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Good-Bye, Mushy Stir-Fried Udon Noodles; The Ultimate Recipes Of YAKIUDON With Two Sauce

Yakiudon, sauce yaki udon, Japanese stir-fried udon noodles, recipe Food & Recipes

Yaki Udon is a staple easy lunch menu in Japanese home cooking and you can buy YAKIUDON meal kits in grocery stores in Japan.

When you ever go out to an Izakayas or Japanese (Chinese-Korean-Japanese-Asian- fusion) cuisine restaurant you’ll often see Yaki Udon on the menu, somehow. (to me, have no clue why…)

So what exactly is Yaki Udon?

Put simply, it’s literally a Japanese Stir-fried noodle dish made with thick chewy udon noodles, proteins, veggies, with a soy-based sauce or Japanese Worcester sauce-based sauce.

Generally, this casual dish can be made at home, but you can meet the dish, normally, in Teppan restaurants or sometimes in Izakayas in Japan.

Honestly, I have never seen Yaki Udon when I eat out in Japan. However, Yaki Udon is seemed to be mainly a common menu on the West side of Japan.

Anyway, to make Yaki Udon, simply stir-fry noodles and other ingredients, however, it’s not so simple.

Cooking Udon noodles is actually not easy since the noodles will become mushy and sticky quickly.

So today, I am going to tell you the full cooking tips on how to make non-mushy stir-fried udon noodles at home using two sauces.

What’ll You Need To Make Stir-Fried Udon Noodles

Udon Noodles

Generally, chewy thick Udon noodles are preferred for Yaki Udon in Japan.

When you see dried Udon noodles in grocery stores, it is categorized as a thin type of Udon noodles.
Go to Asian grocery stores near you, and get frozen thick Udon noodles. (which is often called SANUKI UDON.)

If you can find packaged fresh Udon noodles in Asian grocery stores, it’ll be great.

Either type of Udon noodles (frozen/ fresh) will be the best result rather than using dried Udon noodles.

Yet, use dried thin udon noodles if you can’t find one like me.

When using frozen Udon noodles, place them in a bowl, microwave them covered for a few minutes rather than boiling them.

It is not necessary to thaw completely.

When using packaged fresh Udon noodles, you can just throw them in a pan.

When using dried Udon noodles, it could be mushy, but contrary to say, the sauce becomes thick and creamy and cling well to noodles.

Simply, it’s similar to making authentic Italian pasta. Cook dried Udon noodles until they become in “al dente”.

After cooked, drain and rinse well under tap cold water until the starch is away.

It is really not necessary to oil the cooked noodles, but, it will not hurt if you want to do so.

Vegetables

Green cabbage, beans sprout, carrots, and onions are commonly used for Yaki Udon recipes in Japan.

It is just because of the staple vegetables to the Japanese, so there are no certain rules to use which kinds.

Whatever you like, just throw in!

But the vegetable that has a lot of water content can make the dish mushy, especially the next day.

Also, choose the crunchy vegetables to enjoy the balance of texture.

The important key to avoiding mushy veggies and noodles, do not to put too much amount of vegges.

Make a maximum of 3 cups of the cut-vegetables total for 2 servings. (14 oz/ 2 bags udon noodles.)

Protein

In Japan, we generally add protein for Yaki Udon.

Thinly sliced pork belly is often used, (again, it’s the fridge staple in Japan,) so you can use any proteins you love such as shrimp, pork, and beef.

Besides, we often use processed meat such as bacon, hams, and Vienna sausage for Yaki Udon.

About The Sauce For Yaki Udon

Roughly speaking, there are two common types of sauces for authentic stir-fried Udon noodles.

  • Japanese Worcester sauce-base
  • Soy sauce-base

Worcester sauce-based Yaki Udon will be a thick sauce, sweet, tangy. Soy sauce-based Yaki Udon will be lighter, and easy to eat for everybody.

Japanese Worcester sauce is sweet, fruity, and tasty itself so it is very much different from the original Worcestershire sauce.

So, adding Japanese Worcester sauce (such as bull-dog sauce, Yakisoba-sauce, or homemade Tonkatsu sauce) brings authentic savory Japanese Yaki Udon.

Flavor Yaki Udon with soy sauce only will be fine, but, adding oyster sauce together will be a more flavorful and rich taste.

Do not forget to add sugar as the secret ingredient.

How To Stir-Fry Noodles And Vegetables

When making stir-fried noodle dishes such as Yakisoba noodles and Yaki Udon, noodles often get mushy and sticky easily.

Besides, vegetables get over-cooked losing their fresh crispy texture when you don’t cook efficiently and properly.

Here are cooking tips to make those noodle dishes including Yaki Udon.

  1. Use a non-stick frying pan! Easy.
  2. Try to make Yaki Udon in a small serving portion each time.
  3. Plenty of vegetables sounds really good and healthy, but, you need to a little consider the volume of vegetables. The over-volume of vegetables provides excess juice to noodles which causes mushy and sticky.
  4. Also, it’ll be difficult to cook evenly and perfectly all ingredients when they are over-volume.
  5. Stir-fry onions and root vegetables before adding vegetables that are cooked quickly, such as bean sprouts and cabbages.
  6. Try to toss a frying pan to stir noodles and other ingredients rather than stir them with a tong/ chopsticks to avoid breaking noodles and vegetables with the tong.
  7. Turn the heat to high heat to evaporate excess juice as a finish.

The Basic Authentic Yaki Udon Recipe

Yakiudon

The Soy Sauce-Based Stir-Fried Udon Noodles (Authentic YAKI-UDON)

Rico McConnellRico McConnell
Popular Izakaya menu internationally, Japanese stir-fried Udon noodles, Yaki Udon is an easy & delicious meal loaded with vegetables, mushrooms, and your choice of protein, with rich soy-sauce based sauce. In Japan, Yaki Udon is more likely the staple easy lunch that mothers often cook. Yes, it's quite easy. To avoid making "mushy" Yaki Udon, prepare noodles with my tips, add a moderate volume of vegetables (not too much), and make the stir-fry sauce before cooking.
Course Blunch, Lunch
Cuisine Japanese

Ingredients  

  • 14 oz Udon Noodles *1)
  • 1 tbsp Cooking oil
  • 1 tbsp Japanese Sake/ White wine
  • Your Desired Protein
  • Your Desired Vegetables, sliced Cabbage, Onions, Carrots, Shiitake Mushrooms, Green onions...
  • Pickled Ginger *Optional
  • Runny Sunny-side up *Optional

Stir fry Sauce

  • 1 tbsp Japanese Dark Soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Oyster Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 TSP Hondashi powder

Instructions 

  • <Fresh Udon Noodles> Microwave unopened packaged Udon noodles for 40 seconds (600W) to make the noodles easily untangle.
    <Frozen Udon Noodles> Remove a package. Place 2 batches on a plate. Microwave for 3-5 minutes covered. (600W)
    <Dried Udon Noodles> Cook dried udon noodles for "Al dente". Drain and rinse the starch off.
  • Mix the stir fry sauce ingredients together. Set aside.
  • Heat the cooking oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat then cook protein and vegetables for a few minutes.
  • Drizzle 1 tbsp of sake/ white wine and keep stir-frying the ingredients until they are moderately cooked.
  • Gather protein and vegges aside or remove them out of the pan, make space to cook Udon noodles.
  • Add the udon noodles and the stir-fry sauce and mix evenly together to coat the noodles.
  • Combine noodles and other ingredients, and stir-fry them until you see the sauce thickening.
  • Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Notes

©Japanmcconnell/Rico McConnell- Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
Keyword Easy, frying pan, Hondashi, Pasta & Noodles

Yakiudon, sauce yaki udon, Japanese stir-fried udon noodles, recipe

Japanese Sauce Yaki-Udon, Stir-fried Udon Noodles With Savory Sweet Japanese Tonkatsu Sauce

Rico McConnellRico McConnell
Authentic Japanese street food flavor. A staple Yaki Udon.
Course Blunch, Lunch
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 2 people

Ingredients  

  • 14 oz Udon Noodles
  • 1 tbsp Cooking oil
  • 1 tbsp Japanese sake/ White wine
  • Your choice of Vegetables *Make a maximum of 3 cups of veggies total.
  • Your choice of Protein

The Stir-Fry Sauce

  • cup Japanese Tonkatsu sauce *1)
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Oyster sauce
  • 1 TSP Hondashi powder *Optional

Instructions 

  • Make Tonkatsu sauce the day before, or get bull-dog Tonkatsu sauce.
    *Tonkatsu sauce recipe.
  • <Fresh Udon Noodles> Microwave unopened packaged Udon noodles for 40 seconds (600W) to make the noodles easily untangle.
    <Frozen Udon Noodles> Remove a package. Place 2 batches on a plate. Microwave for 3-5 minutes covered. (600W)
    <Dried Udon Noodles> Cook dried udon noodles for "Al dente". Drain and rinse the starch off.
  • Heat the cooking oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat then cook protein and vegetables for a few minutes.
  • Drizzle 1 tbsp of sake/ white wine and keep stir-frying the ingredients until they are moderately cooked.
  • Gather protein and vegges aside or remove them out of the pan, make space to cook Udon noodles.
  • Add the udon noodles and the stir-fry sauce and mix evenly together to coat the noodles.
  • Combine noodles and other ingredients, and stir-fry them until you see the sauce thickening.
  • Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Notes

©Japanmcconnell/Rico McConnell- Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
Keyword Easy, frying pan, Pasta & Noodles, Stir-fry

The Unique Yaki Udon With Miso Sauce

Rico's Yaki Udon Recipe

Thick Sweet Miso Yaki Udon| Japanese stir-fried Udon Noodles With Miso Sauce

Rico McConnellRico McConnell
Yaki Udon with Sweet Japanese Miso Sauce
Course Blunch, Lunch
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 2 people

Ingredients  

  • 14 oz Udon Noodles
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1 tbsp Japanese sake/ white wine
  • Your choice of Vegetables Green cabbages, carrots, onions, green onions, bean sprouts, Shiitake mushrooms...
  • Your choice of Protein Pork belly, chicken, bacon, sausage, hams, seafood

Miso Sauce

  • ½ tbsp Japanese Red Miso
  • ½ tbsp Japanese Sake / White wine
  • ½ tbsp Water
  • ½ tbsp Sugar
  • ½ tbsp Honey
  • ½ TSP Hondashi powder

Instructions 

Make Miso Sauce

  • Put all ingredients of the sauce in a microwave-safe bowl and heat it until the Miso paste gets combined well.
    *Another sweet miso sauce recipe is here. Use 3 tbsp of the sauce.

Prepare Udon Noodles

  • <Fresh Udon Noodles> Microwave unopened packaged Udon noodles for 40 seconds (600W) to make the noodles easily untangle.
    <Frozen Udon Noodles> Remove a package. Place 2 batches on a plate. Microwave for 3-5 minutes covered. (600W)
    <Dried Udon Noodles> Cook dried udon noodles for "Al dente". Drain and rinse the starch off.

Make Yaki Udon

  • Heat the cooking oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat then cook protein and vegetables for a few minutes.
  • Drizzle 1 tbsp of sake/ white wine and keep stir-frying the ingredients until they are moderately cooked.
  • Gather protein and vegges aside or remove them out of the pan, make space to cook Udon noodles.
  • Add the udon noodles and the stir-fry sauce and mix evenly together to coat the noodles.
  • Combine noodles and other ingredients, and stir-fry them until you see the sauce thickening.
    *Miso sauce is easily burnt. Add additional water if needed.
  • Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Notes

©Japanmcconnell/Rico McConnell- Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
Keyword Easy, frying pan, Hondashi, Miso, Pasta & Noodles

Last Thoughts

On the outside of the standard soy sauce-based sauce, yaki udon has many recipe variations.

By looking at the idea recipes I have introduced so far, discover a new favorite recipe for yaki udon.

Please Try my tips for stir fry Udon noodles.

By the way, you can use all three sauces together to make rich Yaki Udon.

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