Easy 15 minute Yaki Udon (Stir Fried Udon Noodles)

By: MeganPosted: 15/03/2023 Updated: 20/11/2023
Prep 5 minutes
Cook 10 minutes
Total 15 minutes
This delicious and savory Yaki udon or easy Japanese stir-fried udon noodle recipe can be made in under 15 minutes! Yaki chicken udon noodles is a simple one-pan recipe that is loaded with vegetables and tossed in an umami-rich stir fry sauce for a delicious well balanced meal.
Easy 15 minute Yaki Udon (Stir Fried Udon Noodles)

This delicious and savory Yaki udon or easy Japanese stir-fried udon noodle recipe can be made in under 15 minutes! Yaki chicken udon noodles is a simple one-pan recipe that is loaded with vegetables and tossed in an umami-rich stir fry sauce for a delicious well balanced meal.

A bowl of yaki udon with table settings nearby.

Yaki udon or Japanese udon stir fry noodles will be your next favorite noodle stir fry dish. Plump, thick, and chewy udon noodles tossed in a delicious umami yaki udon sauce and vegetables create the most mouthwatering Japanese noodle dish ever.

This yaki udon recipe holds a special place in my heart because it brings back so many memories of sitting and eating with my best friends. In high school, our favorite place to go was this Asian Noodle Cafe that served all types of Asian stir-fried noodles. We would always order the yaki chicken udon and then grab a mango green tea boba next door.

Looking down at a table with a bowl of yaki udon with a pair of chopsticks.

The best part about these insanely delicious Japanese udon noodles is that you can cook the entire dish from start to finish in under 15 minutes. If you loved this easy udon recipe, be sure to check out our easy bihun goreng, chicken lo mein, Vietnamese garlic noodles, or garlic chili oil noodles!

What is Yaki Udon?

Yaki udon (焼きうどん) is a Japanese udon noodle stir-fry dish that is made with the most delicious yaki udon sauce, thick and chewy stir-fried udon tossed with a protein, carrots, mushrooms, cabbage, and green onion. Yaki roughly translates to “fry” which is why this dish is also commonly referred to as Japanese udon noodle stir fry.

Various yaki udon noodle recipes have various types of meat such as pork, shrimp, chicken, beef, or no meat at all, and a larger variety of vegetables. Yakiudon is similar to yakisoba, another popular Japanese noodle dish. However, yakisoba is made with thinner yakisoba noodles instead of udon noodles.

A bowl of yaki udon with a pair of chopsticks in it.

❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Insanely Delicious. This yaki chicken udon recipe creates the tastiest dish, which is healthier, easier, and cheaper than any take-out you could ever find.
  • Ideal for busy weeknights. One pan + 15 minutes= is the best easy udon recipe for those busy weeknights.
  • Customizable. You can mix and match different variations of vegetables and proteins for your own personalized Japanese noodles experience.

🍽 Kitchen Equipment

You will only need a few items of kitchen equipment for this easy udon recipe.

  • Medium Pot: You will need to use a pot large enough to quickly blanch and loosen the frozen udon noodles.
  • Mixing Bowls: Mixing bowls are a must to prep all of the ingredients and mix the yaki udon sauce.
  • Wok: I recommend using a wok to easily toss all the chicken, vegetables, udon noodles, and yaki udon sauce together.

🛒 Ingredients

You can find the ingredients for this yaki chicken udon at your local Japanese or Asian grocery store.

Stir Fry

  • Chicken breast: or chicken thigh is the main protein in this yaki chicken udon. You can use alternative proteins listed in the substitutions and additions section below.
  • Frozen udon noodles: frozen udon noodles can be found in the frozen aisle of most Asian grocery stores. They provide the best chewy texture that tastes fresh and is not prone to breaking and becoming overly mushy.
  • Yellow Onion: sliced and slightly caramelized for the aromatics.
  • Garlic: minced and sautéed for the aromatics.
  • Carrots, Shiitake mushrooms, Cabbage, and Green Onions: are the mix of vegetables used in the udon noodle stir fry to create a healthy well balanced dish.
  • Toasted sesame seeds: a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds works nicely as a garnish for an added nutty flavor.
All the ingredients portioned out and labeled for making the stir fried yaki udon.

Sauce Ingredients

  • Dark Soy Sauce: dark soy sauce is a sweeter and darker soy sauce than regular soy sauce that creates a rich dark brown color. I recommend using this dark soy sauce.
  • Light Soy Sauce: light soy sauce is a lighter, and less salty soy sauce than regular soy sauce that adds a hint of salty umami flavor. I recommend using this premium soy sauce.
  • Oyster Sauce: oyster sauce adds a slightly sweet, salty, and umami flavor that is the main flavoring ingredient in this stir fry sauce. I recommend using this premium oyster sauce.
  • Mirin: mirin is a slightly syrupy, Japanese cooking wine that gives the dish a sweet and tangy flavor.
  • Brown Sugar: brown sugar balances out the saltiness from the soy sauce and oyster sauce.
  • Sambal Chili Paste: a touch of sambal chili paste adds a little kick and added flavor to the yaki udon sauce.
All the ingredients portioned out and labeled for making the stir fried yaki udon.

✨ Substitutions and Additions

This is your fried udon recipe, so go ahead and customize it however you, please! I’ve listed some suggested substitutions and additions below.

  • Udon: Fresh or dry udon noodles. If you cannot find frozen udon noodles you can easily substitute them for fresh or dry udon noodles. To cook the udon noodles, simply follow the package instructions.
  • Protein: I used chicken for my Japanese yaki udon recipe, but you can alternatively use shrimp, beef, pork, or tofu instead.
  • Vegetables: if you want to swap or add baby bok choy, different mushrooms, snap peas, snow peas, broccoli or purple cabbage go ahead!
  • Chili: if you want to add another level of spice to your Japanese noodles, go ahead and add chili flakes or sriracha for added spice.
  • Garnishes: bonito flakes, kewpie mayo, furikake seasoning, and seaweed strips are also alternative garnishes you can use to level up your chicken yaki udon.

📝 How to Make Yaki Udon

This recipe shows you step-by-step how to make an udon noodles stir fry. The steps are very simple to follow. I recommend prepping all of the ingredients before you begin to cook.

Prep

  1. Season the protein. Thinly slice the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Seasoning sliced chicken thighs with salt and pepper in a bowl.
  1. Prepare the noodles. If using dry udon, prepare the noodles according to the package instructions. If using frozen udon, blanch the udon for 40-60 seconds or until the noodles are loosened. Rinse, transfer to a plate, and set aside.
  1. Mix the sauce. In a small mixing bowl, mix the dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, mirin, brown sugar, and sambal chili paste. Set aside.
Mixing together yaki udon sauce in a small glass bowl.

Stir Fry.

  1. Cook chicken. Add cooking oil to a large skillet or wok on medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes or until cooked through. Remove and set aside.
Cooking sliced chicken thighs in a large wok.
  1. Add aromatics and vegetables. Then add the sliced onion and minced garlic and sauté until fragrant about 2-3 minutes. Next add the carrots, mushrooms, cabbage, and green onions. Continue to sauté for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables have softened.
  1. Add udon noodles, chicken, and sauce. Add the softened udon noodles and toss to combine for about 30 seconds. Lastly, add the chicken and sauce and toss until everything is evenly coated.
Yaki udon after being tossed and mixed completely with the yakiudon sauce.
  1. Serve. Serve immediately and garnish with sesame seeds and green onion. Enjoy!
Up close with a bowl of yaki udon surrounded by table settings.

⭐️ Tips for the Best Yaki Udon Noodles

  • Use frozen udon noodles. Frozen udon noodles are the best option that creates the best-tasting results. Be careful to not overcook them when you blanch them in the water. Remove the udon noodles as soon as they separate from each other, it should be no longer than 1 minute.
  • Prepare the yaki udon sauce and vegetables in advance. Once you begin to stir-fry the Japanese udon recipe, everything will move pretty quickly. I recommend having the noodles cooked, all the vegetables prepped and the sauce mixed before you begin cooking.
  • Separate the noodles before adding them to stir fry. Before tossing the noodles into the hot pan, make sure to separate the noodles to prevent them from sticking. To loosen them after they have been blanched, simply run cold water through the noodles and carefully loosen them with your hands.
  • Use a wok! I highly recommend using a wok to cook your udon stir fry. It will provide you with even heat throughout the wok and give you a nice crispy char and caramelization on your noodles.

🥡 Storage Instructions

This yakiudon recipe is best served immediately but also makes great leftovers since it reheats well. You can store any leftover chicken yaki udon in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

To reheat, you can microwave or cook on the stove on medium heat until warm.

💬 Frequently Asked Q’s & A’s

What type of udon noodles do I use for yaki udon?

For the best-tasting yakiudon, I recommend using frozen udon noodles found in the frozen aisle of most Asian grocery markets. Frozen udon noodles are fresh noodles that are frozen and have a nice chewy texture that is less prone to breaking and becoming overly mushy during the cooking process compared to refrigerated fresh udon noodles.

What is udon made from?

Udon noodles are made with very few ingredients—wheat flour, water, and salt—which creates a thick and chewy consistency. Udon noodles are vegan and dairy free but they are not gluten-free.

What are yaki udon noodles made of?

Yaki udon noodles consist of thick udon noodles tossed in a soy sauce based sauce and tossed with meat and vegetables.

What is yaki udon sauce made of?

There are multiple variations of yaki udon sauce online. My recipe uses a combination of dark and light soy sauce, oyster sauce, mirin, brown sugar, and sambal chili paste.

Is yaki udon healthy?

Yaki udon can be a very healthy dish that consists of a mix of protein, vegetables, and carbs which makes it a well-balanced and nutritious dish. Nutrition information for this chicken yaki udon can be found under the recipe instructions below.

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Up close with a bowl of yaki udon surrounded by table settings.

Yaki Udon

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
This delicious and savory Yaki udon or easy Japanese stir-fried udon noodle recipe can be made in under 15 minutes! Yaki chicken udon noodles is a simple one-pan recipe that is loaded with vegetables and tossed in an umami-rich stir fry sauce for a delicious well balanced meal.
Servings: 3 servings
Print Recipe

Ingredients

Stir Fry

  • 8 oz chicken breast thinly sliced
  • 1 lb udon noodles frozen
  • ½ yellow onion sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ cup carrot julienned
  • 4 shiitake mushrooms stems removed and sliced
  • 1 cup cabbage sliced
  • 3 green onions cut into 2 inch pieces

Garnish

Yaki Udon Sauce

Instructions

Prep

  • Season the protein. Thinly slice the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • Prepare the noodles. If using dry udon, prepare the noodles according to the package instructions. If using frozen udon, blanch the udon for 40-60 seconds or until the noodles are loosened. Rinse, transfer to a plate and set aside.
  • Mix the sauce. In a small mixing bowl, mix together the dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, mirin, brown sugar, and sambal chili sauce. Set aside.

Stir Fry.

  • Cook the chicken. Add cooking oil to a large skillet or wok on medium high heat. Once the pan is hot add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes or until cooked through. Remove and set aside.
  • Add aromatics and vegetables. Then add the sliced onion and minced garlic and sauté until fragrant and lightly browned about 2-3 minutes. Next add the carrots, mushrooms, cabbage and green onions. Continue to sauté for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables have softened.
  • Add udon noodles, chicken, and sauce. Add the softened udon noodles and chicken and toss to combine for about 30 seconds. Lastly, add the yaki udon sauce and toss until everything is evenly coated.
  • Serve. Serve immediately and garnish with sesame seeds and diced green onion. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Use frozen udon noodles. Frozen udon noodles are the best option that creates the best-tasting results. Be careful to not overcook them when you blanch them in the water. Remove the udon noodles as soon as they separate from each other, it should be no longer than 1 minute.
  • Prepare the yaki udon sauce and vegetables in advance. Once you begin stir-frying the Japanese udon recipe, everything will move pretty quickly. I recommend having the noodles cooked, all the vegetables prepped and the sauce mixed before you begin cooking.
  • Separate the noodles before adding them to stir fry. Before tossing the noodles into the hot pan, make sure to separate the noodles to prevent them from sticking. To loosen them after they have been blanched, simply run cold water through the noodles and carefully loosen them with your hands.
  • Use a wok! I highly recommend using a wok to cook your udon stir fry. It will provide you with even heat throughout the wok and give you a nice crispy char and caramelization on your noodles.
  • Storage Instructions: This yakiudon recipe is best served immediately but also makes great leftovers since it reheats really well. You can store any leftover chicken yaki udon in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • To reheat, you can microwave or cook on the stove on medium heat until warm.

Nutrition:

Calories: 688kcal | Carbohydrates: 120g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 0.5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 2816mg | Potassium: 585mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 3984IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1mg

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Recipe Rating




  1. 5 stars
    Thank you! This was delicious! I did not have light soy sauce, mirin, mushrooms or frozen udon. I substituted the dark soy sauce I had on hand, white cooking wine, broccoli and dry udon. Otherwise I followed the recipe as closely as possible and it was soooooo good!! Oh! I also added a little bit of siracha. I’m keeping this recipe close by because I’m already hungry for it again. I loved your step by step pictures and directions too. You made it very easy to make a delicious lunch. Thank you!