December 1, 2021

Easy Vegan Recipes

Eat Vegan – Eat Well

Sesame Peanut Noodles

5 min read

Slurpable noodles are drenched in silky peanut sauce with a touch of sesame oil, then served up with crispy cabbage and pan-fried tofu to make these scrumptious peanut sesame noodles. A delicious vegan meal that can be served hot or cold!

Bowl of Sesame Peanut Noodles with Drinking Glass and a Bunch of Scallions in the Background

These sesame peanut noodles have a lot going for them. They’re scrumptious, easy to make, and a great excuse to have peanut butter for dinner. We eat a lot of peanut butter in my house. I just counted and we currently have seven(!) jars of peanut butter in the pantry.

That seems a little out of hand for a two person house. But I can partly blame this on the fact that my favorite peanut butter (Trader Joe’s) requires a twenty-minute drive to obtain, so I like to stock up. My husband also has his own favorite brand, and he has a bad habit of buying and opening a brand new jar when he’s still working on the last one, because apparently the peanut butter at the top of a brand new jar is the best.

Anyway, it’s no surprise that many of my clean-out-the pantry meals involve peanut butter. And this is one of those meals!

Skillet Filled with Sesame Peanut Noodles and Tofu

We also tend to have a ton of pasta hanging around, and while Italian-style pasta isn’t exactly authentic peanut noodle material, the ingredients in spaghetti are pretty much the same as those you find in lots of Asian noodles. You really can’t tell the difference, so I decided to roll with it!

What You’ll Need

  • Dried spaghetti. Feel free to substitute another type of noodle. Soba noodles or ramen would work great!
  • Peanut butter. I recommend using natural peanut butter of the creamy variety.
  • Soy sauce or tamari.
  • Rice vinegar.
  • Maple syrup. You could substitute another type of sweetener if you’d like. Brown sugar works well.
  • Toasted sesame oil. Look for this in the international foods section at your supermarket.
  • Water.
  • High heat oil.
  • Extra firm tofu.
  • Garlic.
  • Fresh ginger.
  • Scallions.
  • Red cabbage. Green cabbage works too!
  • Roasted peanuts. Check the ingredients on these. Believe it or not, some brands of roasted peanuts contain gelatin.

How to Make Sesame Peanut Noodles

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make sesame peanut noodles. Scroll down if you’d prefer to skip right to the recipe.

  • Start by cooking your pasta according to the package directions. Drain it when it’s finished, then toss it with a dash of oil to prevent sticking.
  • While the pasta cooks, make the sauce by whisking peanut butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar, maple syrup, and sesame oil together in a small bowl. Thin the mixture with some water, so it’s a bit on the runny side.

Whisking Peanut Sauce in a Bowl to Make Sesame Peanut Noodles

  • Prep your tofu by pressing and dicing it.
  • Now heat up some oil in a skillet, and add the tofu. Pan fry the cubes for about 5 minutes on each side, until they’re lightly browned and crispy.

Tofu in a Skillet for Making Sesame Peanut Noodles

  • Push the tofu to the side of the skillet, then add the garlic, ginger, and white parts of your scallions. Cook them up very briefly, until they become very fragrant.
  • Add the noodles and sauce.
  • Toss everything a few times and cook it just until it’s hot.
  • Add the cabbage last, so it stays nice and crispy.

Collage Showing Steps for Making Sesame Peanut Noodles: Sauté Aromatics, Add Noodles and Sauce, Heat and Add Cabbage

Sesame Peanut Noodles Tips & FAQ

  • Can this dish be made gluten-free? Yup! Just use a gluten-free variety of noodle and gluten-free tamari in place of soy sauce.
  • Shelf life & storage: Leftovers of this dish will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for about 3 days.
  • I normally serve this dish hot, but cold works too! For cold noodles, pan-fry the tofu (or skip it), but then move away from the stove. Instead of cooking the aromatics and heating up the noodles, just toss everything together in a big bowl.
  • If you’re not into the idea of using Italian pasta for this dish, just substitute your favorite Asian noodles. Soba noodles go great with peanut sauce!
  • Feel free to switch up the cabbage with your favorite veggies.
  • Looking for more Asian-inspired noodle recipes? Try my vegetable lo mein, vegetable chow mein, vegan ramen, or Singapore noodles.

Overhead View of a Bowl of Sesame Peanut Noodles with Fork and Drinking Glass

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Skillet Filled with Sesame Peanut Noodles and Tofu

Sesame Peanut Noodles

Slurpable noodles are drenched in silky peanut sauce with a touch of sesame oil, then served up with crispy cabbage and pan-fried tofu to make these scrumptious peanut sesame noodles. A delicious vegan meal that can be served hot or cold!

Prep Time 15 minutes

Cook Time 20 minutes

Total Time 35 minutes

Servings 4

Calories 544 kcal

Author Alissa Saenz

Ingredients

  • 7 ounces dried spaghetti (or noodles of choice)

For the Peanut Sesame Sauce

  • 1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • About 1/3 cup water, or as needed

For the Pan-Fried Tofu

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, or high heat oil of choice
  • 7 ounces extra firm tofu, pressed and cut into 1-inch cubes

For the Peanut Noodles

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, or high heat oil of choice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 4 scallions, white and green parts separated and chopped
  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage

For Serving

  • 1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook it according to the package directions. 

  2. While the pasta cooks, whisk the ingredients for the peanut sesame sauce together in a small bowl, thinning the mixture with as much water as you need. You want the sauce to be thick and creamy, but pourable and not too runny.

  3. Drain the pasta into a colander and return it to the pot. Toss it with a dash of canola oil.

  4. Next, make the pan-fried tofu. Coat the bottom of a large skillet with canola oil and place it over medium heat.

  5. When the oil is hot, add the tofu in an even layer. Cook for about 10 minutes, flipping one or two times, until the cubes are browned and crispy on multiple sides.

  6. Push the tofu to the sides of the skillet, and add a tablespoon of canola oil to the center, and add the garlic, ginger and white parts of scallions. Sauté for about 1 minute, until very fragrant. 

  7. Add the noodles and sauce the skillet, and push the tofu back into the center with the rest of the ingredients. Flip everything a few times to coat the noodles and tofu with the sauce. Raise the heat to high and cook for about a minute, just until everything is heated throughout.

  8. Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the cabbage.

  9. Top the noodles with the peanuts and green parts of scallions. Divide onto plates and serve.

Nutrition Facts

Sesame Peanut Noodles

Amount Per Serving

Calories 544 Calories from Fat 265

% Daily Value*

Fat 29.4g45%

Saturated Fat 4.6g23%

Sodium 584mg24%

Potassium 551mg16%

Carbohydrates 53.3g18%

Fiber 4g16%

Sugar 10.3g11%

Protein 20.5g41%

Calcium 120mg12%

Iron 6.1mg34%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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