Vegan Ramen

Ramen, one of the most beloved bowls of hot soup in the world. Traditionally, ramen gets its flavor from rich bone broths made with pork or chicken. But what about a vegan ramen that delivers a comparable level of umami punch, from all vegan ingredients? 

That, my friends, is what we have on offer today. 

Secrets to A Richly Flavored Vegan Ramen

Any time I’ve tasted a vegan or vegetable-based ramen in a restaurant, the broth has been thin and bland, without the blast of intense umami I’ve come to expect from a good bowl of Japanese ramen. 

Many of the recipes out there on the Internet also lack the components needed to create real umami. Most recipes rely on store-bought vegetable stock and simply add noodles and toppings. 

However, we recently posted an Asian vegetable stock recipe we’re super proud of, and in that recipe, we describe all the vegan ingredients that give the stock umami: 

Our vegetable stock made with those components will produce an incredible vegan ramen that will please meat-eaters as well as vegans and vegetarians. 

Asian vegetable stock ingredients, thewoksoflife.comAsian vegetable stock ingredients,

We do add one additional ingredient, however. You know how ramen broth has a silky rich texture and almost milky appearance? It comes from hours of simmering bones and cartilage! 

But the way to get that same silky richness in a vegan broth? Plain soy milk. It instantly transforms a clear stock into a rich (still vegan!) ramen broth. 

Vegan Ramen, thewoksoflife.comVegan Ramen,

The best part is…you can make the stock ahead of time and keep it in the freezer, so you can fix yourself a big bowl of vegan ramen whenever you like!

Vegan Ramen: Recipe Instructions

Step 1: Make the stock (skip this step if you already have the stock ready!)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Take the napa cabbage half, and cut it in half again lengthwise. Place the cabbage on a sheet pan and drizzle lightly with oil. Roast for 25 minutes. 

Roasted napa cabbage, thewoksoflife.comRoasted napa cabbage,

Meanwhile, in a large stockpot, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 2 minutes, until fragrant but not browned. Add the fermented bean curd and cook for another minute. Then add the onion, carrots, scallions, daikon, kelp, dried shiitake mushrooms, and water. When the napa cabbage is done roasting, add it to the pot as well.

Vegetables in stock pot with water, thewoksoflife.comVegetables in stock pot with water,

Bring to a boil, turn the heat down to a simmer, and simmer for 4 hours. Strain the stock, and season with salt to taste.  

Simmering vegetable stock, thewoksoflife.comSimmering vegetable stock,

Step 2: Create the ramen broth

In a separate pot over medium heat, add a tablespoon of oil. Fry the spicy bean paste for 1 minute.

Frying doubanjiang in oil, thewoksoflife.comFrying doubanjiang in oil,

Then strain the stock into the pot (you will need about 8 cups to make 4 bowls of ramen). 

Add the miso paste and sesame oil, stirring until the miso paste is dissolved. Stir in the soy milk. Taste for seasoning and season with salt if desired. Keep over low heat (do not boil, or the soy milk will curdle), cover, and leave on the stove while you assemble the rest of the ingredients. 

For the full, more detailed post on how to make our vegetable stock, click here. 

Step 3: Assemble the ramen

Bring a pot of water to a boil for the noodles and bok choy. Meanwhile, heat a skillet over medium high heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Add the corn and season with salt. Sautee the frozen corn until it’s tender and heated through. 

Meanwhile, your water should be boiling. Cook the ramen noodles according to the package instructions. Blanch the bok choy for 30 seconds in the same pot you’re using to boil the noodles. 

Ladle your ramen broth into 4 bowls. Add the noodles, and top with the cooked corn, blanched bok choy, chili bamboo shoots, scallions, and nori.

Chili bamboo shoots are spicy and flavorful, and can be found in any Chinese grocery store. You can also make your own very easily with our simple Homemade Chili Bamboo Shoots recipe!


Vegan Ramen, thewoksoflife.comVegan Ramen,

Vegan Ramen, thewoksoflife.comVegan Ramen,


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