to remove any excess water.
  • Place the kelp noodles in a mixing bowl, add the white vinegar, raw sugar and fine sea salt and marinate for 10 minutes.
  • When ready, add the cucumber, carrots, crab sticks, and salad dressing into the bowl and mix them well and evenly. (If time permits, cover the bowl with cling wrap and chill in the fridge for about 1 hour to further develop the flavor.) Serve. Any unused portion can be refrigerated in an air tight container for two days.

Notes

  • 1 Tbsp = 15 ml

Nutrition Info (per serving)

Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 278mg | Potassium: 57mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1690IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Tried this recipe?I love hearing how you went with my recipes! Rate this recipe with a comment below and tag me on Instagram @MyKoreanKitchen.

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Written by: Sue

Last Updated: May 6, 2021
Sue and My Korean Kitchen Profile

Welcome to my Korean kitchen! I’m so happy that you're here. I am Sue, the creator behind My Korean Kitchen (since 2006). I love good food and simplifying recipes. Here you will find my best and family approved recipes. Thanks for stopping by!

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4 thoughts on “Kelp Noodle Salad (Cheonsachae Salad)”

  1. I love your recipes. Question can I use normal sugar instead of raw sugar. I do not want to go and buy it until I have tried it first. In case if I can’t find kelp noodles what can I substitute with.
    Thanks
    Shabnam

    Reply
    • Yes, you can use normal sugar. Raw sugar has slightly more molasses flavor. Another good substitute for raw sugar would be light brown sugar.

      A common substitute for kelp noodles are shirataki (konjac) noodles. But I believe the texture is very different to kelp noodles, which is a key for this recipe. (I haven’t tried myself though. :))

      Reply

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