Jicama and Orange Spinach Salad with Ginger Dressing

17 Sep

Contain your excitement, please.  This week I bring you not one but TWO recipes that use a relatively uncommon vegetable.  Jicama, pronounced ‘heek-ah-mah’ (also known as yam bean), is a starchy sweet root vegetable native to Mexico.  With a crispy texture resembling a cross between a potato and a pear, jicama is commonly eaten raw in salads and slaws or dipped into salsas.

Jicama keeps a low profile. An addictively crunchy texture is revealed once its unassuming fibrous exterior is peeled away.


While living in London, I tried to get my hands on jicama for what felt like forever.  Coincidentally, every time it was on my grocery list jicama was nowhere to be found.  I did spot it the odd time (London is not that small) but never had the confidence to pick it up without a recipe in mind.

Now that I’m in Toronto, jicama is readily available at some of the larger grocery stores.  I’ve fallen in love with its crispiness and subtle sweet taste.  It’s the perfect snack straight up: no dips or dressing necessary.  For my first jicama attempt, I followed a recipe for an orange, jicama, and red pepper spinach salad with a soy-based vinaigrette.  The salad wasn’t particularly fancy but the flavours worked really well together.

My next jicama attempt?  Stay tuned…

Spinach salad with Jicama, Orange, Red Pepper, and Red Onion.


Jicama and Orange Salad with Ginger Dressing
(from Rose Reisman)

2 cups peeled jicama, sliced into strips 1/2 inch wide by 3 inches long
6 cups baby spinach
1 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 large orange, peeled, membranes removed and cut into thin strips

4 tsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp brown sugar
2-1/2 tsp sesame oil
2-1/2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
1-1/2 tsp olive oil
1-1/2 tsp water
1 tsp minced fresh garlic
1 tsp minced fresh ginger

Garnish (Optional):
1-1/2 tsp sesame seeds, toasted
1/4 cup chopped cilantro or parsley

  1. Place the jicama, spinach, red pepper, onion, and orange in a large serving bowl
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce, olive oil, water, garlic, and ginger.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine.  Garnish with sesame seeds and cilantro, if using.

Makes 6 servings.  Per serving: 137 kcal, 3.9 g fat (0.5 g saturated), 24 g CHO, 5.3 g fibre, 2.9 g protein, ~100 mg sodium.

6 Responses to “Jicama and Orange Spinach Salad with Ginger Dressing”

  1. Sarah Leo September 17, 2012 at 11:49 pm #

    I love jicama. It’s super awesome sliced up with a bit of lemon juice splashed on it. Let’s sit around and eat it next time we reunite!

    • lisa September 18, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

      Deal. I’m not sure if you’ve tried it with a bit of chili powder + cumin + lime juice… also very delicious!

  2. Victoria September 19, 2012 at 7:56 am #

    Hi Lisa:

    Where did you find it in London? I’m always looking for healthy snack for myself now after my weight loss journey.

    • lisa September 19, 2012 at 8:07 pm #

      It’s so nice to hear from you, Victoria! I occasionally spotted jicama at the Superstore or Loblaws in London but it was a rarity. One place to check out is United Supermarket on the east side of Adelaide between Huron and Cheapside. It’s an Asian grocery store that carries a HUGE variety of exotic produce. While jicama isn’t exactly Asian, I wouldn’t be surprised if they have it. Let me know how the hunt goes!

      • Victoria September 19, 2012 at 8:53 pm #

        🙂 Thanks Lisa. I’m in that area a fair bit so I’ll stop in. I have been curious about it but never took the time.

        I just made a great soup with cabbage and quinoa. It’s based on one from Christine Cushing. I took out the bacon and added garlic. It’s YUMMY. 🙂

      • lisa September 19, 2012 at 8:55 pm #

        Sounds delicious! I’d love a copy of the recipe when you have a minute.

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