Spicy Ramen Noodles

4.86 from 7 votes
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Spicy Ramen Noodles uses pantry ingredients and comes together in just 30 minutes. These spicy noodles will be your go-to for better-than-takeout weeknight meals. 

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Spicy ramen noodles in a gold serving bowl topped with cilantro.

Why You’ll Love these Spicy Ramen Noodles

During the winter months, the experience of slurping down a bowl of piping hot ramen is unrivaled. (See my Spicy Miso Ramen for further convincing!)

It’s my go-to this time of year, and something I crave constantly. However, it’s hard to execute homemade ramen that packs a fraction of the flavor punch as most Japanese restaurants.

In developing this recipe, however, I was determined to create homemade ramen that ONLY uses ingredients I already had on hand, and that came together in 30 minutes.

Now I’m not promising you will have every ingredient on hand, but anything you have to buy will likely be used again. Especially if you make my recipes, like this Sesame Tofu Ramen, on the regular.

These spicy noodles are pure comfort in a bowl, and one of my recent favorites. So let’s learn how to make it, shall we?

The Ingredients

Recipe ingredients with labels arranged on a wooden serving board.

Any ramen fan will tell you that it’s ALL about the broth, and this recipe is no different. In fact, the noodles are simply a vessel for this chili-spiked, deeply savory broth.

  • Ramen: Any variety of fresh or dried ramen noodles work! If making the recipe gluten free, use Lotus Foods Millet & Brown Rice Ramen
  • Aromatics: Fresh ginger, garlic, and green onion are musts for bolstering the broth. You can either mince or finely grate the fresh ginger
  • Chili flakes: This recipe calls for 1 1/2 tsp of chili flakes, however feel free to scale that amount to your liking. If you’re sensitive to spice, reduce to 1 teaspoon.
  • Oil: I love using a mix of sesame and vegetable oil. Sesame oil should only be used for low heat cooking since it can easily burn.
  • Vinegar: Many classic ramen recipes call for mirin, which is a sweet rice wine used in Japanese cooking. In this recipe, however, feel free to use rice vinegar instead
  • Soy Sauce: A must for its salty, umami-rich edge, though feel free to use tamari or coconut aminos instead
  • Fish Sauce: This umami POWERHOUSE ingredient that imparts unparalleled salty-savory funk. However, if you don’t have it on hand, you can add extra soy sauce in it’s place.
  • Mushrooms: Perhaps the most umami-rich mushrooms in the game, shiitakes add savory depth and meaty texture. Though really, any mushroom will work here: oyster, cremini, or button mushrooms, for example.
  • Broth: Use either vegetable or chicken broth.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Make a chili-garlic paste. This is a simple mix of sesame oil, fresh garlic, and ginger, but it packs a PUNCH.

The key is to cook the paste over medium-LOW heat to prevent burning. The aromatics and sesame oil are very sensitive to heat, so it’s important to not let them burn. Too high heat will render the oil rancid, and impart bitter notes to the garlic.

Chili-garlic oil being simmered and transferred to a bowl.

Step 2: Cook the mushrooms until golden. The mushrooms can handle higher heat, and we actually want them to develop deep golden color.

For best results, avoid stirring too often so they ample contact with the pan. Once golden, stir in two thirds of the green onion and cook until soft.

Step 3: Build the broth. First, add rice vinegar to deglaze the pan. Next, add soy sauce, fish sauce, and broth.

Mushrooms and green onion being sauteed, and noodles being simmered in broth.

Step 4: Cook the noodles, which should only require a few minutes. Once the noodles are tender, stir in the chili-garlic paste and edamame, and remove from heat.

Divide the spicy ramen noodles evenly into four bowls, deploy your fresh toppers, and enter umami heaven.

Substitutions/Additions:

Think of this more as a blueprint for ramen in which you can get creative with the add-ins and toppings. Read on for some ideas. 

  • Veggies: Just about vegetable you have on hand can be added to ramen. For example, matchstick carrots, broccoli, green beans, and any type of mushrooms.
  • Protein: In this vegetarian version, edamame adds ample protein, however you can also add chicken, pork, or shrimp.
  • Toppings: I go for things that are cooling, crunchy, and/or toasty for texture and flavor contrast. For example, fresh herbs, sprouts, sesame seeds, or a jammy egg.

Recipe FAQs:

What to Add to Ramen to Make it Spicy?

Chili flakes, chili oil, or chili crunch will add the perfect amount of heat to ramen noodles.
If using chili flakes, make sure to gently simmer the flakes in hot oil to coax out their spice. These leads to more dimensional flavor.

What are the Best Noodles for Ramen?

Any kind of wheat or rice noodle are going to be light and springy, and the ideal choice for ramen bowls.
In terms of brands, I love Koyo packs of ramen noodles, which I either purchase from Amazon or Sprouts Market. (I just discard the seasoning packets they come with, though they’re also quite good!)
Alternatively, you can purchase fresh ramen noodles from your local Asian market or specialty foods store.

What are the Best Toppings for Ramen?

Fresh herbs: Basil, cilantro, scallions, or even mint!
Mung bean sprouts: They offer the best crunchy contrast to the silky noodles.
Shaved radish: Look for watermelon radish to imbue some beautiful, bright color.
Toasted sesame seeds: A little crunch, a lot of toasty goodness—what’s not to love?

How to Store and Reheat:

  • Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
  • Reheat: Rewarm leftovers either on the stovetop in a pot over medium heat, or in the microwave.
  • Freeze: I do not suggest freezing these spicy noodles. The mushrooms do not hold up well after being frozen and reheated.
Chopsticks twirling a bite of spicy ramen noodles out of a gold bowl.

More Ramen Recipes to Try:

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a pic and tag #dishingouthealth so I can see your beautiful creations. And don’t forget to follow along on Facebook and Pinterest for the latest recipe updates.

4.86 from 7 votes

Spicy Ramen Noodles

Spicy Ramen Noodles using pantry staples that comes together in just 30 minutes. This easy, adaptable ramen recipe will be your go-to for better-than-takeout weeknight meals.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Dutch oven or stockpot

Ingredients  

  • 2 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
  • 2 tsp. freshly grated ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp. chili flakes
  • 1 to 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 6 oz. shiitake mushrooms, tough stems removed
  • 1 bunch green onions, divided
  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tsp. fish sauce
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 (3-oz.) packs dry ramen noodles (seasoning packs discarded)
  • 3/4 cup frozen shelled edamame, thawed
  • Optional toppings: fresh basil or cilantro, bean sprouts, soft-boiled egg
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Instructions 

  • Heat sesame oil in a stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-low. Once warm, add garlic, ginger, and chili flakes. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until aromatic. Transfer garlic-chili oil to a bowl.
  • Add vegetable oil to pot and increase heat to medium-high. Add mushrooms; cook 6 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden. Roughly chop two thirds of green onions and add to pan (reserve remaining for garnish); cook 2 minutes. Stir in rice vinegar, and scrape up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of pan.
  • Add soy sauce, fish sauce, and broth; bring to a boil. Add noodles, reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, until noodles are cooked, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in reserved garlic-chili oil and edamame.
  • Divide into four bowls and add remaining thinly sliced green onion, plus other garnishes of choice.

Notes

  • Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
  • Reheat: Rewarm leftovers either on the stovetop in a pot over medium heat, or in the microwave.
  • Freeze: I do not suggest freezing these spicy noodles. The mushrooms do not hold up well after being frozen and reheated.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 409kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 980mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 5g

I calculate these values by hand to ensure accuracy, however expect up to a 10% variable depending on food brands.

If you love this recipe, please leave a star rating and review below!
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Recipe Rating




12 Comments

  1. Beth says:

    4 stars
    So so good! Is the dish supposed to be brothy? I didn’t read the directions correctly, and boiled the noodles in the broth, and it reduced a lot and there isn’t much broth. Is that’s how it should be? I’ll definitely make this again.

    1. Beth says:

      5 stars
      Oops, I meant to give it 5 stars.

    2. Beth says:

      5 stars
      I meant to give it 5 stars.

    3. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Beth – It’s supposed to be closer to a pasta dish than an actual soup.

  2. Cheylene Lovie says:

    Any suggestions to replace the fish sauce that’s suitable for vegetarian… 🌸

  3. Sarah S says:

    5 stars
    Wow!! This was so tasty aka flavortown!! I added in about half the amount of chili flakes for garlic-chili oil and it still packed a nice little spicy punch. And again, it truly took the advertised! 10/10 recommend.

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Yay! Thank you so much for the rave review, Sarah–so glad you enjoyed it!

  4. Grace says:

    5 stars
    This was amazing! I ended up using chicken broth because that’s what I had on hand, but other than that, I followed the recipe as written. It definitely has a kick. Will make again 🙂

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Grace, I’m so glad you enjoyed it!! Thank you for taking time to leave a review!

  5. Hayley says:

    Do you think this would work with regular ramen noodles (i.e bought in a package on their own, rather than one of the instant packs with the seasoning packets)?

  6. Charlotte says:

    5 stars
    Quick, tasty and with just the right amount of heat.

    1. dishingouthealth says:

      Glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for taking the time to leave a review!