Gado Gado

Gado Gado is a dish from Indonesia which can be classified as a salad.

It is really really healthy and full of nutrition…not to mention delicious! My neighbor was born and raised in Jakarta and is a great cook. She was generous enough to share this recipe with me. She told me gado gado is kind of a street food in Indonesia.

Basically its bowl full of steamed and raw vegetables served with a sweet, salty and tangy peanut sauce and topped with crumbled up crackers.

I really like recipes like these where you get a flavor of something different in every bite.

For my bowl- I used a combination of dark greens, cabbage, green beans, cucumber, tofu and potato. The next day I also added some jasmine rice to the bowl. The rice made it a wholesome meal and it was very filling….perfect for a lunch!

I topped my bowl with some sriracha (hot sauce)  because I like a little bit of heat in my food. You dont have to if you don’t like the heat–that’s the good part about this recipe…it gives you the flexibility to play around with different flavors.

The peanut sauce is the star of this recipe and is a great blend of flavors. It is sweet, salty, tangy and spicy at the same time….what I like to call a well balanced sauce! You can make the sauce and keep it refrigerated in an airtight container up to a week, so later on all you have to do is steam vegetables and drizzle the sauce that’s already sitting in your refrigerator…easy peasy!

Serves 3 to 4

Cooking time 30 min

Things you will need:

For peanut sauce

1 cup peanuts, unsalted and roasted

1 medium onion, roughly chopped

2 cloves garlic

1 tbs vegetable oil

1 tbs palm sugar

1 tbs water

1/2 lemon

2 dried red chilies, soaked in warm water for 1 hour


In a pan, stir fry onions and garlic till it reaches a golden brown color. Let cool. Mix/melt palm sugar in water, keep aside. In a blender add peanuts, onion, garlic, salt, palm sugar dissolved in water and red chilies. Blend to form a smooth paste (you will have to scrape the sides in between and might have to add a little more water). Adjust the salt and mix in the lemon juice.

For the salad

rice, steamed (optional)

tofu, cubed

potato, boiled and peeled

green beans, steamed

cabbage, shredded and steamed to desired crunch

cucumber, sliced

boiled egg, sliced (optional)

soy chips, or any other kind of chips- preferably unsalted and unflavored

sriracha (hot sauce, optional)

soy sauce

To arrange gado gado

In a pan, stir fry slices of boiled potato- till it turns golden. In a big bowl, place 1 to 2 tablespoon cooked rice. Add cabbage, green beans and potato slices. Arrange egg and cucumber slices on the side. Drizzle good amount of peanut sauce over the salad. Roughly crumble a few chips in your palm and spread over the salad. Drizzle a little bit of soy sauce and sriracha. Serve immediately!