Spicy Thai Papaya Salad
March 30, 2016
By Elizabeth Palmer Califano

This bright and spicy Thai papaya salad packs a flavorful punch, and makes anything you serve it with sing. Papaya is an amazing source of vitamins C, B, folate, flavonoids, potassium, magnesium, and carotenes. It also bolsters your digestion with special enzymes, and supplies healthy fiber. Spicy peppers are full of capsaicin, which gives them their spicy flavor, and also boosts your metabolism. Make up a big batch of this flavorful salad, and enjoy all the healthy benefits!

Total Time: 15 minutes

Serves: 2-4


  • 2 limes, quartered
  • 2 jalapenos, or 2 fresh Thai chilies (de-seeded to your own spice preference), chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, coconut sugar, or honey
  • 1 small handful cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 1 large papaya, peeled, de-seeded, and shredded or thinly sliced and chopped
  • Salt, to taste
  • Cashews, peanuts, or almonds, chopped, to serve (optional)


  1. Using a mortar and pestle, combine the limes, jalapenos, garlic, and brown sugar. Crush and work these ingredients together until well combined, but not totally pulverized. Add the tomatoes, and crush slightly. Season to taste with a pinch of salt.
  2. In a large bowl, add the shredded papaya, and pour over the lime mix. Toss well to combine. Check the seasonings, adding more lime juice or salt as needed.
  3. To serve, garnish the salad with chopped nuts, and serve alongside some steamed rice or cooked protein of your choice. Enjoy!

Note: This salad is a delicious accompaniment to grilled meats, shrimp, or fish. It doesn’t keep well, and tastes best the day it’s made.

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About the Author

Elizabeth Palmer Califano
Elizabeth is a graduate of Hamilton College and The French Culinary Institute, as well as an avid world traveler and dinner party hostess. For more information, visit her website: www.elizabethpalmerkitchen.com