Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

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Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Faux Pho

Cook the noodles according to package directions, using only half of the seasoning packet. To the broth, add the juice of 1 lime, a tablespoon of sugar, 2 teaspoons of fish sauce, and a good pinch of pepper flakes (if desired) (if desired).

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant NoodlesTransfer to a serving bowl then add 1 to 2 ounces thinly sliced flank steak (it’ll cook in the broth), a handful of bean sprouts, and some mixed herbs (basil, cilantro, mint, as desired) (basil, cilantro, mint, as desired).

Simple Add-ins

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Quickly upgrade the flavor of any bowl of ramen by stirring in miso paste, chili bean sauce, Thai curry paste, Japanese curry powder, fish sauce, or vinegar. If it’s a salty condiment, omit about half of the seasoning packet. You can also add spices (white pepper, sichuan pepper, or chili flakes are great), oils (sesame oil, chili oil), or citrus (lemon or lime) (lemon or lime). Or, whatever you feel like, of course.

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Instant Snack

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Don’t have boiling water? Just crunch up the noodles in the bag, tear off a corner, add the seasoning packet, hold the torn corner and shake it up, then consume. Lick your fingers clean after this one. It’s like eating Cheetos, but without the orange fingers.

Simple Eggs

Eggs are one of the most versatile additions. The easiest thing to do is add the eggs to the cold water before you start cooking. Bring the water to a boil, let it boil for a minute or two, then add your noodles.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

If you timed everything right, the eggs will be hard (or soft) boiled just as the noodles finish cooking. You can also cook the noodles then stir in a beaten egg, or cook the noodles, pull them off heat, and drop an egg into the center. Cover the pot, and let the egg poach for 2 minutes before adding the seasoning and serving. Stir the semi-liquid yolk into the broth to enrich it.

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Simple Vegetables

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

For quick-cooking vegetables like baby spinach, sliced cabbage, or frozen peas, just add them after you pull the noodles off heat. Some vegetables, like broccoli, cauliflower, or thick snap peas can go in the pot about 2 minutes before its done boiling.

Simple Simmered Meat

Thinly sliced meats can be cooked in a matter of seconds directly in the pot. Chicken breast, pork tenderloin, or flank steak are all great candidates.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

I like to pick the pieces up one at a time and swish them back and forth in the hot broth until cooked while the noodles are simmering, then set the cooked meat aside and put it back on top right before serving. Cured meats like ham or bacon are great as well, as are cooked meats like leftover chicken or steak, or hot dogs.

Cabbage Ramen

A simple meat and veggie combo. Add 2 slices of bacon cut into 2-inch strips and a couple ounces of sliced napa cabbage to the pot 2 minutes before the noodles finish cooking.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

The bacon will inevitably get picked out and devoured before anything else, but no worries—like the sweet purple milk left behind by the marshmallows in the Lucky Charms, the bacon leaves behind a lingering smoky richness that makes those last drops of broth the best part of the bowl.

Stir-fried Beef and Snap Peas

Toss a quarter pound of thinly sliced flank steak with half of the seasoning packet, then simmer the noodles just until they break apart (don’t overcook them!). Drain the noodles and set them aside.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

In a large wok or skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil until smoking. Add the beef and cook without moving for about 1 minute until well-browned. Toss the meat a few times. Add a quarter pound of snap peas and stir fry for about 1 minute. Add another tablespoon of oil, the noodles, the rest of the seasoning packet, a couple tablespoons of oyster sauce, and a bit of sugar. Toss until everything is well coated, then plate it up! Top with sliced scallions if your goal is to impress.

Aloha, Ramen!

I don’t know if anyone in Hawaii would go anywhere near this, but I think it’s pretty awesome—super salty sliced of pan-fried Spam, sweet pineapple chunks (you can use fresh or canned), a perfectly fried sunny-side-up egg (fried in the same pan as the Spam, of course), and a generous squirt of Japanese-style barbecue sauce.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

You can find this in most Asian grocers (look for the bottle with the bulldog on it), or you can make a quick version at home by mixing 2 tablespoons of worcestershire sauce, a tablespoon of soy sauce, and a half cup of ketchup together. E ʻai ka-kou!

Tom Kha Goong

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Spicy, sweet and sour, coconut-scented tom kha goong is a snap when you start with instant noodles. After boiling and draining the noodles, just add half the seasoning pack to a couple cups of coconut milk along with fish sauce, sugar, and Thai curry paste to taste (wanna make it even easier? Just use regular old sriracha in place of the curry paste). Serve it with cilantro and limes for squeezing. A few strips of chicken or peeled shrimp added to the noodles a few minutes before they’re done simmering makes for an instant upgrade.

Cold Peanut And Coconut Ramen Salad

Somewhere between a Thai-style peanut dipping sauce and a cold sesame noodle salad. You can barely recognize the low-brow roots of this classy rendition. Boil the noodles as directed, then drain them and add them back to a pot filled with cold water.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Meanwhile, mix together a couple of tablespoons of peanut butter (chunky) and half of the seasoning packet along with 1 teaspoon of soy sauce, and a tablespoon or so of chili-garlic sauce (yes, sriracha works too), more or less to taste. Add just enough water to get it to a nice saucy consistency, then toss in the noodles along with some chopped cilantro, peanuts, and unsweetened coconut flakes. Coat thoroughly, serve immediately, and wait for the compliments to start rolling in.

Sweet & Sour Ramen

It’s tacky, it’s bright red, it’s made with ketchup, but it’s good. Cook the ramen just until they break apart, then drain and set aside. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a wok or skillet and stir-fry some bell pepper along with a few chunks of spam until everything’s nice and hot (or if you’d like, some pork or chicken pieces).

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Add a small can of pineapple chunks along with their juice, a half cup of ketchup, and chili-garlic sauce to taste. Toss with the noodles, and serve with a side of irony.

Rad Thai

Real pad thai is tough. The rice noodles go very quickly from undercooked to overcooked. With ramen-based pad thai, expectations go out the window, which makes it significantly easier to meet them. Cook your noodles just until they start to separate, adding a few peeled shrimp to the pot a couple minutes before they finish cooking.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Pull the pot off the heat, then drizzle in a lightly beaten egg. Drain and transfer everything to a large bowl. Add half the seasoning packet, a few nice squirts of fish sauce, plenty of lime juice, crushed peanuts, scallions, bean sprouts, and if authenticity is your schtick, some tamarind paste (I just leave it out—the lime juice is plenty sour on its own). Nobody will recognize your ramen when it’s wearing its new Thai hat.

Cheesy Chili Ramen

Now we get into the realm of fusion ramen, and this is an obvious first step. Taking a cue from Cincinnati, the noodles are simply cooked, drained, and topped with a ladel of chili. I’ve used goopy cheese sauce here, but you can go the authentic route with shredded cheese if you’d prefer. Heck, you can even take it all five ways by adding onions and beans.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Routine Ramen (Ramen Poutine)
Okay, before you start calling the Mounties on me, yes, I am aware that authentic poutine is cooked with cheese curds rather than the shredded cheese I’m using here. However, this is just a ramen hack, so accept it. Simply crunch your ramen in the bag, then pour it into a skillet with a little oil to get it nice and crispy. Toast over medium-high heat, swirling and tossing occasionally, until everything is nicely browned. Add some gravy and cheese on top, then broil everything in the toaster oven until the cheese is melted. Using a fork, eat. also beer

Ramacos!

Ramen tacos are still in their infancy, despite the fact that spaghetti tacos may have finally passed away. Join the bandwagon before it becomes a global phenomenon! Starting with a taco package that includes taco shells, taco sauce, and a seasoning packet is the simplest option.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Along with the water and spice package, add a pack of raw, crunched-up ramen noodles to the skillet after cooking roughly half the amount of ground beef that is suggested on the box. Cook it down, adding additional water as needed, until the ramen is the appropriate consistency (I prefer mine still a little crispy). Scoop it into taco shells, add preferred toppings, and devour.

Corn Chowder Ramen

A sophisticated soup from a more refined time. a chowder that balances the flavors of sweet, salty, and smoke with soft corn kernels. The first step in making it is to crunch up the noodles in the bag, then add them to a skillet with a can of creamed corn and a few chopped bacon slices. Water should be poured into the emptied can of creamed corn and added to the pot. After adding half of the seasoning packet, bring everything to a simmer and boil the noodles until they are perfectly soft.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

The soup will eventually become a thick chowder that you can thin out to your preferred consistency. You can now proceed after adding a few scallions that have been thinly cut. Want a little more decadence? Before serving, add a little butter and swap out the water with milk (or cream!). It is best to wear a tie when serving this dish.

Rac and Cheese

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Clearly a choice, no? This meal has an unusual textural quality since, unlike true elbow macaroni, the ramen itself is almost as gooey as the cheese sauce. You can either make your own cheese sauce from scratch or simply combine a half block of Velveeta with some milk and butter (heat it up in the microwave until gooey). Add the cheese sauce to the cooked noodles, sprinkle with additional cheese, and broil until bubbling and browned.

Pie made with rams

Tastes great but has an odd sound. Ramen noodles are cooked and then placed on top of a typical shepherd’s (or cottage) pie filling before being baked. Under the broiler, the tops of the noodles dry up and get quite crispy while the noodles underneath stay soft. It has a distinct and mouthwatering textural contrast. The recipe is on the following slide.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Okay, before you start calling the Mounties on me, yes, I am aware that authentic poutine is cooked with cheese curds rather than the shredded cheese I’m using here. However, this is just a ramen hack, so accept it. Simply crunch your ramen in the bag, then pour it into a skillet with a little oil to get it nice and crispy. Toast over medium-high heat, swirling and tossing occasionally, until everything is nicely browned. Add some gravy and cheese on top, then broil everything in the toaster oven until the cheese is melted. Using a fork, eat. also beer

Ramacos!

Ramen tacos are still in their infancy, despite the fact that spaghetti tacos may have finally passed away. Join the bandwagon before it becomes a global phenomenon! Starting with a taco package that includes taco shells, taco sauce, and a seasoning packet is the simplest option.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Along with the water and spice package, add a pack of raw, crunched-up ramen noodles to the skillet after cooking roughly half the amount of ground beef that is suggested on the box. Cook it down, adding additional water as needed, until the ramen is the appropriate consistency (I prefer mine still a little crispy). Scoop it into taco shells, add preferred toppings, and devour.

Corn Chowder Ramen

A sophisticated soup from a more refined time. a chowder that balances the flavors of sweet, salty, and smoke with soft corn kernels. The first step in making it is to crunch up the noodles in the bag, then add them to a skillet with a can of creamed corn and a few chopped bacon slices.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Water should be poured into the emptied can of creamed corn and added to the pot. After adding half of the seasoning packet, bring everything to a simmer and boil the noodles until they are perfectly soft. The soup will eventually become a thick chowder that you can thin out to your preferred consistency. You can now proceed after adding a few scallions that have been thinly cut. Want a little more decadence? Before serving, add a little butter and swap out the water with milk (or cream!). It is best to wear a tie when serving this dish.

Rac and cheese

Clearly a choice, no? This meal has an unusual textural quality since, unlike true elbow macaroni, the ramen itself is almost as gooey as the cheese sauce.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

You can either make your own cheese sauce from scratch or simply combine a half block of Velveeta with some milk and butter (heat it up in the microwave until gooey). Add the cheese sauce to the cooked noodles, sprinkle with additional cheese, and broil until bubbling and browned.

Ramepherd’s Pie

Tastes great but has an odd sound. Ramen noodles are cooked and then placed on top of a typical shepherd’s (or cottage) pie filling before being baked.

Ramen Hacks: Simple Methods to Improve Your Instant Noodles

Under the broiler, the tops of the noodles dry up and get quite crispy while the noodles underneath stay soft. It has a distinct and mouthwatering textural contrast. The recipe is on the following slide.

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