There’s not much better than instant ramen. Truly. I love it so much, I even made it into a salad in my first book, so it should be no surprise our pantry is well stocked with this stuff. Do people buy these post-college… or just me? Although there’s nothing like a big warm bowl of ramen (mmm, MSG!), I love to change it up: Dan Dan style, Pork No-Soup or as Pho. Real easy, but people will think you’re fancy AF. You can even use the delicious “surprise packets” (as mom calls them). Watch the full video for three quick, affordable and delicious ways to use instant ramen. Make sure to tag your noods on social!

Ramen 1 – Chilled Dan-Dan Style

You’ll need:

  • 2 packages ramen noodles
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon grated ginger root
  • 1½ tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1½ tablespoons smooth peanut butter, microwaved for 30 seconds
  • Sliced cooked chicken breast (or protein of your choice)
  • Sliced scallions
  • Black sesame seeds

Instructions:

Put the noodles from two packages of instant ramen in boiling water (discard the seasoning packets or save for another use). Cook according to package directions.

Meanwhile, make the peanut sauce. Put the sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, garlic, ginger, rice vinegar, and peanut butter in a medium bowl and whisk until smooth.

Strain the ramen noodles and put in a large bowl. Pour the peanut sauce over and toss to coat. Chill in the refrigerator for 45 minutes until cold.

Top with sliced cooked chicken breast (or the cooked protein of your choice) and green onions. Garnish with black sesame noodles.

Ramen 2 – No Broth Pork Ramen

You’ll need:

  • 2 packages ramen noodles
  • ½ pound ground pork
  • Salt
  • 1-2 cups sliced veggies (like onion and grape tomato)
  • Sliced scallions

Instructions:

Put the noodles from two packages of instant ramen in boiling water. Cook according to package directions.

Cook the ground pork in a large pan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently to break up, until browned and cooked through. Season with salt. Turn off the heat and stir in the seasoning packets from the two instant ramen packages

Add the noodles and veggies to the frying pan with the ground pork and stir well to meld the flavors. Serve and garnish with green onions.

Version 3 – Pho-Style

You’ll need:

  • Sliced onion
  • Cooked Thai pork meatballs
  • Bok choy
  • 2 packages ramen noodles
  • White vinegar
  • 1 egg
  • Fish sauce
  • Soy sauce
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Sprouts
  • Sliced scallions
  • Sliced red chili peppers
  • Lime

Instructions:

Sauté the onion, Thai meatballs, and bok choy in a saucepan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add water and the noodles from two packages of instant ramen to the pot. Stir in just one flavor packet (discard or save the other one for another use). Cook the noodles according to package directions, adding 1 tablespoon fish sauce and 1 tablespoon of soy sauce towards the end.

To poach your egg, bring a small pot of water to a simmer and add a splash of vinegar. Crack the egg into a small bowl. Gently swirl the water, then slide the egg into the water. Cook until the whites are firm but the yolk is still runny, 2 to 3 minutes.

Pour the noodles and broth into a large bowl. Top with cilantro, sprouts, sliced scallions, and squeeze half a lime over the top. Use a slotted spoon to remove the poached egg from the water and put it on top of the pho.