Rice Salad with Shrimp and Avocado


Have you ever made a rice salad with mayonnaise? Until about a month ago I thought every single visitor of my blog would answer this question positively. For long years I was convinced such a leftover salad was popular everywhere around the world, especially among the nations for which rice is a staple. Then, astonished, I realised rice salad was a total novelty for my Japanese teacher, who took my recipe and prepared her very first rice salad. Her enthusiastic feedback emboldened me to post this casual dish. One’s staple is often another person’s discovery, so I hope that regular rice salad makers will forgive me such a basic recipe and will not consider this post pretentious.

I cook a lot of Asian dishes, so leftover rice is my everyday fare. To be honest, I always steam more rice than needed because we are particularly fond of fried rice and of course rice salads. Rice salads have always been for me a safe bet in the simple & quick meals category, especially in summertime when they become a chilling alternative to fried rice. I prepare many different versions, depending on what I have in the fridge, but the mixture of shrimp, avocado and cucumber is probably the most frequent. First of all I am very fond of this combination (see below other dishes including it) and keeping the three ingredients in stock is quite easy (I buy frozen raw shrimp). Almost all my rice salads include canned corn, a necessary sweet accent and a delicate softer but still crunchy note. In my opinion shrimp, avocado and rice literally scream for mayonnaise, so I have never tested this version with other sauces, although I serve other rice salads with mustard vinaigrette. I know this bowl might not look very appetising, but if you like the main ingredients and have never tried making a leftover rice salad, you should give it a go. I am almost certain you will not regret it.

Here are two other dishes with my beloved shrimp, avocado and cucumber combination (accidentally they also include rice and mayonnaise):


Maki Sushi with Shrimp, Avocado and Cucumber

Hot & Cold Rice Bowl with Shrimp, Avocado and Cucumber

TIPS: This is a laid back, casual meal. I change the ingredients’ proportions according to my mood and to what I find in the kitchen. Therefore the below amounts are approximate.

I find that leftover, one day old rice is the best option in rice salads. It should at least stay several hours in a closed container before the salad is served.

Preparation: 10 minutes

Ingredients (serves 2 hungry people as a main course):

15 medium shrimp (shelled, deveined and blanched)

1 avocado

1/2 long cucumber

1 1,2 – 2 cups (about 375 –  500 ml) cooked rice 

1 red onion or 1 big spring onion 

1 can corn (300 g/about 10 oz)

a couple of tablespoons mayonnaise

salt, pepper

(Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce)

Chop finely the onion or spring onion.

Cut up the remaining ingredients.

Drain the corn.

Heat the rice in a microwave until is tepid (it will help to break the grains and to avoid lumps).

In a big bowl combine all the ingredients, add the mayonnaise, salt, pepper, Tabasco and Worcestershire.

Serve cold.




40 Replies to “Rice Salad with Shrimp and Avocado”

  1. Sissi, I have never had rice salad, though the combination makes a lot of sense, and it would be so nice to not have to stand in a hot kitchen waiting for fried rice to get done!

    I am sitting here working while having 2 little girls serving me Play-doh meals (fancy ones too, lobster tail and steak, then finish off with cream brulee). School is starting next week and they are enjoy this last week of Summer vacation just playing. My fridge is suppose to get repaired tomorrow, cross your fingers for me please!

    1. Hi, Jeno. I keep my fingers crossed! I would get really hungry if I were served such play-doh meals 😉

  2. That salad looks very appetizing to me. Especially the fresh green onions on top. I also love the other 2 uses of these ingredients.

    I go through my green onions so slowly that I have resorted to slicing and freezing the rounds so I can add them to various things. Not usually a problem when I add them to miso soup but the defrosted rounds end up limp and not very vibrant in colour and don’t add a great accent in my food ‘styling’ attempts. 🙂

    1. Thank you, A_Boleyn. I add green onions to many dishes, but especially to my Sunday okonomiyaki brunch: I am able to put half of a bunch of green onions on top! (On the other hand I prefer chives in okonomiyaki, but I have already finished my balcony harvest…).

  3. I would never think of any dish that you make was pretentious. I have a rice salad that I love to make that has a vinegar and oil dressing. I have never thought of using a mayonnaise based recipe but I can’t wait to try your recipe as it sounds like something I would really enjoy.

    1. Thank you, Karen, for kind words. When I prepare rice salad with other ingredients I often add vinaigrette, but I am crazy for shrimp, avocado and mayonnaise combination. It gets so creamy especially if the avocado is very ripe.

  4. This sounds Fabulous!!
    I have not eaten anything since morning, just one of those crazy days when you don’t find time to feed yourself.. Now I am so hungry..
    I wish I had shrimps, I would have totally made this, or may be I will make this without shrimp…

    1. Thank you so much, Reem. You can of course make it with anything instead of shrimps. Or just skip them.

  5. Am also a person who always has cooked rice in the fridge, tho’ in my case it is always brown rice 🙂 ! Have also always [by that I do mean ‘boring’ decades and decades!] eaten rice salads! However, most of my many varied dressings are homemade yogurt based: one can treat yogurt the way one would treat the classic ‘French dressing’, adding and subtracting ingredients as mood and availability dictate! And one can vary one’s rice salad in so many ways and end up as a main or a side dish!! Healthy and delightful!

    1. I must say I’m not a big fan of brown rice… I also find it very difficult to digest (I know many people have this problem), so I have a box I bought a year ago almost untouched. I must admit I love the mayonnaise creaminess here and even though I make yogurt sauces in other dishes, I prefer mayonnaise here. You are right, it’s delightful and of course more or less healthy depending on what one considers… healthy 😉

  6. So funny when we say avocado + shrimp + rice salad, I wonder how it’s like, but if you say avocado + shrimp roll (that means rice in it), it sounds familiar. So biased!! We have similar taste bud so I know this salad is delicious! Japanese love our (Japanese) mayo and we put it in a lot of dishes… oh that reminds me. I made this chicken dish that I cook with mayo (I think everyone would say mayo? gross!) but actually this turned out to be very delicious meal… Mayo and ponzu combination. I was shocked… I thought I’d just share it with you (but I guess others can read this comment haha). I love your salad presentation, Sissi! 😉

    1. Thank you so much, Nami. Isn’t it funny? This is why I was so surprised that my Japanese teacher has never tried rice salad. This is a bit like chirashi sushi, but mixed and with mayonnaise 😉 I’m not surprised by your chicken experience… Everything (well almost) is great with good mayonnaise (I love the Japanese mayonnaise by the way!). I often cook a whole chicken, shred it and then mix with vegetables, sometimes rice and… mayonnaise. It’s delightful!
      Try one day dipping korokke or tonkatsu or chicken katsu first in mayonnaise and then in taberu rayu (the solid part). It’s extraordinary!

  7. Logically, rice salad should be tasty. I think I would have it happily if you served it for me, but I would have a lot of hesitation making it myself.

    1. Hi, Hiroyuki. So I was right to write about it! In Europe no one is surprised at my salad. Try to think about it as a chirashi sushi with avocado, shrimp, cucumber and mayonnaise, but thoroughly mixed 😉

        1. Haha! I never think of rice as just another cereal! Maybe another carb? I love rice as much as good French bread and cannot live without it (even though my addiction is recent, only several years and it started with a purchase of a rice cooker; then the discovery of Japanese style rice was a definite start of my addiction; you would have fun seeing how often me and my husband have rice…). I haven’t had pasta for such a long time because when we hesitate between pasta and rice dish, rice always wins 🙂

  8. I made your Rice bowl with Shrimp avocado and cucumber and loved it. I am sure I would like your rice salad as well Sissi. I am always looking for new ways to use up leftovers. Never worry about posting simple recipes — we like them too!!!

    1. Thank you very much, Barb. I am happy you liked my rice bowl. Thank you for letting me know. It always brings a big smile to my face. This one is of course very similar (there is corn too), so I hope you would like it too.

  9. One’s staple is often another person’s discovery – you’re so right about that. I have never had rice salad with mayonnaise… but I think I would enjoy your dressing version for a switch-up. This is such a great, solid meal. Like you, I always have avocado on hand (I eat virtually daily), shrimp is more of a luxury but I adore it equally. I especially like the idea of working with what you have in the fridge and adding it on to the left-over rice. It’s such a sensible way to eat. A more elegant – and yes, cool – style stir-fry ;).

    1. Thank you very much, Kelly. It’s such a staple for me together with vinaigrette and rice salads… so thank you for confirming that it’s not like posting about scrambled eggs 😉 It is solid meal indeed, but I must confess I add low-calorie mayonnaise because I cannot live without it (I have found two fantastic brands and no one ever realises I serve low-calorie mayonnaise!).
      I have stopped considering shrimp as luxury because I happen to live in a city/country where I can buy frozen shrimp much less expensive than for example chicken breasts… I buy it in a special shop for restaurants, so they are raw and frozen. Incredible, isn’t it?

  10. I’ve never heard of rice salad with mayonnaise, but it does sound interesting. We are not eating as much rice these days as we try to cut down on carbs, but I can see this with quinoa or even wheat berries! The creaminess of the avocado would be wonderful with the sweet taste of the shrimp, it’s a combo I often forget about. This looks like a lovely lite lunch, Sissi. Thanks for the inspiration.

    1. Thank you, Eva. I had no idea quinoa or wheat had less carbs. I love rice so much, I couldn’t live without it. I simply have smaller amounts and often mix it either with frozen peas or like here with corn.

  11. I make salads from leftover rice all of the time, but I have NEVER added mayonnaise. Never would have even thought of it until now. Like you I make extra rice and I just happen to have a couple of cups of rice in the fridge that are waiting for something to do. This is a perfect salad for me right now although I would have to have Bobby grill the shrimp which is quite doable. Thanks for the recipe! Perfect timing!

    1. Thank you so much, MJ. I wish I had a grill… grilled shrimp tastes so much better than cooked. I hope you will like this salad (if you make it).

  12. I like the idea of rice salad since I never had it…sounds light and great for the warm weather…
    Thanks for the recipe Sissi and hope you are having a great week 🙂

  13. I prepare rice for my family all the time and I never ever thought of adding mayo. Your flavor combination sounds delicious so this is a definite must try!

  14. Sissi, as much as I love all kinds of rice, the only cold rice I eat is in the sushi roll…which your rolls excel in!
    The Italian rice salad consists of olive oil, and of course various chopped cooked vegetables, but that’s cold too, so I would just heat it up.

    Makes a lot of sense to add the mayo to the cold rice salad, and especially the way you made it looks, so light and delicious with the shrimp:)
    When I have leftover rice, I will make stir-fried, and Italian rice balls, and most favorite is the rice pudding…and that, of course I love to eat chilled…so now (I don’t make sense; hmmm)

    1. Thank you, Elisabeth. I have never had an Italian rice salad. This rice salad is very creamy… a bit like potato salad.

  15. Sissi, I’m back again…this time for a different reason. I am not able to comment on Zsuzsa’s blog due to the ‘word verification’…even after several tries. She is the 6th blog now that has the same word verification that will not let my comment thru!
    I think it has to do something with Blogger…just don’t know why this is happening!
    I would let her know in e-mail, or on facebook but I don’t have either address!
    Maybe you can mention this on her blog since I see that you are able to comment!
    Thank you so much!

    1. Hi Elisabeth, I will comment about it on Zsuzsa’s blog. I hope it will be resolved… and I hope I can still comment!

  16. Rice and mayo … hmmm. I’ve had it in sushi but not this way. It does sound a little strange yet why should it, since we have it in sushi. Guess it’s just something one isn’t quite used to.
    We have our nyonya version of a rice salad and it’s all about pungent herbs. I haven’t posted it (yet) since it takes such a lot of slicing and dicing. Yours however, looks like something I could get used to.

    1. It’s so funny because in Europe where we don’t eat rice often (apart from crazy rice fans like me and my husband) this salad is so basic and boring… definitely not surprising. As I told Nami, you can see it like a chirashi sushi but mixed 😉

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