Ready to jump on the bandwagon and indulge in the Ramen trend? Perfecting this recipe totally reignited my love for these skinny little noodles in a hot, flavorful broth. This Easy Vegetarian Ramen with Tofu is my old college dorm room fave reinvented into a filling, tasty dinner fit for a foodie.
Growing up, instant ramen was my go-to for an after school snack. I wasn’t quite the chef I am today yet—I remember adding pounds of Tabasco sauce to give it more flavor.
But I can promise you my adult attempt at Ramen is much better than a microwaveable pre-packaged cube of dry noodles cooked with tap water and a packet of salty dust. This broth has so much complex flavor, and you can really taste every note.
Vegetarian Ramen Tips and Tricks
It’s All About that Broth
Here’s the secret to a successful Easy Vegetarian Ramen With Tofu: it’s all about that broth.
And if your fear is that a vegetarian broth won’t provide the same depth of flavor, think again! The pungent taste from the onion and garlic that steeps into the veggie broth, combined with the sweetness of the ginger, the saltiness of Tamari, the zing of rice vinegar, and earthiness from the mushrooms brings a complex taste to every bite.
Green tip: Industrial meat production has a huge impact on the environment, especially because of the amount of land it takes to sustain and its high amount of greenhouse gas emissions. Reducing your meat consumption is one great way to reduce your ecological footprint.
Top it off with some sriracha for a little bit of spice and this broth is literally teeming with flavor. It’s a finish-all-the-noodles-and-then-drink-the-bowl kinda broth.
So how do you get that coveted flavor-teeming broth? Use quality ingredients. Like fresh ginger, and high quality Tamari and vegetable broth.
I use minced ginger. You can absolutely use fresh. Ground ginger can work in a pinch, but if you are using ground, you’ll need a little more than 1 tablespoon. It is not as impactful as fresh or minced and its flavor will mellow substantially as it cooks. I would just add a little extra to taste in step 6.
Soy sauce can definitely be used in the place of Tamari. They are very similar in taste and composition. The biggest difference is that Tamari is a little bit thicker, so I like the way it thickens this broth. It’s also a little less salty.
Vegetable broth already has a lot of sodium, so if you are substituting soy sauce for Tamari, start with a little less. You can always add more! Tamari is generally found right next to the soy sauce in your grocery store. You can also get it delivered to your door by clicking here (affiliate link).
The noodles are the perfect way to soak up all that flavor. They’re very easy and quick to make, but timing is essential. It’s best to make them right before serving. When they rest for a while in a bowl, they tend to stick together. And if they rest too long in the broth, they get a little gummy.
The miso-glazed tofu gives this dish more substance and some protein. You can choose to leave your tofu plain and rely on the flavor of the broth, but I find coating it in miso really elevates it.
Green tip: Look for organic, non-GMO tofu to make sure it’s sourced sustainably.
As you probably know, tofu is incredible at picking up flavor, but on its own is extremely bland. The miso glaze is just enough to elevate it without it competing with the strong flavors of the broth.
Always use extra-firm tofu in this Easy Vegetarian Ramen with Tofu and take the time to press it to dry it out. It’ll get you that crispy tofu you’re looking for as contrast to the wet soup.
The addition of scallions and provide extra crunch and bite. The added texture is important in a dish that is otherwise mostly soft.
The egg is my favorite add-in and is probably the most difficult part of the recipe to get just right. My best advice is to time it. Seven minutes in simmering water will give you a great large brown egg. So long as it’s hot, it will continue to cook. So an ice bath is necessary to stop the cooking.
Green tip: Look for pasture-raised eggs (over free-range or cage-free) to support agriculture that is less reliant on chemicals and fossil fuels.
Prepare your ice bath while your eggs are cooking and then transfer them directly from the simmering water to the ice water. Peel them carefully, and you’ve got the perfect soft-boiled egg! I usually make 4 and get 3 just right.
Make It Your Own
You can leave out the egg to make this dish vegan. Every other component is completely free of animal products. You can also choose to mix up your add-ins.
This recipe is meant to guide you, but make it your own! Add extra spices, or more vegetables. My husband often adds chicken to his serving.
Some add-ins I love with this Easy Vegetarian Ramen with Tofu are dried seaweed, roasted tomatoes, carrots, sprouts, edamame, and corn. But I’d be hard-pressed to think of a veggie that wouldn’t be amazing in this!
Enjoy this Easy Vegetarian Ramen with Tofu hot. Maybe with some sake? And some edamame to start? Whatever floats your boat. And if you’re crazy enough to eat hot soup in the dead of summer like me, try this Vegetarian Brocolli Cheddar Soup next 😁