Got 20 minutes? You can have this Chicken Ramen Stir-Fry for dinner tonight. It tastes better than take-out, has less than 400 calories, and it’s fast (did I mention that?). The secret? Quick-cooking ramen noodles. Toss those sodium-packed flavor packets they come with and make a quick sweet and sour sauce – they’ve got nothing on this fresh, real food version.
More nights than I’d like to admit, it’s tempting to pick up pizza for dinner. Work runs late, I get delayed at the preschool, and sometimes Frank and I find ourselves walking in the house after 6pm without even having thought about dinner.
It’s why we wrote Takeout At Home. Even though I cook professionally now, I still need an arsenal of healthy, satisfying 30-minute dinners to throw together in a pinch.
Ramen Noodles and Vegetables
Those super cheap packets of ramen noodles are a secret weapon for fast dinners. We always toss out the flavor packets that come with them, but what remains is a tender, curly, fast-cooking noodle that just needs to be soaked in hot water to serve. To round out these bowls of noodles, you only need a few other ingredients. But the vegetables are totally interchangeable. This is a great dish for frozen stir-fry vegetables or any fresh vegetables in the bottom of the crisper that need to be used.
The sauce in this dish is one that I use frequently for stir-frys. I use it so often that I never even measure the ingredients. These ingredients tend to just work together even when the amounts vary. (But don’t worry, I DID measure them in testing this recipe!)
It’s Wednesday! What are you having for dinner?!
- ¼ cup Low-Sodium Soy Sauce
- 1 Tbsp Cornstarch
- ¼ cup Low-Sodium Chicken Stock
- 1 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
- 3 Tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1 clove Garlic, chopped
- 6 oz Ramen Noodles (Instant Ramen works best, but discard any flavor packets)
- 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil, divided
- 1 lb Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast, chopped
- 8 oz Broccoli Florets, fresh or frozen
- 2 Green Onions, chopped (opt)
- 1 Tbsp White Sesame Seeds (opt)
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the soy sauce and cornstarch until no lumps remain. Add chicken stock, rice vinegar, brown sugar, and garlic and whisk until evenly combined.
- Put ramen in a large bowl and pour very hot tap water over it (I let the water run for a minute to get steaming hot). Set it aside to let the noodles soften.
- While noodles soak, toss chicken with some salt and pepper.
- Heat a wok or non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp oil and then chicken. Saute until chicken is cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. Set chicken aside.
- Return wok to medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp oil and then broccoli. Saute broccoli until it turns bright green and then continue cooking until broccoli is tender (if using frozen broccoli, just saute it until it's heated through and the excess water cooks off).
- Add sauce to the pan and toss to coat broccoli. Continue cooking until sauce reduces slightly, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile, drain ramen noodles and add them to the pan. Add chicken to the pan and toss everything to coat in sauce.
- Remove form heat and add green onions and sesame seeds, if using. Serve immediately!
These noodles get a ringing endorsement from the toddlers at our house, though it’s a shock they had room for dinner after eating chocolate chip muffins earlier in the day. The look on Clara’s face probably needs no explanation, but that, friends, is the look of a girl who just convinced her twin sister that she “needs” a bite.