Ramen noodles. We’ve all had them some time. Maybe more times than we wish to imagine. And to be honest, they are not necessarily a super-healthy choice, so you wouldn’t want to eat them several times a week.

They ARE super convenient though, and can be a base for multiple meals, some that can end up being fairly healthy. In this post I share COUNTLESS combinations that can make ramen into a real meal, for one or for your family!

10 bajillion ways to turn ramen noodles into a meal

1. Add veggies.  My first go-to is cabbage, thinly shredded. If you need a fast meal without going through the drive thru, grab a bag of shredded slaw mix and toss it in the pot while the noodles are boiling. I like to add a 1:1 ratio of cabbage to noodles to kick the healthy up a notch. A few other options you could easily add, singly or combine your favorites:

  • baby spinach
  • frozen green peas
  • frozen french cut green beans
  • frozen corn
  • broccoli
  • snap peas

2. Add protein. While I love a good-flavored veggie soup, sometimes you just gotta have the meat (or protein).

This is a great way to use any type of leftover meat pieces, such as chicken, shredded beef, ground beef, diced pork loin, and even bacon. Not that there is actually any *leftover* bacon, but it is a great tasting protein to add to your ramen noodles.

Another option is to add eggs. You can add hard or soft-boiled, actually cooking them in the same pot while the noodles are boiling, and then add into your bowl before serving. Another option is to drizzle a couple of whipped eggs slowly into the boiling broth, making a type of egg drop soup.

You could also add lentils or other type of bean, as well as tofu, although I have not ever personally tried these options.

3. Mix it all up. If you really want to create a well-rounded super-easy fast meal, create your own protein and veggie combination favorites. When I am sick with a cold or sore throat, my favorite go to is beef flavored noodles with pre-browned ground beef from my freezer and a bag of shredded cabbage. I add some garlic and powdered red pepper to kick it up a notch.

Pick what flavor ramen you want as your base and choose your add-ins from the columns below. Don’t be afraid to experiment!

veggies proteins spices/condiments
cabbage chicken soy sauce
spinach shredded beef red pepper
carrots ground beed garlic fresh or powder
celery pork loin miso paste
scallions bacon rice vinegar
mushrooms ham pesto
zucchini turkey worchestershire
green beans eggs barbeque sauce
corn tofu ketchup
beans mustard

The possibilities here are endless. I am thinking I want to try a chicken based egg drop with baby spinach and chopped mushrooms. 


This version above has bacon and napa cabbage tossed in the pot while cooking. Bacon makes everything good, right?

Like Thai flavors? After draining noodles, run under cold water and add a couple of tablespoons of chunky peanut butter, a bit of soy sauce and a splash of chili garlic sauce. Add a little cold water to mix to the desired consistency. Chill for an hour, or eat right away if you can’t stand the wait!

If you want more ramen ideas, visit this site. Click here if you would like more quick meal ideas.  If you would like to learn more about meal planning to decrease the days you might need a quick meal like these, read Meal Planning 101. 

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat