Sugar Snap Pea Salad

Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Sugar Snap Pea Salad Recipe

Sugar Snap Pea Salad

Spring Fever has officially hit. Mulch is in the air, mini-skirts are on the streets, and farmers’ markets are in full bloom.

I couldn’t resist these brilliant green sugar snap peas the other day. Sweet, crunchy, and juicy, I’ve even been chomping on them raw. Grassy and tender, they taste like pure Spring.

Sugar Snap Peas

Sugar Snap Peas

Snap peas are a cross between snow peas and garden peas. Like the snow pea, the pods are edible; like the garden pea, the pods are round rather than flat. When sugar snap peas are young and in-season like they are now, you don’t even need to “de-string” them (removing that pesky fibrous strand that runs lengthwise from tip to tip), making them perfect for an easy, light salad.

Snap Pea Prep

Snap Pea Prep

I blanched the snap peas first for a few minutes before shocking them in an ice bath. This made them tender but still delightfully crunchy. For texture, I shelled half of them, popping out the little round peas, and then julienned the empty pods into matchsticks. The remaining half of the snap peas I left whole, although, you could certainly continue slicing up the whole bunch.

sugar snap peas

Select the plumper/rounder snap peas to shell, they have larger peas inside.

To the sugar snap peas, I added a handful of refreshing mint, toasted almonds, and sweet caramelized onions. The dish is finished off with a simple, brightly acidic vinaigrette of lemon, rice vinegar, and olive oil.


Onion to be caramelized

This vibrant, fresh green salad is an interesting alternative to your normal leafy salad. It would also make a great substitution for coleslaw given all the crunchy textures.

sugar snap peas


Sugar Snap Pea Salad with Mint, Almonds, and Caramelized Onions

A perfect spring salad of tender sugar snap peas, refreshing mint, toasted almonds, and caramelized onions.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4 servings


1 pound sugar snap peas
1/2 medium onion
1 handful fresh mint leaves (about 1/4 cup chopped)
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 lemon)
2 tablespoons lemon juice (from ½ lemon)
Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  2. Meanwhile, chop the onion into half moon slivers. Allow to caramelize over medium-high heat in an oiled sautee pan (about 25 minutes).
  3. Wash the sugar snap peas and de-string them if necessary, snapping the tip and removing the fibrous strand running lengthwise. If the snap peas are young though, you won"™t have to do this. Drop the sugar snap peas into the pot of boiling water. Cook for 2 minutes, then strain out and drop them into an ice bath.
  4. Once the snap peas are cooled, strain them out and place half of them in a large bowl. Shell the other half, adding the peas to the bowl. Julienne the remaining pod shells lengthwise and add to the bowl.
  5. Roughly chop the mint leaves. Toast and roughly chop the almonds. Add mint, almonds, and caramelized onions to the bowl.
  6. Mix together the rice vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and drizzle over the salad. Toss well, add salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Print Recipe

This post was published on KQED’s Bay Area Bites on April 15, 2011.

Stumble It!
Posted by Stephanie at 11:44 am

35 Responses to “Sugar Snap Pea Salad”

  1. mmm that looks good. i’ve been trying to get better with what i eat, and i’ve been getting tired of the salads i’ve been making, so this is a good entry for me! i’m going to have to try this recipe!

    • Stephanie says:

      thanks, jennifer! yes i totally hear ya — you have to keep it interesting otherwise salads just get too boring :)

    • laura says:

      yes and the variety comes with added nutritional benefits too! all greens were not created equal; and that’s a good thing!

      i bookmarked this with my account!

  2. The colors of spring veggies and fruits are always so vibrant. You want to eat it just because of that. There’s a lot of different textures in this one too, which makes it seem fun to chomp on.

    • Stephanie says:

      yes, the textures are fun in this! between the round peas, slaw texture, and the whole pods, the snap peas themselves provide a carnival of textures. plus the almonds? fuhgettaboutit

  3. Those snap peaas are gorgeous!! The color just sings freshness.

  4. I love spring and all the fruits and veggies to come! This salad looks great. I’ll keep it in mind the next time I have a picnic :)

  5. Mary says:

    You really brought the color and lightness of spring to the table. Your salad is lovely. This is my first visit to your blog and I’ve taken some time to browse through your earlier entries. I’m so glad I did that. I really enjoyed my visit and love the food and recipes you feature here. I’ll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  6. sweet road says:

    How exciting spring and summer foods are! Time to put away those bisques and bring out the spring salads! This looks so great, I can’t wait to try it.

  7. Martina says:

    I love suger snap peas. I actually grow them myself in my garden.

  8. [...] cipollina tagliuzzata con le forbici, e mescolare bene il tutto. Servire su un letto di insalata. Insalata di pisellini novelli: Pulire i bacelli dei piselli, eliminare i filamenti e farli bollire in acqua salata finchè siano [...]

  9. hua says:

    delicious and healthy :)

  10. Really like this dish. Will be trying this this weekend.

  11. Kelly says:

    This looks so healthy and delicious! I can’t wait to try this myself :) Glad I found your blog, it’s fantastic!

  12. sonia says:

    Hi There, This is looking absolutely delightful. Very nicely made and presented. Its always fun to see ur appetizing recipes. Saving this recipe of urs and  wud love to give ur version a try on the coming weekend. Have a great day !!!

  13. Kankana says:

    This is going straight to my wish list. Love how colorful and healthy it looks and I love pea any time :)

  14. susan says:

    this looks fantastic! i am going to put this on the top of my “to do” list!

  15. This looks delicious and super it! must make it this weekend! (YAY Spring!)) 

  16. This salad looks so beautiful and timely! I have seen the peas just come into season and showing up at the organic market. yeepee

  17. This salad sounds so fresh and good!

  18. the salad has our stomach growling! thank you so much for sharing!

  19. Ashleigh says:

    Looks fantastic, cannot wait to try this!!!! YUM!!!

  20. [...] an eye.  I’ve been thinking about combining them with mint and feta in a salad after I was inspired a couple of weeks back.  This simple recipe is perfect for spring.  It’s pea [...]

  21. Marilyn says:

    tried this yesterday with snap peas picked at our CSA and it was a hit. Even larger pea pods worked. Thanks!

Leave a Reply