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Kani Salad Recipe

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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.

Kani salad with mango in a small serving bowl with wooden chopsticks.

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.

Crab sticks, mango, mayo, a carrot, a cucumber, sesame oil, sriracha, sesame seeds, and soy sauce.

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.

Sliced mangoes, cucumber, crab sticks, and carrots in a mixing bowl.
Ingredients for kani salad being mixed in a bowl.

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.  

Kani salad ingredients in a mixing bowl.

More Japanese Veggie Recipes to Try

If you like vegetable-forward dishes with Japanese flavors, try some of our other favorites!

Spicy kani salad in a bowl with chopsticks.

Tips for Making this Recipe

Links on some posts are affiliate links and as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Specialty Ingredients - If you can't find Kewpie mayonnaise at the grocery store, you can buy it online or make your own homemade version.

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.

If you try this recipe, let us know! Connect with us on Instagram and share your photos or leave us a rating.

Yield: 3 to 4 servings

Kani Salad

Kani salad in a white bowl with chopsticks.

This fresh kani salad recipe is zesty and flavorful. It's a fantastic lunch or side dish recipe.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. Combine the shredded crab stick, julienned carrot, julienned cucumber, and julienned mango in a large bowl. Toss with tongs to combine. 
  2. 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. 
  3. Serve in a large bowl and top with optional sesame seeds.  

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 373Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 608mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 7gSugar: 17gProtein: 8g

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