Wave bye-bye to instant noodles with these 12 ramen recipes
Hot, spicy, salty and delicious, there's nothing like a bowl of ramen to warm you up and leave you feeling satisfied. But step away from those chopsticks - instant ramen is usually loaded with sugar, fat, salt and even nasties such as monosodium glutamate that could seriously impact your health. Ramen is so easy to prepare at home that there's no excuse for eating the instant stuff. Don't believe us? We've gathered together 10 of our favourite ramen recipes to inspire you and get you cooking up your own ramen dishes, with just a few ingredients. You'll never eat instant noodles again!
Forget about instant noodles in a flash with this home-made ramen noodle soup. Okay, so it's not THAT healthy, but if you swap out the ramen packet noodles for regular egg noodles and add some more vegetables, it's a pretty tasty meal, infused with Thai flavours. We swapped the peanut oil for sesame oil, but you could use olive oil or rapeseed oil, both a source of good fats. Most of the ingredients are readily available at your local supermarket.
You don't need to be vegetarian to appreciate this gluten-free cross between Japanese ramen and Vietnamese Pho. It's a great way to comfort-eat if you have a cold (or the beginnings of one) as it's warming, satisfying and loaded with goodness. Miso creates a deeply savoury soup that's packed with vitamins A and C from the sweet potato and the broccolini, whilst sliced tofu and egg gives the dish some much-needed protein. Yummy!
We promised you a Korean-inspired recipe, and here it is in all its glory. You could buy kimchi in your local Asian supermarket, but making your own can be fun - it's basically pickled vegetables with a delicious sweet, sour and spicy flavour; get the recipe here. Added to this ramen dish which is packed with flavour from the Korean red chilli flakes, rice wine and smoked paprika, it makes an authentic bowl of home-made kimchi ramen which is the perfect winter warmer!
Sometimes you want a lighter version of ramen noodle soup, and this vegetable-packed version is perfect if you're in need of comfort food that's super-healthy. It's vegan and gluten-free, and whilst you could use any noodles of your choice, this recipe uses courgette noodles, which are easy to make with a vegetable peeler and a knife (or a spiraliser). You can add the vegetables of your choice - a great way to get your five-a-day!
Healthy, cosy and spicy, this is the perfect soup to blast your cold into submission - make a batch the next time you feel unwell and in no time at all you'll be feeling better! It's easy to make too; you just need chopped tomatoes, onions, garlic, spices, herbs and some sriracha chilli sauce. Top with poached eggs for added protein and enjoy.
This luxurious soup is loaded with goodness and you can basically add whatever vegetables you have to hand, although the recipe calls for mushrooms, bok choi, sweetcorn, red pepper and spring onions. Protein from the chicken and egg, carbs from the noodles (use wholewheat varieties, if you can) and rich flavour from the red miso make this a really special noodle soup. Plus, it's a quick and easy meal to prepare for lunch or dinner, if you're eating alone or working from home!
Sometimes you need a recipe that's almost as quick to prepare as a pack of instant ramen - but a damn sight healthier! Enter this amazing recipe for speedy home-made ramen; with none of the MSG or salt. When you're craving Asian flavours and noodle soup, this is perfect - kale, carrots, dried mushrooms (you could use fresh), chives and plenty of ginger and garlic are simmered gently in chicken or vegetable stock with noodles for a delicious soup. For a really special treat, fry some Japanese panko breadcrumbs (available in larger supermarkets or Asian grocery stores) and top the soup with them for added crunch. Delicious!
Forget the takeaway this weekend - this is the only recipe you'll need. Honestly. Loaded with lean protein from the chicken, plenty of fresh vegetables and low in salt, this dish uses zucchini noodles instead of traditional egg noodles, for a light, fresh flavour. The grilled chicken is intensely smoky, thanks to the rub of cayenne, smoked paprika, chilli and cumin, whilst coconut oil adds a source of healthy fat. Use home-made chicken stock if you can, or look for a reduced-sodium version to cut the salt content even further.
It's not STRICTLY ramen, it's Vietnamese noodle soup, but Pho is a delicious, comforting bowl of goodness that's perfect for those chilly days - what better way to warm up after a run? The broth is delicately spiced with star anise, cloves, cinnamon, coriander seeds and cardamom pods - this subtle spicing is a feature of Vietnamese cooking and it's what makes Pho so special. The addition of lime wedges and some fresh mint is lovely; the final broth is served over rice noodles, and you could add some extra veggies, if you like.
#10. Bacon and Egg Ramen
Noodle soup purists - look away now, this recipe is a soup-inspired take on the breakfast classic of bacon and eggs. And it is super-tasty! You can add chicken, pork or beef for extra protein, but the grilled bacon gives the soup a deep, savoury flavour. It's cheap to make too - once you have all the ingredients, you'll be set to make a bowl of comforting bacon and egg ramen whenever the mood strikes!
This is the perfect dinner to have if you're struggling to get your eight hours' sleep a night - turkey is loaded with tryptophan, an amino acid that can help you to feel drowsy. These low-fat, protein-rich meatballs are easy to make - why not make a double batch so you can whip up a second helping of this dish for dinner tomorrow?
#12.Thai Shrimp Ramen Noodle Soup
Using shrimp, or prawns, in this healthy noodle soup means you'll be enjoying a low-fat source of protein, whilst the rich flavour of the broth with its fish sauce, chilli sauce, garlic, ginger and lime means it's hard to believe that this is a healthy option! The recipe calls for iron-rich spinach and mushrooms - we also like to add carrots, and you could throw in some fresh beansprouts for added goodness, if you like. Warming and comforting, this Thai-flavoured soup is a great alternative to a regular bowl of soup!