Chilli garlic noodles is a quick and easy recipe to satiate your Chinese takeout cravings in minutes. This is a super simple recipe that gets ready in less than 30 minutes, totally customizable and makes for an excellent hearty dinner. Vegan recipe.
One of my favorite Chinese noodles preparation is garlic noodles loaded with chili flakes. According to me very few Chinese restaurants and takeout gets this dish right, often times they either dump loads of garlic or just drench the noodles in chili oil making it too pungent or spicy.
Few years back we tasted one excellent Chilli garlic noodles in a small bistro and liked it a lot. It had the right balance of flavors, added tofu and was not tongue numbingly spicy or pungent. The chef was kind to share the method and it has been my go to recipe for garlic noodles ever since 🙂
In this post I am sharing my detailed recipe along with few tweaks I have made like adding vegetables:) Read on, try it out and enjoy!
About Chili Garlic Noodles
Chilli garlic noodles is a popular, delicious and easy to make Chinese restaurant style noodles flavored with chili flakes & freshly minced garlic cloves. This is a staple Chinese dish popular in restaurants, takeout and bistros.
In this recipe I have used some vegetables and tofu strips for added nutrition. I have also kept the sauces minimum to let garlic shine.
The flavor comes from chilli and garlic infused sesame oil. Be generous with garlic cloves and oil in this recipe. I have also added a wee bit of
Chilli garlic noodles for dinner is our favorite at home. what’s not love about this- silky smooth noodles tossed in some veggies for crunch, paneer for texture with wonderful chilli garlic flavor. Oh there is also a generous amount of roasted sesame seeds as garnish. You will absolutely love this noodles 🙂
Ingredients & Substitutes
Restaurants mostly use hakka noodles or plain flour noodles but you can use any variety of noodles here. I make it with soba noodles, udon noodles, rice noodles or millet noodles too.
Just make sure to cook the noodles al dente, non sticky and clump free. Add water according to the package instructions.
Use freshly peeled and minced garlic for best taste and flavor. If you don’t have freshly minced garlic you can use garlic powder or garlic paste but nothing like freshly minced ones.
I have used chilli flakes but you can also use dried red chilies of any variety or red chilli paste. Some chilli oil can also be used to enhance the flavor and taste.
Using sauces is optional in this recipe. If you are looking for typical restaurant style flavor do add them. Here I have used a splash of soy sauce, green chilli sauce, rice vinegar. Instead of green chilli sauce you can also use red chilli sauce.
Vegetables & Tofu
You can add vegetables like carrot, capsicum or bell pepper, baby corn, cabbage in this noodles for color and flavor. I have also added strips of extra firm tofu which you could substitute with paneer or chopped mushrooms.
Salt, freshly cracked black pepper, spring onion greens or scallion greens, sesame seeds for crunch and sesame oil.
How To Make Chilli Garlic Noodles
Open a pack of 200 grams of noodles and keep it ready. Do not break the noodles.
Add 5 cups of water to a large pot and heat it for cooking noodles
Let water the come to a rolling boil. Add a big pinch of salt.
Now place the block of noodles into the water carefully. Most of the noodles packet will have cooking time mentioned, so keep a watch. It helps to cook the noodles a minute or two less than what is mentioned to get al dente texture.
Mix very gently. Add few drops of oil over the noodles.
Mix again gently. As the water boils, noodles will become soft. Usually this takes around 4-6 minutes.
Now mix very gently so that the noodles do not stick to the bottom of the pan. As the noodles cook, they will begin to float, also check the time mentioned in the pack.
Once they are soft, switch off the flame and immediately drain the cooked noodles in a colander.
Making Garlic Noodles
Heat 2 teaspoons sesame oil in a pan. Add crushed garlic cloves, red chili flakes and saute in high flame for 2 minutes.
3. Add cubed onions and saute well for 2 minutes.
4. Next add the veggies and mix well.
5. Add 1/2 teaspoon vinegar, sauces, salt and sugar. Cook the veggies in high flame for 5-7 minutes.
Cook till the veggies are cooked yet retain their crunch. Do not make them soft. Add paneer or tofu cubes and toss well.
5. Add the boiled noodles and toss gently. Adjust seasoning and remove from flame. Add a generous amount of toasted white sesame seeds, chopped green onions and mix gently. Serve chili garlic noodles immediately. You can also add some toasted sesame oil just before serving.
With Chilli Garlic Paste
Instead of making this noodles with chilies and garlic you can simply add 2 tablespoons homemade or store bought chilli garlic paste.
To make chilli garlic paste blend 20 softened red chilies (soak them in warm water) with 6-7 plump garlic cloves to a fine paste. Heat 1/4 cup oil until it smokes, add to this paste and mix thoroughly. You can use it in thai curries, Asian recipes. Keeps well for a month in refrigerator.
You can also add salt in this paste, but reduce salt in the main dish accordingly.
If you are adding soy sauce try to use naturally fermented low sodium sauce. If you prefer a significant taste of soy sauce you can use a mix of dark soy sauce and light soy sauce too.
To make this recipe gluten free you can opt for tamari and rice noodles or any noodles without gluten.
Adding vegetables are optional but I highly recommend them. They add such a wonderful taste, color and also nutrition. Along with carrot and capsicum you also use bok choy, Asian greens of choice, baby corn in this recipe.
I try to sneak some protein in noodles recipes so that I can reduce the quantity of noodles. I follow this especially if I am using flour noodles.
Adding protein makes the dish wholesome and satiating. Here I have used tofu but you can use paneer, mushrooms or even soya chunks or meal maker.
This noodles tastes very delicious when made a bit spicy. If you can handle it you can double the quantity if chili flake and green chili sauce. I make it moderately spicy for my daughter.
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Chilli Garlic Noodles
1 CUP = 250 ml
- 200 grams noodles
- 1.5 cups chopped veggies carrots, beans, baby corns, bell peppers
- 1/2 cup cubed paneer or tofu
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 4-6 garlic cloves crushed
- 2 teaspoons chili flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
- 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
- Cook noodles according to package instructions. Add 1/2 teaspoon oil and mix well. Keep covered until use.
- Heat 2 teaspoons sesame oil in a pan. Add crushed garlic cloves, chili flakes and saute in high flame for 2 minutes.
- Add cubed onions and saute well for 2 minutes.
- Next add the veggies and mix well. Add1/2 teaspoon vinegar, salt and sugar. Cook the veggies in high flame for 5-7 minutes. Cook till the veggies are cooked yet retain their crunch. Do not make them soft. Add paneer or tofu cubes and toss well.
- Add the boiled noodles and toss gently.
- Adjust seasoning and remove from flame. Add a generous amount of toasted white sesame seeds and mix gently. Serve chili garlic noodles immediately.
2. Make sure to chop the veggies in uniform size