This unami mushroom udon bowl is the perfect comfort food – what’s better than a big bowl of noodles in a warm broth heaped with delicious toppings?! Using thick udon noodles, crispy tofu, and a mushroom broth, this recipe is surprisingly easy and tastes great.
One of the things I most looked forward to when visiting Japan for the first time was trying some authentic Japanese dishes – especially ramen and noodles. As a major foodie, it’s no surprise that the trip involved some serious research into the best places to eat in each city we stopped at.
Of course, we couldn’t visit Tokyo without stopping by Tokyo Ramen Street in Tokyo Station. Ramen Street is basically a corridor full of delicious noodle shops on both sides. Once we’d eventually found it (after what felt like going in circles for ages!), we had to pick a shop at random and select the ramen we wanted from a vending machine, using just the photos to go by since everything is in Japanese.
Thankfully, the ramen I ended up with was divine – and I can say that about every other bowl I devoured while in the country.
That obsession with noodle soups has remained with me back here in the UK, but like a lot of people, I’ve preferred to eat it out at resturants over making it myself. That’s because it feels like you need to spend hours cooking and simmering to get a really great broth – and let’s face it, it’s all about the broth.
This mushroom udon noodle recipe is suprisingly quick and easy, and a delicious homemade ramen recipe with some really great unami flavours.
How to make mushroom udon noodle soup
I used oyster mushrooms and shimeji mushrooms in this recipe, but you could adapt the recipe to use whatever mushrooms you have to hand. I find using a mix will definitely add more flavour though!
I also sear the mushrooms in garlic and ginger paste, turning them a beautiful golden brown that’s slightly crispy on the outside and packed with that amazing unami taste that really makes this dish. I also topped this ramen with crispy tofu, bean sprouts, and spring onions, although you could be as creative or as simple as you like with your own toppings.
This recipe uses udon noodles – a thicker, chewy noodle that’s just my personal preference really. Traditional ramen noodles could also work great as a substitute in this recipe.
For this recipe, I use ready-made ramen broth and then add a few additional ingredients to it. Some would call it cheating, others (like myself) would call it being smart! If you had the time, you could definitely take the time to make your own mushroom stock and build up a beautiful homemade broth from scratch. I, however, have a one year old I’m chasing around most of the day, and using a readymade ramen broth gives me all of the flavour with minimal effort. Win-win.
In addition to mushrooms, I added crispy tofu, spring onions, bean sprouts, and a sprinkle of black sesame seeds. As always though, you can customize your ramen to suit you. Optional toppings could include:
- Marinated tofu
- Nori (seaweed)
- Vegan egg
- Bamboo shoots
- Sweet corn
- Bok Choy
Making this vegan mushroom udon noodle bowl
Making this vegan mushroom udon noodle recipe doesn’t take a huge amount of time (about 30 minutes total), but it does have quite a lot of components to bring together. If you’re short on time, I’d recommend at least prepping your tofu beforehand so that’s one less job to do.
You’ll start by simmering your ramen broth in a saucepan and adding shaoxing rice wine, soy sauce, and mushroom stock.
Then, fry the tofu, remove from the pan, and sear the mushrooms and beansprouts. Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions, and serve with the broth poured over the noodles and add the toppings.
Simple, really! I hope you love this mushroom udon noodle recipe as much as I do – let me know how you get on with it in the comments.
- 1 packet of ready-to-go udon noodles
- 2 tbsp corn flour
- 4 cups ramen broth (I use Original Halo ramen broth)
- 1 mushroom stock cube
- 1 tbsp Shaoxing wine
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp garlic and ginger paste
- 20g shimenji mushrooms
- 50g oyster mushrooms
- 2 spring onions
- 1 handful bean sprouts
- 2 knobs of vegan butter
- 200g firm tofu
- Add the ramen broth, mushroom stock cube, shaoxing rice wine, and soy sauce to a saucepan and slowly simmer.
- Cut your tofu into triangles and coat in the cornflour, then fry for 3 minutes on each side in some vegetable oil to get it nice and crispy. Set aside.
- In the same pan, saute your garlic and ginger paste, then add chopped oyster and shimeji mushrooms and sear on high heat to get them golden brown - this step really brings out the flavour of the mushrooms so is a real must!
- Add your beansprouts to the pan to warm through for a minute.
- Slice your spring onions.
- Cook your noodles according to the packet instructions, then portion out into two bowls and ladle the ramen broth over them. Top with the tofu, mushrooms, bean sprouts, spring onions, and a knob of vegan butter.
This dish is best served immediately - personally I wouldn't use ramen as leftovers.