This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links means that sometimes if you click through to a website and register or purchase something, I may get a commission from that sale at no extra cost to you. For more information click here.
Ramen is one of my favorite go-to meals when I’m craving something hot and filling. Since I love plant based meals, I’ve been on the hunt for the best, easy vegan ramen recipes out there. This version is hearty with mushrooms, convenient instant ramen noodles, and and a flavorful, miso based broth. You can also add some sriracha if you want an extra kick!
This recipe also uses protein-rich crispy tofu. It’s easy to find at most grocery stores, or you can make your own by pressing a block of extra firm tofu between some paper towels with heavy cookbooks on top. I like using this super easy method for cooking tofu that turns out perfectly every time!
How do you make good ramen without the seasoning packet?
Do you want to know how easy this recipe is? Let me show you! It’s made with instant ramen–yes, the kind made with dried noodles and packets of flavoring. However, we’ll be tossing out the flavor packet and making our own savory vegan broth. Then we simply add some veggies, along with the instant ramen noodles. Everyone will be impressed by how easy it is to make–it’s the perfect meal for busy weeknights!
How to make easy vegan ramen
I like to start this by preparing the tofu first. Since this is crispy tofu we’re making, it’s a good idea to drain and press your tofu beforehand. Don’t worry, it’s very simple. Just wrap a block of extra firm tofu in absorbent paper towels or a clean linen napkin. Extra firm tofu works best for making crispy tofu, since it will hold its shape better than softer types. After wrapping the tofu, place a heavy object, such as a saucepan, like I did here, or you can use food cans as well. Let it rest from 10-30 minutes.
While you’re pressing the tofu, whisk together the soy sauce, cornstarch, sesame oil and black pepper in a medium bowl. Once the tofu is pressed, cut it into cubes and gently toss with the marinade.
Heat some vegetable oil in a large skillet under medium-high heat. Fry the tofu until both sides are brown, for around 5 minutes. Set aside.
Now for this easy vegan ramen broth recipe. Start by heating up the sesame oil in a large pot under medium-high heat. Next, add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, for around 2 minutes. Now, add the mushrooms, keeping them in a single layer, and brown on each side, for about 5 minutes more.
Once the mushrooms are browned, add the vegetable broth, the soy sauce (use low sodium if you need to watch your salt intake), miso paste and mirin. If you can’t find mirin, you can use equal parts rice vinegar and add 1 tsp of sugar. Combine well.
Once the broth is ready, I just add the instant ramen noodles and let them cook for around 3 minutes, or until tender. Once the noodles are ready, serve them into individual bowls, ladle the broth over them, and top with the crispy tofu, shredded carrots and sliced green onions. Since I make this for my kids too, I usually skip the spicy ingredients, but feel free to add a dash of sriracha for a bit of heat! And that’s it! Easy, right?
What can I substitute for ramen noodles?
Since ramen noodles are usually made with wheat flour, there are other alternatives you can substitute for if you can’t tolerate wheat. Here are some options:
- Gluten-free ramen noodles
- Rice noodles
- Soba noodles
- Glass noodles
- Kelp noodles
- Shirataki noodles
Just make sure to follow the instructions on the package, since cooking times may vary when using different types of noodles.
What can I add to vegan ramen?
You can customize this easy vegan ramen to your taste by adding toppings like tamari-roasted cashews or nori (dried seaweed), which is a great vegan source of vitamin B12. Or go veggie-crazy with sautéed cabbage, bamboo shoots, bok choy, daikon radish–the possibilities are endless!
You can also top this ramen recipe with:
- Lime wedges
- Chili Garlic Paste or Sriracha for extra spice
- Bean Sprouts
- Sesame seeds
- Stir fried broccoli
- Chopped spinach or kale
Easy Vegan Ramen with Crispy Tofu
For the Crispy Tofu
- 1 block extra firm tofu, drained, pressed (if desired), and cut into cubes
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- vegetable oil
For the Vegan Ramen Broth
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 inch fresh ginger, grated
- 8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 2 tbsp mirin
- 1 ½ tbs white miso paste
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 3 oz dry ramen noodle packages, seasoning package discarded
- 1 medium carrot, shredded
- 2 green onions, sliced
For the crispy tofu
- Whisk together the soy sauce, cornstarch, sesame oil and black pepper in a medium bowl. Toss gently with tofu cubes.
- Heat vegetable oil in a skillet. Add the tofu and fry until browned on each side, around 5 minutes. Set aside
For the broth
- Heat the sesame oil in a large pot under medium-high heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, around 2 minutes.
- Add mushrooms and cook until browned, keeping them in one layer.
- Add soy sauce, mirin, miso paste and vegetable broth. Combine well.
- Add dry ramen noodles to the broth and cook until noodles are tender, around 3 minutes.
- Serve noodles in bowl with broth and vegetables. Add crispy tofu. Garnish with shredded carrots and sliced green onions. Enjoy!
Hi! I’m Melissa, Registered Dietitian and mother of two dragons. When I’m not talking nutrition you can find me rolling around the floor with my kids, sewing, crafting, cooking or missing the 90s (seriously, music just isn’t the same). Read More…