Yaki Udon is a simple one-pan meal loaded with vegetables, mushrooms, and your choice of protein coated in an incredibly flavorful sauce that will have you craving for more. This recipe calls for simple ingredients to make the best stir fried udon noodles in just 15 minutes!
Easy weeknight dinner made in a single pan!
Stir fried udon is, without a doubt, one of my favorite meals to make during the week due to its ease of preparation and scrumptious taste.
The thick, chewy texture of Japanese udon noodles makes them my top choice to use in a quick stir fry, as they are truly the best at soaking up all the flavors of the sauce.
Above all, I always make sure to have packs of udon noodles ready to go in my freezer to use in my emergency meals, as they are so convenient to cook with.
I’ve shared many stir fried udon recipes on my blog including Kimchi Udon, Bulgogi Udon, and Creamy Mushroom Miso Udon, but these Yaki udon noodles are the most classic and popular version of stir-fried udon noodles.
What is Yaki Udon?
Yaki Udon (焼きうどん) is a stir-fried udon noodle dish from Japan that’s made with an assortment of vegetables and meat coated in a delicious sweet and savory sauce.
The name of the dish translates to “fried udon” (“Yaki” meaning fry or grill), which also indicates the type of noodles being used.
A similar rendition of this dish is Yakisoba, which is another well-known Japanese noodle dish that’s made with yakisoba noodles instead of udon.
Yaki udon noodles are incredibly popular in Japan and can be often found at festivals (omatsuri) and Izakayas (Japanese pubs) around the world, with the most popular variations being shrimp or chicken Yaki udon.
Thanks to its ease of preparation, Yaki udon is also enjoyed at home in many Asian households in different variations depending on the available ingredients.
Thanks to its versatile flavors, it’s also the perfect dish to make to clean out your fridge and use up your left-over ingredients to make a delicious stir fried udon.
If you have any kewpie mayo and bonito flakes on hand, I highly recommend adding them as garnishes to add as much umami flavor as possible. It is absolutely delicious!
What do I need to make Yaki Udon?
The best part about this dish is that it requires simple ingredients from your kitchen to put together, in which the assortment of veggies/meat can be easily altered to your preference.
Here is a list of ingredients you will need for this recipe:
- Udon noodles: I prefer using frozen “Sanuki-style” udon noodles for this recipe as they are easily accessible, store for months in the freezer, and the best type of udon to use in a stir fry.
- Frozen udon noodles have a nice chewy texture and are less prone to getting mushy and overcooked during the cooking process.
- Shrimp or chicken: or your choice of protein including thinly sliced beef, pork, bacon, or other types of seafood.
- Some vegetarian options include tofu, mushrooms, or you can simply add other vegetables like bell pepper or bok choy to the mix.
- Onion & garlic: for the aromatics.
- Cabbage, carrot, mushrooms & green onions: to add to the stir fry. Feel free to be creative with this! Stir-fries are a great opportunity to use up leftover vegetables from your fridge.
- Dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, mirin, and brown sugar: for the sauce. You can optionally add some Gochugaru or crushed red pepper to the sauce if you like a hint of spice.
- Kewpie mayo, bonito flakes, toasted sesame seeds, and/or green onions: optional for garnish.
Tips & tricks to make the best Yaki Udon Noodles
Although this Yaki udon recipe is easy to follow, I wanted to share few helpful tips to help your cooking process. Here are some tips to make the best udon stir fry:
Prepare your ingredients in advance including the sauce.
Stir fry dishes come together quickly in a hot pan, and preparing all components in advance will make your process a lot easier!
Quickly thaw your frozen noodles by using hot water.
To thaw your frozen noodles in the easiest way possible, soak them in hot water for about a minute, and use a pair of chopsticks to carefully loosen the noodles.
When the noodles are loose, drain and rinse them under cold water in a colander to retain the texture, and set aside to use in the stir fry.
You can also prepare them in boiling water, but I found that preparing them this way is a lot more convenient and time-efficient.
Use a wok to ease your cooking process.
This is essential cookware to use for any stir-fry dishes, including this Yaki udon recipe.
A wok distributes heat quickly & evenly on the entire surface, and the curvature allows the food to be tossed around without causing a mess.
Using a wok will also help to caramelize the noodles as the high heat creates a delicious charred flavor as the sauce hits the pan.
And there you have it! So long as you follow the right steps, making your own udon stir fry is so easy to do in the comfort of your home.
As mentioned earlier, this stir fry dish is prepared in a single wok or large pan, which makes cleanup a breeze!
Let’s be honest, we could all use less dishes to clean, and simple recipes like this are truly a breath of fresh air.
I hope you enjoy this shrimp or chicken Yaki udon recipe, and please feel free to leave a comment below or message me on Instagram for any questions!
Other easy Dinner recipes you may like:
- 10-Minute Egg Fried Rice
- Creamy Mushroom Miso Udon
- Melt-In-Your-Mouth Japanese Hamburger Steak
- Bulgogi Beef Udon Stir Fry
- Spicy Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta
Easy 15-Minute Yaki Udon (Stir Fried Udon Noodles)
- 2 tbsp cooking oil divided
- 2 servings (500g) udon noodles frozen
- 1/2 lb shrimp or thinly sliced chicken, beef, pork, bacon, tofu, or extra vegetables
- 1/2 medium onion sliced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup cabbage shredded
- 1/4 cup carrot julienned
- 3 mushrooms sliced
- 2 green onions chopped
- kewpie mayo, bonito flakes, toasted sesame seeds, and/or green onions for garnish, optional
- 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 tbsp mirin
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp Gochugaru (Korean chili flakes) or red pepper flakes, optional
- Season shrimp or your choice of protein with salt and pepper. Combine all sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
- To prepare your udon noodles, soak them in hot water for about a minute, and use a pair of chopsticks to carefully loosen the noodles. Rinse with cold water, drain, and set aside.
- Heat oil in a wok or a large pan over medium heat and and the shrimp or your choice of protein. Cook for about 2 minutes or until opaque. Remove and set aside.
- Add oil to the same wok, add onion and garlic, and cook until aromatic. Add cabbage, carrot, and mushrooms, and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the cooked shrimp, udon noodles, and sauce, and toss them together until the noodles are evenly coated. Add green onions and mix to combine. Garnish and enjoy!
♥ Did you make this recipe? Please give it a 5-star rating or leave a comment below to share your experience, or tag @cookerru on Instagram to showcase your creations!
Made this last night with chicken and it came out crazy good. Highly recommend to anyone. Thanks for all the tips!
Awesome! So happy you enjoyed the recipe Paul! Thanks for sharing 🙂
That was sooo good!!! Thank you for your recipe. It’s so easy and delicious. I can’t wait to try your other recipes!
The pleasure’s all mine Pepi! So glad you liked it!
what were the utensils used?
Please make yakisoba next!
Coming up just for you! x
I made it with tofu. I love this sauce with gochugaru. It is so tasty!!!
Yay! So glad you enjoyed it. Thanks so much for sharing! 🙂
I made this dish multiple times and its so delicious! Love this easy recipe!!
Awesome!! It’s definitely my go-to udon recipe as well!
I just made this (for breakfast haha) and it was delicious! Usually, I change up recipes a little to fit my taste more, but for this I didn’t have to change anything at all! I will definitely be making this again, and thanks for a great recipe 🙂
The pleasure’s all mine!! I am so happy you enjoyed it Aiman!
So delicious and easy! Perfect quick and yummy lunch or dinner
Easy weeknight dinners for the win! So glad you enjoyed the recipe Sydney!
Made this for dinner last night and it was yummy. Didn’t even get any complaints from the kiddo about chicken being present which means the sauce was great! I tried to ask for gochugaru at the store (living in Shibuya at the moment) and I thought the ingredient name was Japanese? So, since I didn’t feel like chopping the dried chilis I just used the 7 spice powder instead and it had a nice little kick!
That’s wonderful to hear Becki! You’re right that Gochugaru does sound a little Japanese, haha but it’s actually Korean chili flakes that’s prominent across many of our dishes! It’s just for extra spice though, so definitely can use an alternative spice or chili pepper if that’s all you have at hand Thanks for sharing your experience!
Hmm, that’s very odd! The recipe calls for 2 servings of frozen udon noodles, and it’s the same ratio of ingredients I go by in the video, which should make the noodles very saucy. Perhaps you could make a little bit more sauce next time and adjust to your liking? That would help in adding more vegetables to the mix as well!
Perfection. Thanks for sharing this recipe! The best yaki udon noodles I’ve ever had, even better than restaurants.
I am so thrilled to hear that! Thanks for sharing Kellina! ♡
This was fast, easy and delicious! I didn’t have any gochugaru so I subbed in a little bit of gochujang since I had that on hand.
This is so easy to make and so flavorful! Udon isn’t accessible to me so I made use of another type of noodles and made sure to stick to the sauce proportions. This will be one of my go-to recipes!
Amazing! Glad it worked out for you Clarisse! 🙂
This was very good and was quick to make. I used 1 Tablespoon of Gochujang in place of the honey and Gochugaru chili powder. Will definitely make this again!
That is a great substitution! So happy you enjoyed it Samantha ♡
It was easy to make and delicious. My family loved it, especially my daughter who often refuses to try new flavors. She said “thanks Japan”, when I mentioned the origin of the dish. Hubby said it was flavorful, yet not overpowered by the sauce. Thanks for sharing.
How adorable! I am so glad your family enjoyed it Barbara. 🙂
I used the noodles and sauce and because I was very short of time just added sliced mushrooms, prawns and spring onions. It was delicious and we will be making this again!
So, I found this by googling “tiktok chili garlic noodles” and then following the link to udon noodles in your recipe FOR the tiktok noodles! Still haven’t made the tiktok noods because I keep making these ones – they’re SO good and so easy. I’ve taken to buying a bag of coleslaw mix so that the prep is even easier. Thank you!!
Soooo DELISH!! Quick and easy recipe, instructions easy, used prawns as protein, although I choose not to eat them, my husband said he would eat this dish with only VEGETABLES!! Yah, win win for me!
Super easy and delicious! Quick weekday dinner and tastes so good like you’re in a proper restaurant:)
The best udon noodles I have ever tried! I used tofu in place of shrimp and added some nori flakes to serve. It was fantastic! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.
My first time ever to comment on a recipe. YUM!!! So EASY and so GOOD!!! Didn’t have Gochugaru so used crushed red pepper instead. It was a HIT! Thank you for this recipe! It’s a keeper!
I used ground beef instead of shrimp since that’s what I have in my freezer. Can’t wait to try your other recipes!
Just tried this today and came out so good even my 5-yr old loved it and said to make it everyday. Didn’t even change anything. Thank you so much!
Really delicious! Thanks for your recipes, and for your TikTok, which is where I found you. I already have a few more dishes I’m planning to try out.
Added stir fied chicken – YUMMY rice dish. Quick and easy!!
Very tasty and easy. Thanks for your tips
Delicious recipe. Will definitely make it again!
Love it thank you
Easy and delicious! Used chicken and came out fabulous!!!
Made this finally! I made it with onions and red peppers and I omitted the brown sugar altogether because something in the sauce had a slight sweetness (possibly the mirin). Anyway, we don’t like our savory meals to be too sweet. Made this in a wok with thinly sliced rib eye. Will make again … Delish!
Just made this today and it was delicious! Thank you for a great, easy recipe!
This was so good! Everyone loved it. Thank you for the recipe! Looking forward to trying more of your dishes.
I followed the recipe with the exception of the veggies. I added yellow peppers and snow peas as I was ‘cleaning out the fridge’. It turned out great. Will definitely do again. took me longer to prep than it did to make.
True simple greatness! Flexible for most ingredients & a fun way to use veggie leftovers! Thank you ❤️
I made this for the family last night, and it was a huge hit! I can’t wait to try more of your recipes!
A perfectly easy and delicious meal. My partner and I keep talking about how good the sauce was and how versatile this could be to use up vegetables at the end of the week!
It was fantastic! I vegied it up with zucchini, red bell pepper, more mushrooms, and celery. The sauce is so great over all of it, and it’s just YUM!!
I love udon noodles with anything!! Your recipe was quick easy and very tasty. I was wondering do you know the flavors of the pan fried chicken with udon noodles and black sesame seeds from noodles and company, my family loves that flavor in that???
this is so good! i made substitutions with regard to soy sauce, I used a combination of dark and normal as I have my palatte is inclined towards the saltier side.
This was so good! I doubled the sauce because we love a lot of saucey flavor, and I added broccoli and it was so good! Will def make again! Thank you!
The best udon recipe I’ve ever made/had