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Chicken Ramen

Updated on April 07, 2016

Joined: 3 years agoFollowers: 72Articles: 113

Why Ramen?

This might sound strange, but I have always thought they food in animation looks amazing. If you don't know what I am talking about watch Spirited Away. It is a Japanese animation and the food looks phenomenal. I remember growing up and seeing ramen in these animated shows and movies and wondering why the ramen I had in the pantry wasn't that appealing. It was just noodles and broth. Nothing too exciting about that. Since my parents never did anything else with it I never did anything else with it. I remember always being amazed that ramen was always pictured with an egg in it, and I really wanted to try it.

Like nearly all college kids in America I am familiar with instant ramen. It is cheap, quick, and can be eaten anywhere if you get it in the fancy cups. Ramen was never my go to meal, but when the weather was bad or the dinning halls were closed it was the best option I had. And let me tell you, where I went to school it rained a lot and when it rained campus flooded. Given the choice between soaking your last dry pair of shoes to go out to the dining hall for dinner or ramen most of us chose the ramen.

Fast forward a few years and I am still familiar with ramen. I make sure that I have a supply on hand at home just in case funds are tight for the month. However, now I have experienced real ramen. A few months ago my boyfriend, some of our friends, and I traveled to a ramen bar in DC. Thats right we drove four hours one way for ramen. It changed my life. I had never experienced such flavors before. It was everything that I had hoped it would be. I started to crave those flavors at home. And let me tell you, store bought instant ramen was not cutting it.

Ramen

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Ramen from Toki Underground: a ramen bar in Washington DC, my inspiration for creating my own ramen at home.Chicken ramen made at home
Ramen from Toki Underground: a ramen bar in Washington DC, my inspiration for creating my own ramen at home.
Ramen from Toki Underground: a ramen bar in Washington DC, my inspiration for creating my own ramen at home.
Chicken ramen made at home
Chicken ramen made at home

Perfecting the Recipe

I found a simple recipe for chicken ramen on line. It was easy enough and only called for two ingredients I had never used: mirin and ginger. Luckily, my local grocery store had both of these times in stock and I was able to make the dish. It was very nice, but I knew that I could make improvements. I could get it closer to the ramen I had in DC. (I did write an article on that experience at Toki Underground if you would like to read more about it)

I tweaked the recipe until I felt it better suited what I was craving. I added fresh greens. I am a fan of spinach and kale. I added veggies. Fresh mushrooms and thinly sliced carrots add both flavor and nutrition to the meal. I substituted regular soy sauce and chicken broth for low sodium. And honestly, I didn't even notice a difference. I added more of the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and mirin. I also added a splash of rice vinegar, the same that I use to make sushi.

I am very proud of my final product. I feel that it has a lot of flavor to offer and brings nutrition to the meal. I like to think of it as being closer to authentic ramen.

5 stars from 1 rating of Chicken Ramen

What You Will Need

All of the ingredients needed to make ramen at home. Not pictured are the chives (they are growing on my windowsill) soy sauce, and mirin (both of which I already had from previous recipes)
All of the ingredients needed to make ramen at home. Not pictured are the chives (they are growing on my windowsill) soy sauce, and mirin (both of which I already had from previous recipes)

How Long Will it Take?

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 30 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: About eight servings
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Two chicken breasts are all that you need for this recipe.The skin will have a nice golden brown color when you go to put it in the oven to bake. Remember to add about five minutes of cooking time if you have the bones in the breasts.Once the chicken has finished cooking let t cool for a few minutes. Then, pull the meat off the bone. I like mine in small strips that are not even in size or length.
Two chicken breasts are all that you need for this recipe.
Two chicken breasts are all that you need for this recipe.
The skin will have a nice golden brown color when you go to put it in the oven to bake. Remember to add about five minutes of cooking time if you have the bones in the breasts.
The skin will have a nice golden brown color when you go to put it in the oven to bake. Remember to add about five minutes of cooking time if you have the bones in the breasts.
Once the chicken has finished cooking let t cool for a few minutes. Then, pull the meat off the bone. I like mine in small strips that are not even in size or length.
Once the chicken has finished cooking let t cool for a few minutes. Then, pull the meat off the bone. I like mine in small strips that are not even in size or length.

The Chicken

If you would like to save on your prep time get a rotisserie chicken from your local grocery store. Remove the skin (you can keep it if you want, but it will add more fat to the dish) and pull the meat from the bone. You will have a lot more chicken that you would from just two chicken breasts. You will also get a variety of light and dark meat, which will add different flavors.

When I made the ramen I used for the pictures I used chicken breasts. Every other time I made this recipe I have used a rotisserie chicken. The price was the same. I feel like I got more bang for my buck from the rotisserie chicken, and it was less work for me in the end. I also really liked having all the extra meat in the final dish. But, if you already have chicken breasts at home I would save your money and just use them. Remember, if you are going to use frozen chicken breasts that they take a while to thaw so plan accordingly.

Extras

I add shredded carrots, fresh greens (kale and spinach) and mushrooms to my ramen. You do not have to. I usually add a hand full of the carrots and the greens to the bowl when I add the noodles and broth. I typically just use a carton of sliced mushrooms right to the broth before I add the chicken, that way the mushrooms will absorb the flavor of the broth.

I also take fresh chives from my window garden and chop them right over the finished ramen.

Ingredients

  • 2 Chicken breasts, Or 1 rotisserie chicken
  • 4 Ramen noodle packs, ignore the flavor pouch
  • 4 Quarts Chicken broth, Low sodium
  • 2 Tbsp Mirin
  • 1 tsp Rice Vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp Soy sauce, Low sodium
  • 2 Tbsp Ginger, fresh and minced
  • 2 Tbsp Garlic, fresh and minced
  • Egg, Sof boiled, 1 per person
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame or Olive Oil

Preparing the Broth

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Garlic and ginger are both common in asian foods and are full of flavor. You will be able to taste both in the end product.The minced garlic and ginger cook for a few minutes in the oil before the rest of the ingredients are added.The soy sauce gives the broth a rich color and adds a lot of flavor, The mirin adds another layer of flavor that makes the dish more dynamic, but as it is clear it does not change the color like the soy sauce does.
Garlic and ginger are both common in asian foods and are full of flavor. You will be able to taste both in the end product.
Garlic and ginger are both common in asian foods and are full of flavor. You will be able to taste both in the end product.
The minced garlic and ginger cook for a few minutes in the oil before the rest of the ingredients are added.
The minced garlic and ginger cook for a few minutes in the oil before the rest of the ingredients are added.
The soy sauce gives the broth a rich color and adds a lot of flavor, The mirin adds another layer of flavor that makes the dish more dynamic, but as it is clear it does not change the color like the soy sauce does.
The soy sauce gives the broth a rich color and adds a lot of flavor, The mirin adds another layer of flavor that makes the dish more dynamic, but as it is clear it does not change the color like the soy sauce does.

Putting It All Together

  1. In a nonstick skillet brown the chicken (lightly salt and peppered if you desire) for 5 minutes on both sides. Then move the chicken to an oven safe dish and bake at 375 for about 15 minutes. Remember to add an extra five minutes of bake time if you still have bones. If you are using a rotisserie chicken, remove the skin and pull the meat from the bones in chunks the size of your finger and set aside in a bowl.
  2. Mince the garlic and the ginger. Add the oil to a large stock pot and set to medium heat. When hot add the garlic and ginger. Stirring frequently.
  3. Once the garlic and ginger are soft add the soy sauce, mirin, and rice vinegar. Stir frequently. After a minute add the chicken stock. Before to add the stock slowly to avoid splashing.
  4. Bring the stock to a simmer and add the mushrooms (if using) and chicken. Bring to a boil.
  5. Add the Noodles and cook until they are soft. About 5 minutes.
  6. To make the soft boiled egg bring a pot of water to a boil. Use just enough water to cover the eggs. Once the water is boiling add the eggs (still cold from the refrigerator) and boil for 7 minutes. For a more set yolk set your timer to 8 minutes. Then promptly move the eggs to a bowl filled with cold water. allow to cool before removing the shell.
  7. Once the noodles are done add them to a bowl and then cover with broth. Now you can add the greens or any veggies you are using. (you could also add the veggies and greens first and then cover with noodles and broth).
  8. Slice the sole boiled egg in half and place on top of ramen. Add fresh chopped chives if desired.

Putting Everything Together

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You can either put the greens and other vegetables  at the bottom of the bowl and put the noodles and broth on top or you can add the veggies on top of the noodles and broth.I prepared two eggs because I am bad a peeling boiled eggs of any kind without breaking them.Once the broth has reach a boil I add my noodles directly to it. I feel that it really adds a lot of flavor to the noodles themselves. If you would like you can boil water for the noodles and then add them to the bowl and then add the broth.
You can either put the greens and other vegetables  at the bottom of the bowl and put the noodles and broth on top or you can add the veggies on top of the noodles and broth.
You can either put the greens and other vegetables at the bottom of the bowl and put the noodles and broth on top or you can add the veggies on top of the noodles and broth.
I prepared two eggs because I am bad a peeling boiled eggs of any kind without breaking them.
I prepared two eggs because I am bad a peeling boiled eggs of any kind without breaking them.
Once the broth has reach a boil I add my noodles directly to it. I feel that it really adds a lot of flavor to the noodles themselves. If you would like you can boil water for the noodles and then add them to the bowl and then add the broth.
Once the broth has reach a boil I add my noodles directly to it. I feel that it really adds a lot of flavor to the noodles themselves. If you would like you can boil water for the noodles and then add them to the bowl and then add the broth.

Note

For the noodles I have tried pad thai noodles, rice noodles, and the noodles that come in the packs of instant ramen. Honestly, the noodles from the instant ramen packs were the most satisfying. They can be slurped and hold up well in the dish. The others were fine, but they just didn't say ramen quite like the instant noodles.

These packs are cheap, you can get a bag of 6 packs for around a dollar. I use one pack per quart of chicken broth. Just disregard the little flavor packet that comes with the noodles, the broth you just made will have more and better flavor. If you wanted to make your own noodles you can do that. It will add perp time to the meal and would require a trip to your local asian market. Making my own noodles for my ramen is on my bucket list, but for now I am happy with the store bought instant noodles.

Future Changes

I would like to continue to work with my ramen recipe. I have a list of things I would like to add or substitute:

  • Miso
  • Sesame Seeds (roasted, like what I use in my sushi)
  • Nori (just like what is used in sushi)
  • Bean Sprouts
  • Sriracha (only a little)
  • Shrimp

Ramen

Click thumbnail to view full-size
The first time I made ramen I used rice noodles for pad thai, I couldn't find just the noodles for ramen at the store and didn't think to use the noodles from the instant ramen packages. I also was too intimidated to try to soft boil an egg.The second attempt at homemade ramen. I added mushrooms, greens, carrots, and the soft boiled egg. I also used noodles from the instant ramen packets. My third attempt. I put the greens and veggies in before the noodles and the broth. I felt that they cooked a little more that way.
The first time I made ramen I used rice noodles for pad thai, I couldn't find just the noodles for ramen at the store and didn't think to use the noodles from the instant ramen packages. I also was too intimidated to try to soft boil an egg.
The first time I made ramen I used rice noodles for pad thai, I couldn't find just the noodles for ramen at the store and didn't think to use the noodles from the instant ramen packages. I also was too intimidated to try to soft boil an egg.
The second attempt at homemade ramen. I added mushrooms, greens, carrots, and the soft boiled egg. I also used noodles from the instant ramen packets.
The second attempt at homemade ramen. I added mushrooms, greens, carrots, and the soft boiled egg. I also used noodles from the instant ramen packets.
My third attempt. I put the greens and veggies in before the noodles and the broth. I felt that they cooked a little more that way.
My third attempt. I put the greens and veggies in before the noodles and the broth. I felt that they cooked a little more that way.

Closing

I hope that I have inspired you to try your hand at making ramen at home. I think you will be pleasantly surprised by what you create. Even when I don't have time to make this full recipe and I want ramen I now know how to add a little flair to the store bought instant ramen. I simply add a little soy sauce and mirin to the noodles when I pour on the flavor pouch before I add the hot water. I also will add a handful of spinach and shredded carrot. You would hardly know that it started out as regular store bought ramen.

Best of luck! Enjoy!

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    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 9 months ago from Home Sweet Home

      Lovely, must try it out

    • isharkbait profile image
      Author

      isharkbait 9 months ago

      Let me know how it turns out!

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