A juicy, flavourful, simply perfect Mango Salad that will fill your taste buds with joy. Best of all, it only takes 15 minutes to prepare and will get rave reviews every time you make it.
A Refreshing Mango Salad
I think everyone should be eating more mangoes, myself included. Not just mixed into salsas or salads with 20 other ingredients, but all on their own or as the main ingredient in a dish. Sweet and delicious, they are low calorie, full of vitamins, and bring on all the tropical, beachy vibes.
This savory-sweet salad is filled with a combination of flavors and textures, but juicy mangoes are unquestionably the stars of this show. Red peppers and onions offer contrasting color and crunchy bites, while a punchy, tangy lime dressing and fresh herbs keep it lively.
- A Refreshing Mango Salad
- Notes On Ingredients
- How To Pick The Best Mangoes
- How To Peel A Mango
- How To Cut A Mango After Peeling
- How To Make Mango Salad
- Helpful Tips
- What To Serve It With
- Recipe Frequently Asked Questions
- More Refreshing Salads To Try
- Mango Salad
Cooling and refreshing, this summery salad comes together in 15 minutes and is the perfect side to accompany anything that comes off the grill.
Notes On Ingredients
The simple dressing in this mango salad is pretty much identical to the one I use in my watermelon salad. The only difference is in this salad dressing is that I add some Aleppo pepper for more flavor and a hint of spice. So good! These are the salad ingredients you will need:
- Mangoes – You will need 3-4 just-ripe mangoes for this salad. Any variety will work but see section below for my suggestions.
- Red bell pepper – I like to use a red bell pepper for the beautiful contrasting color it makes with the orange. But of course yellow, or orange peppers will work just fine.
- Red onion – I love thinly sliced red onions in this salad, but you can use green onions or shallots instead.
- Fresh herbs – I like to use a combination of fresh basil and cilantro but you can just use one herb, if you wish. Mint would also be great here.
- Lime juice – For the dressing, you will need 1-2 limes.
- Sweetener – The mango is already making this salad sweet enough but we need just a smidge of sweetener in the dressing to balance the sour lime juice. I really like using agave in this dressing which is not too sweet and mild in flavor. But feel free to use honey, maple syrup or just a pinch of white sugar if you prefer.
- Aleppo pepper – I adore Aleppo pepper and sprinkle it on everything I possibly can. It is not as spicy as crushed red chili flakes, but is much more flavourful. It adds just a little heat to this savory-sweet salad, as well as tangy flavours. If you can’t find it, you can use a pinch of red pepper flakes.
- Oil – A neutral oil is best for this dressing. I use avocado oil but ay oil without flavour, or a very mild olive oil will also work.
I adore how simple and delicious this colorful salad is just as written. But you can certainly take it many different directions to make it your own. Here are a few suggestions:
- Add avocado and/or cucumbers. Mangoes, cucumbers and avocados make great partners. Slice one avocado and one English cucumber into thin slices, then layer them onto the platter.
- Top with nuts. Chopped cashews or raw peanuts would be wonderful in this salad.
- Add fish sauce to the dressing. Fish sauce will add some great salty-umaminess to the salad. If using, do not add any extra salt to the dressing or salad.
- Use green mangoes. Thai mango salads are made with green, unripe mangoes. If your mangoes are not ripe and you’re craving a mango salad, go ahead and use them! Add some fish sauce and call it a Thai salad.
- Add black beans. This may be taking it into mango salsa territory, but if you’re serving a crowd and want to stretch the sale, add a can of drained and rinsed black beans. Delish!
How To Pick The Best Mangoes
My favorite type of mango is the Indian Alphonso. They’re the golden yellow mangoes that are just a little smaller than the greenish-red mangoes most grocery stores stock. They are super-duper sweet and juicy but, unfortunately, not many grocery stores sell them.
Ataulfo mangoes, from Mexico, are also golden yellow in color but are longer and flatter. This variety is also very sweet and juicy and now stocked in many grocery stores.
When shopping for ripe mangoes, look for mangoes that are blemish-free and have smooth skin. Because there are so many varieties of mangoes and all differ in color, the color is not a great indicator of ripeness. Instead, give them a gentle squeeze—they should feel just a bit soft but not squishy.
Another way to tell if a mango is ripe is to smell it. Ripe mangoes will smell fruity, and much like, well, a mango.
An unripe mango is fine to buy, it will just take a few days to ripen on your counter. If your mangoes are really firm, put them in a paper bag to ripen more quickly.
How To Peel A Mango
Whether dicing or slicing a mango, my preferred method of preparing it, is to peel it before cutting it. You can use a small knife to peel it but I find it much easier to use a vegetable peeler.
- Start by trimming the tip off both ends of the mango with a knife. Then, hold the mango in your non-dominant hand with the widest end towards the top.
- Using a vegetable peeler and starting at the top, peel away the skin from top to bottom.
TIP: If your mango is very ripe and juicy and starts to get too slippery to hold, use a paper towel or small dish cloth to hold it doesn’t slip out of your hand.
How To Cut A Mango After Peeling
This recipe calls for slicing the mango into long strips. Here’s how to do it:
- Place the peeled mango upright on a cutting board.
- Going slightly off-center to avoid the pit, use a sharp knife to cut the flesh off the four sides of the pit. Repeat on the 3 other sides of the mango. You should end up with 2 thick pieces and 2 thinner pieces of fruit.
- To slice it, place each piece flat side down on a cutting board. Cut lengthwise into thin strips.
TIP: If there is any flesh left on the seed, don’t waste it. Slice it off, then discard the seed.
How To Make Mango Salad
Filled with the fresh flavors of mango, this aromatic tropical salad will truly delight everyone that tries it. Best of all, it is easy and quick to put together.
Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, agave (or sweetener of choice), Aleppo pepper, oil and a pinch of salt.
Layer the sliced mango, sliced peppers and onions on a large serving platter or shallow bowl.
Drizzle the dressing over the mango salad. Add the chopped herbs and sprinkle with a pinch more Aleppo pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
- Try not to use super ripe mangoes. For best results, use mangoes that aren’t super ripe. The sweet mango slices will keep their shape better if the fresh mango is just-ripe as opposed to very soft and very ripe. Leave the really ripe mangoes to use in a smoothie.
- Cut the mangoes and vegetables evenly. For a more visually appealing salad and to make it more pleasing to eat, it is best cut these ingredients into even uniform strips.
- Don’t let the mango salad sit for too long before serving. This is not a salad that can sit out for too long. If not serving immediately, hold the dressing, the cover and chill no more than 1 hour.
- If your mango isn’t super sweet, add a little more sweetener. Even when ripe, some mangoes aren’t very sweet. Just add a little more sweetener to taste, and the salad will still be delicious.
What To Serve It With
This vibrant and refreshing mango salad will make a fabulous side dish to many of your favorite summer mains. Here’s a few suggestions:
- Pair it with seafood. Mango and seafood make very happy partners. Pair it with salmon kabobs or this pistachio-crusted salmon.
- Coconut rice. This mango salad is divine alongside coconut rice. In fact, I could happily have a bowl of coconut rice with mango salad for dinner and feel completely satisfied.
- Grilled chicken. A few favourites are grilled drumsticks, chicken spiedini, grilled lemongrass chicken thighs, or yogurt marinated chicken.
- Burgers. The mango salad would make an excellent side to your favorite burgers. Try it with black bean burgers, or these turkey burgers.
- Rice and beans. This mango salad would make a fabulous vegetarian and complete meal paired with a platter of rice and beans.
Recipe Frequently Asked Questions
The texture and bright flavors of this salad will deteriorate as it sits so it is best to serve it right away. That said, leftovers are great chopped into a grain salad, tucked into tacos, or for making Vietnamese spring rolls – yum!
You could certainly turn it into a chicken mango salad by adding thin slices of grilled or pan-fried chicken. You could also add thinly sliced steak, or cubed crispy tofu.
Not at all. Aleppo pepper is a lot milder than red pepper flakes so you will barely detect any spice in the dressing.
This is a very healthy mango salad. Filled with fresh crunchy veggies, fresh mangoes, and a light dressing, you can feel great about eating this salad.
More Refreshing Salads To Try
If you give this Mango Salad recipe a try, please feel free to leave a comment and/or a star rating below. We appreciate and welcome all your feedback. Thank you!
For The Mango Salad
- 3 ripe mangoes, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, stemmed and thinly sliced
- 1/4 medium red onion thinly sliced
- 2-3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
- 2-3 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
- 2 teaspoons agave or honey
- 1-2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper (or 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes)
- 1 tbsp neutral tasting oil, (I use avocado oil)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Layer the sliced mango, peppers and onions on a large serving platter or shallow bowl. Sprinkle with chopped basil and cilantro.
- Make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, agave (or sweetener of choice), Aleppo pepper, oil and salt.
- Drizzle the dressing over the mango salad. Garnish with chopped herbs and sprinkle with a pinch more Aleppo pepper to taste, if desired. Serve immediately.
- Aleppo pepper: Adds just a hint of spice to this savory-sweet salad, as well as tangy flavours. If you can’t find it, you can use a pinch of red pepper flakes.
- Storage: This mango salad is best eaten shortly after it is assembled. To make a few hours ahead, prepare the salad and dressing but don’t combine until ready to serve. Leftovers can be stores in an airtight container for up to 2 days.