Thai Style Spicy Beef Salad

Thai Salads are incredibly nutritious and easy to prepare. Spicy Beef Salad has become one of the most popular dishes both in Asian and the West. Around Thailand, each region has its own interpretations. This recipe is derived from the northern area of Thailand where Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai sit. Like most other Thai salads, Spicy Beef Salad provides an invaluable source of low-fat proteins and fresh ingredients that create an addictive explosion of flavors on the palate. I love my salads super spicy but you can adjust the level of heat to your own preference.

Serves 4 as Appetizer Salad

8 ounces beef, sirloin or tenderloin
1 tablespoon olive oil
6 garlic, finely minced
1/4 red onion, julienned thinly
2 scallions, roughly chopped on the diagonal
1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
1/2 cup mint, roughly chopped
2 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
Juice of 3/4 lime
5 bird’s eye chili peppers, finely minced (substitute with 1 1/2 tablespoons ground red chili pepper)
1/2 large cucumber, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon lemongrass, finely minced
1 teaspoon sugar
Iceberg or Romaine lettuce for garnish


In a wok or non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Sear the beef for several minutes on each side until golden brown and crusty. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool down.

In a large mixing bowl, place the garlic, red onion, scallions, cilantro, mint, fish sauce, lime juice, chili peppers, cucumber, lemongrass and sugar together.

Slice the beef thinly and place together with all the other ingredients in the mixing bowl. Toss everything together gently but thoroughly. Arrange the lettuce on a serving plate. Top the lettuce with the beef mixture and serve warm.

*Cooking the beef this way results in a medium well done finish. If you prefer rare, sear the beef on high heat and as soon as one side is browned, turn over and repeat. If you prefer more well done, simply cook the beef as instructed but lower to medium heat and add a few minutes on each side.