Peanut Noodles


By Sarah Lagrotteria

What should we have for dinner?

Peanut noodles.

Again? We had those last week.

Peanut noodles.

But I’ll make anything.  Seriously, pick a cuisine and I’ll do it.  I want to try something new.

Peanut noodles.

But I’m a chef!  I need to work on my craft.  Challenge me!  I’ll make you anything you choose

Peanut noodles.

Whatever romantic explanation Angus may create for the benefit of friends and family, the truth is that he married me for my peanut noodles.

Luckily, I love them too.  And they’re easy–a mix of pantry staples plus whatever veggies and herbs you have on hand.  The base is a cool, slurpy, toothsome, peanut-buttery noodle and the best toppings are cold and crunchy.  Perfect for this hot weather.

While you can play fast and loose with the veg and protein toppings, be sure to top it all off with chopped roasted peanuts and a spoonful of spicy chili paste or siracha.  They take the dish to a whole other level.


For sauce:

1/4 cup roasted peanut oil

3 tablespoons rice vinegar or apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 clove garlic, minced

1 jalapeno pepper, minced

2 heaping tablespoons peanut butter.

12 ounces chow mein noodles

3 large carrots, julienned (cut into matchsticks)

2 small or 1 large cucumber, skin on and large seeds removed, julienned (cut into matchsticks)

Any other vegetable of choice, cut into matchsticks.  In the image above I used beets, but sugar snap peas and radishes work beautifully too.  It’s an anything-goes, clean-out-your-fridge kind of dish.

Already-cooked shredded chicken, sliced steak or raw cubed tofu as desired

Fresh mint, Thai basil, basil, cilantro or any combo of the four, roughly chopped

Roasted peanuts, chopped

Chili paste and sea salt, to taste.


If the day feels particularly sticky, I recommend crisping your cucumbers and carrots in an ice bath before adding them to the dish.  Once you cut them into matchsticks submerge them both in a bowl of ice water in the fridge.  Let sit while you prepare the sauce and noodles and then drain just before adding to the dish.  Even a short soak in an icy water bath will give the vegetables more crunch.

Bring a large pot of water to boil over medium-high heat.  Cook the noodles according to the package directions.   Drain and rinse until cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together the peanut oil, vinegar, soy, garlic and jalapeno.  Add the peanut butter and continue whisking until smooth.  Add the cool noodles and gently toss until evenly coated.

To serve I like to to make a nest of noodles in each individual bowl and then add separate little haystacks of each vegetable and whatever protein I desire.  I finish with a sprinkling of peanuts, fresh herbs, sea salt and a dollop of chili paste, offering more of all four final toppings at the table.


11 Comments on Peanut Noodles

  1. Katie
    July 21, 2010 at 11:09 am (13 years ago)

    These peanut noodles are divine and sophisticated – yet easy to prepare! I agree with Sarah – the siracha takes the dish to a whole new level. Who needs to go out to eat when you can prepare something this fresh, delicious and healthy at home?!

  2. Emily @ The Happy Home
    July 21, 2010 at 12:08 pm (13 years ago)

    oh, my goodness. this sounds absolutely heavenly. i didn’t know soaking veggies in icewater would revive them a bit– i’ll be doing that for sure! thanks for making the base vegetarian, too.

  3. Eve
    July 21, 2010 at 6:18 pm (13 years ago)

    Looks delicious! Thanks for the recipe inspiration!

  4. applesandonions
    July 21, 2010 at 6:49 pm (13 years ago)

    Thanks ladies! So glad you stopped by.

  5. nicole
    July 26, 2010 at 5:26 pm (13 years ago)

    going to make these tonight ! xx

  6. Jane Ellison
    August 10, 2010 at 5:28 pm (13 years ago)

    Can’t wait to try these, Sarah

  7. Sarah Lagrotteria
    August 11, 2010 at 8:25 am (13 years ago)

    Thanks Jane! Let us know if you have any suggestions after you do.

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