These quick and easy spicy peanut udon noodles are perfect for those times when only warm and spicy carbs will do. And since they’re ready in just about 10-15 minutes, that can be just about any time you want!
Why you’ll love these spicy peanut noodles!
There is nothing like a big bowl of spicy noodles! They just seem to hit the spot when only carbs will do :) Having this little recipe in your back pocket means that all that ever stands between you and a bowl of these is 10 minutes.
All you need for this delicious bowl is noodles and a few common pantry items to make the sauce. Add some spice and if you have them, add some green onion and/or cilantro to the bowl.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Noodles – I love the ease of frozen or shelf-stable udon noodles, as they don’t need to be pre-cooked. Simply soften in a large bowl of warm water, before adding directly to the skillet. That said, you can use any noodle you have or enjoy, following any instructions for cooking on the package before adding to the skillet.
Peanut Butter – For the peanut butter, you can use smooth or crunchy. I usually just have smooth around, so I add finely chopped peanuts to sauce. If you are starting with crunchy peanut butter, you can skip them.
You can use either regular or natural peanut butter, but as natural peanut butter is drier and less creamy, it doesn’t perform quite as well in this sauce.
Chili Oil – This is where the spice comes from. If you don’t have chili oil, you can make your own by heating 2 Tablespoons of vegetable or olive oil with 1 teaspoon of dried red pepper flakes over low heat just until warm. Remove to a bowl and allow to cool before using.
Alternately, use any spicy Asian sauce, such as Asian Chili Garlic Sauce, Sambal Oelek or even Sriracha. Each one is a bit different in terms of spiciness, so add a bit to start, then taste and add more, to taste.
- Gather and prepare the ingredients.
- Heat oil in skillet and cook ginger and garlic 30 seconds.
- Add sauce mixture and heat until melted and smooth.
- Add noodles and toss to coat well.
- Add additional hot water to skillet, a bit at a time, as needed, to loosen sauce.
- Add green onion and/or cilantro to the skillet and stir to combine.
- Serve with chopped peanuts and additional green onion and cilantro.
Add some spinach to the skillet and stir in until wilted (you may need a bit more water, as the spinach will absorb some of the liquid in the pan).
Stir in some cooked chicken, to add a protein to the mix.
Peanut butter sauces tend to tighten up easily (go from liquid to stiff), so enjoy these noodles freshly cooked. If necessary, loosen up the noodles with a splash of hot water.
The amount of water you need to add is variable, depending on the noodles used and the peanut butter variety. Add as much as you need to create a nice sauce that coats the noodles well.
Making Ahead and Storing
These noodles are best enjoyed freshly cooked, though you can cook the noodles ahead and refrigerate, to make it more quickly later.
Store left-overs in the fridge. To loosen the noodles up after refrigerating, add a bit of water to the noodles when reheating.
Love udon noodles? You might also enjoy … my 15 Minute Spicy Udon Stir Fry recipe.
Get the Recipe: Spicy Peanut Udon Noodles
- 5 Tablespoons peanut butter , *see Note 1 below for options
- 1 Tablespoon soy sauce, low sodium recommended
- 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar, seasoned or unseasoned
- 1-2 Tablespoon chili oil, *see Note 2 below for options
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1/4 cup hot water, plus more, as needed
For the Stir Fry:
- 1-2 teaspoon cooking oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste, or 1/4 tsp fresh ginger minced, or 1/8 tsp dried ginger powder
- 12-14 oz udon noodles, shelf-stable or frozen, pre-soaked in warm water
- Additional hot water, as needed
- 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
- 1/4 cup green onion, green part only, sliced
- 2 Tablespoons peanuts, finely chopped
- Sesame seeds, optional
- Additional green onion
- Additional cilantro
- If using udon or similar noodles that only need soaking, soak in a large bowl of hot water. Drain after soaking and set aside. (If using noodles that require pre-cooking, boil water and cook according to package instructions and drain).
- In a small bowl, combine sauce ingredients and stir a bit (it won't really come together in the bowl, but will melt together in the skillet later). Set aside.
- Heat cooking oil over medium heat in a skillet or wok on the stove-top. Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, for 30-45 seconds. Add the sauce mixture and stir and heat, until the sauce melts. Add the noodles and toss to coat well with sauce. Add additional hot water, a Tablespoon at a time, as needed, to loosen the sauce to coat the noodles well. Stir in some of the green onion and cilantro (if using), reserving some for garnish.
- Spoon noodles in to bowl. Garnish with reserved green onion and cilantro and chopped peanuts and/or sesame seeds.
- This recipe was tested with regular peanut butter. You can use smooth or crunchy peanut butter. If you are using natural peanut butter, you will probably need to add more hot water to loosen the sauce and the texture of the sauce may be less creamy.
- Use 1 Tbsp chili oil for less spicy or 2 Tbsp for more spicy. If you don't have chili oil, you can use any spicy Asian sauce, such as Asian Chili Garlic Sauce, Sambal Oelek or Sriracha. As each varies in spiciness, add a bit to start, taste, then add more, to taste.
More Udon Noodle Recipes to Love!
Hi! I’m Jennifer, a home cook schooled by trial and error and almost 40 years of getting dinner on the table! I love to share my favourite recipes, both old and new, together with lots of tips and tricks to hopefully help make your home cooking enjoyable, stress free, rewarding and of course, delicious!