Thai Ginger and Garlic Noodle Bowls is a flavor-packed vegetarian rice noodle recipe loaded with veggies swimming in a umami filled sauce. Readers share their variations to this maker favorite below! This Asian noodle bowl recipe is easy to make and is also vegan and gluten free.
This recipe post was first published August 2016. I’ve updated the photos and recipe notes June 2021. The recipe remains largely unchanged.
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Thai Inspired Vegetarian Rice Noodle Recipe
Doable for busy weeknights but also for when you just want a fuss free umami filled bit of comfort, stir fry rice noodle bowls to the rescue!
This dish whips up in not time and is packed with oodles of noodles, veggies and a sauce that will knock your socks off! Read on to learn more!
Vegetarian and Vegan Asian Noodle Bowl Ingredients
Pantry staples and fresh veggies come together in this flavorful stir fry recipe. You don’t need a fancy pan or wok to pull this together. Simply use your largest skillet. Here’s what you’ll need to whip it up (see recipe card for details):
For the Sauce:
- Veggie Broth – I use Better Than Boullion.
- Toasted Sesame Oil – offers so much flavor to this recipe.
- Tamari, for a gluten free sauce or use Soy Sauce
- Brown Sugar, Coconut Sugar or Maple Syrup – adds a hint of sweetness to balance the savory.
- Red Pepper Flakes – for a bit of spice. You can take adjust to taste.
For the Noodle Bowls:
- Rice Stick Noodles (aka Vermicelli Rice Noodles) or Bean Thread Noodles
- Snow Peas – for crunch and freshness. If unavailable, use sugar snap peas.
- Sesame Oil – I like toasted, but regular may be used.
- Fresh Ginger and Garlic – adds an authentic Thai flavor to this dish.
- Carrots – for color and freshness.
- Green Cabbage – cooked just until softened, it should still have a little crunch when done cooking.
- Mushrooms – you can use cremini or shiitake in this recipe. I like the texture of shiitake, as they’re a bit meatier, but they can be expensive.
- Fresh Lime Juice – brightens the dish with a hit of acidity.
Is your mouth watering?
What Type Of Rice Noodles to Use
I tested two types of rice noodles for this recipe, thin (stick) rice noodles and bean thread noodles (rice noodles pictured). Either variety can be used for this scrumptious noodle bowl recipe. I like both but there are differences.
- Bean thread noodles are a bit chewier but seem to pick up the flavors of the sauce more readily than the rice noodles.
- Rice stick noodles (vermicelli rice noodles) have a nice, tender texture and delicious mild flavor, but don’t pick up as much flavor.
While I’ve not tried Asian brown rice noodles in this recipe, one maker did with delicious results. If you give them a try in this noodle bowl recipe, let us know how it goes in the comments!
Quick Guide: How to Make an Asian Noodle Bowl
There’s a bit of overlap in prep and cook time, but overall, this recipe comes together in about 45 minutes total time. In summary, here’s how to make this rice noodle stir fry (see recipe card for details):
- First, soak the noodles in cold water.
- Second, while the noodles are soaking, chop the veggies. Blanch the snow peas, drain and put them back in the empty blanching pot.
- Third, make the sauce by shaking the ingredients up in a Mason jar.
- Fourth, stir fry the veggies in a skillet over medium heat and add them to the pot with the blanched snow peas. Set aside.
- Next, gently cook the noodles with the sauce in the same skillet you stir fried the veggies for just a few minutes.
- Last, add the veggies to the noodles and toss together.
Garnish this easy vegan noodle recipe to your hearts delight with lime, sesame seeds, and scallions. Herbs such as mint, cilantro and Thai basil can be used together or alone. They make flavors sing when combined.
Asian Noodle Bowl Variations
This noodle bowl recipe can be paired with your choice of protein, if desired.
- Share With: Your favorite baked, fried, or prepared tofu. If you’re in the mood for a little peanut butter, we love this with my Spicy Peanut Tofu!
- Or: A soft boiled egg is nice too.
- Swaps: The veggies can be swapped with your favorites pretty easily. Sugar snap peas, broccoli or bell pepper are delicious subs.
- See makers notes below to see what the community has shared!
- Add Protein: This veggie noodle bowl is delicious on its own; however, it can be shared with tofu or egg easily. Prepare your favorite tofu recipe, baked, fried, or prepared or give my spicy peanut tofu a go. A soft boiled egg is nice too.
- Meal Prep: While this recipe comes together in about 45 minutes, you can get a jump on prep by making the sauce, chopping the veggies and blanching the snow peas up to two days in advance.
- Freezer Friendly? I don’t recommend freezing this recipe. The noodles and veggies turn to mush.
Thank you for sharing your comments and tips below and on social. Here are some highlights!
- Peggy said: “…added some peanuts as people suggested and some sliced
- Lisa said: “I left out the mushrooms and added peanuts, lime juice, and cilantro at the end. When I reheated leftovers later in the weekend, I added a little more sesame oil and soy sauce to bring the noodles back to life!”
- Lisa B said: “I added a little tamarind paste to the sauce for sourness and some fried tofu for protein. For the garnish I roasted some white and black sesame, otherwise I stuck closely to the recipe.”
- Suzi said: “I didn’t have mushrooms nor did we have snow peas but instead used broccoli. I blanched that and I used red rice noodles.”
- Darren said: “Made this tonight with spaghetti squash instead of noodles and oh man it was amazing!”
- Margaret said: “I used brown rice noodles and, otherwise, followed the recipe…”
More Noodle Recipes to Love
- Thai Peanut Noodle Salad
- Garlicky Asparagus and Bok Choy Noodle Bowls
- Speedy Miso Mushroom Ramen
- Sesame Ginger Noodle Salad
Thai Ginger and Garlic Noodle Bowl Recipe
- 8 oz (227g) Rice Noodles or Bean Thread Noodles *see note
- 11 oz (310g) Snow peas trimmed
- 1 ½ Tbs Sesame Oil
- 2 tsp fresh Ginger microplaned
- 1 Tbs fresh Garlic microplaned or minced
- 1 1/2 C (150g) Carrots Julianne about two large carrots
- 5 C (400g) Green Cabbage about 1/2 a medium head, cut into bite sized pieces
- 5 oz (142g) Shiitake Mushrooms stemmed and sliced into quarters, cremini work here too.
- 1/2 Lime
For the Sauce
- Scallions slice thin
- Sesame Seeds
- Thai Basil mint and/or cilantro are also nice
- Drizzle of Tamari and/or Sesame Oil
- Lime Wedges
For the Noodles
- Place noodles in a large bowl and cover with cold water. These can soak while you prepare the veggies and sauce. (The packages I've seen say to soak in hot water. For me, the noodles turn to mush, so I use a cold soak to soften them, then gently cook them).
For the Veggies
- Fill a stock pot ½ full of water and bring to a boil. While the water is heating, prepare the snow peas by trimming each end. To blanch the snow peas, carefully place them in the boiling water, turn the heat to low and blanch for for exactly two minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water. Place the snow peas back into the empty stock pot they were blanched in (with heat off). Set aside.
For the Sauce
- In a small jar pour in the broth, sesame oil, tamari, sugar, pepper flakes and salt. Lid, shake, then set aside.
- In a large skillet or wok, heat the sesame oil on medium high heat. Once shimmering, toss in the grated ginger and garlic. Sizzle for about 30 seconds, then toss in the mushrooms, cabbage and carrots. Using two wooden spoons, stir fry until tender crisp, about 5-6 minutes. When ready, transfer the stir-fried veggies into the pot with the snow peas (heat off). Set aside.
- Check on the rice noodles. They should be tender, but not soft. Drain thoroughly. Set the noodles near the stove. In the same skillet or wok the veggies were stir fried in, pour in the sauce. Bring to a simmer. Once simmering, gently toss in the noodles. Use a pair of tongs to twist and turn the noodles around in the sauce so that each noodle is covered. Turn the heat down continue turning the noodles, cooking for about 2 minutes. Test the noodles for taste and tenderness. If they seem tough, give them another minute to cook while turning the noodles. Remove from heat and stir in the veggies using the residual heat of the noodles to rewarm the veggies.Squeeze in a bit of lime juice, about 1/2 a lime and toss. Taste for seasoning adjustment.
- Garnish with sesame seeds, Thai basil, scallions and a drizzle of sesame oil and/or Tamari. Serve with a wedge of lime and Sriracha on the side.
- This recipe is best enjoyed fresh off the stove. The noodles tend to get a bit soggy when reheated. However, it will keep for up to three days in the refrigerator. I do not recommend freezing this recipe.