CUISINES/ JAPANESE/ MAINS

Vegetable Yakisoba

Hello and welcome! Today’s recipe for Vegetable Yakisoba is not only super easy to prepare, it’s easy to customize too. If you want to add chicken – no problem! Yakisoba, “fried noodle”, is a Japanese stir-fried noodle dish that first appeared in food stalls in Japan in the 1930s. Interestingly, the noodles in Yakisoba are not the typical Japanese buckwheat soba noodles, they are Chinese wheat flour noodles. The noodles are stir fried with veggies and then mixed with a Worcestershire-like sauce. Yakisoba is savory, packed with umami and a wonderful variety of textures. Let’s stir fry some noodles!

Yakisoba Sauce Ingredients

Let’s start by whisking together the Yakisoba sauce. We have oyster sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, fresh ginger, sugar, pepper and vegetable or grapeseed oil. Whisk all of these ingredients together in a measuring cup and set aside.

Yakisoba Ingredients

For the Yakisoba, we have thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms, matchstick-cut carrots and sweet red pepper, thinly sliced onion, minced garlic, sliced scallions, baby spinach, and we have our noodles. Typically you will find these noodles as pre-cooked or steamed, sealed and in the “International” section of the supermarket. If you have a well-stocked market you might find them in the refrigerated or frozen section. Look for the name “Hokkien Stir Fry Noodle” or you might see “Chinese Stir Fry Noodle”.

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Have everything prepped and ready to go so this cooking process is smooth. It’s not going to go super fast like wok cooking, but it’s nice to have everything ready.

Stir Fry Noodles

In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of grapeseed or vegetable oil over medium-high heat until the oil is shimmery. Then add the noddles in as close to a single layer as possible. Let the noodles fry, undisturbed for about 3-4 minutes, until the noodles develop some browning in spots. Then Stir the noodles and let fry again for another 3 minutes, until more browning develops.

When the noodles have developed some browning – with browning ranging from golden to charred in spots – transfer the noodles to a plate and set aside.

In the same pan add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and add the onion, carrot and red pepper. Season with kosher salt and black pepper. Stir fry the veggies until they have softened a bit and begin to char in spots. About 5 minutes.

Then add the garlic, stir to combine and cook for another minute. Then add the shiitake mushrooms. Stir the mushrooms into the veggies and stir occasionally until the mushrooms have softened. About 5 minutes.

Now, add the spinach in batches, letting the first batch wilt before adding the second. Stir the spinach into the stir fry until all the spinach is wilted.

Then add the noodles back to the pan and pour the sauce over the top.

Stir in the noodles, the sauce and 3/4 of the sliced scallions. Stir and fry until the sauce is absorbed by the noodles and is well-incorporated into the stir fry. The mixture should be saucy, but not soupy. This should take about 3 minutes.

Vegetable Yakisoba

Then cut the heat and we are ready to serve!

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Serve the Vegetable Yakisoba in noodle bowls and top with the remaining sliced scallions. The variety of textures is just fantastic! We have the bouncy, chewy noodles; crunchy carrots; soft sweet red pepper; and meaty, chewy shiitakes – all cloaked in the umami-rich savory sauce. Vegetable Yakisoba is quick to prepare and it makes a really great weeknight meal. Add cooked chicken or tofu for a more protein-rich dinner.

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I hope you give this Vegetable Yakisoba a try! If you’re looking more noodle dishes, try Easy Sesame Chili Noodles, Ramen with Scallions and Garlic Crisp. Or for something more adventurous, try Flat Hand-Pulled Noodles with Chili Oil Vinaigrette. Thanks so much for joining me today! Take care and be well, xo Kelly

Key Equipment

Vegetable Yakisoba

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Dinner, Main Course Japanese
By Adapted from Kay Chun, via NYTCooking Serves: 2-3
Prep Time: 10 Minutes Cooking Time: 20 Minutes Total Time: ~30 Minutes

Stir fried chewy noodles; crunchy carrots; soft sweet red pepper; and meaty, chewy shiitakes – all cloaked in the umami-rich savory sauce.

Ingredients

  • Yakisoba Sauce
  • 3 tbsp. Oyster Sauce
  • 3 tbsp. Low-Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 2 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 tbsp. Neutral Oil, such as grapeseed, safflower or canola
  • 1 tbsp. Ketchup
  • 2 tsp. Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. Grated Fresh Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. Black Pepper
  • Stir Fry
  • 1 lb. Pre-steamed Yakisoba or Hokkien Noodles, thawed if frozen
  • 3 tbsp. Neutral Oil, such as grapeseed, safflower or canola, divided
  • 1 Small Yellow Onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 Medium Carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1 Large Red Bell Pepper, stemmed, cored and thinly sliced
  • Kosher Salt and Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Minced Garlic
  • 8 oz. Shiitake Mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 8 oz. Baby Spinach
  • 1 cup Thinly Sliced Scallions

Instructions

Yakisoba Sauce

1

Whisk together the oyster sauce, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, fresh ginger, sugar, pepper and vegetable or grapeseed oil in a measuring cup and set aside.

Stir Fry

2

Have everything prepped and ready to go so this cooking process is smooth. It's not going to go super fast like wok cooking, but it's nice to have everything ready.

3

In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of grapeseed or vegetable oil over medium-high heat until the oil is shimmery. Then add the noddles in as close to a single layer as possible. Let the noodles fry, undisturbed for about 3-4 minutes, until the noodles develop some browning in spots. Then Stir the noodles and let fry again for another 3 minutes, until more browning develops.

4

When the noodles have developed some browning - with browning ranging from golden to charred in spots - transfer the noodles to a plate and set aside.

5

In the same pan add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and add the onion, carrot and red pepper. Season with kosher salt and black pepper. Stir fry the veggies until they have softened a bit and begin to char in spots. About 5 minutes.

6

Then add the garlic, stir to combine and cook for another minute. Then add the shiitake mushrooms. Stir the mushrooms into the veggies and stir occasionally until the mushrooms have softened. About 5 minutes.

7

Now, add the spinach in batches, letting the first batch wilt before adding the second. Stir the spinach into the stir fry until all the spinach is wilted.

8

Then add the noodles back to the pan and pour the sauce over the top.

9

Stir in the noodles, the sauce and 3/4 of the sliced scallions. Stir and fry until the sauce is absorbed by the noodles and is well-incorporated into the stir fry. The mixture should be saucy, but not soupy. This should take about 3 minutes.

10

Serve the Vegetable Yakisoba in noodle bowls and top with the remaining sliced scallions.

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Mari
    January 16, 2023 at 10:25 am

    I’m loving this visit to the Far East. It’s always good to break out of the usual and go for the unusual. This promises to be a good meal with a lot of flavor. I will have to sub the noodles, but I do have several kinds that I think will work. Some days it just feels wrong to say Happy Monday, because it is Monday after all, but with this on the table, Monday will be a happy day. I did hear that Bullet Train is going to have a sequel, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. There re some fun outtakes and bloopers on YouTube. Happy sunny Monday, (I think it’s a trend, yay) to Kelly, Alex, Terry and the usualsuspects..

    • Reply
      Kelly Djalali
      January 17, 2023 at 9:58 am

      Hi Mari, I realized with this post that I have an unintentional theme going with Asian recipes this week… I am sure you’ll enjoy this one, so easy and delicious! We have rain again today. I hope you have a sunny day! xo Kelly

  • Reply
    Janet Hurlbrink
    January 16, 2023 at 11:34 am

    This looks delicious and healthy. Ketchup was an unexpected addition. I would love it if you would include the gorgeous chopsticks in your key equipment list.

    • Reply
      Kelly Djalali
      January 17, 2023 at 10:02 am

      Hi Janet, Thanks so much! It’s actually a little surprising how often Ketchup pops up in sauces! Those particular chopsticks have been on backorder for a while now, which is why I gave an alternative. But here is a link so you can select to be notified when they’re back in stock: https://rstyle.me/+kg1KJ_BJ_fEkHKpA8nVOkA
      Take care! xo Kelly

  • Reply
    Kathleen
    January 17, 2023 at 8:40 pm

    I absolutely loved this! Super easy to put together! The flavors came through perfectly!
    I will definitely try this again!

    • Reply
      Kelly Djalali
      January 18, 2023 at 6:49 am

      Wonderful, Kathleen! I am so happy this was hit for you. Thanks so much for writing in to share your success! xo Kelly

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