“Soba noodles are made from a base of buckwheat,” says Angie Asche, MS, RD, CSSD, and expert nutritionist at Centr. “Buckwheat is, for starters, an excellent whole-grain noodle base for individuals that follow a gluten-free diet. But soba noodles are also a great source of plant-based protein and contain both fiber and essential minerals, such as iron and zinc.”
Buckwheat is also a good source of thiamin, adds Maggie Michalczyk, RDN, the founder and recipe developer behind Once Upon a Pumpkin. “Thiamin is an important B vitamin that our bodies need for energy production. Plus, because soba noodles are higher in protein and fiber than noodles made from refined wheat flour, they are better for blood sugar control than traditional pasta—the fiber helps to prevent a blood sugar spike,” Michalczyk says. “Buckwheat's flavonoid content has also been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that could help cardiovascular function by helping to lower blood pressure and fight free-radical damage in the body.”
In addition to their major health benefits, soba noodles are also insanely easy to cook. Get this: They require a maximum of three minutes in boiling water (and if you prefer them more al dente, we’d recommend something closer to two and a half minutes). Given the speed in which you can prep them as well as their versatility, it's difficult to make the case that you don't have ample time to get a delicious soba noodle dish on the table. We're talking a baseline of five minutes here, folks.
Ready to get started? To help you make the most of this superstar ingredient, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite soba noodle recipes that highlight the almighty buckwheat pasta in its many forms.
6 protein-packed, anti-inflammatory soba noodle recipes to try tonight
1. Spicy Thai Red Curry Noodles
We’re absolutely gaga over the warmth and spice that the red curry-based spicy red pepper sauce brings to this dish. "Bursting with flavor and heat, it’s perfect on noodles with extra veggies for a meal," says Michalczyk. And of course, you can never go wrong with the healthy fats and delicious plant-based creaminess provided by coconut milk—soba noodles absolutely sing when swimming in this stuff. Feel free to stir in whatever veggies you have in your crisper drawer: broccoli, peppers, mushrooms, or eggplant would all work equally well alongside your spicy soba.
Get the recipe: Spicy Thai red curry noodles
2. Spicy Peanut Soba Noodle Bowl
There are so many things to love about this recipe, but we're particularly focused on the perfectly balanced salty, nutty, and umami-forward flavor profile and the nice amount of protein you'll reap from the soba noodles, peanut butter, veggies, and peanuts. To dial up the protein content even more, stir in tofu, salmon, or scrambled eggs... the world is your oyster. The best part of all, however, it the fact that this delicious noodle bowl takes just 15 minutes to make—10 minutes of prep and just five minutes of cooking time—thanks to the soba noodle base.
Get the recipe: Spicy peanut soba noodle bowl
3. Soba Noodle Soup
Another excellent 15-minute soba noodle recipe comes in the form of this warming, soul-soothing soup, which is perfect for a cold day (or a cold). You need minimal ingredients for this easy-to-make recipe, and you can always jazz it up by adding your favorite toppings and condiments. We're partial to sriracha, a squeeze of lime, and a generous shower of fresh cilantro.
Get the recipe: Soba noodle soup
4. 10-Minute Zaru Soba (Cold Soba Noodles)
This traditional preparation of soba noodles calls for a dipping sauce that gives your soba noodles some additional moisture and flavor. Without any hot components to speak of, this is a top-notch dish for a sweltering summer day (it's basically the dream beach picnic nosh, just saying), or for a day that you’re just running a bit behind. You can also customize the toppings to fit your tastes—try adding some sauteed tofu or soft-boiled egg on top.
Get the recipe: 10-minute zaru soba
5. Soba Noodle Veggie Stir-Fry
You need just 10 minutes to make this delicious vegetarian stir-fry, which is packed with peanutty, garlic, and ginger-forward flavor and major anti-inflammatory benefits. You can adjust the amount of sriracha you add to the final product based on your heat tolerance, and feel free to mix up the veggies as well. While this stir fry is meant to be served warm, it tastes great cold, too.
Get the recipe: Soba noodle veggie stir-fry
6. Sesame Soba Noodles
There are few flavor combinations more winning than sesame and soba, and this recipe does justice to the marriage. Go heavy on the sesame dressing if you like a bit more nutty oomph to your final product, and like the aforementioned stir-fry, this is one dish that is delicious both hot and cold. We love that it also incorporates avocado, edamame, and (gorgeous) watermelon radishes for big-time cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory benefits.
Get the recipe: Sesame soba noodles
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- Li, Jing et al. “Analysis of Flavonoid Metabolites in Buckwheat Leaves Using UPLC-ESI-MS/MS.” Molecules (Basel, Switzerland) vol. 24,7 1310. 3 Apr. 2019, doi:10.3390/molecules24071310
- Giménez-Bastida, J A et al. “Buckwheat and buckwheat enriched products exert an anti-inflammatory effect on the myofibroblasts of colon CCD-18Co.” Food & function vol. 9,6 (2018): 3387-3397. doi:10.1039/c8fo00193f
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