Sea Vegetables. Yes, it’s a thing. In Japanese cuisine, seaweed has been used for centuries. A sheet of kelp is simmered in water for a flavored broth called dashi. Nori sheets are the thin, black sheets used for rolling sushi, onigiri and maki. Seaweed is baked for “crackers” and sprinkled over salads and rice for added umami.
Because sea vegetables come from the salty ocean water, they naturally have a salty, briny flavor. They are also loaded with healthy minerals like iodine, iron, and calcium. Some studies even link seaweed with helping to eliminate toxins from the body.
From an environmental point, because these vegetables grown in the water, they are one of the most sustainable and eco-friendly plants. They don’t deplete the soil of nutrients. Rather, they provide protection to fish and other ocean life. They also help clean the water of harmful toxins.
What are the most Common Types of Sea Vegetables?
Kelp: This comes in sheets which are used in dashi. However, you can use them in any broth for a boost of iodine and more intense flavor.
Nori: Thin Nori sheets are either toasted or untoasted. They can be used for wraps or Easy Raw Veggie Rainbow Veggie Nori Rolls
Spirulina: This “super food” boasts lots of protein and plant-based nutrition. However, it comes from algae so it can have a strong flavor. Try it in a smoothie or St. Patrick’s Minty Sham-mock Spirulina Shake.
Wakame: These small, curly seaweed strands are also called hijiki seaweed. They’re the type used in this salad. They have a crunchy texture. Because of their briny flavor, they can be used in plant-based recipes to replace fish. For instance, add some to 10-Minute Roman Chickpea ‘Tu-No’ Salad or add to Oil-Free Vegan Caesar Dressing. It can replace the tuna or anchovies traditionally used in these dishes.
Where can I find Seaweed and Other Sea Vegetables?
You can often find them in the Asian section of your grocery store. If you live in an urban area, you may be able to visit an Asian market, which would have a huge selection. If these aren’t options, you can find them online.
Easy | Servings: 4 | Ready In: 10 minutes | Yield: 5 cups
Hijiki Seaweed is a small, squiggly-shaped seaweed, reminiscent of the packaged Ramen noodles that have been used in cold Chinese noodle picnic salads. In this raw, soy-free, vegan recipe they add a subtle briny flavor along with that same noodle-salad crunch. Paired with sweet corn, creamy avocado, and a dash of cayenne, this simple, oil-free dish brings the flavor with minimal effort. If you like this, you’ll also love Easy Raw Veggie Rainbow Veggie Nori Rolls, Shiitake Mushroom Miso Soup with Black Beans and Spinach, and Smoky Broccoli Pecan Crunch Salad.
- ½ red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons coconut aminos
- 1 ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
- ½ cup (40g) Wakame Hijiki Seaweed
- 4 ears fresh corn, kernels cut from the cob
- 2 avocados, diced
How it’s Done
To make the Spicy Hijiki Seaweed Avocado Salad: In a medium bowl, combine the red onion, coconut aminos, and cayenne pepper. Allow to sit for at least 5 minutes, letting the onion marinate and soften slightly with the coconut aminos. While the onion sits, you can cut the corn and avocado.
After the onion has marinated for 5 minutes, add the remaining ingredients to the bowl. Stir well to thoroughly combine. Taste to adjust seasoning.
Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 5 days.
The longer this sits, the more the flavors will come together.
If you like this, you’ll also love Easy Raw Veggie Rainbow Veggie Nori Rolls, Shiitake Mushroom Miso Soup with Black Beans and Spinach, and Smoky Broccoli Pecan Crunch Salad.Print Recipe
Chef Katie’s Tips
Coconut Aminos? Coconut aminos are a raw, soy-free alternative to soy sauce or tamari. They are gluten-free and have the same salty, umami flavor of traditional soy sauce. If you’re not concerned about this recipe being raw or soy-free, you can use soy sauce or tamari.
|Amount Per Serving|
|% Daily Value *|
|Total Fat 12 g||18 %|
|Saturated Fat 2 g||10 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 7 g|
|Polyunsaturated Fat 2 g|
|Trans Fat 0 g|
|Cholesterol 0 mg||0 %|
|Sodium 88 mg||4 %|
|Potassium 652 mg||19 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 29 g||10 %|
|Dietary Fiber 12 g||48 %|
|Sugars 8 g|
|Protein 6 g||12 %|
|Vitamin A||9 %|
|Vitamin C||24 %|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|