This delicious kani salad recipe is an easy and fresh Japanese style salad.
You'll love the bright flavors of this dish and the lovely combination of crunchy and creamy ingredients.
This salad is easy to make, ready in minutes, and you can enjoy it as a main course or side salad.
Why You Should Make This Spicy Kani Salad Recipe
This Japanese crab salad (kani is a Japanese word that means crab) comes together quickly and is refreshing! This salad is called Kanikama salad (which means imitation crab) in Japan.
You'll top the salad with a delicious dressing made from kewpie mayo and seasonings. It's similar to Yum Yum Sauce. If you've ever been to American Japanese restaurants (like a Japanese steakhouse or Japanese hibachi restaurant sauce), you'll know it is a mixture of mayo, tomato, and vinegar.
The crunchy vegetables, juicy mango, and creamy mayo pair beautifully with the crab flavor.
Kani Salad Ingredients
This lightly spicy crab salad comes together quickly with only a few simple ingredients. Here's what you'll need:
Crab Stick - You'll need 8 ounces of imitation crab stick for the main ingredient. This is typically 8 crab sticks (they're one ounce each). You'll shred the imitation crab meat by tearing them apart with your fingers or a fork.
The imitation crab stick might be labeled kani kamaboko or kanikama.
Produce - You'll need 1 medium carrot, 1 English cucumber, and 1 medium mango. You'll finely slice all of these or shred them with a julienne peeler.
Mayonnaise - You'll use 1/3 cup of Kewpie mayonnaise. This is a seasoned Japanese mayonnaise that is more savory than regular mayonnaise.
Seasonings - You'll need 2 teaspoons of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon of sesame oil, and 1 teaspoon of sriracha sauce to top the salad.
Optional Toppings - You can add a sprinkle of sesame seeds (I like black sesame seeds) to the salad. Add sliced avocado or chopped green onions for more flavor. If you want a little crunch, add 2 tablespoons of panko breadcrumbs.
How to Make this Recipe
Prepare the Ingredients - Shred the imitation crab sticks with a fork or your fingers. It's easy to pull them apart if you pinch both ends of the crab stick as they come pre-sliced. Chop or shred the carrots, cucumber, and mango.
Assemble the Salad - Combine the shredded crab stick, shredded carrots, julienned cucumber, and julienned mango in a large bowl. Toss with tongs to combine.
Add the Sauce - Add the Kewpie mayo, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, and sriracha to the bowl. Toss to coat the crab and vegetables in the sauce.
Plate - Serve in a large bowl and top with optional sesame seeds.
More Japanese Veggie Recipes to Try
If you like vegetable-forward dishes with Japanese flavors, try some of our other favorites!
- Daikon Radish Cucumber Salad - this fresh and crisp salad is ready in minutes.
- Cucumber Kimchi - spicy cucumber kimchi that's a great side dish or snack.
- Braised Kabocha Squash Recipe - simmered winter squash that can be served with rice.
- Tatsoi Salad - a fresh green salad with simple ingredients and bright flavors.
Tips for Making this Recipe
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Recommended Tools - I love this little OXO julienne peeler - it makes prepping this recipe so easy.
Storing Tips - You can save this salad for up to 3 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
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- 8 ounces imitation crab stick, shredded
- 1 medium carrot, julienned
- 1 English cucumber, julienned
- 1 medium mango, julienned
- 1/3 cup Kewpie mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- optional - avocado slices and sesame seeds
- Combine the shredded crab stick, julienned carrot, julienned cucumber, and julienned mango in a large bowl. Toss with tongs to combine.
- Add the Kewpie mayo, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, and sriracha to the bowl. Toss to coat the crab and vegetables in the sauce.
- Serve in a large bowl and top with optional sesame seeds.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 373Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 608mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 7gSugar: 17gProtein: 8g