Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad with Vietnamese Dressing

Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad with Vietnamese Dressing by

If I stare just long enough, I think I can see the bok choy leaves growing in the garden.  They must be growing that fast.  When I harvest the large leaves to make for dinner, they’ve grown back again in only a few days.

I had planted two rows of hybrid baby bok choy seeds a little over a month ago, admittedly not the best time since bok choy likes to bolt in the hot, dry summer weather (when bok choy bolts, the leaves become bitter and stop growing, and the plant flowers and goes to seed).  But with a scissors in hand, snipping any sign of flowering, the leaves continued to grow.  Let’s say at an alarming rate.

hybrid baby bok choy growing in the garden
garden fresh baby bok choy for salad

Salads were the easy solution. Fresh bok choy from the garden mixed well with a variety of ingredients and dressings like in this Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad with Vietnamese Dressing.

Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad with Vietnamese Dressing recipe by

Here, I’ve paired the garden bok choy with fresh shrimp to make a delicious summery dish. 

The shrimp are lightly seasoned with our Vietnamese Spicy BBQ Seasoning, then pan fried with chopped garlic.  For the dressing I used nuoc cham, the infallible, classic Vietnamese combination of fish sauce, sugar, rice vinegar and lime juice. 

Easily-prepared and delightfully delectable, you can serve this Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad as a side or a stand-alone dish with brown rice.

Quick tip: If you’re growing bok choy in the garden, the leaves will likely become more bitter after each harvest due to more frequent bolting.  Enjoy the first few harvests of bok choy in salads, then later in stir-fries. The quick, high-heat process of stir-frying, cooked along with other veggies and spices, will make the greens more palatable.

buy sriracha sea salt, vietnamese spicy bbq seasoning and lemongrass ginger seasoning at seasonwithspice asian spice shop

Shrimp & Bok Choy Salad with Vietnamese Dressing 
by Season with Spice 
Serve 3-4 as a side dish

12-14 (about 1 lb) large shrimp – peeled and deveined
1/2 tsp of Season with Spice’s Vietnamese Spicy BBQ Seasoning
A few bunches of baby bok choy – sliced thinly, crosswise
1 tbsp peanut oil or vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic – minced
Cucumber slices (I used English cucumber)
1 scallion - chopped finely
Spoonful of Toasted Sesame Seeds

Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese Dressing)
2 tbsp quality fish sauce
1 tbsp water, or more to taste
2 tsp of brown sugar (or coconut palm sugar)
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tsp sesame oil

1. In a small bowl, stir together fish sauce, water, brown sugar/ coconut palm sugar, lime juice, rice wine vinegar, and sesame oil. Adjust to taste. Set aside.
2. Place bok choy and cucumber slices in a large salad bowl. Drizzle half of the prepared dressing over and toss to coat well.
3. Lightly season the shrimp with Vietnamese Spicy BBQ Seasoning on both sides. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high fire. Place shrimp carefully in the pan and cook on one side for about a minute. Turn the shrimp over and add in the minced garlic, and cook for another minute. Then stir shrimp and garlic and cook for another minute or two until shrimp are cooked through and have crispy brown edges.
4. Add the cooked shrimp into the bok choy salad. Drizzle in the remaining dressing and toss well. Garnish with scallion and toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.