Back when I lived in Los Angeles, Mark and I used to go to restaurant called Houston’s. It was perfect for special-but-low-key occasions – like when family came out to visit or Valentine’s Days where we didn’t want to deal with another night of having our car accidentally locked away in a Hertz Rental Car lot because the swanky/upscale Italian place didn’t have their valet on duty when we tried to figure out parking. Grumble. Anyway. The main draw of Houston’s, for me, was their Thai Steak salad.


I finally decided to try and attempt it myself for one of our Qwerty nights. This recipe features a whole array of different flavors that, on paper, sound a little scary (Brie was admittedly a little worried, but says she ended up loving the result). It was all complicated by the fact that one of our crew is allergic to mango, others hate cilantro, and others still hate bell pepper.


I ended up combining cabbage, avocado, romaine, and freshly chopped mint (OH GOLLY did that smell good!) in a large bowl, and then served the mango, strawberry, cilantro, marinated and grilled steak strips, bell pepper, and peanut dressing all in their own separate bowls, assembly line style.  I realize that strawberries aren’t part of a traditional Thai Steak Salad, but it ended up being the perfect substitution for our Mango-allergic Qwertyer while also adding a nice element for the rest of us.


It turned out really lovely. Admittedly, there was a lot of chopping and prepping all the fruits and veggies, but Mark is a pretty wonderful sous chef. 🙂

This makes for a really wonderful special occasion meal that’s definitely lighter than our usual Qwerty fare. Hope you enjoy it!

Thai Steak Salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A multitude of flavors combine for a light, fresh, and delicious salad that works nicely as a main dish.
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Thai Fusion
Serves: 6-8
  • 2 mangoes, peeled and sliced
  • 2 avocados, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup strawberries, sliced
  • ½ cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • ½ cup green onions, sliced
  • 1 cup mint leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 4 cups cabbage, shredded
  • 6 cups romaine, shredded
  • 4 Tablespoons peanut butter
  • 4 teaspoons sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons Olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
  • Juice of four limes
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 3 pounds of sliced flank steak
  • 1 additional Tablespoon sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons squeeze-bottle ginger
  • 2 Tablespoons squeeze-bottle garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Hoisin sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • Cooking spray
  1. Combine 1 Tablespoon sugar, ginger, garlic, hoisin, and soy sauce in a large plastic bag. Add in steak and massage bag until well combined. Refrigerate/marinate for at least one hour.
  2. Whisk together peanut butter, 4 teaspoons sugar, olive oil, sesame oil, lime juice, pepper flakes, and salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Set aside (or refrigerate until it is time to serve).
  3. Once the steak is done marinating, coat a pan with cooking spray and cook the steak to preferred doneness (we tend to like it medium, but the flavor sticks around even if you like it well done).
  4. Combine mangoes, avocados, strawberries, bell pepper, green onions, mint, cilantro, cabbage, and romaine in a large bowl.
  5. Separate out equally onto desired number of plates, then distribute steak evenly and drizzle well with dressing.
  6. Serve & enjoy!


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Founder at Wendt Creative
Cat loves to eat tasty homemade things, yet isn’t terribly fond of the process of making them. She prefers recipes that take shortcuts when possible – without compromising flavor. Her dog, Cheeto, likes stealing her creations from the dining room table.

She lives in the Bay Area and cites her diverse background as her biggest influence: her visual artist mom is half-Chinese, half-Greek, and from Hawai’i; her film-loving, world-music curating dad is from Montana; and she lived in both California and Montana while growing up. She loves at least a little bit about virtually everything (Pokémon Snap included) and aims to be a Jane of all trades. By day Cat is a multiple-hat-wearing media person.

She is also allergic to felines.
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