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5 from 2 votes
Hero shot of Japanese Pasta Salad (Spaghetti Salad) on a plate.
Japanese Pasta Salad (Spaghetti Salad)
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
8 mins
Total Time
13 mins

It takes a mere 10 minutes to make this salad. My Japanese Pasta Salad is a spaghetti salad dressed in Kewpie mayonnaise with Dijon mustard. It is not heavy and is great even as a light meal.

Cook Time depends on the type/brand of pasta you use. My pasta needs 8 minutes to cook al-dente.

Actual Total Time is about 10 minutes as you can do the preparation while cooking the pasta.

Recipe Type: Salad, Sides
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: Kewpie mayonnaise, mayonnaise dressing, pasta salad, spaghetti
Serves: 2
Author: Yumiko
Ingredients (tbsp=15ml, cup=250ml)
  • 100g/3.5oz spaghetti , broken in halves (note 1)
  • 2 tsp vinegar
  • 25g/0.9oz leg ham slices , cut to 1cm/3/8" square (note 2)
  • 40g/1.4oz cucumber , thinly sliced
  • A pinch of salt
  • 20g/0.7oz onion , thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp Kewpie mayonnaise (note 3)
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp milk (more or less, optional)
  • A pinch of salt & pepper
To Serve (optional)
  • A couple of lettuce leaves
  1. Cook pasta in a pot with sufficient amount of salted water as per the packet instructions.
  2. Drain pasta and sprinkle vinegar over the pasta, toss and leave to cool down.
  3. While cooking pasta, sprinkle a pinch of salt over the cucumber slices and leave for 5 minutes to soften, then squeeze the moisture out.
  4. Leave the sliced onion in a bowl of cold water for 5 minutes, then squeeze moisture out (note 4).
  5. Mix the Dressing ingredients in a bowl. If you prefer slightly runny dressing, add milk to adjust consistency.

  6. Add pasta, ham, cucumber and onion slices to the bowl and mix gently ensuring that the dressing coats every strand of spaghetti.

  7. Place lettuce leaves (if using) on a serving plate and place the pasta salad in a mound in the centre.

Recipe Notes

1. Instead of spaghetti, you can use macaroni if you like.

2. I used a slice of leg ham but you can use other hams, even salami.

3. Kewpie mayonnaise is a Japanese brand of mayonnaise. It is creamier than the Western-style mayonnaise and not very sour, or sweet. See the photo of Kewpie mayonnaise in the post Okonomiyaki (Japanese Savoury Pancake). It is sold at major supermarkets.

You can use Western-style mayonnaise instead of Kewpie brand but the flavour of the dressing will be different.

4. This is to take the bite out of the onions. Some onions are sweet and do not have a strong bite. In that case, you can skip this step.

5. You could also add corn kernels and/or julienned carrot to the salad.

6. Nutrition per serving.

serving: 187g calories: 435kcal fat: 20g (31%) saturated fat: 3.3g (16%) trans fat: 0.1g polyunsaturated fat: 10g monounsaturated fat: 5g cholesterol: 53mg (18%) sodium: 1039mg (43%) potassium: 414mg (12%) carbohydrates: 41g (14%) dietary fibre: 2.1g (8%) sugar: 3g protein: 22g vitamin a: 1.7% vitamin c: 2.3% calcium: 2.6% iron: 13%