Sensational Salads: Nut Allergy Hack ~ Candied Chow Mein Noodles

A few weeks ago, I was having a friend over for lunch. We both love salad, but like so many people out there, she hates making them. I used to feel the same way, but over time, have found some fabulous dressings and short cuts, so I no longer dread making them. Check out my previous Sensational Salad posts for great recipes and tips.

On to today’s post….I often like to add nuts or seeds to my salads for that added crunch (and extra protein), but being allergic to both, I knew that wasn’t an option. It didn’t seem fair, that she had never even had the chance to enjoy them. It got me thinking about how I might be able to mimic the experience for her. I googled and found some good suggestions for nut substitutes, but still wasn’t left feeling too excited about any of them. One of my favourite salad add-ons is candied nuts. Since I was making a salad with a sweeter dressing (Holiday Lettuce Salad) and the recipe called for nuts, I thought I might see if I could come up with my own alternative for “candied nuts”.

I adapted a recipe for Candied Pecans by substituting the pecans with dry CHOW MEIN NOODLES. They turned out fabulous…nut allergy or not! They served their purpose perfectly by adding a bit of sweetness and crunch to the salad.

Candied Chow Mein Noodle Recipe


  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 cups dry chow mein noodles


  • Combine the first 4 ingredients in a skillet and cook over medium heat for a minute or two, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is bubbling.
  • Add the chow mein noodles and cook for an additional 3 minutes, stirring to coat the noodles in the glaze. *You may find that you want to add more than one cup of noodles to soak up the extra glaze.
  • Remove from the heat, and spread the chow mein noodles out on parchment paper and let them cool completely.
  • Break apart, and enjoy! I use my food chopper when I want the pieces smaller, but bigger pieces make a yummy and dangerously addictive snack! I’m not gonna lie…you might not want to make a full batch!

Give this simple recipe a try and let me know what you think!

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About Cindy RoyI’m a busy mother, wife and kindergarten teacher. I have a huge list of loves! I love my family, The Source Church, old houses, “up-cycling”, DIY projects, scrapbooking, volleyball, interior design, cake decorating, party planning, healthy eating, and last, but certainly not least…gift wrapping! I just launched my brand new Youtube channel and am super excited to share BOWhemian WRAPsody with my followers. My channel is dedicated to all things relating to gift wrapping and creating beautiful eye catching presents…its all in the PRESENTation! I’m very organized and reflective, and am continually striving to do life more lovingly, passionately, effectively and successfully.

2 thoughts on “Sensational Salads: Nut Allergy Hack ~ Candied Chow Mein Noodles

  1. I am always so excited to go to Cindy’s home for any event, but sharing Cindy’s company while enjoying one of her delicious salads was lovely. I have to say the added crunch on top of the salad was a new experience for me as those toppings are always nutty and I am careful to stay away from them due to my allergies. The entire afternoon was full of fun, laughs and friendship. Since following Cindy’s blog I have learned to embrace making salads and I have discovered that I was in fact an “over chopper”. I have tried all the salads and all the dressings on Cindy’s blog and I highly recommend them. I went out the next day and bought my chow mien noodles and candied them. It was a big hit with my family. Thanks Cindy for helping me re:define salad making.

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