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Chow Mein

4.89 from 34 votes

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Make amazing Chow Mein in 15 minutes! These noodles are highly adaptable and you can make them sweet or spicy, however, you like! I love this recipe along with the rest of my Asian-inspired recipes!

tongs picking up a serving of chow mein

Chow Mein | Quick and Easy!

I like Chow Mein from takeout places just fine. But when I make them myself, I can add in as much flavor as I want and eat a whole pan of them for maybe $2. I’m a cheap date, ya’ll. Also, I’m all about lazy fast recipes and this one does not disappoint. So yeah. These Asian-y inspired noodles will make your skirt fly up and you can make them as salty, sweet, spicy, or gingery as you’d like….and all in 15 minutes!

But First, What is Chow Mein?

Chow Mein is made up of stir-fried noodles with vegetables and/or meat. It’s a popular dish in most American Chinese restaurants and now in your home too!

I made this recipe so it could be a customizable base for your dinner needs, add meat, different vegetables, and even a different type of noodle if you want.

top down view of ingredients laid out on a counter

Main Ingredients Needed

You only need 10 ingredients and 15 minutes of time to whip of this quick and easy Chow Mein Recipe! Here’s everything you’ll need:

  • Chow Mein Noodles – AKA ramen noodles. I used the cheap packaged ramen that comes with little seasoning packets. However, you are welcome to buy and use storebought fresh ramen or yakisoba noodles.
  • Olive Oil – used to saute the vegetables.
  • Cabbage and Onion – these are our veggies which is not a lot but, if you want, you could experiment and add steamed broccoli, or grab a frozen bag of peas and carrots!
  • Soy Sauce and Sesame Oil – they both bring essential Asian flavor to the whole dish and really make it tasty. If you are a soy sauce lover, add a little extra for all your salty needs.
  • Garlic and Ginger – two staple ingredients in any Asian dish. I prefer fresh but you can use store-bought minced garlic and ginger too.
  • Salt and Pepper – season as you go and season to taste!
  • Sugar – this is a much-needed contrast in flavor to all the other things in this recipe but it also helps make the sauce thick. Think of broccoli beef sauce and how it clings to each bite of meat and holds onto every broccoli floret. The sugar does that for this recipe but with noodles. YUM!
cabbage in a cooking pot with a wooden spoon

How to Make Chow Mein

When I say easy and quick Chow Mein I mean it! I start out with ramen noodles and cook those until chewy. Then I stir fry the vegetables and add all the dry seasonings. Adding the noodles to back to the pan with the veggies, I then toss it all together with the wet seasonings and that’s it! For full recipe details, check out the recipe card below!

Cook Chow Mein Noodles

Cook ramen noodles in boiling water until chewy and *just* cooked. Drain and set aside.

Sautรฉ Cabbage, Onions + Ginger

In a large skillet, heat olive oil. Sautรฉ onion, cabbage, salt, pepper, ginger together until tender.

Toss Together with Flavorings

Toss together with cooked noodles, sugar, garlic, soy sauce, and sesame oil until heated through. Serve hot!

hand holding tongs into a pot of chow mein

Storing Chow Mein

Any leftover Chow Mein can be stored in the fridge, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days. After that, things start to get a little too mushy!

Freezing Instructions

Chow Mein actually freezes really well! Let cool then transfer to a freezer-safe airtight container (tupperware or a ziploc bag work great). Freeze for up to 3 months!

To reheat, thaw in the fridge overnight then do a quick stir fry to warm things up!

close up of tongs resting in a pot of chow mein

Side Dishes

If you feel like you need some protein with this meal check out my Korean Beef Recipe or Better Than Take-Out Crispy Sesame Beef. Chicken or shrimp would be super good too.

You could also serve this alongside some more vegetables or pot stickers!

chow mein on a white plate

More Asian Inspired Recipes to Try!

Give this Chow Mein Recipe a try tonight and see if you like them as much as my family did. And check out these other Asian dishes on the blog!

Printable recipe below! Enjoy, friends.

4.89 from 34 votes

Chow Mein Recipe

Make amazing Chow Mein in 15 minutes! These noodles are highly adaptable and you can make them sweet or spicy, however, you like! Love this recipe.
servings 4 servings
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins


  • 4 packages ramen noodles* or yakisoba noodles
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion diced
  • 10 oz shredded cabbage
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger or grate in a little fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil


  • Cook ramen noodles in boiling water until chewy and *just* cooked. Drain and set aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Sautรฉ onion, cabbage, salt, pepper, ginger together until tender.
  • Toss together with cooked noodles, sugar, garlic, soy sauce, and sesame oil until heated through.
  • Serve hot.



*You are welcome to use fresh ramen or yakisoba noodles in place of the cheap ramen.


Calories: 128kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 844mg | Potassium: 190mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 70IU | Vitamin C: 27mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 0.8mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: Chow Mein, Chow Mein Noodles, Chow Mein Recipe

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Recipe Rating

107 Responses
  1. Susan

    This sounds tasty but ground ginger in no way substitutes for fresh ginger – they are two different animals entirely. You will get a much better flavor overall if you just use some grated fresh ginger. This is a quickie recipe I am going to definitely try, as my girl is a bottomless pit when it comes to ramen noodles.

      1. Cheryl H

        FYI, When you buy fresh ginger buy enough to put the rest in the freezer. You can scrape/peel it frozen and use what you need. Grating is easy when itโ€™s frozen. Then youโ€™ll always have fresh ginger to use in your recipes.

  2. Shelley

    I make this too! I usually just use 1 packet of ramen seasoning and soy sauce, but will try your sauce! Sounds yummy! I roast my sliced cabbage, onions and celery in the oven! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Patricia Miller

    This might be a dumb question, but for the ramen noodles, you’re talking about the kind that come with the little seasoning packets, right? I’ve heard of some ramen that’s in the refrigerated section at the grocery store, so I just wanted to make sure.

    1. Lauren

      Yes, the 15 cent ramen noodles that are dried and come with the flavor packets. I mean, you could probably get a better result by using the fresh noodles in the refrigerated section, but my kids like the cheap-o kind. They have such refined palates.

  4. Karen @ On the Banks of Salt Creek

    Mmmmm. I love Asian noodles.
    Yes, it is a boy thing. Eventually he will notice more things in his way (not all things) as he goes 90 mph through life. My husband who is 41 doesn’t run into things so at some point boys do get some sense. However, that boy gene always has that ‘go go go’ to it. It’s one of the things we love about them.

  5. Maddie

    What a fantastic idea for a quick and easy vegetarian meal!! Can’t wait to try this the next time I get a noodle craving ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Peggy

    It is truly the first sign that he is all male… he is displaying the male trait of being single minded. Ha ha! As a mom to 3 boys (who are now actually young adults) with 3 COMPLETELY different personalities… well ALL 3 of them ran into stuff on a regular basis. Serious goose eggs followed. and it was too funny. we did take after pictures (i know i’m such a bad mom but we had to have some evidence to show them later in life when they wouldn’t believe us.) Yes he will quit running into things at some point in time, and there will be no lasting damage. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Lauren

      sure! Just add it into the pan with the cabbage and onion. You might need more seasoning because it’s more food, but besides that, it should be just fine.

  7. Patricia

    Definitely a boy thing, my grandson is nearly 5 & he throws himself around the place, I nearly have heart failure lol

  8. Maddie

    My hubby is 68yrs old and he still walks into doorframes & walls !!! lol Looking forward to trying your recipe ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Jill

    This recipe sounds good! A great way to use up the noodles from the chicken flavor packages that my daughters don’t particularly care for. I am curious what you mean by granulated garlic? Is that garlic salt? Also, did you know that you can freeze fresh ginger? I just peel it and freeze in a small container or freezer bag. That way I always have some on hand when I need it. Thanks for all the great recipes!

    1. Lauren

      No, its NOT garlic salt! It’s like garlic salt without the salt. Yes, I knew about the frozen ginger. Fabulous tip ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Megan {Country Cleaver}

    Oh my gosh – how is he almost TWO?!? And I want a bowl of these noodles and just to sit back while I hang out with that crazy kid!!

  11. Karen

    This sounds delicious! I was wondering if I could use a different oil besides sesame oil since my son is allergic to sesame.

  12. Trish - Mom On Timeout

    Awww, boys ๐Ÿ™‚ Gotta love ’em! I have a 6 year old and an 8 year old and can totally relate. But gosh are they FUN! These noodles are the bomb Lauren! Can’t wait to give them a try!

  13. Aly

    It’s a boy thing. My 7 year old gave himself a black eye at Disneyland, walking into a lamppost. I am used to watching where he is going in order to yell in a vain hope of him looking in front of him. It usually fails.

  14. Elizabeth

    Phew. I’m just glad to read that my son isn’t alone in his habit of walking into walls, posts, chairs, doors, the counter, etc etc etc. (Noodles look good too. ๐Ÿ™‚ )

  15. Melissa

    Please take your son to a doc and tell him how much he runs into things. It may be nothing more than he isn’t paying attention or it could be something else. I don’t want to scare you but running into walls was a symptom of a serious problem that a grandson of a friend of mine had. Also have his eyes checked… Better to rule all that out and give yourself peace of mind than to have ??? in the back of your mind.

  16. Katie

    5 stars
    We made this for lunch today with some leftover cabbage from earlier in the week. First thing my hubby said was, “oh, it’s got a little kick.” Even using the ground ginger, there still is enough spice there to make this really tasty. Thanks!

    1. Natalie

      This would be perfect for dinner tomorrow night! I run into walls all the time and I’m a 24 year old female. Hahaha. Some of us at just born clumsy

  17. Gillian

    This looks yummy! And I’m 27 and I still walk into door frames and walls (and chairs and tables and the corners of kitchen counters) if I’m not paying attention or distracted. So he’ll probably grow out of it, but maybe not, and it’s not just a boy thing ๐Ÿ˜‰

  18. Crystal Klein

    5 stars
    I made this tonight…I used fresh ginger, chopped up some baby carrots, zested a key lime plus the juice, and added some cooked chicken breast. It was great! I love cooked cabbage.

  19. Sam

    Hi thanks for the memories(long ago College days) …only additionwill be either prawns or chicken…. again thanks for the memory….

  20. James

    I eat Ramen on our families pick night (when everyone gets to pick what they want to eat themselves), so this work great for me to try something different. My two boys didn’t run into walls very often, but when they did, we laughed and said they pulled a Justin (my friend’s boy) because he did it all the time. (the boy could trip on air). But, he did grow out of it.

  21. Stacey

    5 stars
    Just made this for dinner,the kids love it. Next time will have to cut the sugar in half. Added fresh ginger, and green onions. Definitely making again

  22. Samantha

    5 stars
    Tried this last night. Very pleased with it. only thing my boyfriend would like to add is some sort of protein. He was leaning towards shrimp or chicken cooked in the seasoning first then combined with the rest of the ingredients after. Loved this! ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Les Alabacos

    5 stars
    thank you very much for very simple recipe, my whole family love it including the fussy child.
    P.S try it without the sesame oil it tastes fantastic also

  24. Nancy Howard

    This looks like a good recipe for when I am in a hurry. I had 3 girls. So I am not qualified to speak, but when my girls ran into walls, I usually measured their height. With every little change, they got clumsy and forgot where their edges were.

  25. Michelle

    Made this for late dinner tonight. Next time I would cook the noodles for maybe two minutes, as they became too soft after cooking for four minutes, then heating through with the rest of the veggies. We also thought it was missing something, so I sprinkled a bit of the chicken seasoning packet on top, and that did the trick. Next time I’d mix it with a little water and add to the pan. Overall, a great starting point. Would be good with chicken or shrimp, and more veggies.

  26. VikkiD

    5 stars
    I just made this, added in some broccoli & it was SO good. Next time I am going to make it a complete meal with even more veggies & some kind of protein such as teriyaki chicken. Delish!

  27. Cheryl DeCriscio

    Want a great meal? Cook raman noodles, add in frozen broccoli florets and cook until noodles are done, not mushy. (I bring to boil and turn heat off, cover and let steam). Sprinkle with lemon juice and enjoy. You can also add any vegetable you like, but I like broccoli. This is my standby when I can’t think of anything else and want it quick.

  28. Shelli Bender

    Maybe just get your son a helmet for a few years? I am not fond of ramon noodles but I am very fond of chowmein! lol Must try this!

  29. Kathy

    I know EXACTLY what you’re saying about your 2-year-old. When my son (now 46) was two I really thought that he would grow up with his head coming to a unicorn-type point because of all the bashing he did on his forehead! And I laughed too. So don’t feel bad!