Easy Soba Noodle Soup

Difficulty Easy

A steaming hot bowl of Soba Noodle Soup is the perfect light soup or snack! Incredibly delicious and savory, the list of minimal ingredients will make this an easy, go-to dish. Nutty, slightly chewy Buckwheat Soba Noodles and thinly sliced fishcake swim in a light and clear broth. Top with crushed roasted nori (Gim) and aromatic green onion for a simple yet irresistible noodle soup!

Soba Noodle Soup

Soba Noodle Soup is a simple Asian noodle soup that can be put on the table in 10 minutes. A little bit Korean, a little bit Japanese — it’s a light yet filling soup that’s satisfying and incredibly delicious.

The star ingredients are Buckwheat Soba Noodles that delicately twist and wrap around each other in a mound. And a savory, umami-rich, clear broth that’s both nourishing and warm. So cozy and comforting!

Although any number of garnishes can be added, I’ve made this 10-minute soba noodle broth especially easy with simple toppings: crushed roasted nori and aromatic green onions.

So easy and tasty, Soba Noodle Soup will become your favorite go-to easy meal!

Ingredients:

  • Soba Noodles. Japanese soba noodles are thin, dark brown noodles made from buckwheat flour. Different from wheat noodles, they taste nutty, savory, and earthy. The texture is also firmer with a pleasantly chewy and bouncy texture. Look for Soba noodles in Asian grocery stores or the international aisle of your grocery store. They keep a long time in the pantry. If you can find them, I recommend fresh soba noodles from the refrigerated section.
  • Korean Fish Cake (Eomuk). Thin, rectangular fish cakes are a freezer pantry staple in my kitchen. They add lots of umami, seafood flavor but do not taste fishy. Look for Eomuk in the frozen section at the Korean market.
  • Tsuyu or Mentsuyu. For an easy soba broth, use Tsuyu or Mentsuyu — a Japanese concentrated soup base that’s multi-functional and used for a variety of both hot and cold dishes. Commonly used as the base of soups, as well as a dipping sauce for tempura, rice dishes, etc. The umami-rich, smoky flavor comes from soy sauce, skipjack tuna, kelp, and mirin. A pantry staple that keeps a long time in the fridge.
  • Mirin. Japanese or Korean sweet cooking wine. Adds fragrance and flavor.
  • Roasted Seaweed Snack or Nori (Gim). Crush one entire package on top, as a garnish, for an earthy, deep flavor. Not the same without it!
  • Green onion. The flavorful and aromatic finishing touch.
ingredients for Soba Noodle Soup
Ingredients for Soba Noodle Soup

Instructions:

  1. Prep the broth. Gently heat water, tsuyu, and mirin until steaming hot but not boiling. Add sliced fish cakes and stir to warm through. Cover and set aside.
  2. Cook the noodles. Add soba noodles to boiling water and cook according to package directions. Drain and rinse in cold water.
  3. Garnish and serve. Add noodles to the hot soup. Gently reheat. Add crushed roasted nori and green onion. Serve immediately!

Watch how to make it:

PRO Tips:

  • Drain and rinse noodles. Do not cook the soba noodles directly in the broth! Instead, cook the noodles in a separate pot, then drain and rinse in cold water to remove excess starch. A common Asian method to avoid gummy noodles and keep the broth light and clear. Otherwise, the broth will become thick and starchy and the noodles will be gummy.
  • Use a stovetop-to-table cooking pot. To keep the dishwashing minimal, I like to use a small cooking pot that goes from stovetop to table. Prep the broth in the cooking pot. Then cook the soba noodles separately, in another pot. When the noodles are drained and rinsed, add them back to the cooking pot holding the broth and briefly warm before serving.
  • Store Korean fishcakes (Eomuk) in the freezer. They defrost quickly at room temperature. Most recipes (like Cheese Tteokbokki) only require a few fishcakes so this is an easy way to keep fishcakes on hand.
  • Check the label for completely gluten-free soba noodles. Soba noodles are made from gluten-free buckwheat flour. However, some brands combine buckwheat flour with wheat flour or contain trace amounts of wheat flour. To ensure gluten-free buckwheat soba noodles, check the packaging to make absolutely sure.

Variations:

  • Add vegetables. Add vegetables to Soba Noodle Soup for more nutrition and fiber. Baby spinach, julienned carrot, and shitake mushrooms are all nice additions.
  • Make it meaty. Add thinly sliced meat, like the kind used in hot pot, for a meatier dish.
  • Make it vegan. Swap out the Tsuyu with soy sauce and a pinch of sugar. Instead of fish cake, substitute with thinly sliced tofu or deep-fried tofu pockets.
  • Add miso. Add 1 tsp miso paste for a slightly different broth. I recommend Shiro Miso paste for its mild and sweet flavor.

Any other noodle suggestions?

Instead of Buckwheat soba noodles, any of these noodle varieties will also work well:

  • Udon Noodles. Thick, chewy wheat noodles. Look for frozen udon noodles as they keep their texture best. To defrost, simply add frozen noodles to the hot broth and they will unravel. Heat briefly on medium heat until hot and serve.
  • Somen/Somyeon Noodles. Thin wheat Japanese/Korean noodles. Cook separately then rinse in cold water, just like the soba noodles so they don’t become gummy and mushy.
  • Instant Ramen Noodles. Thin and chewy wheat noodles that cook in 2 minutes. They are found inside packaged instant ramen. Do not use the soup flavoring packets. FYI you can also buy instant ramen noodles without soup flavoring packets.

Serve with:

Soba Noodle Soup is a light yet filling soup. Good for a snack or side dish. The flavors make it an ideal dish to serve alongside:

  • Tonkatsu. Deep fried breaded pork cutlet.
  • Tempura shrimp or Tempura vegetables. Deep fried tempura battered shrimp or vegetables.
  • Gyeran Mari (Korean Rolled Omelet). Thin layers of rolled egg omelet. A classic Korean side dish that can be put on the table in 10 minutes.

FAQ:

Is there a substitute for Tsuyu or Mentsuyu?

If you don’t have access to Japanese Tsuyu or Mentsuyu, substitute with equal parts soy sauce + pinch of sugar and simmer the soup with a small piece of kombu for 10 minutes. It won’t taste exactly the same so I recommend purchasing Tsuyu or Mentsuyu for making this dish.

Can I multiply the portion and make for my family?

Yes, the recipe easily multiplies for a larger portion. I often serve Soba Noodle Soup for my family of 5. A simple and tasty soup noodle that’s enjoyed by everyone.

More noodle recipes:

More easy soup recipes:

gold cooking pot filled with soba noodle soup with roasted nori and green onion garnish

Easy Soba Noodle Soup

The Subversive Table | Lis Lam
A steaming hot bowl of Soba Noodle Soup is the perfect light soup or snack! Incredibly delicious and savory, the list of minimal ingredients will make this an easy, go-to dish. Nutty, slightly chewy Buckwheat Soba Noodles and thinly sliced fishcake swim in a light and clear broth. Top with crushed roasted nori (Gim) and aromatic green onion for a simple yet irresistible noodle soup!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Course Side, Soup
Cuisine Asian, Japanese, Korean
Servings 1
Calories 199 kcal

Equipment

  • ramen cooking pot (a cooking pot that can be tranferred fron stovetop to table is ideal)
  • medium saucepan (for cooking noodles)
  • Colander

Ingredients
  

  • 6 oz Buckwheat Soba Noodles
  • 1 sheet Korean fish cake (Eomuk)
  • 2 Tbsp Tsuyu or Metsuyu concentrated broth
  • 1 Tbsp Mirin
  • 1 1/2 cup water

For garnish:

  • 1 green onion, finely diced
  • 1 individual package roasted seasoned seaweed snack (gim)

Instructions
 

  • Make the broth. In a small saucepan, add water, Tsuyu or Metsuyu, and Mirin. Heat on medium heat until steaming. Cover and turn off heat.
  • Add fishcakes. Slice Korean fishcakes (eomuk) into thin 1/2-inch strips. Add directly to the broth, stirring briefly to warm. Cover so the broth stays warm.
  • Cook soba noodles. Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water, about 1 liter or 4 cups. Bring to a boil. When the water comes to a boil with bubbles breaking the surface, add soba noodles. Cook according to package directions, about 3-5 minutes.
  • Drain soba noodles. Drain noodles in a colander. Rinse with cold water until cool to the touch. Set aside.
  • Garnish and serve. Add drained noodles to the broth and fishcakes. If needed, briefly reheat for 1 minute on medium heat until steaming. If needed, trasnfer noodles and broth to a bowl. Crumble the seaweed snack with your hands, directly on top. Add green onion. Eat immediately!

Video

Notes

Variations:
  • Add vegetables. Add vegetables to Soba Noodle Soup for more nutrition and fiber. Baby spinach, julienned carrot, and shitake mushrooms are all nice additions.
  • Make it meaty. Add thinly sliced meat, like the kind used in hot pot, for a meatier dish.
  • Make it vegan. Swap out the Tsuyu with soy sauce and a pinch of sugar. Instead of fish cake, substitute with thinly sliced tofu or deep-fried tofu pockets.
  • Add miso. Add 1 tsp miso paste for a slightly different broth. I recommend Shiro Miso paste for its mild and sweet flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 199kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 9gFat: 0.2gSaturated Fat: 0.03gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.04gSodium: 372mgPotassium: 96mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 236IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 27mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Soba Noodle Soup
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15 minutes, All Recipes, Asian, Seafood, Side, Snacks, Soup, Weeknight Meals

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