Snow Peas with Garlic & Ginger

This easy snow peas recipe uses a handful of fresh ingredients and pantry staples, and it’s ready to eat in minutes. Use a hot skillet or wok for this simple snow pea stir fry. You’ll love this Asian-inspired side dish with chicken, pork, seafood, and more.

ingredients for cooking snow peas recipe.

When you think of snow peas, you probably think of them as part of another recipe like my pork lo mein, but these tender, green pea pods are also delicious on their own, like in this snow pea side dish. This simple recipe is quick and easy and goes with many main course dishes.

side by side comparison of snow peas and sugar snap peas.
See how much flatter the snow peas are?

Snow peas vs. snap peas – what’s the difference?

Before we get into the recipe, I want to point out the difference between snow peas and snap peas so there’s no confusion.

Snow peas are also known as Chinese pea pods (originated in Southwest Asia) and are indeed a pea pod, but the snow peas are harvested before the peas mature.

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You can quickly tell the difference because snow peas are much flatter than snap peas.

Sugar snap peas, on the other hand, are a hybrid of English peas and snow peas. They are rounder, crunchier, and very good to snack on raw with hummus.

Fresh snow peas are best for this recipe.

Ingredients for snow peas recipe

  • Soy Sauce
  • Rice Wine Vinegar
  • Sesame Oil
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Snow Peas
  • Grated Ginger
  • Minced Garlic
  • Vegetable Oil (or other neutral oil)
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds (optional)
  • Black Sesame Seeds (optional)

There’s no need to add salt as the soy sauce acts as the salty ingredient.

fresh snow peas on a plate.

Do I need to trim snow peas?

Snow peas have a thin string that runs along the seam for the length of the pod. Sometimes they can be tough… and, well, stringy.

Although the whole pod of the garden pea is edible, some people may want to remove the strings before cooking the snow peas. It’s your choice.

How to trim snow peas

  1. Remove the tough stem by trimming it with a paring knife.
  2. Hold a snow pea in your hand and use a sharp paring knife to gently trim the end of the pod where the little string is attached.
  3. Don’t cut through the string; instead, hold it between your thumb and the knife and pull it down the length of the pea pod. Discard the string.
trimmed snow peas.

How to cook snow peas

  1. Whisk the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Heat a heavy skillet or wok over medium-high heat.
  3. When the skillet is hot, add the neutral oil, then stir in the ginger and garlic and cook, constantly stirring, for about 30 seconds or until the mixture is fragrant.
  4. Add the snow peas to the skillet and cook, occasionally tossing for about 1 minute.
  5. Stir in the sauce and toss to coat the snow peas. Cook until the sauce reduces to a glaze and the peas are crisp and tender.
  6. Remove from heat and garnish with sesame seeds if desired.
grated garlic for the snow pea recipe.

Pro-Tip for cooking snow peas

This easy snow peas recipe comes together quickly, so it’s best to have everything prepped and ready to go before you start cooking.

Cooking snow peas in a hot skillet.


  • If you like a little spice, add a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes or a squeeze of sriracha to the sauce.
  • For more crunch, add a handful of chopped peanuts or cashews when you add the snow peas to the skillet.
  • If you like a fresh finish, add a squeeze of lime and chopped cilantro before serving.


Can I cook the snow peas ahead of time?

No, this is best when it’s done fresh and at the last minute.

Can I use frozen snow peas for the recipe?

You can, but they won’t be quite as snappy. Frozen vegetables are typically blanched first (already cooked), so they won’t be as crisp-tender as fresh.

Can I add other ingredients to the snow pea stir fry?

Absolutely! It would be very good with sautéed mushrooms and strips of sweet bell pepper. However, you’ll want to account for different cooking times with the stir fry. Start with mushrooms; when they’re cooked and tender, add the red bell pepper, then proceed with the rest of the ingredients. You can serve it with rice for a simple vegetarian meal.

Snow peas on a plate with pork loin.

How do the snow peas with ginger and garlic taste?

We love these sauteed snow peas because they’re crisp-tender to the bite with a tasty Asian-inspired flavor and a nice change of pace from everyday side dishes like green beans. The toasted sesame seeds and black sesame seeds add both texture and an eye-popping accent.

What goes with this snow pea recipe?

This snow peas recipe goes with many main course dishes (Asian and otherwise). Here are a few suggestions:

Serving cooked snow peas with sesame seeds.

More easy vegetable side dishes to try:

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5 from 6 votes

Snow Peas with Ginger and Garlic

This quick and easy Asian style side dish is one of our favorites. Snow peas with garlic, ginger a little soy sauce, sesame oil and rice wine vinegar make this a standout vegetable that goes with so many things.
Author: Lisa Lotts
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Asian Inspired
Keyword snow peas
Dietary Restrictions Dairy-Free, Egg Free, Gluten-Free, keto, Low-Carb, Vegan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4


  • heavy skillet or wok



  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 ½ teaspoon rice wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon sugar


  • 9 ounces snow peas strings trimmed
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil or canola oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoons fresh grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon black sesame seeds optional



  • In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil and sugar. Whisk to combine and set aside.
  • Heat a skillet or wok over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, add the vegetable or canola oil and swirl to coat the pan.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and stir until aromatic, about 30 seconds. Add the snow peas and sauté for about 1 minute, tossing with the garlic and ginger frequently.
  • Stir in the sauce and cook until it reduces down to a glaze. Add the sesame seeds and toss to coat. Serve immediately.


YouTube video


Calories: 41kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 255mg | Potassium: 150mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 693IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 2mg

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe was so quick and easy to make. We love the sauce and the ginger added a nice pop. Didn’t have black sesame seeds, but used regular toasted ones. Very good.