Vegetarian Flat Noodles

Vegetarian Flat Noodles

I can’t believe we’ve gotten through almost the entire first month of the year and I haven’t posted a noodle recipe yet. Well that travesty ends today! These Vegetarian Flat Noodles are an absolute winner of a dish. They are on the table so fast- I use fresh rice noodles that get stir fried, no boiling water required. The sauce is an umami bomb that is made from simple but oh so savory pantry ingredients, like hoisin and vegetarian oyster sauce. There’s tofu cutlets for protein, and flavor powerhouses like fermented black beans and garlic chives. We love a one pan masterpiece for dinner, so let’s get into it!

ingredients vegetarian flat noodles

First I start by making the sauce. You can use vegetarian oyster sauce, or sub with stir fry sauce. And if you’re not vegetarian, you can go ahead and use regular oyster sauce. I like to use white pepper because it has an earthy funk I love, but plain black pepper will do if that’s what you have on hand. Soy sauce and a little sugar round it out.

sauce ingredients vegetarian flat noodles

sauce vegetarian flat noodles

After the sauce is done, I set it aside and start prepping the other ingredients, starting with the noodles. I use a fresh rice noodle for this, which can be found at most Asian grocers. They look like a solid white cake but are folded rice sheets that you must first cut. (If you only have dried rice noodles first you will need to soak them according to the package directions and then proceed with the recipe.) Fresh rice noodles are sticky when they are fresh but turn brittle once they are refrigerated. Once you are done cutting them into strips, you must then separate the strips and pull them apart. Be gentle as they can break easily.

Next I get all the veggies and tofu prepped. Remember, this is a stir fry dish and as such, everything needs to be ready before you begin cooking.

red onion and chives

I like to use a tofu cutlet for this. These are ready to use firm tofu blocks that have been fried. I like the flavor and texture it gives the dish. It also has a lot less moisture than other kinds of tofu so it holds its shape nicely in Vegetarian Flat Noodles. And because it has a crust from being fried, it doesn’t adhere to the pan like regular tofu can. (It’s also awesome in Kiriboshi Daikon and Lemongrass Tofu Rice Salad.)

If you can’t find it or prefer to use regular tofu, you can use firm or extra firm tofu instead but use a gentle hand when stir frying it so the tofu stays intact.

tofu vegetarian flat noodles

Now that everything is prepped it’s time to get cooking. Make sure you have everything within easy reach as this part goes lightening fast. I used a large non-stick skillet which kept the moist ingredients from sticking to the pan. If you’re using a regular skillet, make sure it’s a well seasoned one and heat it for several minutes before starting.

onions and tofu noodles

bean sprouts spinach flat noodles

Taste a noodle and make sure it’s hot, chewy, and delicious. Adjust seasoning if needed with a little salt and ground pepper. Give everything a final stir and then your Vegetarian Flat Noodles are ready to serve!

I hope you enjoy our first noodles of the year! Take a moment to comment and let us know what you think, and don’t forget to tag us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen, we love hearing from you!

If you are as much of a noodle fiend as I am, check out some of our most popular recipes:

Spicy Garlic Noodles

Coconut Curry Noodles

Beef Udon



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noodle recipe card

Vegetarian Flat Noodles

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: serves 2-3 1x


  • 1 Pack fresh rice noodles about 8 ounces 
  • ¼ red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 package tofu cutlet
  • 1 ½ cup packed spinach (about 2 ounces)
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • ½ inch bundle garlic chives (I used the ones with flower buds)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon fermented black beans
  • 1 Tablespoon neutral oil
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil


  • 1 Tablespoon Vegetarian Oyster or Stir Fry Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Hoisin Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper


Mix the sauce:

  1. Combine the vegetarian oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sugar, ground white pepper, and water.
  2. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Set aside.

Make Noodles:

  1. Cut the noodles into 1 inch strips. Peel the noodles apart and set aside.
  2. Trim ½ inch off of the base of the garlic chives. Cut into 2 inch pieces. You should have about ¾ cup. Set aside.
  3. Cut the tofu cutlet in half horizontally so you have 2 thin pieces. Then, from the shorter end, cut the tofu into thin strips. Set aside.
  4. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Add the oil, the onions, and the tofu. Stir fry for 2 minutes, moving the contents of the pan around constantly. 
  5. Add the garlic, ginger, and black beans and stir to combine. 
  6. Next add the noodles and stir fry for 1 minute, moving them around the pan to start softening the noodles. 
  7. Add the sauce and garlic chives and cook for 2 minutes, mixing to keep everything cooking evenly. The noodles should be soft and translucent. Cook for an additional minute if they are still a little stiff.
  8. Add the bean sprouts, spinach, and the sesame oil. Cook for a minute to wilt the spinach and beans sprouts. Taste and adjust seasonings with a little salt and pepper if needed.
  9. Serve immediately.   


*You can find fermented black beans in a well stocked Asian market. They are in the dry goods section. Once open, I put the package in a zip-top bag and store them in the freezer. They’re good for at least several months.

*Fresh rice noodles are available at Asian markets usually near baked goods or other ready to eat foods. Sometimes they will have them in the refrigerated section as well. If you prefer to use dried rice noodles, look for the widest ones, which look like fettuccine. Use about 4-5 ounces dried noodles for the recipe and soak the noodles in cool water for 20 minutes. Drain the noodles before starting.

Keywords: rice noodles, vegetarian, fermented black beans, tofu

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