Start With Ramen Noodles

Chicken Lo Mein
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I never was a big fan of ramen noodles until I went to college. Ramen noodles are those very inexpensive packages of curly dried noodles with a seasoning packet that college students use to make soup with a microwave oven or hot pot. (Wow, just thinking about those hot pots brought back a flood of college memories!) Start with ramen noodles and make delicious and super easy recipes in a hurry. These easy recipes are simple enough for beginning cooks to make.

With some ramen noodle packages in your pantry, you can have dinner on the table in just a few minutes, with only a few extra ingredients. All the recipes in this list use 'instant' ramen noodles, which are precooked and just need to be rehydrated with some boiling water or stock.

Because these noodles are precooked (they are usually deep fried so they are very crisp), they can be used right out of the package to add crunch to salads and sandwiches. If a recipe calls for discarding the seasoning packet, please do so and don't feel guilty about it. That packet is pretty high in sodium and lots of artificial ingredients (which doesn't make a lot of difference to college students, but still ...) and the recipe will call for other seasonings that will be delicious.

The noodles are so inexpensive, and I'm not about to pretend that the ingredients in the seasoning are good for you! We're talking about quick, filling food here, not stellar nutrition. The packets are very high in sodium, so you can add your own seasoning mixes instead of the packet if you wish, using 1 tablespoon of the homemade mix for every seasoning packet. You can find low fat and baked ramen noodle mixes too, in most grocery stores and health food stores. Just be sure to read the label so you know what you're buying.

Still, it's comforting to know that you have a few emergency meals stashed safely away in your pantry, especially during this time of world turmoil. And all of these recipes are delicious and comforting too.

Start With Ramen Noodles