Ramen Noodles: The 16 Best Substitutes When You’re Out


If you’re looking to substitute ramen noodles, then there are 16 amazing alternatives that you can use to create a similar flavor and texture.

I, being a Japanese food lover, have tried and tested many varieties of noodles have tried most of these.

So, let’s get straight into our list of alternatives.

16 Ramen Noodle Substitutes

1. Soba Noodles

A gluten-free substitute

Soba noodles are made from buckwheat flour. They have an earthy and nutty taste and are rich in fiber and protein. 

Their thick and chewy texture makes them an ideal substitute to use in both hot and cold dishes. You can cook them in the same way as ramen noodles and even include them in your soups.

Check these three must-try soba noodle recipes:

2. Rice Noodles

A vegan substitute

Rice noodles are chewy in texture and contain a great rice flavor.

They have a good absorption capacity. Hence, whatever ingredients you put in your dish, they will easily absorb all of their flavors.

You can use them for making stir-fries, salads, and soups.

To prevent them from becoming mushy and inedible, you must cook them properly.

Here’s how you can make Rice Noodles at home:

3. Shirataki Noodles

A zero-calorie substitute

If you’re looking for a vegan plus gluten-free substitute that contains no calories, then shirataki noodles are a perfect choice.

They go well in many hot and cold dishes, including stir-fries, salads, and gravies.

Watch this video to make Pad Thai with Shirataki Noodles:

4. Glass Noodles

Glass noodles are almost flavorless with a hint of starchy sweetness. Their texture is chewy, and they have a high flavor absorption capacity.

Hence, they’re great for making broths, stir-fries, spring rolls, hot pots, and soups.

See this video to learn how you can cook Korean Stir Fry Glass Noodles:

5. Chinese Egg Noodles

Available in varieties of fresh, dried, thick, and thin strands, Chinese egg noodles have a savory taste with a springy texture and a slight yellowish appearance.

They fit well into soups and stir-fries in place of ramen noodles. 

Try this recipe to cook Chinese egg noodles at home:

6. Kelp Noodles

A low-carb substitute 

Kelp noodles are a low-calorie substitute that has a neutral taste with a gelatinous yet crunchy texture.

You can use them as a pasta substitute as well as for making soups, salads, and stir-fries.

Try this recipe to make Kelp Noodle Pasta:

7. Veggie Noodles

Veggie noodles consist of thin strands of vegetables like zucchini, sweet potato, cucumber, etc. Hence, they are available in a variety of flavors. 

They might not taste like ramen but are a rich source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

So, they are a healthy alternative suitable for use in soups, salads, and stir-fries.

Here are 5 ways to cook Vegetarian Noodles:

8. Udon Noodles

Similar to Ramen noodles, udon noodles also consist of water, wheat flour, and salt.

Their mild taste, along with a chewy, dense texture and thick strands, makes them a good substitute that you can serve with hot broth.

They fit well into stir-fries, salads, and soups and also go well with vegetable and meat-containing dishes, including fried tofu.

Check out this video to make Garlic Shrimp Udon Noodles: 

9. Wonton Noodles

Wonton noodles have a fresh, mild flavor with a springy and chewy texture. 

Their rich taste brings out an excellent flavor in hot broths and dishes that contain leafy vegetables, prawns, spring onions, chicken, and pork. 

They are available in both thick and thin strands. 

Try this easy Wonton Noodle Soup recipe:

10. Spaghetti

Spaghetti doesn’t have the same shape or taste as ramen noodles, but you can still create a similar texture and flavor by adding one tablespoon of baking soda to the boiling water that contains Spaghetti.

It will give you pasta-like results with a chewy texture. You can also add some extra seasoning to enhance its flavor.

See this video to learn How to Turn Spaghetti into Ramen-Style Noodles:

11. Gluten-Free Ramen Noodles

If you’re looking for a ramen substitute just to avoid its gluten content, then you can purchase gluten-free ramen noodles.

They’re usually made of brown rice noodles or purple potatoes.

They are not only a healthy and flavorful option, but brown rice noodles have an extra nuttiness in them with more fiber.

Hence, they might taste even better than ramen.

Try this Quick Stir Fry Brown Rice Noodle Recipe:

12. Chow Mein Noodles

Chow Mein noodles are a variation of Chinese egg noodles, also called fried egg noodles.

They come in two varieties: steamed noodles and crispy noodles.

They don’t contain any flavor. However, you can make them taste similar to ramen by adding some vegetables, sauces, and other seasoning ingredients while making a stir-fry, soup, or salad.

Here’s how you can make vegetarian chow Mein noodles with special spicy chow Mein sauce: 

13. Lo Mein Noodles

Lo Mein noodles are also called mixed or tossed noodles because they’re generally cooked with a sauce and some vegetables.

They have a unique flavor with a combination of sweet and savory taste, smooth structure, and a texture that is thick and chewy. The way their flavor comes out largely depends on the type of sauce used.

Regardless, they work as a great ramen substitute in soups, salads, and stir-fries.

Watch this video to know how you can cook the best Chinese Lo Mein noodles:

14. Green Bean Noodles

Green bean noodles are made from green beans, flour, and soy sauce.

They have a neutral taste and a springy texture. Besides, they contain a very low amount of carbohydrates and are healthier than ramen.

Hence, you can substitute them in almost any recipe that calls for ramen noodles.

Check out this video to make Spicy Green Bean Noodles:

15. Somen

Similar to ramen, somen noodles also consist of wheat flour.  Except, they have a thinner strand, a soft texture, and a very mild flavor. 

However, they don’t require much effort while cooking and are easier to prepare than ramen noodles. Hence, they are a good substitute.

Try this recipe to make Somen Japanese summer cold noodles:

16. Moringa noodles

Moringa noodles contain multi millet and wheat flour with moringa powder and salt.

They are tasty, healthy, and a rich source of protein. Hence, they act as a good ramen alternative.

You can combine them with fried meat, carrots, salads, potato and egg stews, and sausages.

Try this Moringa Millet Noodles Recipe:


Q1. Are ramen noodles the same as pasta?

Ans. Ramen noodles and pasta are not the same because, unlike pasta, ramen noodles aren’t produced using durum wheat. Besides, their texture is also much soft and smoother than pasta. 

Q2. What are some cheap alternatives to ramen? 

Ans. Quesadillas, Chili Macaroni, Pasta Salad, Canned Soup, and Tuna with noodles all work as great cheap alternatives to ramen noodles.

Q3. Which is the healthier substitute for ramen noodles?

Ans. Both udon and soba noodles do not contain a high amount of fats or sodium. Therefore, if you are looking for a healthy alternative, then they are a good choice. 

Q4. Can I use spaghetti instead of ramen noodles?

Ans. Cooking spaghetti by adding some baking soda to its boiling water gives you a great ramen noodle alternative.

Q5. What are ramen noodles made of?

Ans. Ramen noodles consist of wheat flour, vegetable oil, and some added flavorings. 

Bottom Line 

With so many types of Ramen noodles substitutes, it can be hard to know which one is right for you.

Hopefully, this list has given you some good ideas and shown you that there are plenty of healthy, delicious, and affordable options out there.

If you’ve tried any of these recipes or have your own favorite substitute for Ramen noodles, we want to hear about it!

Share with friends and family on social media and let us all know how you rocked your next potluck or dinner party. 

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About Irene Clark

Irene is a supermom of 4 kids who always has a smile on her face. She's an amazing dancer - you should see her moves! - and she loves to eat, especially with wine. She also loves pop music and travels across the country with her family and friends.

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