Transform ultra low-cost ramen noodles into a hearty, delicious and flavourful dinner that is worthy of a payday splurge, without the hefty cost. Pork tenderloin is roasted in a sweet and sticky sauce along with onions, carrots and frozen peas then tossed into your University go-to. With only 30 minutes to make, this Hoisin Pork + Ramen Noodles is the answer to the age-old question of “what’s for dinner?”.
The day I found-out I was accepted into grad school was the first day I had started recipe testing my Tex-Mex Egg & Chickpea Rice Bowls. It was March and I laughed so hard when I caught-on to the irony of eating rice and beans for dinner the day my budgeting would have to change dramatically. As I am nearly a year into that reality, I figured it was time to really lean-into the whole University student reality and finally publish something with ramen. Plus, how on-brand is this?!?!
Food blogging note: Yes, I can sometimes recipe test for months-upon-months before posting a recipe. As I don’t work on the blog full-time, sometimes it is because life just happens. Most times, it is planned like in the case of the aforementioned Tex-Mex Egg & Chickpea Rice Bowls. I knew I was onto something AMAZING and wanted to get it 100% right and with the right spin before publishing. So, when I had the chance to pitch to one of my favourite commodity group partners, Egg Farmers of Canada, I was able to approach them with a fully thought-out recipe idea that was sure to drive impact. The more you know!
This meal’s inspiration was simple. I literally eat Sapporo Ichiban Ramen at least once a week. I love it so much, that since i was a kid it’s been called simply ‘Favourite Soup’. I typically prepare it with frozen peas, maybe some thinly sliced carrots and whatever leftover onion or spinach I have kicking at the back of the fridge. I also usually split the package into two meals because of how much veg I add to the soup. Well, one day I accidently dumped the entire seasoning packet into the water when I had only cooked half the noodles. I added more water, of course, but was left with a half-package of plain ol’ ramen noodles. The next day I rummaged in the fridge and ended up tossing them in hoisin and fish sauce and my-oh-my was that tasty. For the blog, I rounded-out the classic struggle meal with pork tenderloin, which, if you are a long-time reader of this blog you will know is kinda my go-to cut for pork. Delicious!
Pro tip: You can buy packages of 6 plain ramen noodles in many grocery stores for about $1.50 or load-up on the $0.23 single packs that include the flavour packet to make the broth for soup. Please note these are prices from Manitoba, Canada and mileage may vary! If you go the latter route, don’t throw away the packets of flavouring! Store it in the cupboard and use as a soup base when you are needing a quick pick-me-up, or mix with water in place of broth for recipes when you don’t have any on hand.
This dish also packs and heats-up well for lunches the next day. This is a great option for meal prep! Coming-out at three hearty portions for this recipe, it also would fare well for family dinner. If you are planning to use as leftovers, I like to throw a tablespoon or two of water into the container before I press ‘start’ on the microwave to keep everything moist.
All-in-all, I am *pretty* sure you will love this recipe. Feel free to omit the Chinese Cooking WIne (Shaoxing Wine) in the recipe. However, it is a great addition and truly something i think every budget pantry should have! I often use it in my asian-inspired recipes and it truly gives off a certain oomph to the dishes (such as my popular Budget Egg Roll Rice Bowl). Don’t have the wine? According to a great article on Spruce Eats, gin makes a great substitute! Which just may be why my G+T pictured in the photos went oh-so-well with the ramen noodles! Don’t want booze in your food? Apple juice or white grape juice also work – however, if you go that route, omit the sugar.
Hoisin Pork + Ramen Noodles
- 1/3 cup hoisin sauce
- 3 tbsp soya sauce
- 3 tbsp shaoxing wine (Chinese cooking wine) Optional, see note
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp canola oil
- 1/2 tsp fish sauce
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- chili flakes Optional - to taste
- 1 medium yellow onion (about 3/4 cup, sliced)
- 1 cup carrots (cut batonnet style, or small and uniform!)
- 1 pork tenderloin (1 pound)
- 3/4 cup frozen peas
- 3 squares ramen noodles
- Green Onions for garnish
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In small bowl, mix hoisin, soya sauce, shaoxing wine (or substitute, see note), sugar, canola oil, fish sauce, garlic and chili flakes.
- Place onions and carrots in middle of baking/casserole dish the length of pork tenderloin. Place pork tenderloin the in the middle and pour sauce mixture over.
- Bake in oven, uncovered for 20-25 minutes. At the 15 minute mark of cooking, baste the tenderloin and then add frozen peas and stir to incorporate. Return to oven.
- Boil water and cook ramen noodles for about 2 minutes. Drain.
- Remove pork from oven and remove from baking dish to rest. Toss prepared ramen noodles in sauce and veggie mixture. Thinly slice pork.
- Portion-out noodles into three bowls. Top with pork and green onions as garnish. Enjoy!
Did you make Hoisin Pork + Ramen Noodles at home?
If so, take a picture and tag it with #peppersandpennies! I love seeing your creations and will gladly share your photo!