Upgraded Instant Ramen

It's still fast but much healther if you add some veggies. Amp up the broth with some extra flavouring too.

As much as I love to cook, even I have those days when I’m just too busy or too tired to make any effort in the kitchen. If you’re anything like me then perhaps you ate a lot of instant ramen and pot noodles in your youth. They were perfect as an after-school snack or to satisfy the late night after-bar munchies in your university dorm room. As a real grown-up I have for the most part left them behind, preferring real vegetables to dehydrated, powdered ones.

It's still fast but much healther if you add some veggies. Amp up the broth with some extra flavouring too.

Fortunately, it’ so easy to upgrade instant ramen and throw in some fresh veggies that you don’t need to feel guilty for having such an unhealthy meal. Throw in whatever veggie you’ve got, anything goes, and it’s also a good idea to beef up the broth a bit. The possibilities are endless: you could go Thai with a spoonful of red curry pasta, spice it up with a squeeze of sriracha or sambal oelek, or hot and sour with soy sauce and rice vinegar. It’s up to you but keep in the spirit of instant ramen and keep it simple!

Upgraded Instant Ramen

Upgraded Instant Ramen

Yield: Serves 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 37 minutes


  • 2 packages of instant ramen (read the ingredients carefully!)
  • 1 1/2 cups water, plus more for soaking the mushrooms
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon rice or white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sriracha, sambal oelek, or tabasco
  • 6 dried shiitakes
  • 1/2 medium carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • A handful of baby spinach
  • A handful of bean sprouts
  • Red pepper flakes, to garnish


  1. Soak the dried shiitakes in hot water for about 30 minutes or until softened. Cut off the stems and slice. Reserve.
  2. Boil the water and vegetable stock in a medium pot. Add the noodles and the seasoning packet and boil according to the package directions. Remove from heat and stir through the soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil and hot sauce.
  3. Serve noodles in two bowls with their broth. Garnish with the shiitakes, carrots, spinach and bean sprouts and sprinkle over a few red pepper flakes.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 439Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 2429mgCarbohydrates: 59gFiber: 5gSugar: 3gProtein: 12g

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