Homemade Easy Healthy Vegan Vegetable Chow Mein that’s better than takeout and almost as easy! With crispy noodles, stir-fried veggies, and savory sauce, there are lots to love about this vegan version of a Chinese classic.
I did not enjoy the very first time I got Chinese takeout. So I started avoiding getting Chinese. But one day I went to a Chinese restaurant with my partner and I LOVED the food. So, I started eating more Chinese from then, but the takeout we get nowadays ( I live in the UK ) are not really proper ‘Chinese’ food.
basically, the Chinese have adapted their recipes to suit the Western palate. That is why perhaps, I did not like the very first Chinese takeout I had.
So, I decided to start making my own Chinese food – the result, absolutely amazing. Substituting the meat with tofu or vegetables, using less fat, and just focus on the spices, sauces, and the cooking of the vegetables. It might not be the authentic Chinese food and traditional food you get in China, but it’s certainly a lot better ( and healthier ) than the Chinese takeout we get nowadays.
INGREDIENTS FOR THIS YUMMY CHOW MEIN:
We’re using dried chow mein noodles for this recipe because in my experience the fresh ones usually contain egg. You can buy dried chow mein noodles at most supermarkets, or online.
If you can’t find chow mein noodles, try substituting ramen noodles, which are very similar. What’s really important is the thickness — you want your noodles to be on the thinner side so they crisp up easily when you fry them.
Our sauce is a simple mixture of soy sauce, dark mushroom soy sauce, hoisin sauce, brown sugar, cornstarch, and sesame oil. Just about all of these ingredients are available at the supermarket, except maybe the dark mushroom soy sauce, which you can buy online or in an Asian market.
If you can’t get your hands on the mushroom soy sauce, substitute additional regular soy sauce — you might just need a splash extra (dark mushroom soy sauce is more intense than regular), which you can add at the end of cooking when you taste-test the noodles.
Scallions, garlic, and ginger are our aromatics and will be adding some extra flavor to the chow mein.
Shiitake mushrooms, carrots, celery, and cabbage are our stir-fry veggies. Feel free to substitute with your favorites or whatever you have on hand, keeping in mind that harder veggies can be added to the skillet earlier, and softer ones later.
Let’s make some Chinese!
Do let me know how you found this Easy Healthy Vegan Vegetable Chow Mein if you do try it though! And if there was anything you tried or something that worked better…Do drop me a comment below, or you can find me/message me directly on Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, or Facebook! I love seeing what my lovely readers think of my recipes!
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Easy Healthy Vegan Vegetable Chow Mein
- 8 ounces dried chow mein noodles you can substitute with ramen noodles if needed
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon dark mushroom soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
- 2 teaspoons organic brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 4 tablespoons of sesame seed oil divided
- 6 ounces shiitake mushrooms stems removed, cleaned, and sliced
- 4 scallions white and green parts separated, white parts finely chopped, green parts cut into 1-inch lengths
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 1 cup julienne cut carrots about 2 medium carrots
- 1 cup chopped celery about 2 medium stalks
- 1 1/2 cups sliced cabbage
- Add the noodles and cook them according to the package directions.
- Drain the noodles into a colander, rinse them with cold water, and then return them to the pot. Toss the noodles with a dash of oil to prevent sticking.
- Whisk the soy sauce, mushroom soy sauce, hoisin sauce, brown sugar, cornstarch, and sesame oil together in a small bowl, making sure to dissolve the sugar.
- Place a large skillet or wok with a nonstick surface over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons of oil to the skillet.
- Give the oil a few minutes to heat up, and then add the noodles, arranging them in a relatively even layer.
- Fry the noodles in the oil for about 2 minutes until they begin to crisp on the bottom, then use a fork or spatula to redistribute the noodles. Continue cooking and redistributing the noodles every 2 minutes or so, until they have lots of crispy spots. This should take a total of about 8 minutes.
- Remove the noodles from the skillet and transfer them to a plate.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet. Give it a minute to heat up, then add the mushrooms.
- Let the mushrooms cook for about 4 minutes until they begin to soften up and brown on the bottoms.
- Push the mushrooms to the side and add the garlic, ginger, and white parts of scallions to the skillet. Cook the aromatics for about 1 minute, until very fragrant, being careful to avoid burning.
- Raise the heat to high and add the carrots and celery to the skillet. Stir-fry the veggies until they brighten in color slightly, about 2 minutes.
- Add the cabbage and continue to stir-fry for about 1 minute, until it just begins to soften.
- Return the noodles to the skillet and add the soy sauce mixture. Use a fork or spatula to distribute the ingredients, making sure to get an even coating of the sauce on the noodles.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the green parts of the scallions.
- Divide onto plates and serve.