This Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad is another one of our main-dish salads that we just cannot get enough of. Hearty, packed with protein, but lots of vegetables, too. And this one even has noodles! You could use sweet Italian basil, but if you can find Thai basil it will give it a distinct flavor that we love. It is a little spicy with a hint of licorice. Combined with ginger, Garlic-Infused Oil, toasted sesame oil, soy sauce and sambal oelek, this salad is filled with flavor.
Let’s Talk About Texture & Color
Chances are that if you are reading this, the images and title intrigued you, which means, I bet that you are a bit of a foodie. I actually dislike that term, but it says what it means. Come join us in our private Facebook Group, Low FODMAP for FOODIES, if you haven’t already. You will find like-minded cooks.
We are the kind of folks who love cooking and the low FODMAP diet isn’t going to slow us down. Well, maybe it slows you down at first, but it isn’t going to stop you from learning how to thrive on the low FODMAP diet! We take flavor and deliciousness seriously.
Looks & Taste
For me, when I cook, I think about flavor first and foremost, but I also think about visuals and textures and temperature as well. And when you have a dish such as this Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad that combines many colors, textures, flavors and even temperatures you are rewarded with an explosion of culinary satisfaction. Your palate will be thrilled – and isn’t that what we look for in a “good recipe”?
There is absolutely no need for low FODMAP food to be boring!
Ingredients for Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad
Choose Your Fish Sauce Wisely
Fish sauce has a very assertive flavor, and it varies tremendously from brand to brand. To the point where I find that lesser quality fish sauces can ruin an entire recipe.
I use Red Boat fish sauce in the Test Kitchen, and this is the brand that I recommend. It has a well-balanced flavor as opposed to others that are overly salty to the point of being inedible. Some even have an acrid flavor that can permeate and ruin a dish. I can vouch for the way your Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad will turn out if you use Red Boat. If you use another brand, please do not write to complain.
This condiment is spicy, being primarily made up of chiles, but it has depth of flavor as well. The ingredient label should list chiles, salt, vinegar and perhaps some preservatives. There should be no garlic, so check to make sure.
Extra Garlic Flavor
How to get garlic flavor into your low FODMAP dishes is a big conundrum, especially for those new to the diet. FreeFod Garlic Replacer is a fantastic product in that it is super simple to use, and the garlic flavor brings it! The ingredients are maltodextrin and natural garlic flavor. The product is lab tested and certified low FODMAP by FODMAP Friendly.
A Closer Look At Garlic-Infused Oil
When I am making Tex-Mex food or Asian-inspired food and want garlic flavor I reach for my Garlic-Infused Oil made with vegetable oil. This is to distinguish it from my Garlic-Infused Oil made with olive oil. I keep both around, because each has its place in my low FODMAP kitchen.
Olive oil is much too aggressive a flavor for this dish. Even lighter flavored olive oils will clash with the ginger, sesame oil, fish sauce, lime and sambal – and overpower our star of the show, the Thai basil. Please use a vegetable oil-based garlic-infused oil for this recipe.
This dish was inspired by my new Thai basil plant. I had gone to the garden center to buy sweet Italian basil to plant and there were the Thai basil plants alongside, and although I hadn’t thought about them before I got to the store, I figured, why not?
And it was so perky and dying to be used…and this Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad came to be. The slight heat and licorice flavor from the Thai basil is unique and beautifully profiled in this dish.
How To Make Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad
Whisk together the marinade/dressing ingredients in a non-reactive bowl:
The FreeFod Garlic Replacer is a very fine granulated texture and will dissolve quite easily.
Tear the Thai basil by hand and add it in.
Make sure that you plan ahead so that your steak has at least 2 hours to marinate.
I like to cut the carrot and cucumber into fine julienne, and this is most easily accomplished using a hand-held julienne cutter. You can, of course, put your sharp chef’s knife to work as well; it will just take longer.
Begin adding your vegetables to a large mixing bowl that will be large enough to hold the noodles, too.
Part of the marinade is reserved to use as dressing. Use just enough to coat your salad lightly.
Once your steak is grilled everything gets tossed together, dressed and you are ready to chow down! This salad is best served immediately.
PLEASE NOTE that the nutritional profile is very approximate. You will not be consuming a great majority of the marinade, and therefore all the factors will be less (calories, sodium, etc.)
Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad
This Low FODMAP Thai Basil Steak Salad is another one of our main-dish salads that we just cannot get enough of. Hearty, packed with protein, but lots of vegetables, too. And this one even has noodles! You could use sweet Italian basil, but if you can find Thai basil it will give it a distinct flavor that we love. It is a little spicy with a hint of licorice. Combined with ginger, Garlic-Infused Oil, toasted sesame oil, soy and sambal oelek, this salad is filled with flavor.
Steak Dressing & Marinade:
- ½ cup (120 ml) Garlic-Infused Oil, made with vegetable oil, or purchased equivalent
- ½ cup (120 ml) freshly squeezed lime juice
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- ¼ cup (60 ml) fish sauce, such as Red Boat
- 2 tablespoons sambal oelek
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, preferably low-sodium, gluten-free
- 1 heaping tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 teaspoons FreeFod Garlic Replacer
- ¼ cup (6 g) Thai basil leaves
- 1- pound (455 g) raw steak, such as rib-eye, strip steak, top sirloin
- 12- ounces (340 g) low FODMAP gluten-free spaghetti
- 2 medium carrots, trimmed, peeled and julienned
- 2 Persian cucumbers, ends trimmed and julienned
- ¼ cup (16 g) chopped scallions, green parts only
- 2- ounces (55 g) baby arugula
- 2- ounces (55 g) baby spinach
- ¼ cup (6 g) Thai basil leaves
Make the Dressing: Note that the dressing will be divided into a marinade for the steak as well as partially reserved to dress your salad. Whisk together the oil, lime juice, sugar, fish sauce, sambal oelek, toasted sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger and FreeFod Garlic Replacer in a bowl. Tear the Thai basil leaves into pieces and add to the marinade. Pour about half of the dressing into a non-reactive shallow bowl, like a pie plate, and add the steak. Turn the steak over a few times, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 6 hours. You can also place in a Zip-top plastic bag and remove all the air. If the steak is in the plate, it does need to be turned over at least once while it marinates. In the bag you can leave as is.
Prepare the Steak & Salad: Lightly oil clean grates and prepare a medium-hot propane or charcoal grill. Remove steak from marinade and discard marinade. Grill the steak until your level of doneness, flipping once. We like it charred on the outside and fairly rare within but cook to your liking. Let the steak rest at least 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, fill a large pot with salted water and cook the pasta till al dente; drain. Place the pasta in a large mixing bowl. Slice the steak across the grain and add to the bowl and drizzle with a little of the reserved dressing. Add the carrots, cucumbers, scallions, arugula and spinach and toss, adding more dressing as you go, to taste. Garnish with additional Thai basil, bruising or tearing gently as you add it to the salad. Serve right away.
Our recipes are based on Monash University and FODMAP Friendly science.
- Arugula: Monash university has lab tested arugula. For many years they stated that arugula had no FODMAPs. After a 2019 smartphone app update, they changed the entry to say that arugula contains trace amounts, but still state, “east freely and according to appetite”.
- Carrots: Carrots have been lab tested and deemed low FODMAP by both Monash University and FODMAP Friendly. According to Monash carrots contain no FODMAPs.
- Cucumbers: Both Monash University and FODMAP Friendly have lab tested cucumbers. FODMAP Friendly gives them a “Pass” at ½ cup (64 g).Monash states that no FODMAPs were detected upon lab testing and set a serving size at ½ cup (75 g).
- Garlic-Infused Oil: Make your own Garlic-Infused Oil or buy a commercial equivalent for the easiest way to add garlic flavor to your food. Fructans in garlic are not oil-soluble, so garlic-infused oil is low FODMAP.
- Ginger: Monash University has lab tested fresh ginger root and has determined it to be free of FODMAPs, making it one of our go-to no FODMAP foods.
- Lime Juice: Monash University has lab tested lime juice and it is low FODMAP in 1 cup (250 g) amounts (double that of lemon juice, as an interesting fact).
- Pasta: You have to read labels but there are many low FODMAP and gluten-free brands of pasta available. Use what is called for in individual recipes. Our go-to is rice based pasta. Monash University lab tests states that 145 g for 1 cup cooked pasta is a low FODMAP serving and FODMAP Friendly lab testing suggested 2 cups or 146 g cooked is low FODMAP.
- Scallions: The green parts of scallions are low FODMAP as determined by Monash University lab testing and can be used to add onion flavor to your low FODMAP cooking.
- Sugar: Monash University and FODMAP Friendly have both lab tested white, granulated sugar. Monash states that a Green Light low FODMAP serving size of white sugar is 1/4 cup (50 g). FODMAP Friendly simply states that they have tested 1 tablespoon and that it is low FODMAP. Regular granulated white sugar is sucrose, which is a disaccharide made up of equal parts glucose and fructose. Sucrose is broken down and absorbed efficiently in the small intestine.
Please always refer to the Monash University & FODMAP Friendly smartphone apps for the most up-to-date lab tested information. As always, your tolerance is what counts; please eat accordingly. The ultimate goal of the low FODMAP diet is to eat as broadly as possible, without triggering symptoms, for the healthiest microbiome.
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more. For a more detailed explanation, please read our article Understanding The Nutrition Panel Within Our Recipes.