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National Ramen Day: Midweek dinner recipes for the whole family

At first glance, ramen might look tricky to make but it is surprisingly simple! The mix of vegetables, together with protein-packed toppings in a hearty broth, means it’s bursting with flavour and nutrients, and these versions are quick to put together, making it a great mid-week meal for all the family.

What’s more, it’s also low cost as it makes use of a lot of store cupboard ingredients that people typically have at home already, like eggs, oils, dried noodles, soy sauce and herbs. The secret to the ultimate bowl does require having the patience to leave things to simmer, so that all the flavours can infuse in the broth.

To help get creative juices flowing this National Ramen Day (4 April), I’ve masterminded a mix of deliciously warming plant-based, vegetarian and meat ramen bowls, starting at just £2.74 per person. Made with noodles that are easy to whip up in a matter of minutes, the recipes include sweetcorn, squash and spring onion ramen, beef ramen, barbecue tofu ramen and leftover lamb ramen.

Sweetcorn, squash and spring onion ramen recipe

This colourful bowl is packed with veggies

(Tesco)

This colourful bowlful is packed with veggies, ginger and chilli – perfect for the cold winter months. Top with a soft-boiled egg and tuck in!

Serves: 4

Time: 30 mins

Nutrition: Vegetarian | 409 calories per serving

Ingredients:

1 vegetable stock cube, made up to 1.25ltrs

20g fresh ginger, finely grated

1 garlic clove, crushed

2 red chillies, 1 halved, 1 finely sliced (optional)

3 tbsp reduced-salt soy sauce

100g bunch spring onions, trimmed and finely sliced

250g diced frozen squash

400g frozen sweetcorn

4 eggs

250g pack medium egg noodles

5g fresh coriander, leaves picked

Method:

1. Put the stock in a large, lidded saucepan and bring to the boil. Add the ginger, garlic, halved chilli, 1 tbsp soy sauce and half the spring onions. Reduce to a gentle simmer over a medium heat, cover and leave to infuse.

2. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over a medium-high heat and add the squash with 3 tbsp water. Stir for 5-6 mins until defrosted and the water has evaporated. Stir in the sweetcorn and remaining 2 tbsp soy sauce. Stir-fry for 2-3 mins until the sweetcorn is hot and the soy sauce coats the veg. Remove from the heat.

3. Bring a pan of water to the boil and lower in the eggs. Simmer for 6 mins (or 8 mins for hard-set yolks). Add the noodles for the last 2 mins until tender; drain both. Rinse the eggs under the tap for 30 secs to cool, then remove the shells and halve.

4. Divide the noodles between 4 bowls and add the veg. Top each with 2 egg halves, then pour over the broth, removing the chilli. Top with the remaining spring onions, coriander leaves and the sliced chilli, if you like.

Leftover lamb ramen recipe

Try something new with your leftover lamb

(Tesco)

Try something new with your leftover lamb with this super easy ramen recipe. Give packet noodles extra flavour with miso and ginger, then load on your leftover meat and whatever toppings you fancy. We recommend pak choi, carrots and jammy eggs.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 10 minutes | Cook time: 25 minutes

Nutrition: Dairy-free | 718 calories per serving

Ingredients:

1½ tsp sunflower oil

4cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely sliced into matchsticks

4 garlic cloves, crushed​

6 spring onions, finely sliced, white and green parts separated

3½ tbsp miso paste

4 medium eggs

200g leftover lamb shoulder, shredded

Pinch of chilli flakes

1 tsp sesame oil

4 packets southern fried chicken flavour instant noodles

2 pak choi, sliced in half vertically

1 carrot, sliced into ribbons with a vegetable peeler

4 tbsp drained sweetcorn

Sesame seeds, to serve

Fresh red chilli, finely sliced, to serve

Sriracha, to serve

Method:

1. Heat half the sunflower oil in a large saucepan over a medium-low heat. Add the ginger, garlic and the white parts of the spring onions and cook for 2 mins, until softened. Stir in 3 tbsp miso paste and pour over 2ltr water. Bring up to the boil and simmer for 5 mins.

2. In a separate pan, boil the eggs for 7 mins, then plunge into cold water to stop them from cooking further. Peel and set aside.

3. Heat the remaining sunflower oil in a medium, nonstick frying pan. Add the lamb, remaining miso, 1 tbsp water and chilli flakes and stir-fry for 3-4 mins, until heated through and crisp at the edges. Finish with the sesame oil and set aside.

4. Add the noodles and seasoning to the miso stock, along with the pak choi. Simmer for 4 mins. Divide the ramen between bowls. Top with the lamb, carrot ribbons, sweetcorn and halved eggs. Sprinkle over the spring onion greens and serve with sesame seeds, fresh chilli and sriracha, if liked.

Barbecue tofu ramen recipe

Serve up an umami-packed ramen broth that’s entirely plant-based

(Tesco)

Serve up an umami-packed ramen broth that’s entirely plant-based this easy vegan recipe from Derek Sarno. Tofu coated with Wicked Kitchen Asian-style BBQ sauce adds smoky notes while vibrant sugarsnap pea and pak choi add plenty of green goodness in these flavour-packed noodle bowls.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 25 minutes | Cook time: 35 minutes

Nutrition: Vegan | Dairy-free | 754 calories per serving

Ingredients:

20g dried mixed mushrooms

396g pack firm tofu, drained well and cut into thin triangles

3 tbsp Wicked Kitchen Asian-style BBQ sauce

1 ½ tbsp sesame oil or vegetable oil

100g bunch spring onions, whites thinly sliced, greens very thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

2 tbsp white miso paste

1 tbsp dark reduced-salt soy sauce

500ml oat milk-alternative

250g pak choi, halved lengthways

2 tsp vegetable oil

250g pack wholewheat noodles

150g sugarsnap peas

1 fresh red chilli

1 lime, cut into 4 wedges

Method:

1. Put the dried mushrooms in a heatproof bowl and cover with 800ml boiling water; set aside for 30 mins. Coat the tofu in the BBQ sauce and set aside while you prepare the rest of the meal.

2. Heat 1 tbsp sesame oil in a large saucepan over a low heat. Cook the spring onion whites and garlic for 2-3 mins, stirring, until softened. Stir in the miso and soy sauce and cook for 2 mins more, then add the dried mushrooms and their liquid and mix thoroughly. Increase the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 mins. Stir in the oat milk-alternative and season with black pepper and extra soy sauce to taste. Remove from the heat and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan over a high heat. Brush the cut sides of the pak choi with 1 tsp oil, arrange cut-side down in the pan and sear for 5 mins or until lightly charred. Transfer to a plate and cover to keep warm. Add the remaining 1 tsp oil to the pan, decrease the heat to medium and add the tofu in a single layer. Cook for 4-5 mins each side until lightly charred.

4. Cook the noodles to pack instructions until al dente (they will soften more as they sit in the broth). Meanwhile, put a steamer or colander over them and steam the sugarsnap peas for 5 mins, or until tender but still crunchy. Drain the noodles, toss in the remaining sesame oil and set aside. Gently reheat the broth over a medium-low heat.

5. Divide the noodles and broth between 4 bowls. Top with the pak choi, sugarsnap peas and tofu, then scatter with the spring onions greens and fresh red chilli. Serve with the lime wedges for squeezing over.

Get ahead: You can store all the components separately in the fridge in airtight containers for up to 3 days. To serve, assemble the ramen bowl and microwave on high for 2-3 mins until piping hot.

Tip: An oat-milk alternative adds richness and a depth of flavour to this dish, but the recipe works just as well with stock instead.

Beef ramen recipe

This beefy ramen recipe is ready in just 20 minutes

(Tesco)

Making ramen at home doesn’t need to be complicated. This easy ramen recipe is ready in just 20 mins, with tender beef steaks simmered in a quick fragrant broth with noodles and sugarsnaps.

Serves: 4

Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 15 minutes

Nutrition: 299 calories per serving

Ingredients:

1 tbsp vegetable oil

5cm piece ginger, grated

2 garlic cloves, crushed

50g spring onions, sliced, greens and whites separated

2 beef stock cubes, made up to 1.25ltr

2 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tsp sugar

395g pack Boswell Farms thin cut beef steaks

150g sugarsnaps

250g fine egg noodles

Method:

1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan on a medium heat. Fry the ginger, garlic and white parts of the spring onion for 2 mins until golden and fragrant. Pour the stock into the pan and cover. Simmer for 5 mins.

2. Add the soy sauce and sugar to the broth. Thinly slice the beef steak into 1cm strips. Add to the broth with the sugarsnaps and noodles. Cook for 5 mins over a medium high heat until the beef is cooked through and the noodles are tender.

3. Divide the ramen between 4 bowls. Scatter with the greens of the spring onions to serve.


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