What Is Tempeh? All About This Hearty Plant Protein

Looking for a new way to perk up your meat-free meals? Tempeh is a plant-based protein made from fermented soybeans that’s easy to find, easy to cook, and well-worth a spot on your weekly shopping list. Nutritious, flavorful, and versatile, tempeh is o…

Looking for a new way to perk up your meat-free meals? Tempeh is a plant-based protein made from fermented soybeans that's easy to find, easy to cook, and well-worth a spot on your weekly shopping list. Nutritious, flavorful, and versatile, tempeh is on a steady rise in popularity, giving tofu a run for its money. Plus it's vegetarian (vegan, actually!) and gluten-free, meaning just about anyone can fall in love with it.

What Is Tempeh

Tempeh is made by cooking, hulling, and fermenting dried soybeans with a yeast starter—similar to sourdough starter but made with rice flour instead of wheat. The resulting mixture is drained and compressed into slabs that are typically sliced, cubed, or crumbled. What may appear to be white mold on the outside of tempeh actually is white mold: remnants of the fermentation (like the rind on Brie), and a natural, harmless, flavorless part of the process. Thanks, helpful white mold!

Read More >>

Vegan BBQ Sauce

You will need only 5 minutes to make your own BBQ Sauce. It will be smoky, a bit sweet, but plain delicious. It is 100% vegan and gluten-free contrary to many store-bought condiment brands.  Condiments is not always worth making at home especially…

You will need only 5 minutes to make your own BBQ Sauce. It will be smoky, a bit sweet, but plain delicious. It is 100% vegan and gluten-free contrary to many store-bought condiment brands.  Condiments is not always worth making at home especially the tricky ones with hard to get ingredients or difficult technology like...

Read More

The post Vegan BBQ Sauce appeared first on My Pure Plants.

Vegan Moussaka with 3 Vegan Mince Alternatives

What do you need to make the BEST ever Vegan Moussaka? I would say layers of roasted eggplant slices, a hearty tomato-based mince ragú sauce, and a creamy white bechamel baked together. We made this recipe with THREE different ground bee…

What do you need to make the BEST ever Vegan Moussaka? I would say layers of roasted eggplant slices, a hearty tomato-based mince ragú sauce, and a creamy white bechamel baked together. We made this recipe with THREE different ground beef alternatives. All came out scrumptious.   Do you also like casseroles? They are so great for...

Read More

The post Vegan Moussaka with 3 Vegan Mince Alternatives appeared first on My Pure Plants.

A Vegan Pantry Staple You Can Get at Any 7-11 in Japan

Even though—like miso and tempeh—it is made of fermented soybeans, sticky, earthy, funky natto does not receive the same love as its cousins. Slimy foods are just a little bit challenging to sell—no matter how high in protein or environmentally sustain…

Even though—like miso and tempeh—it is made of fermented soybeans, sticky, earthy, funky natto does not receive the same love as its cousins. Slimy foods are just a little bit challenging to sell—no matter how high in protein or environmentally sustainable.

Let’s get the technicals out of the way: Natto is boiled soybeans that have been inoculated with Bacillus subtilis and left to ferment for about a day. The culture is found in a type of straw that was used historically in Japan to store food. Like yogurt, natto’s origin was likely accidental, probably involving an epicure discovering that she liked the taste of soybeans that had been wrapped in straw. Somewhere between the discovery that fermented soybeans are edible and 2020, natto became a Japanese staple.

Read More >>

Is soy sauce gluten-free? + 5 perfect substitutes

Regular soy sauce is sadly not gluten-free. However, the good news is that there are several alternatives and substitutes for soy sauce you can use instead. Do you want to see the list of suitable gluten-free products? Read on then.  Wha…

Regular soy sauce is sadly not gluten-free. However, the good news is that there are several alternatives and substitutes for soy sauce you can use instead. Do you want to see the list of suitable gluten-free products? Read on then.  What is soy sauce exactly? Soy sauce is a Chinese condiment and a staple in Asian cuisine...

Read More

The post Is soy sauce gluten-free? + 5 perfect substitutes appeared first on My Pure Plants.

Copycat Chipotle Veggie Bowl with Fajitas Veggies

Here is a delicious and loaded Vegan Burrito Bowl in Chipotle Veggie Bowl style with Fajitas Veggies, Black Beans, Cilantro Brown Rice, Tomato and Corn Salsa, and more… We stacked up exactly NINE ingredients to make an epic Meatless Burrito …

Here is a delicious and loaded Vegan Burrito Bowl in Chipotle Veggie Bowl style with Fajitas Veggies, Black Beans, Cilantro Brown Rice, Tomato and Corn Salsa, and more… We stacked up exactly NINE ingredients to make an epic Meatless Burrito Bowl at home. Are you excited too?  More Tex-Mex recipes yeah! Have you seen our Best...

Read More

The post Copycat Chipotle Veggie Bowl with Fajitas Veggies appeared first on My Pure Plants.

The Best Milk Substitutes for Every Kitchen Situation

I really like milk milk.

My partner, though, is very allergic—not pop-a-Lactaid allergic, but hives-and-EpiPen allergic. So, sharing meals (and spaces) has necessarily meant a sharp decline in my dairy consumption (bye, cream). It’s not that having da…

I really like milk milk.

My partner, though, is very allergic—not pop-a-Lactaid allergic, but hives-and-EpiPen allergic. So, sharing meals (and spaces) has necessarily meant a sharp decline in my dairy consumption (bye, cream). It’s not that having dairy at the table will poison him, but I’ve come to learn that meals are just slightly less enjoyable, less meaningful when you can’t share them with the person you love. (OK, the reality is less virtuous: I ordered a burrata appetizer at a restaurant a few months ago and had to eat the entire ball alone.)

Read More >>

Quick Soba Noodles

Need a quick noodle fix? These simple soba noodles are fast and full of flavor: perfect as an Asian style side dish or easy dinner. Need a quick noodle fix? Try these simple soba noodles! Soba are a Japanese buckwheat noodle, and they’re perfect as a component for a fast and easy dinner. Done in about 15 minutes, they’re covered in a zingy sauce of soy, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and honey and sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. Throw them in a bowl and top with an egg or sauteed shrimp, and you’ve got dinner! Because they’re so fast, Alex and I have been relying on them as a crutch for quick weeknight meals. They’re also a great side dish for Asian-style meals like Teriyaki Salmon or Shrimp and Broccoli. Here’s what you need to know about soba! Types of soba noodles Soba are a traditional Japanese buckwheat noodle. They’re easy to find at your local grocery, either in the noodles section or near the Japanese ingredients. Because they’re made with buckwheat flour, most soba are naturally gluten-free. However, some brands also have wheat flour in them: so make sure to check the package if you eat gluten free. There […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Need a quick noodle fix? These simple soba noodles are fast and full of flavor: perfect as an Asian style side dish or easy dinner.

Soba noodles

Need a quick noodle fix? Try these simple soba noodles! Soba are a Japanese buckwheat noodle, and they’re perfect as a component for a fast and easy dinner. Done in about 15 minutes, they’re covered in a zingy sauce of soy, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and honey and sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. Throw them in a bowl and top with an egg or sauteed shrimp, and you’ve got dinner! Because they’re so fast, Alex and I have been relying on them as a crutch for quick weeknight meals. They’re also a great side dish for Asian-style meals like Teriyaki Salmon or Shrimp and Broccoli. Here’s what you need to know about soba!

Types of soba noodles

Soba are a traditional Japanese buckwheat noodle. They’re easy to find at your local grocery, either in the noodles section or near the Japanese ingredients. Because they’re made with buckwheat flour, most soba are naturally gluten-free. However, some brands also have wheat flour in them: so make sure to check the package if you eat gluten free.

There is a lot of variation in soba noodle brands! Alex and I have tested dozens, and we find that every brand of soba is different. Some are very thin and tend to break, so we try to look for soba that are thicker and hold up better. Make sure to experiment a bit to find the brand of soba that you like best.

Soba noodles

What’s in this soba noodles recipe?

This soba noodles recipe is fast and easy to make, and most of the ingredients are pantry staples! It’s essentially a pantry meal aside from the green onion. So you can leave out the green onions if you don’t have them on hand! Here’s what’s in this soba noodles recipe:

  • Soba noodles
  • Soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • Toasted sesame oil: make sure it is toasted, not regular! Toasted sesame oil is intended for flavoring, whereas regular sesame oil is neutral in flavor
  • Rice vinegar
  • Honey or maple syrup
  • Miso: optional but adds great flavor (see below)
  • Garlic
  • Green onions (optional)
  • Sesame seeds (optional; if you use them toast them!)
Soba noodles with sesame seeds

Rinse your soba to remove starch!

Here’s an important note about cooking soba noodles: rinse them after they’re done cooking! Rinsing pasta is not required for something like Italian spaghetti or penne. But for soba, rinsing is necessary to remove starch the builds up during cooking.

If you don’t rinse, here’s what happens: the soba becomes very gummy and mushy. It also absorbs the sauce and becomes dry instead of saucy. So please: rinse your soba after cooking! You’ll notice a big difference.

A secret ingredient: miso

This soba noodles recipe contains a little secret ingredient: miso! If you’ve never cooked with it, we highly recommend getting a container for your fridge (and it lasts for months). Miso is a Japanese fermented soybean paste that’s full of nutrients and savory flavor (or, umami). Umami is the so called “fifth flavor” after sour, salty, sweet, and bitter. It adds incredible flavor to any dish!

You can find miso at most major grocery stores near the other Japanese ingredients. There are many different types of miso, all with different flavors: red, yellow, and brown. Alex and I used brown miso here, which contributed to the dark color of these noodles.

Since we cook mostly plant based, Alex and I tend to use it to get a meaty or cheesy flavor in recipes. It’s great in Easy Miso Ramen, and even works to substitute Parmesan flavor in our Vegan Pesto!

Sesame soba noodles

Why to toast sesame seeds

For the best flavor, garnish these soba noodles with toasted sesame seeds! Of course, you can just use straight up sesame seeds. But toasting your sesame seeds in a pan heightens the nutty flavor considerably. It’s almost like using salt on food: it brings out the existing flavor and takes it to new heights! It only takes 3 minutes to toast sesame seeds, and you can store leftovers in a sealed container for months. Go to How to Toast Sesame Seeds.

Make it a meal!

Now for the fun part: how to make these soba noodles into a meal! You can serve them as part of an easy dinner main dish, or a side to an Asian style entree. Here’s what we recommend:

  • Top with an egg. The easiest way to make it dinner! Top with a fried egg or soft boiled egg. Dinner, solved!
  • Top with tofu. This Pan fried tofu is our favorite method for weeknights. Or try Marinaded tofu, which requires little hands on effort and can be stored in the fridge.
  • Top with shrimp. Try this quick and healthy Sauteed shrimp! To stick with Asian flavors, use plain sesame oil for cooking and substitute the lemon for a drizzle of rice vinegar and soy sauce at the end.
  • Add edamame. This quick Asian style side is so simple! Try with Easy Edamame or Spicy Edamame.
  • Serve with a stir fry! Try it with our Easy Stir Fry Vegetables!
  • Serve as a side dish to shrimp or salmon. Try it with Teriyaki Salmon or Shrimp and Broccoli.
Soba noodles recipe

This soba noodles recipe is…

Vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free.

Print
Soba noodles

Quick Soba Noodles


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Need a quick noodle fix? These simple soba noodles are fast and full of flavor: perfect as an Asian style side dish or easy dinner.


Ingredients

  • 8 ounces soba noodles
  • 1/4 cup regular soy sauce (or substitute tamari or coconut aminos)
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon miso (optional; we used dark miso)
  • 1 teaspoon grated garlic
  • 4 green onions
  • Sriracha, to taste (optional)
  • Toasted sesame seeds*
  • To make it a meal: Fried egg or soft boiled egg, Pan fried tofu or Marinaded tofu, or Sauteed shrimp

Instructions

  1. Cook the noodles: Cook the soba noodles according to the package instructions: it should take about 4 to 5 minutes. Important: when the noodles are done cooking, rinse them under cool running water in a strainer, tossing them to remove the starch. Then shake off excess water. If you’d like the noodles to be warm when serving, run them under warm water for a few seconds; you can also serve room temperature or cold. (If you skip this step, the noodles soak up the sauce and become too dry.)
  2. Whisk the sauce: Meanwhile, in a medium bowl whisk together the soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, rice vinegar, honey or maple syrup, miso (if using), and grated garlic.
  3. Slice the onions: Thinly slice the green onions on the bias (diagonally), using both white and dark green parts.
  4. Combine and serve: Return the rinsed and shaken dry noodles to the pan or a bowl; stir in the sauce and green onions. Place in serving bowls, top with sesame seeds and serve. 

Notes

*Toasting the sesame seeds really brings out the nutty flavor! It takes only 3 minutes and you can taste the difference. Store toasted sesame seeds for months in a sealed container in the pantry.

  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Japanese

Keywords: Soba noodles

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Easy Soba Noodle Bowl

This soba noodle bowl is a quick and easy dinner recipe, perfect for weeknights! It’s a filling vegetarian meal full of healthy veggies. No one’s going to complain about more quick and easy recipes, right? This one the ultimate quick weeknight meal, a filling vegetarian dinner that comes together in 20 minutes flat. Meet this soba noodle bowl! It’s filled with stir fried broccoli, red pepper and onion, mix with a savory sauce with creamy peanut butter. Even better: eggs are scrambled right into the mix (like fried rice, but with noodles~). This healthy stir fry comes to you straight from our friend Rachel’s cookbook Just the Good Stuff. And it’s chock full of good stuff. Why to make this soba noodle bowl This soba noodle bowl is more like an easy stir fry than a free-form noodle bowl with lots of veggie toppings. This makes it quicker and easier to put together than the type of noodle bowl that has lots of components. Here are some of the reasons it’s a candidate for your go-to list: It takes 20 minutes. There’s no limit to the amount of easy dinner recipes you can have in your arsenal! The quick prep […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

This soba noodle bowl is a quick and easy dinner recipe, perfect for weeknights! It’s a filling vegetarian meal full of healthy veggies.

Soba noodle bowl

No one’s going to complain about more quick and easy recipes, right? This one the ultimate quick weeknight meal, a filling vegetarian dinner that comes together in 20 minutes flat. Meet this soba noodle bowl! It’s filled with stir fried broccoli, red pepper and onion, mix with a savory sauce with creamy peanut butter. Even better: eggs are scrambled right into the mix (like fried rice, but with noodles~). This healthy stir fry comes to you straight from our friend Rachel’s cookbook Just the Good Stuff. And it’s chock full of good stuff.

Why to make this soba noodle bowl

This soba noodle bowl is more like an easy stir fry than a free-form noodle bowl with lots of veggie toppings. This makes it quicker and easier to put together than the type of noodle bowl that has lots of components. Here are some of the reasons it’s a candidate for your go-to list:

  • It takes 20 minutes. There’s no limit to the amount of easy dinner recipes you can have in your arsenal! The quick prep time makes it perfect for whipping up on a weeknight with limited ingredients.
  • The 2 ingredient sauce brings big flavor. The sauce here couldn’t be easier: just coconut aminos or soy sauce plus nut butter! We used peanut butter, but you could use almond butter or cashew butter. (All 3 link to our homemade versions!)
  • It’s a protein-filled vegetarian dinner. The best part of this recipe is the savory scrambled egg! It’s like the egg you’d scramble into fried rice, but with soba noodles. The egg plus nut butter makes for enough protein to make it a filling meal.
Just the good stuff

About the book: Just the Good Stuff

This soba noodle bowl is from Rachel Mansfield’s book Just the Good Stuff: a compilation of “guilt-free recipes to satisfy all your cravings.” Alex and I met Rachel speaking on a panel together at a conference, and she even more lovely in person than her Instagram self (if that’s possible!).

Like us, Rachel is passionate about eating real food and organic ingredients. The book is filled with gluten-free, Paleo-friendly recipes made with healthy ingredients: but you never feel like you’re giving anything up. If this recipe is any indication, this book is absolutely packed with flavor! (Note: it’s not vegetarian or vegan, but there are plenty of plant based options.)

Get it: Just the Good Stuff

Soba noodle bowl

Scale this soba noodle bowl as needed!

This soba noodle bowl can be made in any quantity. The original healthy noodle stir fry recipe is actually in the “Solo Meals” chapter of Just the Good Stuff: it was written as a recipe for one. But since we are most often cooking for 3 and all the recipes on this website are for 4, we increased the quantity. Plus, we love leftovers! We love cooking once and eating for a few days.

But if you’d rather: this makes a great single serving meal! Just divide the quantities by 4.

The skinny on soba noodles

What are soba noodles? Soba are thin Japanese buckwheat noodles. They’re often served in soups or chilled with a sauce: or in a noodle stir fry like this one! All buckwheat soba noodles are gluten-free, but some brands are made with wheat flour and buckwheat flour. Make sure to check the package if you eat gluten-free.

One note on soba noodle brands: Alex and I have found that every brand of soba is different! There are some brands that very thin and tend to break, and some that are a little thicker that we like better. Make sure to experiment a bit to find the soba you like.

Soba noodle bowl

Variations on this soba noodle bowl

While we love this soba noodle bowl as is, there are plenty of ways to mix it up! Here are some ideas on ways to accessorize it:

  • Add shrimp. Cook up some garlic shrimp on the side and throw it on top!
  • Add tofu. Try our easy marinaded tofu or tofu scramble. Tofu scrambles are perfect as a vegan protein for quick weeknight meals!
  • Add more of your favorite veggies. Anything that would work in a stir fry works here: mushrooms, carrots, cabbage, snap peas, zucchini, edamame, green onion, etc. For approximate cook times, go to Easy Vegetable Stir Fry.
  • Use rice noodles, zucchini noodles or squash noodles. For gluten-free, try any of these three noodle varieties. You can also try Roasted Spaghetti Squash or Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash.
  • For nut free, use sun butter. Sun butter is a good substitute for the nut butter.

This soba noodle bowl recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free, omit the egg.

Print
Soba noodle bowl

Easy Soba Noodle Bowl


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (9 votes, average: 4.44 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

This soba noodle bowl is a quick and easy dinner recipe, perfect for weeknights! It’s a filling vegetarian meal full of healthy veggies.


Ingredients

  • 10 ounces soba noodles (or zucchini noodles)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 medium onion (1 cup chopped)
  • 1 red bell pepper (1 cup chopped)
  • 1 large head broccoli
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos or soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup nut butter (peanut butter, almond butter, or cashew butter)
  • Sriracha hot sauce, to taste
  • Sesame seeds, for the garnish

Instructions

  1. Start a pot of water to boil. Boil the soba noodles according to the package instructions (it should take about 4 minutes). When it’s done, drain. Then rinse with cold water to wash away the starch, and drain again.
  2. While the starts to boil, mince the garlic. Chop the onion. Chop the pepper into 1-inch squares. Chop the broccoli into florets.
  3. While the noodles cook, heat the sesame oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger, onion, bell pepper, and broccoli. Cover the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until soften, about 6 minutes.
  4. Strain the soba noodles and add them to the vegetables in the skillet.
  5. Crack the eggs into the skillet and mix well, breaking up the yolk and white and cooking it into the vegetables and noodles.
  6. Once the egg starts the set, add the coconut aminos or soy sauce and peanut butter and mix well. Serve warm.

Notes

Reprinted with permission from Just The Good Stuff. Copyright © 2020 by Rachel Mansfield Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Asian Inspired

Keywords: Soba Noodle Bowl, Soba Stir Fry, Noodle Stir Fry

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Healthy Vegan Egg Salad

This 15-minute Vegan Egg Salad is made of tofu and cashews to give you a creamy, protein-packed and delicious breakfast sandwich. To make this recipe the healthiest possible, we skipped the high-fat mayonnaise and any other packaged products and opted …

This 15-minute Vegan Egg Salad is made of tofu and cashews to give you a creamy, protein-packed and delicious breakfast sandwich. To make this recipe the healthiest possible, we skipped the high-fat mayonnaise and any other packaged products and opted for only whole foods plant-based ingredients.  We love savory breakfasts, not to mention quick savory...

Read More

The post Healthy Vegan Egg Salad appeared first on My Pure Plants.