Get Baked: Peanut Noodles

When I was growing up and we ate a lot of Working Single Mom fare, which as I remember was mostly frozen fish sticks, my mom had a regular dinner dish that I cannot recall in specific but which I loved. I think it was mostly peanut butter on ziti? Probably there were other things involved? Sometimes my mother reads these articles, so maybe she’ll enlighten me. Anyways, it was delicious, but by the time I grew up I knew it was not a food Real People ate. EXCEPT, AND THEN, I found out that you could totally still eat peanut noodles as a real thing! Glory be. I have been doing this now every day for like a week, because it is a lunch that is delicious, can integrate many vegetables without being a salad, and also has a ton of protein, thereby keeping me full until like 8 PM. Way to be, peanut butter!

This is less of a “recipe” than a collection of ingredients which I think are good, and suggested amounts of each of them. Do not feel compelled to follow them closely! I have an unhealthy relationship with rice vinegar, so maybe I put in more than you would. Feel free to ramp up the sriracha if that’s your thing. This probably makes two normal-person servings; I eat the whole thing myself in one sitting because I’m a boss/#YOLO.

PEANUT NOODLES

Ingredients:

Soba noodles (this is what I use! Udon noodles would probs be ok. I won’t tell anyone if you use, like, spaghetti.)

1/4 cup smooth peanut butter (I like the hippie natural kind, unsurprisingly)
1/4 cup warm water
1/8 cup soy sauce
1/8 cup rice vinegar
2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp sesame oil (or more! you know, depending on your peanut butter consistency.)
An Amount of sriracha

Preferred Noodle Accessories. I like:
peas
firm tofu
broccoli
red bell pepper
avocado if I’m feeling fancy

1. Put a pot of water on to boil. Once it does boil, add in your soba noodles. (If using other noodles, you will have to make your own way in the world w/r/t cooking them.) If you are dealing with noodle accessories that are frozen (like my peas and broccoli usually are), then maybe also add them to the water when you add the noodles.

2. While you are waiting for the water to boil, chop up the rest of your noodle accessories into bite-sized pieces.

3. Also mix your sauce! It is pretty self-explanatory. The key is finding the best cooking utensil to mix the relatively solid peanut butter with relatively liquid other ingredients. I recommend a whisk. (Also, I think of peanut butter as being relatively solid, but I’m not allowed to have it on planes? Except one time I did bring a jar of peanut butter through security, but then my gate was changed, and I had to go through a different gate, and the second time they took it away. That seems unfair? Anyway.) You can mix it in a separate bowl and then add it to your noodles; if you are feeling bold and sassy, you may also mix it in the same bowl you plan to eat out of, add your noodles on top of the sauce and toss vigorously.

4. Depending on what kind of noodles you use and how thin they are, they probably only need to cook for a few minutes. Like three. After that amount of time, strain whatever’s in the pot. If you’re okay with eating warm peanut noodles (delicious!) then mix in a bowl with your Noodle Accessories and sauce, and you’re good to go. If you want cold noodles (delicious!), run the strainer under cold water in the sink for a couple minutes, and then mix with your Noodle Accessories and sauce. Hurray, you’re good to go! If you are interested in garnishing, scallions, sesame seeds, or crushed peanut would all be appropriate.

 

pre-sauce and post-sauce, for your viewing pleasure

Rachel is Autostraddle's Managing Editor and the editor who presides over news & politics coverage. Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1114 articles for us.

20 Comments

  1. I make something very similar, but with peanut butter (crunchy is good too!), toasted sesame oil, sweet Thai chili sauce (the Trader Joe’s brand is delicious), and powdered ginger. It turns out incredibly delicious. I am also a heathen and have it with whole wheat spaghetti, because I have yet to find affordable soba noodles at a place near me. A bag of frozen broccoli/cauliflower/carrots, tossed in the pasta water for the last 3 minutes of cooking is a great addition. I’ll also sometimes thin out the sauce with a small bit of pasta water, so that there is enough sauce to cover everything well.

  2. I have all these ingredients. Totally making this for lunch. Thank you!
    Also I love “noodle accessories”. Makes it sound like you bought them from Claire’s or something.

  3. A similar thing I do is a sort of sweet Teriyaki-esque thing.

    Main saucy ingredients are Soy, Sesame Oil, Vinegar (should be rice, but I always use cider because I have it), Balsamic Vinegar, Ginger and a bit of sugar. Mix them all together (just keep tasting. Recipes are for chumps.)

    Make some noodles as conveniently demonstrated above, and then toss the noodles in the sauce. I like to marinate the tofu in the sauce for an hour or two then pan-fry it. Most of the same rules for accessorisin’ apply.

  4. I had this for lunch today. STOP STALKING ME AUTOSTRADDLE. My accessories were mushrooms and onion. nom. Sometimes I mix in an egg while it’s cooking if I’m really hungry and it’s amazing.

  5. Yum! I often add a pinch of brown sugar to the sauce.

    Is that Teddie peanut butter? I LOVE Teddie – it’s the best. Not super sweet, and has a better texture/taste than that Trader Joes stuff (bleh). I’m always upset when I’m away from home and can’t find it anywhere.

    • i just bought a bunch on amazon! also, i love this and very often go with the whole peanut butter-soy sauce-hot sauce combo, delish. i almost threw a fit when my peanut butter was confiscated at the airport. c’mon, it’s measured in GRAMS!

  6. I have gone through several periods in life where this (alternating with oatmeal or cereal) has been my main food for survival. It’s so, so good, and super inexpensive (after the up-front condiment costs). I make it with crunchy peanut butter and occasionally use sweeter add-ins, like dried mango and/or cranberries, or pomegranate seeds. Ramen noodles also work well as a carb conduit for the sauce.

  7. This is relevant to my interests and/or cooking for the week.
    except that my peanut sauce consisted of peanut butter, honey, chili powder, water, and soy sauce. And maybe some other things, but I can’t remember right now because Alcohol.

    And I used rice instead of noodles. except for that one night I used fettuccine. Accessories included carrots (grated), cabbage (sliced/chopped into smallish pieces), chopped scallions, firm tofu, and ginger. Garlic would have also been a part of this, but I ran out and haven’t gotten more yet.

    I still have some broccoli and some leftovers in the fridge. The broccoli probably needs to become one with my peanutty rice shebang before I finish the last of it off, so thanks for reminding me of that.

  8. Made this last night! After reading the recipe I found it deeply puzzling that I am not already making this every week, I love peanut noodles and it is So Easy. My add-ins: bok choy, green onion, cilantro. I love that the sauce has built-in protein so you don’t even need to add a ton of other things to feel full. Thanks, Rachel!

  9. I made this tonight and it was de.li.cious. I used crunchy peanut butter, cos I like the crunch and it was so rich. I used broccoli, green beans and red pepper. The noodles and sauce was so filling I won’t use tofu next time, it’ll be fine without. Thanks Rachel!

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