Spicy Buckwheat and Mung Bean Salad

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Loaded with protein and yumminess, this spicy buckwheat and mung bean salad is really easy to make, and is as delicious as it is nutritious and frugal!

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Know what I love about this time of year? Apart from the weather, of course. Yep, salads. Whether it’s a simple Thai pomelo or sour mango salad, or something more full on, such as my roasted potato and quinoa one, salads are great! And a far cry from the ones – and I use the term, salad, very loosely – my gran (and possibly yours too!) used to serve up in the summer.

This buckwheat salad is packed with protein!

This salad came about when we were about to leave Slovenia for Romania, and I was trying to not go shopping for anything other than fresh bread, fruit, and veggies. I wanted to use up as much as possible from the freezer, back of the ‘fridge, and the store cupboard, and so this salad was born! I’ve since made it loads of times, including for local cafés, where it has always been a huge hit.

Combining mung beans and buckwheat in a salad was a pretty phenomenal idea, if I say so myself! The two textures work so well together. Plus, of course, they are full of protein.

I also had about a quarter of a jar of sun-dried tomatoes which needed using up, plus odds and ends of tahini, wholegrain mustard, pomegranate molasses, and sesame seeds.

Once the buckwheat and mung beans were cooked and cooled, I just added some veggies that were in the salad crisper, and dressed the whole lot with the tahini etc. The salad was finished with the sun-dried tomatoes and sesame seeds. Really simple but sooo deelish. And a definite keeper.

By the way, the stems/ribs of Chinese (napa) cabbage are brilliant in salads – they’re so crunchy and refreshing. Much nicer than celery, IMO, not least because they don’t give me numb tongue.

(Bonus points if you immediately pictured James T Kirk just then!)

Ingredients for spicy buckwheat and mung bean salad

  • mung beans
  • buckwheat groats (aka kasha / kaša)
  • Chinese cabbage
  • courgette
  • red pepper
  • spring onions
  • chillies
  • flat-leaf parsley
  • lambs’ lettuce
  • sun-dried tomatoes
  • sesame seeds
  • Dressing: tahini, pomegranate molasses, wholegrain mustard, and water

How to make this salad

  • Cook the mung beans and buckwheat in plenty of water, then drain, rinse under cold water until cool, and place into a large mixing bowl.
  • While the beans and buckwheat are cooking, separate the leaves and stems of the Chinese cabbage, and cut the stems into thin slices. Place into the bowl.
  • Top and tail the courgette, then cut into ribbons. Add to the bowl.
  • De-seed and finely chop the red pepper, and add to the bowl as well.
  • Finely slice the spring onions, chillies, and parsley, and add these to the bowl, too, along with the lambs’ lettuce.
  • Using your hands, gently mix everything together.
  • Make the dressing by whisking together all the ingredients, add half to the mixing bowl, and gently toss to lightly coat the salad.
  • Top the salad with the sun-dried tomatoes and sesame seeds, and serve immediately.


  • As ever, how many chillies you use is up to you – the ones I use for this aren’t overly hot
  • I use sun-dried tomatoes in oil but blot as much of the oil as possible before adding to the salad
  • You may not need all of the dressing; if you don’t use it all, it will keep in a screw-top jar or bottle in the ‘fridge for up to a month.
  • The salad will not keep for much longer than a couple of hours, so it’s best to only make as much as you’ll need for your meal.
  • Feel free to change the leaves – this is really a guideline!

Check out these other delicious salad recipes!

You’ll love this Spicy Buckwheat and Mung Bean Salad

Because it’s…

  • simple to make
  • full of protein, fibre, Vitamins A & C, and Iron
  • gluten-free
  • soy-free
  • nut-free
  • savoury but a little bit sweet
  • satisfying and filling
  • insanely delicious

Although it can be a complete meal by itself, this salad goes really well with soft seeded bread too.


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