Today, I’m participating in Food Network’s Back to School Communal Table event where a group of bloggers is sharing their favorite back to school kids and adult lunches.
Now that my kids are all back in school, I don’t have to worry about feeding my brood of boys lunch each day. Instead, I can eat what I like – quick and easy one pot soup noodles. There isn’t a week that goes by during the school year that I don’t have at least one bowl of soup noodles. It’s the perfect one pot meal that can be tossed together in no time using whatever I have in my refrigerator.
Most days, I simply pour some chicken broth into a pot, add some Chinese vegetables, crack an egg into the broth to poach it, then toss in some leftover soba noodles. If there are a few pieces of leftover chicken, I might toss that in. Or, if I have a few dumplings in the freezer, I’ll throw those in. No matter what, everything is done in just a few minutes.
Last week, I made a Spicy Korean Ramen Noodle Soup for lunch that reminded me of the instant spicy Korean ramen noodles that my oldest son lived off of during his first year in college. When I was in college, I also lived off of Ramen noodles because they were cheap and easy to make. Unfortunately, these Ramen noodle packets often contain lots of preservatives and sodium, so while they’re extremely convenient, they’re definitely not the best thing for you. The good news is that it’s easy to make a healthier homemade version of this favorite noodle soup.
Instead of ramen noodles, I used soba noodles which are made with whole grain buckwheat flour and wheat flour. You can also buy 100% buckwheat soba noodles, but they are harder to find and generally more expensive than soba noodles which are made with both buckwheat and wheat flour. As you can see, I love baby bok choy and usually toss in a good amount to make sure I get my green vegetables in at lunchtime. For protein, I poached an egg in the broth, and for fun, I added a few dumplings (Chicken & Cilantro Mini Wontons from Costco’s).
I found a recipe for making a spicy sauce (Gochujiang Yangnyum) for the ramen noodle soup in The Korean Table by Taekyung Chung and Debra Samuels. The spicy sauce consists of Korean red pepper paste, Korean red pepper flakes, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, oyster sauce and lemon juice. The recipe made more than I needed for one batch of these soup noodles, so I stored the rest in a container for another day.
To make this Spicy Ramen Noodle Soup, simply heat some chicken broth up, stir in a little bit of this spicy sauce and cook the vegetables and egg right in the broth, then add some cooked noodles. For some fun, toss in some cooked gyoza or wontons.
If you like extra spicy food like me, try substituting the baby bok choy with Napa Cabbage Kimchi. That’s what I did the next day for lunch (I posted it on Facebook). So good!
See what everyone else is bringing to today’s Back To School Communal Table. Please feel free to share what your favorite back to school kid and adult lunches are in the comments section below or tweet it out using the hashtag #pullupachair.
Tidy Mom: Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Peanut Butter Cookies
Made by Michelle: Almond Butter and Banana Sandwiches
Chez Us: Healthy Tuna Salad
And Love It Too: Healthy Lunchbox 2012: The Ultimate Collection
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Back to School Roasted Chicken Legs
Bacon and Souffle: Gruyere Grilled Cheese With Apple Salad
Zaika Zabardast: Fresh Corn Cakes With Black Bean Salad Tossed in Cumin Vinaigrette
This Girl Can Eat: Cashew-Curry Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Spicy-Korean “Ramen” Noodle Soup
Haute Apple Pie: Edamame Hummus
Feed Me Phoebe: Deviled Egg Salad Sandwiches
Creative Culinary: Margarita Watermelon
Big Girls Small Kitchen: Swiss Chard Turnovers With Parmesan and Pistachios
Here are some more Asian Soup Noodle Recipes for lunch:
Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup
Honey Miso Glazed Salmon Soba Noodle Soup
Chinese Noodle Soup with Egg and Vegetables
Spicy Korean “Ramen” Noodle Soup
Spicy Red Pepper Paste
- 2 tablespoons Korean red pepper flakes
- 3 tablespoons Korean red pepper paste
- 1 tablespoon garlic paste
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1 teaspoon oyster sauce
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon organic sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 2 teaspoons Spicy Red Pepper Paste
- 1 1/2 cups baby bok choy cut into 1" pieces
- 2 eggs
- 6 cooked gyoza or wontons
- 2 cups cooked soba noodles
- 1 scallion minced
Mix together Spicy Red Pepper Paste ingredients in a small bowl. You will only need 2 teaspoons for this recipe so reserve the rest.
Bring chicken broth and 2 teaspoons Spicy Red Pepper Paste to a boil over medium heat. Add bok choy and break eggs into broth to poach. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for a minute. Add gyoza (or wontons) and cooked soba noodles. Cook for 3 minutes to heat gyoza and noodles through.
Divide soup, noodles, vegetables, eggs and gyoza between two bowls. Sprinkle with scallions and serve.
Adapted from The Korean Table.
Alyssa (Everyday Maven) says
Jeanette, Your soup recipes always look amazing! I actually have your red curry with tofu on my plan for this week – I can’t wait to make it!
Thanks Alyssa – soup noodles are one of my favorite lunches and they are so easy to put together. Hope you like the red curry tofu noodle soup – it’s one of the easiest recipes and people who’ve tried it love it!
Hi Jeanette! This is totally one of my favorite kinds of food. I love the idea of using Gochujiang in a ramen noodle soup. And I love spice. So I’m going to have to put this on my list to make!
Jessica – I love spicy foods, especially Korean food and anything with Gochujiang. Soup noodles are definitely my go-to lunch, so easy to make with little bits and pieces from the fridge.
Jeanette these all look fantastic! I’m always looking for new soup recipes!
My mouth is watering just looking at that gochujang and the soup! So spicy delicious!
France @ Beyond The Peel says
Love the paste. It makes making delicious soup with Soba Noodle soup super easy. love this.
I love Kim Chee. I really love spicy foods.
Beth @ Tasty Yummies says
This looks amazing!! This is my kind of meal. Is it weird that I want you to adopt me and cook me noodles and soups and all that yumminess every single day? haha 🙂
Kelly @ Inspired Edibles says
A perfect warming soup for our cooling weather – waaaaaaaaaaaaaa 🙁 . No really, I’m fine ;-).
I love that this is a much, much healthier version of ramen! I haven’t had ramen in years, but during college it was one of my favorites. This healthy bowl of goodness is calling my name!
Thank you so much for this recipe! Made it today and my husband absolutely loved it! He even said he loved me a little bit more after eating it 🙂 It is the perfect amount of spice and I love how it builds on you as you keep eating!
Yomahra – so glad you and your husband loved this dish – it’s become one of my favorites this winter. Thank you for letting me know you tried this recipe and how it turned out. I always enjoy hearing back from readers who try my recipes.
Hi, I was wondering if you eat this for lunch how do you bring it to work? Do you have the noodles in the soup or in a separet container?
Hi Maria – I would do as you suggest – pack the soup separately from the other ingredients and reheat separately; otherwise, the noodles and dumplings might get mushy.
I’ve been looking to recreate the Korean ramen noodles I’ve loved for years but without all the sodium and chemicals. This comes the closest I’ve seen! When I look at the ingredients, I notice beef flavors included even though the name is “Spicy Chicken” so on a whim, i added some dashida and a splash of fish sauce to this and bam, it’s basically the same thing.
Michele (natureunchecked) says
How much spicy red pepper paste does the recipe make? You mention we only need 2 t for the recipe and I don’t want to have too much paste leftover, if possible. I’m looking forward to using up the fresh kimchi mandu I just whipped up. Thanks so much!
Michele, I think the recipe makes about 1/2 cup of hot pepper paste. It keeps in the fridge but if you want to, just make less.
Michele (natureunchecked) says
Oh my goodness! This was such a great recipe! I didn’t have oyster sauce, so I added a little more sugar and soy sauce, along with a teaspoon of fish broth paste. The fiance scarfed his down and said it was like “real ramen.” Hah! Loved it. We will definitely be making this again. Thank you so much for sharing!