Ramen noodles tossed with a spicy peanut sauce, sliced cucumber, scallions, and fresh cilantro. A flavorful easy dinner to add to your rotation! 

Spicy Peanut Noodles on Plate with Chopsticks

As I’m sure is the case among many of us, we’ve recently hit a dinner rut. To break out of it, I’ve made a concerted effort to expand our running list of go-to meals. 

One of the best ways to do this is to try new dishes every week. Bookmark a recipe from your favorite cookbook or website (our recipe archive can be searched by category or ingredient), jot down a shopping list, and roughly plan the week ahead. 

It requires some time, but more often than not, makes the week more exciting and rewards you with a new favorite meal. Keep a running list of favorites and turn to it when you’re stuck on ideas. 

These Spicy Peanut Noodles with Cucumber are here to stay. They come together quickly and taste fantastic at room temperature or prepped ahead and served as cold leftovers. This dish is all about the peanut sauce! 

Spicy Peanut Noodle Recipe Ingredients

Here’s What You’ll Need: 

  • PEANUT BUTTER – you’ll want to use natural creamy (unsweetened and, preferably, unsalted) peanut butter for this sauce. 
  • SOY SAUCE – for added flavor and seasoning. 
  • LIME JUICE –  adds brightness and punch of acid to the peanut sauce. 
  • TOASTED SESAME OIL + SESAME SEEDS – toasted sesame oil is incredibly flavorful and an ingredient I always keep on hand in my pantry. We’ll also add some toasted sesame seeds for texture. 
  • SAMBAL OELEK – an Indonesian hot sauce, which sometimes goes by the name of chili garlic sauce. I recommend Huey Fong brand, which can be found in most grocery stores. Feel free to add more to taste. 
  • RICE VINEGAR – for another touch of acid. If you don’t have rice vinegar and don’t wish to buy it, feel free to add a touch more lime juice to taste.
  • GINGER + GARLIC – fresh ginger and garlic are absolutely essential to this dish. I recommend using a microplane to finely grate them. 
  • DRIED RAMEN NOODLES – feel free to use basic instant dried ramen noodles (remove and discard the seasoning package) or fresh ramen noodles for this recipe. Be sure not to overcook them and rinse them well under cool water before tossing in the sauce. 
  • ENGLISH CUCUMBER – sliced cucumber adds great color, texture, and crunch 
  • SCALLIONS – we’ll use both the green and white parts – don’t skimp on the scallions, you can’t get enough. 
  • CILANTRO – fresh herbs improve every dish. 
  • CRUSHED PEANUTS – we’ll garnish the noodles with a sprinkle of crushed dry-roasted peanuts

Spicy Peanut Noodle Sauce Ingredients in Bowl

How to Make Spicy Peanut Noodles: 

1) Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. 

2) Prepare the Peanut Sauce Mixture: In a large mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, sesame seeds, sambal oeleek (chile garlic paste), rice vinegar, grated ginger, grated garlic, and red pepper flakes (if using). Whisk together until well combined and smooth.

3) Prepare the Noodles: Add the ramen noodles to the boiling salted water and cook according to the instructions, stirring often, or they are until al dente. Drain the noodles, run under cool water, and drain again.

Spicy Peanut Noodles Being Mixed with Tongs

4) Transfer the rinsed, drained ramen noodles to the mixing bowl with the peanut sauce and toss gently with tongs until the noodles are evenly coated in the peanut sauce. Add the sliced cucumber, chopped cilantro, and sliced scallions, and toss again gently. Season to taste.

5) Serve at room temperature topped with finely crushed peanuts, cilantro, and lime wedges. You can also prep the noodles ahead of time – they taste great cold from the fridge! 

Spicy Peanut Noodles

How to Serve Spicy Peanut Noodles: 

This noodle dish is substantial enough to be served on its own.

If you’re looking to bulk it up a bit, you can pair the noodles with sautéed tofu (or even this No Cook Spicy Tofu, if you really want to up the heat level!), grilled chicken, or roasted vegetables. 

Spicy Peanut Noodles on Plate with Chopsticks

How to Store Leftovers: 

These spicy peanut noodles taste great at room temperature, just after preparing, but they can also be prepped ahead to enjoy as leftovers. 

Store leftover noodles in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The sauce will thicken during chilling – feel free to add a tablespoon of water to thin the sauce if you wish.

Spicy Peanut Noodles on Plate with Chopsticks

Spicy Peanut Noodles with Cucumber

Yield: 4 Servings

Ramen noodles are cooked and tossed with a spicy peanut sauce, sliced cucumber, scallions, cilantro, lime wedges, and topped with crushed peanuts. This simple Asian noodle recipe is best served at room temperature or cold from the fridge. Serve on its own or with bulk it up with a side of sauteed tofu, grilled chicken, or roasted vegetables.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons (32 grams) creamy peanut butter (preferably natural and unsalted)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (about 1/2 juicy lime), plus wedges for serving
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons Sambal Oelek (chile garlic paste)
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar 
  • 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, grated on a microplane
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated with a microplane or finely minced
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 8-9 ounces dried ramen noodles (see note)
  • 1/2 English cucumber (8 ounces), seeds scooped and discarded, quartered lengthwise and cut into thin 1/2-inch slices
  • 3 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced on a bias
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped, plus more for garnish
  • dry-roasted unsalted peanuts, finely crushed, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Prepare the Peanut Sauce Mixture: In a large mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, sesame seeds, sambal oeleek (chile garlic paste), rice vinegar, grated ginger, grated garlic, and red pepper flakes (if using). Whisk together until well combined and smooth.
  3. Prepare the Noodles: Add the ramen noodles to the boiling salted water and cook according to the instructions, stirring frequently, or they are until al dente. Drain the noodles, run under cool water, and drain again. Transfer the noodles to the mixing bowl with the peanut sauce and toss gently with tongs until the noodles are evenly coated in the sauce. Add the sliced cucumber, chopped cilantro, and sliced scallions, and toss again gently. Season to taste.
  4. Serve room temperature topped with finely crushed peanuts, cilantro, and lime wedges.
  5. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The sauce will thicken during chilling (it still tastes great!) - feel free to add a tablespoon of water to thin the sauce if you wish.

Notes

Tips for Success:

  • Feel free to use dried or fresh ramen noodles for this recipe. You'll want roughly 8 - 9 ounces total for this recipe (if you're using a brand like Nissin Instant Noodles, that is roughly 3 packages - remember to discard the seasoning packet).

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 717Total Fat: 44gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 29gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 2027mgCarbohydrates: 62gFiber: 8gSugar: 4gProtein: 23g

A Beautiful Plate provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician.

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