Noodles are a staple food in many Asian countries, including China, Japan, North and South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam.
They are long strips, which may look almost string-like and they can vary in thickness from very thin Vermicelli noodles to much thicker udon noodles.
Noodles are popular in dishes such as Chow Mein, Pad Thai and ramen.
They can also be eaten as an addition to stir fries or soups for lunch or dinner or even as a snack. Notably, they add extra bulk to dishes to make them more substantial and filling.
So if you are planning on creating a Saturday night fakeaway, then we have a wonderful variety of noodles available to help you recreate your favourite cuisine.
Noodles are traditionally made with eggs, which would make them unsuitable for anyone following a vegan diet.
However, the good news is that there are lots of noodles available now which use alternative ingredients which are, in fact, suitable for vegans.
Biona Organic Asia Noodles for example, are suitable for both vegan and vegetarian diets.
These vegan noodles are made with spelt.
Spelt is an ancient wholegrain which is related to wheat. It has recently seen a surge in popularity.
And like other whole grains, spelt is an excellent source of dietary fibre. Fibre helps us to feel fuller for longer . Wholegrains are also richer in some vitamins and minerals compared to refined carbohydrates.
Another option for plant based noodles are the Clearspring Japanese Soba Noodles.
They are traditionally made, using slow drying techniques at low temperatures and then a roll and cut process.
These noodles are super versatile and can be included all year round in a variety of dishes including broths, stir fries and salads.
For some vegan noodle dish inspiration, why not try Singapore noodles, a vegan Thai curry or vegan ramen?
Simply substitute meat for extra vegetables or a plant-based protein like tofu or pulses. Chickpeas, lentils and beans are all good plant-based protein sources.
If you are short on time thanks to a busy lifestyle and you are looking for a quick but satisfying solution for lunch, then instant noodles could be just the answer.
They are also a great portable lunch option – just pop the pot in your bag and take to the office with you!
Instant noodles have previously had a bad press thanks to some convenience product ranges which are high in calories and salt. But the good news is that there are much healthier ranges available.
Mr Lee’s Zen Garden Vegetable Instant Noodle Pot contains vegan instant noodles which are low in calories, sugar and saturated fat and do not contain any MSG.
Freeze dried ingredients are used so that all of the nutrients are locked in to the pot.
And if you like your food with a little bit of spice, then Mr Lee’s also offers a Dragon Fire Vegetable Instant Noodle Pot, with delicious hot and sour flavours.
Itsu Satay Noodle Pot contains udon noodles in a satay flavoured miso based broth, along with a sachet of dried tofu and spring onion flavouring – yum!
These instant noodles are low in both fat and sugar, making for a filling, affordable and very convenient lunch.
If you are following a low carb diet such as the ketogenic diet, the paleo diet or the Atkins diet, then you will be looking for some carb free alternatives to your favourite foods.
Eat Water Slim Noodles are completely free from carbohydrates.
They are made with konjac flour, which is a plant based, water-soluble fibre, rich in glucomannan.
Glucomannan is digested into the stomach, where it expands by absorbing water. This helps us to feel fuller for longer and therefore much less likely to snack or overeat.
As well as this, these noodles are also wheat free, low in calories and fat free. But they retain a delicious noodle flavour and do not skimp on taste.
Holland & Barrett Organic Konjac Noodles are also carb free, fat free and sugar free and are low in calories. These are also suitable for vegans and are ready in just a couple of minutes.