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Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp

June 11, 2014

This Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp is packed-full of veggies and protein to make a delicious and satisfying meal. It’s perfect for BBQs, picnics of even lunch on the run! It’s also gluten-free!

You know what drives me bonkers?! False advertising. I get the concept of needing to sell a product, but marketing your jelly beans as fat-free isn’t cool. You know what turns into fat? Sugar. You know what the main ingredient in jelly beans is? Sugar. I apologize in advance for this post becoming a full-on rant.

This Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp is packed-full of veggies and protein to make a delicious and satisfying meal. It's perfect for BBQs, picnics of even lunch on the run! It's also gluten-free!Let’s rewind for a minute here. It’s a beautiful day and I decide to get my grocery shop on. I put together my list, grab my bundle buggy and head to the store. Sometimes I get inspired when I’m there and as I was looking for tamari, my eyes glazed over a pack of soba noodles. Hmmmm cold soba noodle salad sounded good so I made an impulse buy and headed home.

When I got home from the store it was lunchtime so I decided to put together the salad. As I was pulling out all of the ingredients I think I want to use for the salad, I glanced across the soba noodle packaging only to notice that the first ingredient in them was enriched wheat flour <–SAY WHAT? I was livid. Not only was I a) hangry and b) experiencing an intense craving which needed to be fulfilled immediately, but I truly felt deceived. The front of the package says “Buckwheat Soba Noodles” so naturally you would expect them to be made from buckwheat? Okay fine buckwheat was the second and only other ingredient but still…

Instead I had to put aside my craving until I could make it to a health food store to pick up some legit buckwheat noodles. The people at Vibrant Lifestyle (I love it there!) were not only nice enough to listen to my rant but also taught me to always look for 100% buckwheat noodles. Nonetheless, I still have some pent up anger.

Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp // thehealthymaven.comOther types of false advertising that drives me nuts: When multigrain is just a combo of white and whole-wheat, “made with corn!” aka high-fructose corn syrup, or when companies fool consumers into thinking their product is healthy because it is labeled as gluten-free. I could go on and on but in my attempts to keep this space a positive place, I’ll stop. For now, I urge you to read more into the products you buy. I’m not talking calories, but look at the ingredients! And try not to come home with enriched wheat flour soba noodles…


Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp

  • Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 package of 100% buckwheat soba noodles (8 oz)
  • 1 bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 cups bean sprouts
  • ½ pound cooked shrimp, deveined and peeled

For The Sesame Ginger Dressing:

  • 1 T finely minced ginger root
  • 1 T sesame oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 1/2 T honey
  • 2 T rice wine vinegar
  • 2 T tamari
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 T sesame seeds (for topping)


  1. Cook buckwheat noodles according to package instructions.
  2. Run noodles under cold water until completely cool.
  3. In a large bowl add noodles, bell pepper, bean sprouts and shrimp.
  4. In a separate bowl combine all ingredients for the sesame ginger dressing.
  5. Pour onto noodle mixture and top with sesame seeds.
  6. Serve cold.
  7. Will keep for several days in the refrigerator.


  • Serving Size: 4

This Cold Sesame Ginger Soba Noodle Salad with Shrimp is packed-full of veggies and protein to make a delicious and satisfying meal. It's the perfect healthy recipe for BBQs, picnics of even lunch on the run! It's also gluten-free!What kind of false advertising have you encountered? Does it drive you as crazy as it does me?


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  • Reply
    Arman @ thebigmansworld
    June 11, 2014 at 5:19 am

    Don’t even get me started.

    I won’t forget buying a loaf of ‘wholewheat 100% natural bread’ in NYC and the second ingredient was HFCS….and it had sugar in addition to it. As for this recipe….COLD = winning. PRAWNS = winning.

    This will be made….but with rice noodles because I OD’d on them and the shrimp/pesto combo is getting a tad boring lol.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 5:42 am

    This looks mighty fine. I love Asian noodle bowls, especially cold. Cold curry is possibly the best thing ever – try it if you have not already! It is pretty shocking what can be lurking in those labels despite the front package claims. “Natural Flavouring” is usually speak for beaver butt glands. YUM…

  • Reply
    Kim @ BusyBod
    June 11, 2014 at 5:48 am

    I’m actually really glad you shared this story because after some quick googling I’ve discovered that buckwheat (and therefore soba noodles) is ok for my fructmal! Wheat of course is not, so that would be a very upsetting mistake for me to make as well.

    I feel you on the false advertising because I get irrationally angry about something similar – false reporting! John will tell you that I spend pretty much every moment watching the news shouting at the TV because some reporter said something misleading or flat out untrue. This comes not from any sort of journalism background but from my inner scientist. It started with science based stories and spiraled out of control.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 5:53 am

    I get so angry when I feel a company is trying to dupe me, like Stonyfield and their baby yogurt. Grrrrr

    On the other hand, I get happy when I find shrimp recipes. Love shrimpieeees

  • Reply
    meredith @ The Cookie ChRUNicles
    June 11, 2014 at 6:10 am

    Sometimes I think I know way to much because like you, I can look at those ingredients and be like – hello, false advertising, fooling most of America, this is not healthy as it claims nor is it really the food you think you are getting. Ugh don’t even get me started!

  • Reply
    kaitlin @4loveofcarrots
    June 11, 2014 at 8:10 am

    ugh I hate false advertising, like when you buy a granola bar and find out after you ate the whole thing the serving was meant to be for 2 people! I love cold noodles and am sooo happy you posted this recipe!

  • Reply
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey
    June 11, 2014 at 8:11 am

    It’s awful because SO many people think that they are eating healthy foods, when really all they’re having is processed junk. That was one of the main points of the Katie Couric documentary “Fed Up” and it’s so true. Most people don’t know to read the ingredients. Good thing you did and didn’t just go digging in to yours!

  • Reply
    Em @ Love A Latte
    June 11, 2014 at 9:08 am

    Love cold noodle dishes. I will add this list to my sauce to make. I normally make a peanut sauce, but this is a really nice change up. Minus the shrimp for me and this dish sounds fantastic for summer! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Kelly Runs For Food
    June 11, 2014 at 9:09 am

    False advertising is the worst! I often eat “bad” foods, but at least I’m perfectly aware they’re bad. Nothing’s more annoying than thinking you got one thing, then finding out it’s something else.

  • Reply
    Amanda @ .running with spoons.
    June 11, 2014 at 9:10 am

    You mean you don’t like finding preservatives in your “natural” products? Or traces of trans fats in foods that are supposed to be trans fat free? Yeah, I’m not a fan either. It’s kind of sad how deceptive food marketing is these days. I’m sticking to my theory that they’re secretly trying to make people sick and fat.

  • Reply
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles
    June 11, 2014 at 9:23 am

    It’s interesting the see the lengths that companies will go to jump on the ‘healthy’ bandwagon, to the point of being deceiving. Anything to make a buck, apparently!

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 9:24 am

    My life is false advertising because I live it/work it/breathe it. I fall for dumb shit (i.e. flash sales) but I’m good at knowing what is a good buy and what isn’t (thanks marketing degree!). Also I read every label like a freak, it takes me years at the grocery store… and I wonder where all my time goes. ANYWAY, this looks delicious but are you trying to kill me with those shrimp? Maybe Joe P and I can switch out for some scallops. Have they invented a shrimp allergy shot yet?

  • Reply
    Kim @ Hungry Healthy Girl
    June 11, 2014 at 10:00 am

    What a pretty noodle salad! Would you believe, I’ve never tried Soba noodles. Gotta change that!

  • Reply
    Alex @ Kenzie Life
    June 11, 2014 at 11:32 am

    Cold noodle salads are some of my favorite dishes during the summer because they are just so refreshing! I might replace the shrimp with tofu but the sesame ginger dressing sounds amazing too! (I’ve also had that same problem with buckwheat noodles that aren’t completely buckwheat…)

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I have had exactly this problem before!! The extra frustrating part is that the 100% buckwheat noodles (at least at my local Whole Foods) are super expensive–I think $8 a package. For noodles? How silly!

    Have you ever tried any of these Asian-type recipes with black bean noodles? I just discovered them recently and they’re a great option!

  • Reply
    Chelsea @ Chelsea's Healthy Kitchen
    June 11, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Totally agree with you here. Package labelling can be ridiculously deceiving! I actually recently talked about this during a nutrition educations session I did with pregnant women. My #1 advice was to always read. the. ingredients!

  • Reply
    Jo @ Living Mint Green
    June 11, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I think I’ve settled on Vancouver for my mini-vacay. DONT BE MAD. But, it’s just that Vancouver has the ocean, mountains and all that outdoorsy stuff I love.
    My BFF just moved to Toronto so I will visit you soon. xoxox

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Oh my gosh! I totally agree with you about the multigrain and the gluten free issue! False advertising is the worst! Especially when it comes to healthy eating. Most people just don’t have the knowledge to be able to decipher all this propaganda and make informed decisions.

  • Reply
    Ang @ Nutty for Life
    June 11, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    UGH false labeling pisses me off so much. The time I get most annoyed with it is with yogurt actually. Very specific. But basically I hate “fat free” flavored yogurt because guess what?! IT’S PUMPED WITH ASPARTAME! I yell at my mom for eating it all the time. Merp.

    ANYWAY this looks super good. I have a strange affinity for bean sprouts, so. Yeah.

  • Reply
    Polly @ Tasty Food Project
    June 11, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    I love soba noodles and I think this looks so flavorful and refreshing! I always try to remember to read the label before buying something. I’m not a huge fan of false advertising!

  • Reply
    Gabby @ the veggie nook
    June 11, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    And that’s why I never buy soba noodles- the less expensive ones ALWAYS have wheat! UGH. I honestly think the best thing I got out of being vegan for so long is that I always read labels now and know exactly what’s in everything I eat. Saves me from nasty surprises most of the time. So sorry you got duped!!

    But on the upside, the final dish you made look spectacular!!

  • Reply
    Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
    June 11, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    I’ve been craving Asian inspired dishes for the past week…need to make something with sesame seeds & sesame oil ASAP!

    On a note related to annoying food advertising, I listened to an interview with Michael Pollan the other day and he was saying how sneaky smart the food industry is. Because awhile back after he publicly shamed high fructose corn syrup, food producers listened up and started making products loaded with sugar, with their labels proudly exclaiming “NO HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP!” as if it was healthy just because it’s lacking one crappy ingredient.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Ahhhh yes, I have learned the hard way to always read the label. Being dairy free I have to, it’s ridiculous what has milk in it that you wouldn’t think does. The last time I slacked on reading a label I bought a peanut sauce with ANCHOVIES IN IT! BLECH. Lesson learned, labels always get ripped apart. I would like a fat bowl of this amazing looking salad, dear Lord.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 6:46 pm

    Rant received and reciprocated! I hate “false” advertising too! If you don’t educate yourself, you have no chance. Same goes with beauty ads that feature photoshopped, flawless models. No, your lotion will not make me look like Jessica or whoever the hot celeb is at the moment. I’m not Jessica, I’m Emily!

  • Reply
    Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves
    June 11, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    BOOOO for false advertising. Like when chips are “made with real vegetables,” but it’s some over-processed powder crap. I still eat the stuff, but that ain’t my veg.

  • Reply
    Archana @ThePerfectZest
    June 11, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    that is so wrong of them to market enriched wheat for soba noodles. I have to try these though- I’ve seen them in several places but always forget to look for them at TJs.

  • Reply
    June 11, 2014 at 9:21 pm

    I feel like EVERYTHING in magazines is false advertising… I actually cancelled every single one of my 7 subscriptions b/c I just got so fed up with it finally.

  • Reply
    Megan (The Lyons' Share)
    June 11, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    Amen, sister. False advertising drives me absolutely bananas. It’s so unfair to the less educated consumer who is **trying** to be healthy, picks something up that says “fat-free” or “healthy” or “whole grain” or whatever, and is actually eating crap. Your recipe, of course, looks delicious! I tried kelp noodles tonight in a seafood dish … eh, they were ok, but I think I’ll go for soba next time!

  • Reply
    Shashi @ RunninSrilankan(dot)com
    June 12, 2014 at 6:47 am

    So, I haven’t ever had buckwheat noodles before – do they taste/feel like spaghetti> Only reason am asking is cos spaghetti has me ranting about worms…nasty right? But, I will tell you what’s not nasty – this flavor combo with shrimp, bean sprouts and peppers – married with that ginger dressing – gawsh – hold the fork, I think I will dive right in!!!

  • Reply
    June 12, 2014 at 8:58 am

    Oh – what a huge bummer about the noodles the first time through!
    I’m glad you were able to get buckwheat noodles and share your recipe still!!!
    I don’t read labels much – I know it’s not normal but….

  • Reply
    Alexis @ Hummusapien
    June 12, 2014 at 9:22 am

    Omggggg I could rant and rave for hours about this topic. Like when I saw bright green sugar-free snow cone syrup at the store complete with artificial colors and flavors (duh), HFCS, and a trillion other gross chemicals. Buckwheat noodles with enriched flour are especially ridic since people wanting those are often gluten-free! I mean hellooooo! PS why must buckwheat noodles cost me half my paycheck??! Love these noodlies and love you.

  • Reply
    Erin @ The Almond Eater
    June 12, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Hhaha oh man well that’s the food companies for you. Trust no one!

  • Reply
    Miss Polkadot
    June 13, 2014 at 5:25 am

    And that’s the very reason I have yet to try buckwheat soba. Because yes, I’ve seen soba noodles before – only that sneaky label didn’t deserve to say buckwheat but more like: traces of buckwheat. I honestly wonder if these companies have ever been sued by somebody with a gluten intolerance. Maybe when they ordered a buckwheat noodle dish at a restaurant assuming the pasta was okay or when others cooked for them assuming the same?
    The ‘fat-free’ tag? We don’t even need to talk about that. Hello, tons of sugar making up for the lack of delicious natural fat. Another claim that really bugs me is ‘free of flavour enhancers’ when there’s stupid yeast extract in just about every single one of those products. Summing up: yes, it drives me nuts, too.

  • Reply
    Melissa @ Nourish By Melissa
    June 13, 2014 at 10:56 am

    I totally understand your frustration with all that false advertising! It especially drives me crazy when people assume “gluten free” is automatically healthy! Ahhhh on the bright side, this recipe looks delicious 🙂 Super refreshing on a hot summer day!

  • Reply
    June 17, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    This is why I never buy low fat or low sugar anything. Give me the real deal, and I bet it satisfies me more which means I need less of it and my craving is actually satisfied.

    Check out olive oil the next time you’re at the store. Most are actually a mixture of different oils, which can only be seen by reading the fine print, the ingredients. It’s all shenanigans, I tell you.

  • Reply
    December 6, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Can you clarify the amount of tamari? The ingredients say 2 T cup?

    • Reply
      Davida Kugelmass
      December 6, 2014 at 6:16 pm

      sorry about that Kit! It should be tablespoons, NOT cups! Fixed. Thanks for pointing this out!

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