Gochujang Ramen with Tofu

I love good quality food, but I also have a small place in my heart reserved for convenience foods like instant ramen or frozen pizzas. I don’t indulge in them often, and when I do I often spruce them up with something special to make them a little more interesting. I’ve posted before about the […]

The post Gochujang Ramen with Tofu appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I love good quality food, but I also have a small place in my heart reserved for convenience foods like instant ramen or frozen pizzas. I don’t indulge in them often, and when I do I often spruce them up with something special to make them a little more interesting. I’ve posted before about the things I like to add to my instant ramen to give it an upgrade, and now I have a new favorite ingredient—gochujang! This sweet-salty-spicy paste creates a rich broth with plenty of umami that I balanced with some fresh spinach and chunks of mild tofu. This Gochujang Ramen with Tofu is a quick and easy way to indulge that noodle craving!

Two bowls of gochujang ramen with tofu, a bowl of gochujang on the side

What is Gochujang?

If you’ve never heard of gochujang, it’s a Korean chile paste made with chile peppers, rice, fermented soybeans, and salt. It kind of reminds me of a spicy version of miso. Gochujang is really starting to trend in the U.S. because of its uniquely sweet-salty-spicy and UMAMI flavor. And because we’re all kind of over our infatuation with sriracha and looking for the next best thing. It’s those fermented soy beans that really set gochujang apart and give whatever you’re adding it to that extra “WOW” factor. So if you haven’t tried it yet, put it on your list!

Where to Buy Gochujang

Because gochujang is really becoming quite popular, you’ll probably be able to find some at most major grocery stores. My local kroger actually carries about 4-5 different kinds! I’m using this Sempio Gochujang. If you have an Asian grocery store near you, you’re sure to find a really good selection there, and probably much better prices. Want to try to make your own? Try this traditional gochujang recipe, or this quickie 5-minute gochujang.

To Use the Ramen Packet or Not to Use the Ramen Packet

Personally, I like to use my own broth when making ramen instead of using the little seasoning packet that comes with the noodles. I like the freedom of tweaking the flavors and salt content, but you can use the seasoning packet if you prefer. Gochujang has quite a bit of salt, so if you do want to use the flavor packet that comes with the instant ramen I suggest adding the gochujang to the water first (3 cups water), then adding a little of the flavor packet at a time until the broth reaches a reasonable salt level for you.

How Spicy is It?

Decently spicy, IMHO. You can reduce the amount of gochujang to make it slightly less spicy, if you prefer. Or, if you’re looking for non-spicy ways to spruce up your ramen, check out my post about 6 Ways to Upgrade Ramen, or my Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen.

What Should I Do With my Leftover Tofu?

This recipe uses half of a traditional 14oz. block of tofu. My first choice for using up the other half of the block would be to make a half batch of my Curried Tofu Salad. That stuff is to die for. You could also toss it into a stir fry, or chop it up, add some BBQ sauce and make yourself a BBQ Tofu Slider.

Gochujang ramen with tofu in the sauce pot on a yellow background with a black and white zig-zag napkin.

 
One bowl of gochujang ramen with tofu, chopsticks on the side

Gochujang Ramen with Tofu

Spicy gochujang gives this instant ramen extra oomph! Gochujang Ramen with Tofu is a quick and easy way to satisfy that noodle craving.
Total Cost $2.26 recipe / $1.13 serving
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 322.15kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 7 oz. extra firm tofu $0.90
  • 1 cup water $0.00
  • 2 cups vegetable broth* $0.26
  • 2 Tbsp gochujang $0.46
  • 1 package instant ramen* $0.19
  • 2 cups fresh spinach $0.25
  • 2 green onions $0.20

Instructions

  • Drain the tofu and cut it into 1/2-inch cubes.
  • Add the water, vegetable broth, and gochujang to a small sauce pot. Whisk until the gochujang is dissolved.
  • Add the cubed tofu to the pot, place a lid on top, and bring it up to a boil over high heat.
  • Once boiling, add the instant ramen noodles (without seasoning). Boil for one to two minutes, or just until the noodles begin to soften and pull loose from each other.
  • Add two handfuls (about 2 cups) fresh spinach and stir it into the hot broth until wilted. The noodles will finish cooking as the spinach wilts.
  • Slice the green onions and sprinkle over top of the ramen just before serving.

Notes

*If using vegetable broth, discard the seasoning packet that comes with the ramen noodles. If using the seasoning packet, use 3 cups of water instead of 1 cup water and 2 cups vegetable broth. Add the gochujang to the water first, then add a small amount of the seasoning packet at a time until you reach the desired level of saltiness for the broth.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 322.15kcal | Carbohydrates: 37.55g | Protein: 15.9g | Fat: 12.6g | Sodium: 1347.35mg | Fiber: 3.1g

side view of a bowl of gochujang ramen with chopsticks picking up a piece of tofu

How to Make Gochujang Ramen with Tofu – Step by Step Photos

cubed tofu on a cutting board

Drain a 14oz. block of tofu and cut half of it into ½-inch cubes. See the notes above the recipe for ideas for using the remaining tofu.

Gochujang broth in a small sauce pot with a whisk, tub of gochujang on the side

Add 1 cup water, 2 cups vegetable broth, and 2 Tbsp gochujang to a small sauce pot. Whisk until the gochujang has dissolved.

Cubed tofu being dropped into the pot

Add the cubed tofu to the pot. Adding the tofu before we start boiling the broth gives it a few minutes to start absorbing some of the flavor from the broth, as opposed to adding it at the end. Place a lid on the pot and bring the broth up to a boil over high heat.

Ramen noodles added to the pot, empty package on the side

Once boiling, add the block of instant ramen noodles (without seasoning packet). Let the noodles boil for about a minute, or just until they being to soften up and loosen up from the block.

Spinach added to the pot

Add a couple handfuls of spinach to the pot and stir it in until wilted. This should give the noodles just enough time to finish cooking as well.

Finished gochujang ramen in the pot

Slice two green onions and sprinkle them over the ramen just before serving.

One bowl of gochujang ramen with tofu, chopsticks on the side

Enjoy that spicy goodness!!

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Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Fresh sweet corn is one of my favorite things about summer. It’s so sweet and juicy when it’s fresh, and the smell of the husks as you peel them back from the cob brings back so many memories of summers past. So when I saw fresh sweet corn on sale at the grocery store this […]

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Fresh sweet corn is one of my favorite things about summer. It’s so sweet and juicy when it’s fresh, and the smell of the husks as you peel them back from the cob brings back so many memories of summers past. So when I saw fresh sweet corn on sale at the grocery store this week I grabbed a couple and whipped up this super simple Summer Sweet Corn Salad. It has a medley of colorful vegetables, a little pasta to bulk it out, and a super fresh lemon vinaigrette keeps everything light and flavorful. This is a very flexible recipe and I’ve got a couple modification ideas for you below!

Overhead view of a serving bowl full of Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Make it Pasta-Free

I added pasta to my salad for bulk, but you can totally make this salad without pasta, too! Just double up your vegetables, drizzle that lemon vinaigrette over top, and you’re good to go! You can eat the vegetable salad as-is, or scoop it over a bed of greens.

Add a Protein and Make it a Meal

If you want to eat this salad as a main dish instead of serving it as a side, try adding some grilled chicken, rotisserie chicken, boiled shrimp, or cooked salmon on top. It’s such a light and fresh dish that it pairs really well with “lighter” meat and seafood.

Can You Eat Raw Corn??

Yes, yes, and YES! Raw sweet corn is soooo sweet, crisp, and juicy. It’s an absolute delight! It adds nice little pops of sweetness throughout this salad that contrast so well with the creamy avocado and tangy vinaigrette. 

If you don’t have fresh corn for this salad, I would suggest frozen corn as the next best substitute, BUT just know that it’s 100x better with fresh sweet corn.

Doesn’t the Avocado Turn Black?

Nope! I kept this salad in my fridge for four days and it was still great. On day two there was no noticeable difference in the appearance of the avocado chunks. By day four, they were slightly grey on the edges, but overall still looked great. The lemon vinaigrette goes a long way toward preventing the oxidization that usually causes the color change. 

What to Serve with Sweet Corn Salad

This salad makes a great side dish to Quick BBQ Chicken, Cilantro Lime Chicken, Garlic Butter Baked Cod, Baked Spicy Chicken Sandwiches, or Marinated Portobello Burgers.

Close up of a bowl of Summer Sweet Corn Salad with a wooden spoon in the middle

 
Close up of a bowl of Summer Sweet Corn Salad with a wooden spoon in the middle

Summer Sweet Corn Salad

Colorful summer vegetables, creamy avocado, pasta shells, and a homemade lemon vinaigrette make this light and fresh Summer Sweet Corn Salad.
Total Cost $7.67 recipe / $0.96 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 1 cup each
Calories 255.84kcal
Author Beth - Budget Bytes

Ingredients

Lemon Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup olive oil $0.64
  • 1 fresh lemon $0.89
  • 1/4 tsp dried basil $0.03
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard $0.04
  • 1/8 tsp salt $0.02
  • 1/8 tsp pepper $0.02
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley $0.20

Salad*

  • 8 oz. pasta shells $0.63
  • 2 cobs sweet corn $0.80
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes $2.50
  • 2/3 lb. zucchini $0.89
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion $0.11
  • 1 avocado $0.89

Instructions

  • Zest and juice the lemon. You'll need 2 Tbsp juice and ½ tsp zest. Combine the lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, basil, Dijon, salt, pepper, and chopped parsley in a bowl or jar. Whisk the ingredients in a bowl, or close the jar and shake until combined. Set the vinaigrette aside.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Add a couple large pinches of salt to the pasta water, then add the pasta. Continue to boil until the pasta is tender (about 7 minutes), then drain in a colander. Rinse the pasta briefly with cool water, then allow it to drain well.
  • While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the rest of the vegetables. Slice the corn kernels off the cobs, slice the grape tomatoes in half, dice the zucchini, finely dice the onion, and dice the avocado.
  • Once the pasta has drained well and cooled, add it to a large bowl with the prepared vegetables. Pour the dressing over top, then toss until everything is evenly combined and coated in dressing. Season with a pinch of salt to taste, then serve.

Notes

*The vegetable amounts are very flexible. If you have a little more or a little less of each, it's okay.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cup | Calories: 255.84kcal | Carbohydrates: 35.68g | Protein: 5.95g | Fat: 11.54g | Sodium: 68.91mg | Fiber: 4.28g

How to Make Summer Sweet Corn Salad – Step by Step Photos

A zested and juiced lemon on a cutting board

Zest and juice a lemon. You’ll need 2 Tbsp juice and ½ tsp zest.

Lemon Dressing in a jar

To make the lemon vinaigrette, combine ¼ cup olive oil, 2 Tbsp lemon juice, ½ tsp lemon zest, 1/4 tsp dried basil, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ⅛ tsp salt, ⅛ tsp pepper, and about ¼ cup chopped parsley. If you do this in a bowl you can whisk the ingredients together, or combine them in a jar and shake until they’re combined.

draining shell pasta in a metal colander

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add a couple pinches of salt and 8 oz. pasta shells. Continue to boil the pasta for about 7 minutes, or until tender. Drain the pasta in a colander, and give it a brief rinse with cool water. Let the pasta drain well.

Cutting corn off the cob

While the pasta is cooking and draining, prepare the rest of the vegetables. Cut the kernels off two cobs of sweet corn. I like to do this with the end of the cob in a bowl so they kernels fall right off into the bowl instead of flying all over the kitchen. Haha!

Chopped vegetables on the cutting board

Also dice about ⅔ lb. zucchini, slice 1 pint grape tomatoes in half, finely dice about ¼ cup red onion, and dice one avocado.

Dressing being poured over the salad ingredients in the bowl

Add the drained and cooled pasta to a large bowl with the corn, zucchini, tomatoes, red onion, and avocado. Pour the dressing over top, then toss until everything is combined and coated in dressing.

Seasoning the salad with a pinch of salt

Finally, add just a small pinch of salt on top, if desired. I like to have a little bit of crystalized salt on the surface of the pasta and vegetables for a little pop of flavor. 

Overhead view of a serving bowl of summer sweet corn salad with a wooden spoon on the side

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Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta

Keep it stupid simple. That saying applies to so much in life, including food. One of my favorite “stupid simple” meals is buttered pasta with a vegetable and a healthy does of salt and pepper. Incredibly simple, incredibly good, and a million ways you can play on that theme. This Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon […]

The post Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Keep it stupid simple. That saying applies to so much in life, including food. One of my favorite “stupid simple” meals is buttered pasta with a vegetable and a healthy does of salt and pepper. Incredibly simple, incredibly good, and a million ways you can play on that theme. This Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta is just buttered pasta with charred oven roasted broccoli, steak seasoning, bright lemon, and salty feta. The flavor combo is absolutely to die for and it really couldn’t be any easier.

Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta

A plate with roasted broccoli pasta, lemon wedges, feta, and a black fork on the left

What is Steak Seasoning?

Steak seasoning, sometimes called Montreal steak seasoning, is one of the few pre-made spice blends that I keep in my pantry. This chunky-crunchy blend of spices has big pieces of salt, pepper, garlic, paprika, and other spices. It’s not just good for steak, it’s also great with broccoli, potatoes, pasta, and a million other things. The way the coarsely ground spices coat the surface of food provides a slightly crunchy texture, a subtle smokiness, and big pops of flavor. I put it on everything.

You should be able to find some form of steak seasoning at most major grocery stores. McCormick makes one, as does Aldi and Kroger.

Do I have to use Whole Wheat Pasta?

You can actually use any type of pasta you have on hand for this recipe, BUT I find that the slightly nutty flavor of whole wheat pasta pairs the best with the flavors in this dish. And while you can use a long shaped pasta, like spaghetti or linguine, shorter shapes will be easier to stir together with the rest of the ingredients. Bowtie and rotini are great alternatives to the penne.

Fresh Lemon is a Must

The fresh lemon carries a lot of weight in the flavor profile of this pasta, so please don’t be tempted to skip it! Whole lemons can be on the pricier side, but if you buy a whole bag of lemons and keep them in your freezer, you’ll pay less per lemon. Frozen lemons are still great for zesting and juicing, but will not be pretty for garnishing or slicing.

Can I use Frozen Broccoli?

If you know me then you know I love to roast frozen broccoli. It’s fast, easy, and totally delish. But for this recipe I highly recommend using fresh instead of frozen broccoli. Fresh broccoli is not as “wet” as frozen broccoli, so you get a better char on the outside edges, which lends a really smoky flavor to this pasta. You can use frozen in a pinch, but you’ll get much better flavor with fresh for this recipe.

Front view of a pot full of Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and feta, garnished with lemon wedges

 

Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta

Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta is an incredibly simple pasta dish with big flavors. An easy, fast, and delicious weeknight dinner!

  • 1 lb. broccoli crowns ($1.79)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil ($0.16)
  • 1 tsp steak seasoning ($0.10)
  • 1 fresh lemon ($0.39)
  • 8 oz. whole wheat penne pasta ($0.50)
  • 2 Tbsp butter ($0.20)
  • 1 oz. crumbled feta ($0.55)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut the broccoli into small florets. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then spread the florets out over the baking sheet. Drizzle the broccoli with olive oil and sprinkle the steak seasoning over top. Toss the broccoli until it is well coated in oil and seasoning.

  2. Roast the broccoli for 20-25 minutes, or until it is brown and crispy on the edges.

  3. While the broccoli is roasting, prepare the rest of the dish. Bring a pot of water to boil for the penne. Once boiling, add the pasta, and continue to boil until the pasta is tender (8-10 minutes). Reserve about ½ cup of the starchy pasta water, then drain the pasta in a colander.

  4. While the pasta is boiling, zest a lemon, then cut it into wedges.

  5. Return the drained pasta to the pot (heat turned off). Add the roasted broccoli florets, the butter, about 1 tsp lemon zest, and the juice from two of the lemon wedges. Stir the ingredients together, letting the residual heat from the pasta melt the butter. If the pasta seems too dry, add a splash or two of the reserved pasta water.

  6. Top the pasta with crumbled feta and a pinch or two more steak seasoning, if desired. Serve with extra lemon wedges.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Close up view of a fork picking up some roasted broccoli pasta from the bowl

 

How to Make Roasted Broccoli Pasta – Step by Step Photos

Chopped broccoli florets on a green cutting board

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Chop the broccoli crowns into small florets.

Steak seasoning bottle held over sheet pan with broccoli

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the broccoli florets out over the baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp olive oil and sprinkle 1 tsp steak seasoning over the broccoli.

Seasoned broccoli florets on the baking sheet

Toss the broccoli florets until they are well coated in oil and seasoning. 

Roasted broccoli florets on the baking sheet

Roast the broccoli florets in the 400ºF oven for about 25 minutes, or until they are well browned and crispy on the edges.

Cooked whole wheat penne being held in a pasta spoon over the pot

While the broccoli is roasting, bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Once boiling, add 8 oz. whole wheat penne and continue to boil until the pasta is tender (8-10 minutes). Reserve ½ cup of the starchy pasta water, then drain the pasta in a colander.

Zested and sliced lemon

While the broccoli is roasting and the pasta is boiling, zest the lemon then cut it into wedges.

Pasta, broccoli, butter, and lemon combined in the pot.

Once the pasta has drained, but is still hot, return it to the pot (with the heat turned off) and add the roasted broccoli, 2 Tbsp butter, about 1 tsp lemon zest, and the juice from two of the lemon wedges.

Feta added to pasta in the pot

Stir the pasta to combine the ingredients and let the hot pasta melt the butter. If the pasta becomes dry, add a splash or two of the reserved pasta water. Once the butter has fully melted, top the pasta with 1 oz. crumbled feta.

Finished pot of roasted broccoli pasta with lemon and feta

Serve with the remaining lemon wedges for squeezing over each bowl. If desired, add an additional pinch or two of steak seasoning.

A bowl full of Roasted Broccoli Pasta with lemon and feta and a black fork on the left side

The post Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Lemon and Feta appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot

What is a Wonderpot? It’s a pasta dish that cooks all in one pot (a.k.a. One Pot Pasta) with vegetables, aromatics (garlic, onion), and broth so that every bite is packed with flavor. The broth and pasta create a rich saucy gravy in the pot that coats everything in wonderful flavor. This Spinach and Artichoke […]

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What is a Wonderpot? It’s a pasta dish that cooks all in one pot (a.k.a. One Pot Pasta) with vegetables, aromatics (garlic, onion), and broth so that every bite is packed with flavor. The broth and pasta create a rich saucy gravy in the pot that coats everything in wonderful flavor. This Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot is like, the easiest, tastiest “dinner in 30 minutes” meal! 

Originally posted 10-17-2013, updated 12-22-2019

Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot (One Pot Pasta)

A red Dutch oven full of Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot, with feta and spinach leaves on the sides

Use Fresh or Frozen Spinach

The original version of this recipe used frozen spinach, but the price of fresh spinach has come down tremendously in the past six years, so I was able to remake this with fresh spinach for about the same price as frozen. Fresh spinach has a much better texture, but frozen is still an option if you have that on hand or can’t get fresh spinach for a decent price.

Whether using fresh or frozen spinach, it can be added to the recipe at the same point—after the pasta has cooked. Frozen spinach is added to the pasta without thawing, and the heat of the pasta quickly thaws the spinach as it’s stirred in.

What Kind of Artichokes Should I use?

You can use artichoke hearts packed in a brine or marinated in oil. Either will work just fine. I usually find the kind packed in a brine in a can to be a little more affordable.

A shallow bowl full of Spinach and Artichoke One Pot Pasta with spinach and feta on the sides.

Can I Use a Different Pasta Shape?

Yes, you can use a different type of pasta, just be aware that different shapes may need different amounts of broth to cook properly, so you’ll have to adjust the recipe slightly. You can do this as the pasta cooks, adding more broth if it becomes dry before the pasta is tender, or allowing the pasta to boil without a lid if it’s too brothy when the pasta is nearly cooked through.

Can I Freeze the Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot?

Yes, you can freeze this dish, just be aware that the pasta may soften further through the freeze and reheat cycles. The best option for reheating would be in the microwave, first on the defrost setting, then high once it has loosened enough to stir.

Love One Pot Pastas? Check out my entire category of One Pot Meals for more!

 

Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot (One Pot Pasta)

This delicious and simple Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot is a One Pot Pasta that takes less than 30 minutes to make and is packed with vegetables.

  • 8 oz. mushrooms ($1.69)
  • 1 13 oz. can artichoke hearts ($2.59)
  • 4 cloves garlic ($0.32)
  • 1 small yellow onion ($0.32)
  • 5 cups vegetable broth ($0.65)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.32)
  • 12 oz. fettuccine ($0.82)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano ($0.10)
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme ($0.05)
  • freshly cracked black pepper ($0.05)
  • 4 oz. fresh or frozen spinach ($0.65)
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper (optional) ($0.05)
  • 3 oz. feta (optional) ($2.19)
  1. Rinse the mushrooms to remove any dirt or debris, then slice them thinly. Drain the can of artichoke hearts and roughly chop them into bite-sized pieces. Thinly slice the onion and garlic (you can mince the garlic and dice the onion if you don't like large pieces).

  2. Place the vegetable broth, olive oil, mushrooms, artichoke hearts, onions, and garlic in a large pot. Break the fettuccine in half and add it to the pot along with the oregano, thyme, and some freshly cracked pepper (10-15 cranks of a pepper mill). Push the ingredients down under the broth as much as possible. Place a lid on the pot and bring it up to a rolling boil over high heat.

  3. As soon as it reaches a boil, stir the pot to evenly distribute the ingredients and prevent the pasta from sticking. Turn the heat down to low so that the pot is simmering. Allow the pot to simmer, with the lid on, stirring every couple of minutes, for 10-15 minutes, or until the pasta is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Make sure the broth is simmering the entire time, turning the heat up slightly, if needed, to maintain a simmer.

  4. Once the pasta is cooked through, add the spinach and stir it into the pasta, allowing the heat to wilt the spinach (if using frozen, stir until the heat has thawed the spinach).

  5. Serve the pasta hot with a pinch of crushed red pepper and some crumbled feta on top, if desired).

If you use low sodium vegetable broth, you may want to season with a little salt at the end. Sometimes just a pinch of salt will help pronounce the flavors and prevent a bland finish.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Close up of Spinach and Artichoke One Pot Pasta on the plate being twirled around a fork

 

How to Make Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot – Step by Step Photos

Sliced onion mushrooms garlic and artichoke hearts

Start by prepping the veggies. Rinse and slice 8 oz. mushrooms. Drain a 13 oz. can of artichoke hearts and then just chop them up roughly so that they are in smaller, bite-sized pieces. Thinly slice one small onion and 4 cloves garlic. If you don’t want big garlic pieces, you can mince the garlic and dice the onion. 

Vegetable broth being poured into the pot with all the other inredients

Place the sliced onion, mushrooms, garlic, artichoke hearts, 12 oz. fettuccine, 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp dried thyme, some freshly cracked black pepper (about 10-15 cranks of a pepper mill), and 5 cups vegetable broth. If your pot is not big enough for the fettuccine to lay flat across the pot, I suggest breaking it in half first. My pot is quite wide, so I left it whole.

Ingredients pushed down in the pot below the broth

Push all of the ingredients down under the liquid as much as possible. Place a lid on top and bring it up to a boil over high heat. As soon as it reaches a boil, give it a good stir, and reduce the heat to low. 

Cooked one pot pasta

Let it simmer on low, with the lid in place, stirring every couple of minutes, for 10-15 minutes, or until the pasta is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed. Make sure the broth is simmering well the entire time, turning the heat up slightly if needed to maintain a simmer.

Fresh spinach added to the one pot pasta

Once the pasta is cooked, add 4 oz. fresh spinach and stir it into the pasta until the spinach has wilted. If using frozen spinach, stir it in until the heat from the pasta has thawed the spinach.

Finished spinach and artichoke one pot pasta

And then you suddenly have this! Amazing! Easy! Yum! It’s a WONDERPOT!

Sauciness in the bottom of the wonderpot

Take a closer look… see that yummy sauciness in the bottom of the pot? 👌

A pasta fork lifting pasta from the pot of Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot

Serve the Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot as is, or add a pinch of crushed red pepper and some crumbled feta. It’s also pretty good with Parmesan!

The post Spinach and Artichoke Wonderpot appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen

I hope I’ve convinced you to experiment with leftovers in your fridge by now. Most of my favorite recipe creations have come from me just piling whatever I have leftover in my fridge into a bowl or pot, and seeing how it turns out, including this Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen. I’m not kidding when I […]

The post Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I hope I’ve convinced you to experiment with leftovers in your fridge by now. Most of my favorite recipe creations have come from me just piling whatever I have leftover in my fridge into a bowl or pot, and seeing how it turns out, including this Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen. I’m not kidding when I say this is one of the best things I’ve ever tasted, and it only takes about 15 minutes and a handful of ingredients. #totalwin

Noodles being lifted by chopsticks out of a black bowl full of vegan creamy mushroom ramen

I had some coconut milk leftover from making my Easy Cauliflower and Chickpea Masala on Facebook live the other day, plus Aldi had baby bella mushrooms on sale for $1.69 per container 😱 so I had purchased some of those with the intent of roasting them, which didn’t happen. I came home ravenous for carbs after Orange Theory, saw that coconut milk and the mushrooms in my fridge, and immediately knew what I needed to make! 

The super simple broth for this ramen (vegetable broth + coconut milk) is so freaking good that I’m 100% going to be making a regular “cream” of mushroom soup with this method in the near future. So if you don’t like ramen but love creamy mushroom, just hang tight. ;)

What Kind of Mushrooms are Best for Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen

Definitely try to get baby bellas or full sized portabella mushrooms for this recipe. The deep color and robust flavor of these mushrooms makes a big impact, and I think regular button mushrooms would fall flat. 

What Kind of Coconut Milk Should I Use?

I used full-fat coconut milk in a can for this recipe and it made the broth extremely rich and delicious (and surprisingly it didn’t taste like coconut). I think you might be able to get away with using light coconut milk, but just be aware that the broth won’t be nearly as creamy or thick. I do not suggest using the dairy milk substitute type of coconut milk that comes in a carton. It is FAR too thin. Only canned coconut milk for this recipe.

Overhead view of a bowl full of Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen garnished with chili garlic sauce and green onion

What Kind of Ramen Should I Use?

I used the super basic, super cheap, 25₵ per pack ramen. Nothing fancy needed here. I did toss the seasoning packet and use my own vegetable broth, though (Better Than Bouillon). 

What Else Can I Put in My Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen?

Whatever you want! Ramen is one of those great “catch all” dishes that is good for tossing all your leftover vegetables and proteins into. Check out my post about 6 Ways to Update Instant Ramen to see what other fun things I like to put in my ramen. Some quick ideas are tofu, sliced bell pepper, sesame seeds, or shredded cabbage or carrot.

 

Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen

This incredibly simple Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen is a rich and flavorful 15 minute meal that only requires a handful of ingredients! 

  • 1/2 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.02)
  • 4 oz. baby bella mushrooms ($0.85)
  • 1.5 cups vegetable broth ($0.20)
  • 1 handful fresh spinach ($0.53)
  • 1 package ramen noodles (discard seasoning) ($0.25)
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (canned) ($0.66)

Optional Garnishes

  • 1 green onion, sliced ($0.11)
  • 1 Tbsp chili garlic sauce ($0.13)
  1. Slice the mushrooms. Add them to a small sauce pot with the cooking oil and sauté over medium heat until the mushrooms are soft, dark, and all the moisture in the bottom of the pot has evaporated.

  2. Add the vegetable broth, turn the heat up to medium-high, and bring the broth up to a boil. Once boiling, add the ramen noodles (without the seasoning packet) to the broth. Cook the noodles in the boiling broth for about 3 minutes, or until tender.

  3. Turn the heat off, add a heaping handful of fresh spinach, and stir until the spinach is wilted (about 30 seconds). Pour the coconut milk into the pot and stir to combine.

  4. Serve the Vegan Creamy Coconut Ramen as-is, or with garnishes like green onion or chili garlic sauce.

Scroll down for the step by step photos!

Close up overhead view of a bowl full of vegan creamy mushroom ramen with chopsticks lifting some noodles

How to Make Vegan Creamy Mushroom Ramen – Step by Step Photos

Baby bella mushrooms being sliced on a white cutting board

Slice 4 oz. baby bella mushrooms (about 4-5 mushrooms or half of an 8 oz. package). If you want to do full sized portobella mushrooms, just slice the caps in half, then slice crosswise into thin strips.

Cooked sliced mushrooms in a sauce pot

Add the sliced mushrooms to a small sauce pot with about 1/2 Tbsp cooking oil (your favorite type of oil to cook with, any type is fine). Sauté the mushrooms over medium heat until they are soft and dark, and all the liquid they release has evaporated out of the pot.

Vegetable oil being poured into the sauce pot with the cooked mushrooms

Add 1.5 cups vegetable broth to the pot with the mushrooms. I use broth made with Better Than Bouillon broth concentrate. Turn the heat up to medium-high and allow the broth to come up to a boil (this goes faster with a lid).

Dry ramen added to the broth in the pot

Add one “brick” of ramen noodles (discard the seasoning packet) to the broth and continue to boil for about 3 minutes, or until the noodles are tender.

Spinach added to the sauce pot.

Turn off the heat and add a heaping handful of fresh spinach to the soup. Stir until the spinach is wilted (about 3o seconds).

Coconut milk being poured into the ramen noodles in the pot

Finally, pour in 1/2 cup coconut milk (the canned kind, not the dairy milk substitute kind in a carton). Stir to combine.

Finished vegan creamy mushroom ramen in the sauce pot

And that’s literally all it takes! Done in about 15 minutes. You can serve it as is, or add some fun toppings.

Front view of noodles being lifted out of a bowl of vegan creamy mushroom ramen with chopsticks

I added sliced green onion and some chili garlic sauce to mine. The sharp chili garlic sauce added a nice contrast to the super creamy broth!

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