Vegan yaki udon

Vegan yaki udon

vegan yaki udon close

While Wednesday is often referred to as hump day, it’s been a good day so far. After feeling the wrath of two super storms – Ciara and Dennis – for the past two weeks, the sun is out and the wind has calmed down a lot – which is a relief, I did not think our roof was going to stay intact. We have finally had our downstairs floor finished, kitchen island moved back, sink reconnected and last night we found a sofa we like, of the right dimensions for the living room and one that is not filled with bird feathers.

Did you know that this is now a common thing? Sofa cushions (and settees often too) are now topped up with duck (or other birds’) feathers for extra comfort. What a mad world we live in? I’m glad I stumbled across this piece of information before we bought anything as I was not aware that finding a vegan sofa is going to be a challenge at all. I assumed that most sofas are automatically free of animal products, unless upholstered in animal skin or wool, of course, but I was wrong. Going against the accepted norms does get exhausting sometimes. So yeah, it took as ages to find something suitable, but we did and we are planning to order it this week once we have decided on the material, colour etc.

We are excited as our living room is finally taking shape and it is now only a matter of 6 more weeks (hopefully) before we have a little bit of the comfort we so missed, especially over the winter. We both dream of spending a weekend watching a movie while sitting on a comfy sofa with our Tina, in front of a fire. While it may get too warm for the fire before we get the sofa delivered, the rest is in our future, I can smell it! 😉

The floor is staying the way it is, btw. I know I said I was unsure about my choice, but I made it and I will live with it. It is growing on me anyway… The thing is I know myself and I am not 100% sure that if I had chosen walnut, I would not have ended up in the exact same place. I am terrible (and I mean terrible) at decision making. I do not trust myself, I change my mind (a lot) and once I decide I always feel that I made a mistake. It is something that has caused me a lot of misery over the years and I am acutely aware of it. I am thinking of getting some counselling to help me with that but the trouble is I cannot decide (funny that, eh?) on a counsellor either.

Foodwise, I have a new, exciting midweek recipe for you today. It comes together quickly, it’s delicious and very satisfying. It’s my vegan take on a Japanese classic – yaki udon. It’s easy to make and full of umami. Like any stir-fry type dish, it is very flexible – use any veggies you like, but make sure you add hardier vegetables to the wok first. The aromatic sauce (and the right amount of it) and chunky udon noodles are key elements here. You could cook the noodles from dry, but if you want to speed things up, use precooked noodles like I did. I found mine in an Asian section of my local supermarket so you should be able to find them with ease too.

This dish goes well with a light beer according to craft beer aficionado – Duncan. He likes to treat himself to a beer with his meal after his Tuesday track night and he was well chuffed to come back to a plate of these noodles last night after he ran his heart out for an hour, in the freezing cold. Bless! I forever admire his unrelenting fortitude and often wish I loved running in the cold as much as I like eating 😛 .

vegan yaki udon noodles sauce

vegan yaki udon noodles ingredients

vegan yaki udon wok

vegan yaki udon

vegan yaki udon portion

15 min
15 min
15 min
15 min


  • 100 g / 3.5 oz fresh shiitake (or chestnut) mushrooms
  • ½ large broccoli
  • 2 small pak choi / bok choi
  • ½ bell pepper
  • 1 carrot
  • 3 spring onions / scallions, white part thickly sliced
  • 4 tsp high smoke point oil (I use rice bran)
  • 400 g / 14 oz precooked udon noodles or 200 g / 7 oz dry, cooked per packet instructions
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds, to garnish
  1. Mix all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl. I added nutritional yeast and finely grated (and sifted) a dry shiitake mushroom into the sauce to give it more umami, in the absence of umami-filled (non-vegan) Oyster sauce. You could also add some seaweed powder if you have it. Set the sauce aside to infuse while you prepare the rest of the meal.
  2. Slice the mushrooms thickly, divide broccoli into small, evenly sized bite-pieces. Cut white, firm parts of pak choi into thick slices, gather the green leaves together and cut them in half (if large). Slice red pepper thinly and cut carrot into matchsticks. Arrange the veggies on a large plate or chopping board in this order: mushrooms, broccoli, pak choi white parts, red pepper, carrot, spring onion white parts, pak choi leaves.
  3. Heat up a wok on a medium heat until just smoking. Add 2 tsp of oil and allow it to get really hot – until it starts shimmering.
  4. Add in mushrooms and stir-fry for one minute, until sealed. Next add in, broccoli, stir fry for about 2 more minutes.
  5. Push everything to a side, add another 2 tsp of oil – allow it to heat up, then add firm bits of pak choi, red peppers, carrot matchsticks and spring onions. Stir-fry for 2 minutes and finally add pak choi leaves and allow them to wilt slightly.
  6. Push all the veggies to the side of the wok and add in the sauce to the bottom of the wok. Allow the sauce to bubble a few seconds and then add the noodles.
  7. Mix the noodles into the sauce. If using precooked noodles, handle them gently – shaking the wok back and forth which will allow the noodles to soften from the heat and slowly unravel into the sauce. Mix everything well, ensure the noodles are fully cooked before taking the wok off the pan.
  8. Divide between two bowls. Serve topped with toasted sesame seeds.

My recipe is adapted and veganised from this recipe.

15 g
13 g
2 g
14 g
69 g
*per serving
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15 reviews, 31 comments
Yara Coussa:
Soooo good!
    Thank you, Yara! I am delighted to hear that :) x Ania
10/10 Our family loved this recipe!
    Thanks so much, I am delighted to hear that it was such a winner in your house and thanks for letting me know - I really appreciate it. x Ania
Loved this! Easy too — adding this to our weeknight rotation .
Could we add Miso paste to this, and a spicy smoky chilli paste?
    Hi Faye,
    Sure you can, in fact I have a similar recipe with miso and gochujang under way so I'm totally with you. Just be mindful that miso adds saltiniess as well as depth of flavour, but I am sure you have that covered already. x Ania
I like this recipe. Easy to make and delicious! I tried putting different vegetables and it still turned out good. Thank you.🤛
    Thanks Mo! I am really happy to hear that you enjoyed this dish and many thanks for taking the time to leave this lovely review, it helps me a lot! Ania
Really enjoyed this, it was quick and using simple ingredients but still full of flavour. So glad I found your recipes I can't wait to try more!
    Thank you so much, Lauren! I'm delighted to hear that it was a hit and thanks so much for taking the time to review - much appreciated. x Ania
Vicki Johnson:
This recipe was incredible! So yummy! I did not use any mushrooms, and added cauliflower. I also used one green pepper and one red pepper. The sauce is awesome and it all turned out so delicious! I will definitely be making this again. Thank you!!
    Thank you for your kind words, Vicki! I’m delighted to hear that you enjoyed these noodles – and yes, the veggies you can use here are totally flexible! Thanks so much for taking the time to write this review, I really appreciate it. x Ania
What can you use instead of mushrooms?
    How about your favourite tofu? or any other veg you enjoy...Hope you'll enjoy it! x Ania
I’ve made this 2x already but was wondering why your noodle looks red? Mine is pale. But was delicious!
    Thanks, Nina! I'm glad you enjoy this recipe. It may be my photo editing or a mixture of ketchup and vegan Worcester sauce that makes them look like they do, not sure...Ania
    Mine looked a little bit red but not as much as on the photo for sure. Probably because of the ketchup?
I tried these noodles tonight and they were really yummy! Great recipe with plenty of flavour. I have tried to cook Asian recipes before and they didn’t turn out out great but this was awesome! Thank you!
    Thank you, Natalie! I'm really happy you enjoyed it and thank you for taking the time to let me know - much appreciated. Ania
very yum, indeed!
    Thank you, Dodie! I'm delighted to hear that! x Ania
What dessert would you recommend with this?
Thanks for the recipe, I will be making it tonight!
    Great to hear, I hope you'll enjoy it. Hm, not sure, depends what you like. I love this peanut butter mousse, but they do require some setting time! Have a browse through my sweet recipes if you would like and I'm sure something will catch your eye. Hope this helps! Ania
I used up all my sad looking leftover veggies in the fridge and it was soooo good. Definitely a keeper!
    Yay! That's fantastic to hear, Sara and thank you for letting me know. Anna
the sauce was amazing!! I ran out to get everything the only thing I didn’t have was a wok, but it was still pretty darn good. but my noddles didn’t turn out to have that yellow tint was there something I did wrong? Thanks again for the recipes
    Glad you enjoyed it, Emely. I am not sure why your noodles didn't have a yellow tint, that tint comes from the sauce itself. I'm happy you enjoyed the taste! Ania
I made this tonight with some oven baked tofu and roasted cashews added on top and it’s definitely another recipe that will be added to the favourites list!
Thanks so much for sharing!
    Thanks so much for your kind words, Niamh! I'm delighted to hear that you enjoyed this recipe enough to add it to your favourites. Ania
Hi - what brand of udon noodles did you use for this recipe? Have been looking for vegan ones but have had no luck.
    Seven Moons, Clearspring and Hakubaku brands are all vegan. Hope this helps! Ania
Laura Porto:
This was so tasty! Great recipe thank you, the sauce was bursting with flavour. I added tofu for extra protein and because I’m addicted to it :)
    I'm delighted to hear that, Laura! Thanks for letting me know that you enjoyed this dish so much! x Ania
I love how easy and delicious this is. And full of colourful veggies! I subbed bok choi for purple cabbage as thats what I had in the fridge. Will definitely make again!
    Great to hear that you enjoyed it and plan to make it again, Emma! And thank you for taking the time to let me and my readers know - much appreciated. x Ania
Simply delicious!
    Thank you, I am delighted to hear that! Ania
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! For years I've been trying to recreate a yaki udon I used to buy as a teenager from a little hole-in-the-wall authentic Japanese takeaway in my hometown, and could never quite get it right. Imagine how stoked I was, 20 years later, when this vegan one replicated it almost exactly!!! It was so simple and quick, packed with veggies, and that flavour... THAT FLAVOUR! Sweet, salty, rich, and just the right amount of tang. Eating it was a sheer pleasure and I am so grateful. A new staple in my house for sure! Thanks again you legend!! <3
    Aw, thank you - I am so chuffed to hear that you enjoyed it so much and that it brought back happy food memories! That's priceless! x Ania
Priti Shah:
Hi Ania. Thank you for posting this japanese yaki udon recipe I love japanese/Thai food but haven’t been brave enough to try making it myself but now I will try a few of your recipes. You mentioned in your recipe to grate and sift dry shiitake mushrooms. What is the reason for sifting it? Also can I sub tamarind sauce for Worcestershire sauce?
I’m having a dinner party next week and can’t wait to try this out.
    Hi Priti,
    I hope you'll make it and enjoy it! I sifted my grated mushrooms so that there are no larger pieces of mushroom floating in the sauce (to isolate fine powder only), but you don't need to do that at all if you don't mind. I don't think tamarind is a good substitute for Worcestershire sauce, I am afraid. The former is intensely sour and the latter has a more complex, full of umami flavour with hardly any sour notes. Hope that helps! Ania
Amazing! I have all the ingredients for this! (Random - I usually have to go shopping when I see a recipe I like).
I’ll report back tomorrow :) Thank you 🙏
    Great to hear, Jane! I hope you'll enjoy it! x Ania
Something that helped me with my indecisiveness is the mantra “there are no right answers.” I chant it often as need be when I get stuck in making a decision.
    Thanks Kim, I will remember that although I haven't had much success with other mantras so far :( . Ania
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