This Asian Pear Slaw is a little crunchy, a little sweet, and a little spicy! It's a refreshing slaw that pairs well with any Thai or Asian dish. It's naturally sweet and gently seasoned with ginger and lime.
Try this refreshing Asian Pear Slaw with a zingy Ginger Lime dressing for a light and healthy side dish or salad. Here's an Asian pear recipe with perfectly balanced flavors that will complement any meal!
🍽 Wondering what to serve with Thai or Asian dishes?
This Asian Pear Slaw with Ginger and Lime is a perfect choice! It's a crisp, refreshing slaw with hints of fresh lime.
This slaw adds a touch of light sweetness to balance the spicy flavours in your main dishes.
Note: This is not an Asian coleslaw or Thai-style coleslaw, as it doesn't contain cabbage. If you're looking for a cabbage slaw, you might like this Thai-Style Coleslaw with Sesame Ginger Dressing.
Or for other options, try this Cabbage Coleslaw with Sesame Miso Dressing or Crunchy Thai Noodle Salad with Peanut Sauce.
You'll find a complete list of ingredients with amounts in the recipe card below. Before we get to the full recipe, here are a few notes about what you'll need to make this delicious slaw with Asian apple pears! (Note: they're sometimes called Korean apple pears.)
- celery: 2 stalks
- Asian pears: (also known as apple pears) if you can't find them, use a firm winter pear, like D'Anjou
- cilantro: use parsley if you don't like cilantro
- green onions: you'll slice these very thinly
- fresh ginger: finely grated. Use a kitchen rasp or microplane if you have one.
- lime juice: freshly squeezed is always best
- rice vinegar
- Thai chili pepper: just a hint. These are VERY hot, so you won't want to overpower your slaw. A few specks add a little heat and interest, but that's all you'll need.
First, whisk together the ginger, lime juice and rice vinegar to make a simple dressing for this Asian slaw.
Add a small amount of ginger first, then taste and add more if you like. (It's easy to overpower the sweet apple pears with too much ginger.) Set it aside to let the flavours blend.
Next, prepare all the ingredients: Use a julienne tool, if you have one, to prepare the celery and pears. If not, you can grate the Asian pear and the celery or cut them with a sharp knife into fine matchsticks.
Chop the cilantro, slice the green onions, and finely slice the Thai chili pepper.
Be careful how you handle the chili peppers as they can be very hot. You may wish to wear rubber gloves. The seeds are even spicier, so I tend to discard them.
And finally, toss everything together with the dressing and enjoy every crisp and crunchy bite!
Asian pears, also known as Apple Pears, Chinese Pears or Korean Pears, are sweet and crisp. They're round, not pear-shaped as you might expect.
The skins are sometimes a little tough, so I peel them to make this simple tasty Asian-style slaw.
Asian pears are in season from late summer through winter. If you're lucky to have a friend with a tree, beg a few.
They're also usually available in stores in January and February for Lunar New Year. They're wrapped in a soft netting to protect them from bruising.
These pears are absolutely delicious, and they add natural sweetness and a crisp texture to any salad or slaw recipe.
When picking out the best Asian pears, look for those that
have a sweet scent, are firm, have no bruises, and have smooth skin. Depending on the variety, the colour may vary from light yellow to russet brown!
The best (and safest) way to julienne-cut an apple pear is to peel it, then slice it in half. Place the cut side down on a cutting board. Anchor the pear by inserting a fork at the top edge, then use your julienne tool with the other hand to slice the pear into shreds.
Do the same with the celery. Start by removing any obviously tough strings, then anchor the stalk firmly with a fork. Hold the fork in one hand while you use the julienne tool to slice the celery into long strands.
Apple pears will turn brown just like apples. You can prevent them from oxidizing by tossing them in a teaspoon or two of lime or lemon juice. You can also simply slice all the other ingredients first, leaving the pears to do last.
🍽 What to serve with this Asian pear recipe
Try this simple Asian Pear Slaw with any of these spicy dishes! I like to make it when I have Thai Red Curry with Shrimp or any of the following:
- Ginger Garlic Glazed Korean Chicken Skewers
- Asian Glazed Garlic Chicken
- Easy Thai Chicken Skewers
- Easy Thai Baked Chicken
- Spicy Thai Wings
- Bangkok Crab Cakes with Spicy Thai Dip
🗒 More healthy slaw recipes
If you like coleslaw, try these recipes, too:
❓What can I do with too many Asian pears?
Are you overloaded with a bumper crop of apple pears? Try these 5 ways to use them! Here's a list of Asian pear recipes.
- Make this Asian Pear and Cranberry Chopped Salad
- Try this healthy Baby Bok Choy Salad with Ginger-Orange Dressing--the Asian pears put this vegan salad over the top!
- Serve them as an appetizer. This Blue Cheese Crostini with Crisp Honeyed Pear always gets rave reviews.
- Add them to a salad, like this nourishing Quinoa Salad with Cranberries and Pears.
- Poach them for dessert. These Poached Cinnamon Orange Pears with Maple Mascarpone make a heavenly dessert!
When you make this Asian pear recipe, please leave a comment and a star rating below. I love hearing from you! Thanks in advance.
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Asian Pear Slaw with Ginger and Lime
- 2 large stalks celery, julienne cut
- 2 large Asian pears, (about 3 inches in diameter) peeled and julienned, (also called apple pears)
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced, (scallions)
- ½ inch knob fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
- 2 tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon Thai chili pepper, very finely chopped (optional)
- Whisk together the ginger, lime juice and rice vinegar, then toss with the remaining ingredients. Let stand for a few minutes before serving.
This Asian pear recipe was originally published in 2017. It has been immensely popular, so I've updated it and bumped it up!
This recipe doesn’t sound like much on paper; but this slaw is one of the best recipes I’ve ever come across!
Thanks Paula! It's been immensely popular, maybe because it's so simple, but has SO much flavour! Thanks for the 5 stars.
This salad was awesome. Going to be a regular.
Flavour & Savour
Thanks Sue! Happy to hear that!
Nice change of pace for a crispy "sweet" and tangy side dish. Fresh ginger gave it a nice kick.
I've made this slaw many times and never tire of it! So refreshing. Thanks for another great recipe!
This is a wonderful recipe! We received several Asian pears as part of our CSA and discovered we don't like them very much as is. I couldn't bear to waste them so I turned to St Google for help. This slaw transforms them into pure deliciousness. Thank you!
Flavour & Savour
That's a great way to avoid wasting them--transform them! I agree--that little bit of ginger and lime brightens them up. Thanks for letting me know, Jenn!
Flavour & Savour
Hopefully soon, Kari! 🙂
I can see myself pairing this with everything Asian, the flavors are right up my alley! I'm excited to see your crab cake recipe, I've never done anything other than the traditional crab cakes, but a Thai twist sounds even better to me!