6 Ways to Upgrade Instant Ramen – Make it a Meal! – Budget Bytes

6 Ways to Upgrade Instant Ramen

confession meter : sometimes I actually like instantaneous ramen. You know, those bum little packets of salty noodles that only cost 30¢ ? I don ’ thymine eat them frequently, possibly once per year, but when I get the crave I ’ m wholly not above grabbing a packet of instantaneous noodles and going to town. Over the years I ’ ve found 6 easy ways to upgrade blink of an eye ramen, like to the point where it might actually qualify as a legit meal, AND use up the leftovers in my kitchen at the same time. then I ’ megabyte going to partake them with you nowadays because it ’ s a total win-win .

primitively published 12-16-2015, updated 4-25-2019.

A big bowl of ramen with a soft boiled egg, tofu cubes, spinach, bell pepper, and sliced green onion on the side.
Yeah, that ’ s moment ramen in that stadium in the photograph above. And those upgrades were pretty cheap .
now it ’ sulfur obvious that the best way to upgrade blink of an eye ramen is to just get real ramen ( from a restaurant or beneficial quality noodles from an asian grocery store ), but that ’ s not what we ’ ra talking about today .
We ’ rhenium talking about when your lone option, or your favored option, is the cheap little ramen packets that you can find in just about any grocery or appliance store in America. so, when that ’ s what you ’ ve got, here ’ s what you can do !

6 Ways to Upgrade Instant Ramen

A clump of noodles being lifted out of the bowl of upgraded ramen with chopsticks.

1. Use Your Own Broth

A jar of vegetable flavored Better Than Bouillon
Skip the season packet and use your own broth, whatever kind you prefer. I like to use either vegetable or chicken flavored Better Than Bouillon ( I do half broth, half water to keep the salt down ), but you could besides use a homemade bone broth, dashi, or even equitable some miso mixed with water. not alone does this give you more control over the salt and other ingredients, but it offers you a fortune of spirit options !

2. Add Aromatics

Garlic, sliced green onion, and ginger on a cutting board.
Adding fresh aromatics to your broth in truth gives the spirit some dynamism. I like to add fresh garlic, ginger, and green onion. I normally have all three of these on hand ( I keep my ginger in the deep-freeze ), so it ’ s a no-brainer. Plus, fresh ginger gives the soup a pleasant medicative timbre that is great when you ’ re under the weather .
TIP: Mince the garlic and grate the ginger. Sauté both in a little vegetable oil for a moment or so before adding your broth to the toilet. The green onion can either be sprinkled over top at the end, sautéed with the ginger and garlic, or both !

3. Sauce it Up

Add Sambal to Garlic and Ginger in the sauce pot
If you ’ re like me, you have no less than 20 half-used bottles of sauces in your electric refrigerator. Well, Instant ramen is a big way to use up some of those sauces. You can stir sambal, chili garlic sauce, sriracha, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, fish sauce, gochujang, soy suace, or any count of other sauces into your broth for more spirit. Or add them to the finished bowl as a sort of table season .
TIP: Adding sauces normally comes with add salt, so keep this in judgment when choosing your broth. That is one reason I like to do half broth and half water—it gives me more wiggle room to add sauces late.

4. Add Vegetables

Salad Bar Vegetables in a take-out container with tofu.
I looooove my bowl of ramen packed full of vegetables. This is where it gets truly playfulness and utilitarian. Browse your electric refrigerator for any vegetable that might need to be used up, like carrots, bell peppers, mushrooms, cabbage, and more. You can besides toss in freeze vegetables, like broccoli florets, peas, or corn .
TIP: If you don ’ t have any vegetables in your electric refrigerator, stop by the salad bar at your local anesthetic grocery store and grab a small handful or two of your favorite vegetables. That way you don ’ t have to buy a wholly package of each one. You can besides score protiens like bean curd ( see photograph above ) or rotisserie chicken to toss in there .
Spinach being added to cooked ramen in the sauce pot.

5. Add a Protein

Close up of Chopsticks lifting noodles out of an upgraded bowl of instant ramen, with a soft boiled egg.
My favorite protein to add to my ramen is an egg because it ’ s fair so easy and I constantly have them ( soft boiled testis or hard boiled egg ). But there are so many more options ! Tofu cubes, sliced tempeh, rotisserie wimp, prime pork ( browned ), shelled edamame, pulled pork, shrimp, you name it !
TIP: You can crack a raw egg straight into your simmering broth and let it cook for about 6 minutes. Make certain the broth is not vigorously boiling or the testis will break apart into a million pieces and equitable make the broth cloudy. For the egg in the photograph above, I cooked it individually, using my easy 6-minute Soft Boiled Egg method acting, and then added it to the finished bowl .

6. Top it Off

Sriracha being drizzled on a bowl of upgraded Instant Ramen.
meter to go violent ! Top off your ramen with lots of fun goodies to give your bowl flavor, semblance, and texture. hera are some fun ideas : sriracha, kimchi, sesame seeds, crumbled bacon, nori ( dried seaweed ), fresh herb ( coriander, Thai basil, chives ), a drizzle of crispen sesame oil, crushed chiles, furikake, or a lodge of linden .
An upgraded bowl of instant ramen, viewed from above, being eaten with chopsticks
And that ’ s it ! That ’ s all it takes to turn a sad little package of instant noodles to a sincerely epic bowling ball that I ’ meter sure I ’ five hundred credibly pay at least $ 8 for in a restaurant .
An opened package of instant ramen with other ingredients around it, including green onions, chile paste, and garlic.

What About You?

Share your favorite ways to upgrade blink of an eye ramen in the comments below ! I love reading all the unique and creative jazz band people come up with for their ramen !