Everyone loves peanut noodles right? I mean, what’s not to love about a nutty, slightly sweet, savory bowl of noodles?! These noodles come together quicker than it’d be to decide on where to order takeout from. Best of all, the sauce is made from pantry ingredients so you’re pretty much good to go whenever the craving hits.
Instead of peanut butter for noodles, I went with almond butter, but you can use any sort of nut butter you want. Or you could even go with seeds and use sesame paste. Heck, you could even make this with peanut butter. The reason I skipped out on that is because Mike is allergic and even though he pretty much doesn’t care if I eat peanuts (he’s not severely sensitive, thank goodness) I don’t really like having peanuts in the house. Instead I have a little section of our pantry devoted to nut butters.
Because the ingredients are so simple for this recipe, it goes without saying that the ingredients you do use should be good. In this case that means nut butters without sugar, real soy sauce (not the chemically brewed kind), and of course, good udon. I actually made this with udon that I don’t normally buy. To be honest, I was randomly hungry in the middle of the night and our usually stash of udon in the freezer was out. I found a sad package of that udon you can buy in a clear plastic bag and used that. Don’t be like me! Buy the good stuff!
How to Buy Good Udon
Udon generally comes packaged three different ways. There’s frozen udon, packaged shelf stable udon, and dried udon. For our purposes we’re not going to talk about dried udon. Dried udon is usually thinner that what we imagine when we think of udon.
Between the two other types of udon, you definitely want to make the special trip out to the Asian grocery store for the frozen sanuki style udon. Sanuki udon is thick and chewy, square cut slurpable strands that have the best texture ever. They’re sold in the freezer section, cleverly portioned out in individual serving bricks and usually come in a package of five. They’re essentially pre-cooked and all they need is a quick defrost in a bowl of warm water (if you’re going to be stir frying) or a very quick dip in a pot of boiling water (if you’re going to be saucing). They are the udon you should buy.
If you can’t make it to the Asian grocery store then I guess you can buy the shelf-stable udon that comes in clear plastic bagels. They even sell these on amazon. They’ll work well enough but they just don’t have the supple chew of the frozen udon and then tend to break into sad short noodle strands if you heat them up too long.
Oh, there’s also fresh udon too, of course. The kind where they make it with flour, salt, and water; roll it; then cut it out. We’re not going to talk about that kind because unless you have a fresh udon shop near you that is willing to sell you udon, you’re pretty much fresh out of luck for that kind.
Anyway, all that and I’m going to say: you don’t even have to use udon for this recipe! You can pretty much use any noodle you want, even pasta. I’ve done it before and I love it. Especially short shapes that I can just spoon into my mouth. SO GOOD.
Super Simple Peanut Free Peanut Noodles
Savory nutty peanut free peanut noodles – better and faster than take out!
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 3 mins
Total Time 5 mins
- 1 tbsp almond butter or nut butter of choice
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
- 1 tsp sugar optional
- 1 package udon noodles
- chili flakes to finish
- toasted sesame seeds to finish
- sliced green onions to finish
In a bowl, mix together the almond butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, toasted sesame oil, and sugar until smooth. Set aside.
Cook the udon according to the package instructions. Use a pair of tongs to move the udon from the cooking water to the bowl with the sauce. Don’t pour out the water yet.
Toss until the noodles are coated, thinning out with a bit of cooking water if needed. Enjoy topped with chili flakes, sesame seeds, and green onions!