Flavorful sesame udon noodles are a perfect side dish that only takes 15 minutes to make. Serve them hot or cold.
Cold sesame udon noodles are one of my favorite takeout dishes. They're total comfort food for me. This easy version is just as delicious as the one I love to order, and it's ready in less time than it takes to decide on a takeout order and call it in.
These noodles are seriously ready in a snap.
Your cooking time will vary, depending on what kind of noodles you choose. You can find udon noodles dried or fresh. And fresh udon noodles can come frozen or refrigerated. All of these have slightly different cooking times.
Since the noodles you use will vary, so will your cooking time. Just cook them according to the package directions. Drain and rinse the noodles, and toss them with toasted sesame oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce, and sesame seeds.
Top with a sprinkle of green onions for color and umami flavor, and you are ready to serve!
If you want to serve these cold, stick them in the refrigerator to chill until mealtime. You can chill them more quickly by sticking them in the freezer for 20 minutes.
What goes with sesame noodles?
Sesame udon noodles are super versatile. Serve them up hot off of the stove, or keep a batch in the fridge for a quick meal with some air fryer tofu and a kale salad piled into a big, delicious bowl.
Here are some ideas for veggies and proteins that go well with hot or cold sesame noodles. I'd choose one protein and one to two veggies from this list.
- Napa cabbage wraps
- teriyaki tofu
- air fryer tofu
- ginger-sesame kale
- air fryer Brussels sprouts
- bok choy
- fresh shredded lettuce, cabbage, Napa cabbage, or carrots
- steamed veggies of your choice
Whether you're planning to make a bowl meal out or eat these as a side dish, you can take things to the next level with some good toppings:
- cashews or peanuts
- chopped green onion
- sriracha sauce
- vegan teriyaki sauce
Because they're just as delicious cold as they are hot, these are also perfect for meal prep. You can get about four lunches out of these sesame noodles. Just pair them with some of the proteins, veggies, and toppings listed above, and you're in business.
If you don't like or can't find udon noodles, feel free to use other noodles instead. Soba or rice noodles work great in this recipe. I've even use spaghetti or fettuccine in a pinch, when the store shelves were especially bare.
If you don't do oil, you can omit the toasted sesame oil. Just know that this is where most of the sesame flavor in this recipe comes from. If you omit the sesame oil, use an extra teaspoon of soy sauce and two extra teaspoons of rice vinegar. Also add one to two extra teaspoons of sesame seeds.
Sesame udon noodles recipe
- 4 servings udon noodles - prepared according to package directions, then drained. Do not rinse!
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- In a large bowl, toss the noodles with all of the other ingredients. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve warm or chill for a cold noodle side dish.
Frequently asked questions
Udon noodles are made from wheat flour, and you can find them fresh or dried.
The noodles I'm using in the photos and video are dried udon noodles, which aren't quite as plump as fresh. If you can get your hands on fresh udon noodles, I do recommend giving them a try! They're thick, chewy deliciousness. You can find fresh udon noodles in the refrigerator or freezer section of many Asian markets and specialty stores.
It's up to you! These are delicious either way.
Yes! Udon noodles generally don't contain egg.
Leftovers keep for up to four days in the refrigerator.
You can! Transfer to a freezer-safe container, and it will keep in the freezer for up to three months. Thaw your sesame noodles in the fridge overnight or add a splash of water and warm them in the microwave.
Sesame noodles are very versatile! If you can't find udon noodles, make these with soba or rice noodles instead. In a pinch, you can even use easier-to-find pasta, like fettuccine.
Yes! Just choose gluten-free noodles and soy sauce, and you're all set.